Sunday, December 31, 2017

Plans for 2018

This next year promises to be great. I have spent the last week reflecting on how my year went.Last year's school year was very stressful. We had a large turnover, especially in the office/administration side. That was the negative part. On the positive side, in April I learned I had been one of five teachers in our state selected to spend three weeks at the Hermitage Artist Retreat in Manasota Key, Florida. I spent three glorious weeks in a cottage on the beach working on revision of my latest book and starting a new one.  That was the happiest I had been all year.  This school year has been great. However, I signed up for two book challenges besides the one I participate in on Goodreads. I accomplished nothing on either one. I did reach my 150 book goal on Goodreads. It is only because I got behind on reviews of picture books that I was able to reach it. I had started putting weight back on after losing so much for my double knee surgery.  So when I reflect back on last year to make plans for this year I have made some decisions that are all about me.

My Health
My goal for this year is to stick closer to my paleo diet. I had lost so much weight and still have a long way to go. I felt so much better. Before the next school year starts I want to drop 50-70 pounds.  This means not only sticking to my paleo lifestyle, but putting more exercise into my life.

My Reading Life
I was stressed by struggling to read and write this year.  You know you have slacked off when publishers and authors contact you to see if everything is okay.  I am dropping my Goodreads goal from 150 to just 50 books.  I am not officially signing up for any reading challenges. I want reading to be fun again and not feel like a chore.

My Writing Life
I want to spend more time working seriously on my own writing. One thing that has been a hindrance is that I currently have no personal computer of my own. I have been taking my school laptop back and forth from school. This means all of the programs I own for reading and writing have been unavailable to me because so many things are blocked by my district. I can't download anything. In February that will be remedied. We were an "A" school this year and so with part of my bonus money I will be purchasing another laptop.  My goal is to write a minimum of three times a week for a minimum of an hour. I say a minimum because with school teaching and testing things can quickly get out of control.

My Creative Life
I plan to start painting and quilting again. There are a couple of projects that I began a year or more back and just never got back to them. When I stopped doing some of the creative things I loved I became a stressed out cranky person.

My Family Life
A few months back my husband and I started going to "Pop Craft", a gourmet popsicle place, on Saturdays. This was our weekly "date". We need to spend more time together, just us. My mother lives with us so we go very few places.  We have to start making time for US.

My Work Life
This is the one I know I struggle with the most. As a teacher I am always putting my job first. This has led to problems in many areas of my life. I get to work an hour to an hour and a half early. I leave 1 - 2 hours later than others.  I bring work home.  I have gotten better. However, this next year, unless there is a critical deadline for the next day, I must stop bringing work home. That will leave me several hours for the things I listed above.

My Plan
One way I am going to do this is to journal each week. I want to take a look at these areas and see how I did and what I need to improve. That is what I do with my job. If it is important enough for me to do this for my job, then it is even more important and valuable for me to do it in other areas of my life. I need to keep a calendar of my activities like I do for school, or reviews I agree to do. I believe with these things in place at the beginning of 2018 that my life will be better.

If you have any suggestions or would like to share what your plans are for the new year please leave me a comment.

1 comment:

  1. Reading your words reminds me of why I write and why I visit schools to talk to kids about writing. Teachers are superheroes and we as authors need to support them however possible. Writing books thst offer great reaching moments, along with support materials, is a must for mid-grade and YA authors. We need good teachers like you, and I believe that by working together we can make a real difference.