In with the new …

ID-10088168Over many years, rather than a list of resolutions of what I would like ‘to do‘ for the year, I had thought of new beginnings in philosophical terms of what I would like ‘to be‘ such as being responsible for my own destiny; developing a strong core of principled values, beliefs, and attitudes; and showing courage, kindness and fairness.

Whilst commendable, that philosophical framework did little to actually move me forward out of the mud of the nearly four years of the marital property legal settlement. For that, practical aims were needed and a return of that dreaded ‘to-do’ list. In that regard, I was buoyed by a suggestion to re-frame the processes for the settlement as steps towards my future, rather than thinking in terms of being stuck in the past. That suggestion was as if a light had come on. My mother, also recognizing I was suffering a dread of pushing through the legal steps rather than an inability to get over emotional aspects, later reinforced this. “You just have to get stuck in and get it all done”, were her words to me. So, even though I yearned for the luxury of starting my new life, in 2014, I had to push aside my emotional pain and set practical goals to get the marital settlement over the line.

In January 2015, the legal papers were finally signed. Even though there would be no going back, the actual processes would still take some time. Because of administrative tasks, I was not yet free. At the time, my mother was also gravely ill and I was sharing in her full- time care. My life was still on hold. However, with the sale of the business, and changes happening around me, I needed a new focus for the year – for me. On January 02, with a lightening bolt of an idea, I decided to focus on my health for a full year. Throughout 2015, while caring for my mother and grieving her death, while dealing with administrative tasks of the legal separation, while sorting out the 600 archive boxes in the shed, I have clung onto that one goal for 2015 as something for me. I achieved that goal. Now, rather than having a feeling of still being stuck because I have not moved on as I am living in the same house in the same town, I have not started a new career, and I have not been on any exciting adventures; I do have an enormous sense of achievement in keeping to that goal. Moreover, my health, weight improvement (and new wardrobe) have transformed me.

Keeping goals makes me feel good about myself and feeling good about myself is good for me. So it seems for two years in a row now, practical goals and the dreaded ‘to-do’ list have actually worked for me. Maybe there is something in my character or personality that responds well to set goals, at least for practical aspects of my life. With that in mind, let me continue and tick a few more things off my list…

Here are my practical goals for 2016:

  1. Sell my home and set-up a new home nearer other family members.
  2. Set my financial goals, including developing a new avenue of income.
  3. Spend time with my siblings in NSW, my son in Canada, friends and family.




35 thoughts on “In with the new …

  1. I like your goals for 2016 Elizabeth and well done for looking after your health and sticking to it. I am scheduled to run a six week course starting in February about Transitioning to Retirement. I am really hoping this will be successful and that I can go on to run it on a regular basis and help people who are struggling with transitions. It doesn’t mean I have nailed it but that I do understand how difficult it can be to adapt to change.

    • How magnificent for you to be running the six week course on Transitioning to Retirement. I would love to hear more about it. Yes, you are correct in that some people find that transition difficult. I do hope that you are able to reach people with your ideas and experience.

      • Thanks Elizabeth :-). I am sure to write about it once it gets started in mid-February. It is great doing the research for it – I am learning a lot myself.

  2. Elizabeth, as always, I am uplifted by hearing your positive approach towards your progress forward. Your ability to see the light in the darkness is powerful. I admire you for your courage, selflessness, and determination. I hope that your 2016 is full of many goals and aspirations met and memories made to color your world a beautiful landscape of joy.

  3. “Keeping goals makes me feel good about myself and feeling good about myself is good for me.”

    Exactly what I needed to read this morning — and there is research to back up your point.

    There was a study in the US amongst students in what were considered ‘underprivileged’ areas being given a goal setting course — those who set concrete goals achiever higher scores on their tests than those who did not set goals.

    I love how you frame everything with such clarity while standing so gracefully in your truth.

    Blessings and joy for a New Year of moving further towards your goals.

    • I am glad that the research backs up this up. It is interesting as for many years resolutions never worked long-term for me. I think maybe it is the difference between a resolution and a goal. Best wishes for a peaceful and joyous year for you too.

  4. It’s awesome when you reach goals. No matter what happened, you can always look back and say with confidence that you made that dream into a reality due to your own perseverance and consistency. Congrats on reaching your goals and I pray for your new year, the same will happen for you! Happy New Year! 🙂

  5. Best of luck with those goals! All good ones and hefty. After what you have been through, I have no doubt you will achieve them. You just keep proving yourself worthy of the challenges:). Happy New Year!

    • I appreciate that you read this closely enough to realize they ARE indeed hefty goals and may not all be achieved in a year. In some ways I think I need a year off with no big challenges but it is not to be. i know it is best I get these ticked off too.

  6. You went though a lot in 2015–and still managed to accomplish many important goals. Best wishes as you continue to move forward and accomplish your 2016 goals. Happy New Year!

  7. To have or have not is less important than to To Do and To Be, according to my grandfather, the oldest of 11 children who struggled to work farm land together and take care of each other.
    You have accomplished much, Elizabeth, and you’re just revving up for the new year! 🙂
    Bless you.

    • Wise words from your grandfather. I think the older generations (who knew what it was like to go without) did not have the luxury of us where we now can spend time reflecting, pondering and meditating and such like. This is all commendable but back then they just had to get in and get things done. 🙂

  8. Pingback: I feel the glow … | Spring into Summer

  9. Congratulations on achieving your health goals last year. Taking care of ourselves helps us achieve other practical things. Best wishes for 2016 and this year’s list.

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