It’s January and that means we are being bombarded with media messages and advertisements encouraging us to set goals to lose weight, exercise more and get better sleep. I don’t know about you, but I never have much success in trying to achieve someone else’s goal.  For a goal to work (and by goal I mean a way to progress for those who are way over goals in general) I need to have a vested interest in it and it needs to be applicable to the problems and situations I am currently trying to overcome.

I also, get frustrated by the correlation that a goal needs to be something you do more of.  I don’t want to do more, I’m doing plenty. I want to do what I do, but do it better.

After thinking about my current situation and potential ideas for improvement, I have come up with a few ideas for improvement.  Ideas, which although will be helpful for me, probably go against the conventional norm.

Do fewer projects.

I used to do projects as a stress reliever.  It was something I could do to get my mind off whatever difficulties I was having with the kids.  After working on a project for 10-20 minutes I was able to engage with them again with a clearer head.   This has worked so well, that I now have many running projects, including this blog, and no longer really need to go off in search of a project.  I’ve noticed over the last year, that when I try to force myself to do a project outside of my current every day projects, particularly sewing projects, that my stress level doesn’t decrease it increases and that’s not really the point.

Read less.

Last year, I read more than is probably healthy for me.  I really wanted to see how many books I could reasonably get through in a year, my last count was 56, and while that’s a great number, it probably would have been okay if it was 5 or 10 fewer than that, too.  I will continue to always have a book on hand and read at least 10 minutes a day, but I will also stop forcing myself to get through a book a week as doing so left me feeling a bit frazzled and was totally unnecessary.  In particular, I will limit how many non-fiction, self-help type books I read.  These, I learned a lot from, but took a lot of brain power that sometimes I just didn’t have.  I would probably implement strategies better if I only did one of these a month.  I also realized that I read for leisure the way some people watch TV, exercise, nap or play games for leisure.  It’s just a different way to relax, so I’ll still read, but I’ll also remember that it’s okay to unwind in other ways, too(see below goal).

Watch more TV.

Our family really needs some ways to unwind and enjoy being together at the end of the day.  We really don’t watch much television currently, but when we do it tends to be done more as a solitary activity.  I think some good TV would be a realistic way we could connect and spend some time together.  Of course, the trick will be finding shows we all want to watch together and not doing this to excess.  I plan to start by checking out this “Essential TV Guide” found at Common Sense Media.

So, those are my unexpected goals which although they won’t be traditional goals will nonetheless help me to be happier and better in 2018. I don’t want to overwhelm myself, so I won’t be doing anymore, but if you like the idea of setting some unconventional goals, you might consider setting one or more of the following:

Eat more:

This would work well for you if you’re not making time to eat and are ending the day or the morning hangry.

Exercise less:

This might be for you if you are having a hard time fitting everything in, but are killing it at the gym, maybe just kill it slightly less so you can keep up with what you have to do and by extension maybe need less of a break.

Get up later:

If you have really young ones, this might be for you.  If you’re just tired all the time, maybe now isn’t the season for you to get up early to get a head start on the day, maybe now is the time for you to sleep, so you are better able to handle life when it happens.


Whatever you do, I hope that you will listen to yourself and consider your real needs and that by doing so you will find more joy and fulfillment in your upcoming year.



What are some unconventional goals you might consider setting this year?

Write it down in a journal, talk it over with a friend or leave a comment on Facebook.