January Resolution Check In

I want to do a progress report on my resolutions.  Before I go into details I want to say I am very happy with the way I've approached them this year.  Having lots of small concrete steps is definitely much better for me than having some vague overall goal.  Even if I fail at half of them I am still making progress forward.  And that is what this is all about right?  Progress forward in my life.  So here's how I did in January along with some changes I'm making.

Photography
1.) 52 week mirror project - I did two of five.  Oh well.   I'll keep trying

2.) Instagram Color Wheel - I rapidly dropped the color wheel part because I wanted to take photos of other things and I found it silly to  ignore photo opportunities.  I have changed this one now to Instagram 3x a week.  I hope to use it to develop my iPhone photography which is something that is fun for me.  I have already gotten into the habit of checking Instagram every day.  Now I just need to find some other inspiring iPhone photographers to follow. 

3.) Everyday App - I did pretty well with this one.  I didn't take a photo everyday in January but almost. I  have a video of the January photos here

4.) Photowalk Twice a Month - I attended a meet-up at the zoo and that was fun, but I did not go out on any individual photowalks.  I'm leaving this one here though because I definitely want to do this. 

Food & Drink
1.) Make a Weekly Meal Plan - I'm getting better at this one.  It will be necessary to tie into my next step.  My eventual hope is that if I know I have food at home I won't be tempted to pick something up on the way home from work.

2.) Vegetable Dish Once a Week - I'm dumping this one.  I kept having images of overcooked vegetables swimming in a sauce.  Not that the dishes I made would have to be like that but it just wasn't appealing.  There were times this month when I just wanted a salad but that wouldn't have fit the definition so that goal is out.  In its place I am putting Fresh Cooking 3x a week.  This means finding recipes or cooking with fresh ingredients and avoiding recipes that use over processed ingredients. So things like Hamburger Helper does not count as fresh cooking (my comfort food... don't judge).  I think cutting out processed foods and sticking with fresh foods will benefit me the most in the long run. I will also be working on incorporating these meals into my work lunches to extend the benefits because right now lunch is usually take out, something from the cafeteria or frozen lunches which are highly processed.

3.)  Bake Twice a Month - The idea was to bake twice a month and then in between times not snack on sweets.  I did make something twice this month, but that didn't stop my sugar tooth in between.  I'll keep working on it.  I also wanted to bake from scratch but one of the times I used the mix.  Small steps.  I'll get there.  The bigger hurdle for this one is cutting down the sweet snacking in between.

4.) Drink More Water and Tea - Didn't do so great on this one.  Will keep plugging away at it.

Personal Improvement
1.) Track Spending - Slow start.  I was doing so great at this in the fall and I've just fallen out of the habit.  I'll get it back.

2.) Get Involved with a Charity - Not yet, but I knew this one would evolve over time.

3.) Put Things Away - I was doing fabulously with this one for about the first half of the month and then I fell off the wagon.  I am tempted to blame it on work, but I want to do these habits whether work is hard or not because work is always hard.

4.) Make the Thought Count - I passed on a gift card that I didn't want to someone that I knew could use it.  Other than that  not much happening here but I definitely have had some ideas.  It is executing the ideas that needs the work.

Feel Good/Look Good
1.) One Piece of Clothing Each Month - I did this!  In fact I found two new shirts, one of them for conducting concerts.  Now I need to remove things from my closet to balance them out.

2.) One Girlie Magazine Every Other Month - I dumped this one.  I wrote earlier about how the magazines skeeved me out.  I'll explain what I replaced it with in item 4.

3.) Look Best Each Time I Go Out - This one has completely changed my morning routine.   I still haven't gotten into the habit of night showers and there have been a few days where I went back to the old way, but I can definitely see progress in this task.

4.) Walk/Ride Fives Times a Week - I'm splitting this goal up into two goals (one replacing the girlie magazine).  One goal is the 10,000 steps a day which I blogged about here.  It will probably take me all year to get there, but it is a worthy goal.    The other goal is to bike once a week.  On the days that I ride my bike I am dropping my step goal (or lowering it, I don't know yet).  The overall idea is to become more generally active.

Free Time
1.) 15 Books in 2012 - As of this morning I've read 4 books.  I am trying to slowly turn my down time to reading time instead of hanging out on the computer.  I've decided to bump this goal up to 20 books in 2012.  Definitely doable.

2.) Reduce Screen Time - Thanks to my reading kick this has seen some progress.  I still feel some withdrawal symptoms so I know I am still addicted to the screen.  It will get better over time.

3.) Weekly Fun List - I didn't do this at all because I don't think it ever really made sense to me.  I'm changing it to a Weekly To Do List.  This can include tings like laundry, or paying a bill but it should also include events or lectures around town and things I want to see or do.  Things to keep me active. Hopefully this wording change will get this one going.

4.) Blog Four Times a Week- I haven't been keeping count, but I know I have been blogging a lot more consistently than I have in a long time.  That's a good thing and makes me happy.

So here we go with month #2 of 2012.  Incremental progress ahead! 

Designs and Plans

Everyday January 2012