Wednesday, October 31, 2018

October Monthly Balanced Life Goals - Update

October 31st - a good time to update  my monthly balanced life goals for October!  As I've explained before, my monthly balanced life goals are similar to the spokes on a wheel, with the length of each spoke representing my satisfaction in that area of my life, from 1 to 10, with 1 being most dissatisfied and 10 being most satisfied.

October's highlights included my retirement going into effect, as of the 15th and hosting the monthly prayer gathering on the 21st.

My October goals were:

Spiritual (9) (9):  The goal is to live a spiritually meaningful life.
- Continue with daily prayers and gratitude; focus on being positive -  On-going; prayers are being said, daily; I've been listing 5 things I am grateful for, daily; and I've focused on the positive aspects of my life.

- Take time for meditation - Resume going to Friday night meditation sessions at the temple, at least twice, preferably, three times -  I went only once, this month, on 10/13.

- Cultivate non-attachment - focus on letting go of attachment to material possessions - declutter at least one item per day, this month - I didn't declutter every day, but I decluttered 45 items in total.

- Host the monthly rosary prayer gathering (scheduled for 10/21) - DONE!  Prayer gathering was hosted and went off well.
  - Call and remind everyone, a bit closer to the date - DONE
  - Finalize menu/grocery shop/cook - DONE

I am keeping the rating at 9; I was able to accomplish most of what I wanted to do, although I didn't go to as many meditation sessions as I had planned.

House (9)(9):  The goal is a clean, tidy, uncluttered house:
- Focus on decluttering, deep cleaning, and maintaining cleaned areas to get the house company ready in time for the prayer gathering - Made good progress, especially with the deep cleaning

- Declutter 1 item a day for a total of 31 items - Decluttered 45 items.
- Dig out the 3rd bedroom, a.k.a. The Dump! - STARTED!

I am keeping the rating at 9 because, although I was able to do some deep cleaning in addition to the regular cleaning and maintenance, plus some decluttering, etc., I have a long way to go before I can rate it a 10!

Garden (8)(8):
- Maintain (water 2x per week; weed; prune pine tree) - Watering on schedule, weeding as and when; the pine tree has not been pruned yet.  However, I was able to plant some new plants for fall color.  

- Flea spray at least one more time - buy flea spray - Flea spray was bought and the garden was sprayed, but the one rainfall we had all month fell on the evening of the day when the garden was sprayed and probably washed it all away!  What are the odds?

- Plant some fall flowering plants by the front entrance - buy plants - plants were bought and planted!

Newly planted mums

- Paint the front security door - buy paint - Not done.

I am keeping the rating at 8 because, although some tasks didn't get done and others got washed away due to the rain, there are new plants and the garden is recovering from the heat of the summer.

Daughter (10)(10):  The goal is to continue to have a close relationship with her
- Daily texts, phone calls, emails, and video chatting - On-going, and, as always, the highlights of my day! 

No visits planned for this month.

Keeping this area at a 10, as there is no higher rating!

Family & Friends (10)(10):  The goal is to keep in touch with various family members and friends.
- Visit my mother's grave on the anniversary of her birth (10/18) - Visited her grave
- Visit aunt T - Visited her with cousin P on 10/30
- Call sister - Called and spoke with her
- Send birthday card to brother - Made and mailed a card
- Call friend A's daughter on her birthday - Called and wished her
- Regular phone calls and emails - Plenty of those!
- Will be seeing several members of the family and friends at this month's prayer gathering (10/21) - Accomplished
- Weekly calls with neighbor T - Accomplished
- Visit neighbor S/wish her daughter on her birthday - Didn't visit, but exchanged greeting as and when I saw her, which is usually when I am watering the front garden.

This area of my life has been well plumped, this month.  I'm very pleased. 

Community (9)(7):  The goal is to become more involved in my community.
- Continue to participate in the blogging community - On-going

Participate in the temple community/attend weekly meditation sessions at least twice, preferably trice - Ongoing; I was able to attend the meditation sessions only once, however.

- Participate in the library weekly knitting group - attend at least once more - did not attend any of the knitting sessions.  I didn't find what I was looking for in terms of social interaction, and I was busy enough, with other activities, this month. 

I am decreasing the rating to a 7 because I wasn't able to participate in the community as much as I would have liked.  This is an area I will need to rethink, because I feel my original plans haven't worked out as well as I had imagined.

Finances (9)(9):  The goal is financial security.
- Continue budgeting and spending mindfully, with purpose -  On-going.  I kept a watchful eye on my spending and I managed to come under budget in many areas.

Health & Well Being (8)(8):  The goal is good health.
- Attend the appointments with my various medical doctors
  - 10/2 optometrist - DONE; new glasses received
  - 10/4 dentist - DONE; was prepared for having a bridge fitted
  - 10/15 radiation oncologist - DONE; follow up appointment; all was found to be well
  - 10/18 dentist, again - DONE; had the bridge fitted

  - 10/28 primary care physician - DONE; the bad news was my blood pressure was elevated; the good news was, my blood sugar level was so good and had been good for several months, so I was taken off the already very low dosage of medication I had been on.  I am to keep a log of BP and sugar readings and a follow up appointment has been made.  I also received my flu shot.

  - Call re. peripheral field vision test if don't hear from the doctor's office by the end of the month - Doctor's office called and the test has been scheduled for March, 2019, along with a follow up visit with the doctor.

*Work harder at those life style changes:
   - better diet - eat more vegetables, less carbs, to maintain blood sugar levels - I wasn't as diligent as I could have been, but, apparently, I did something right because the blood sugar levels have been maintained at such a low level that the doctor took me off the medication I had been on.
   - better hydration - drink 8 x 8oz glasses of water - On-going
   - better sleep habits - get at least 7 hours of sleep/try to go to sleep before 4:00 a.m.! - Ha!  I have not been successful with an earlier bedtime, but, I have been getting 7 hours of sleep by sleeping till late morning!
   - more exercise - walk 30 minutes 5 days/week - Work in progress!  I did not walk with any consistency.

 I am going to keep the rating at 8.  There were some successes but, there's is much room for improvement, still. 

Time Management (7)(8):  The goal is having enough time to do all what I want to do!
- Retirement Planning - Accomplished!  Retirement went into effect as of 10/15
 - call to check on status of paperwork -DONE! 
 - go in to the office one last time, before Oct. 13 to fill out last time sheet, hand in ID and parking permit, etc. - DONE
- 10/25 Driver's License renewal appointment - DONE
- Implement routines and schedules - Another work in progress!

I raised the satisfaction level to 8 because everything I needed to do was done on time, with only a little procrastinating from time to time.

Leisure/Crafts/Hobbies/Me-Time (10)(8):  The goal is to relax doing something I enjoy doing for the pleasure of it.
- Make the transition to being retired! - No problem there!

- Continue to work on Works-in-Progress: 
  - the Mountain Quilt - the border fabric was bought
  - the Mile-a-Minute Quilt - the sashing and border fabric was bought
  - T-shirts for niece's sons - one has been done
  - red hats for heart association - on-going; I have received an email from the local coordinator regarding this year's participation

- Fall Joy List - I was able to do several things from the list

I decreased the rating to 8, because I wasn't able to work on as many leisure projects as I had hoped to.  However, I did spend a lot of time sewing holiday pillowcases and a considerable amount of my time was taken up with preparation for the prayer gathering and deep cleaning.  I need to find a good balance.  

So, that is my review of my goals for a more balanced life, in October, and how I did.  I think, on the whole, I did fairly well.  However, there is room for improvement in several areas.

Did you make any balanced life goals for October?  If so, how did you do on them?  Are you satisfied, overall?


  1. It sounds like a very positive month ... well done. It's a shame the knitting group didn't work out for you so I hope you have more luck finding something to replace it. I'll do my own review tonight or tomorrow - I have some medical appointments today so may not have time to write a post.

    1. Thank you, Eileen. Yes, it was a very good month, over all. I am disappointed that the knitting group didn't work out the way I had hoped it would, but I might still continue to go on an occasional basis. In a week where I haven't been out much or something, it might still provide a bit of an opportunity to get out and mingle. Maybe opt for once a month, instead of once a week.

      I hope your medical appointments go well. Looking forwards to your review.

  2. Wow! Way to go Bless. You have maintained or surpassed last month's goals. I think you were too hard on yourself for not recognizing all the work you did on leisure projects. (Which brings me back to the question I asked earlier in the month....Are the holiday pillow cases fun to do, or have they become another chore that needs done?) Anyways, I guess the main question here was if you FELT you had enough ME time in the day. And you must have felt deprived to give yourself a lower score. But YAY for time management. I think that is a first time for a score over 7. Yippee ki yay.

    1. Thank you, Susan. Yes, I met most of my goals and I am pleased. There's always the problem of wanting to do more and unrealistic expectations.

      I need to re-examine my leisure goals. I thought being retired would give me more time to do crafts, but I didn't take into account having to deep clean the house and prepare for the prayer gathering and getting side tracked with making pillowcases.

      Yes, the holiday pillowcases have been fun to do. It's creative, I enjoy sewing them, and I feel virtuous because I am using up the stash and saving money on holiday gifts at the same time. But I can easily spend several hours a day doing them and nothing else, to the detriment of house cleaning and paperwork, etc., which I should be doing!

      Actually, I think I had plenty of ME time; I spent some of it sleeping in and a lot of it playing games on the computer! But, I didn't actively work on the leisure time projects I had set for myself, as in no quilts were sewn and completed. That's why I gave it a lower score. At the same time, October was a rather busy month and I always underestimate how long it takes for me to do things.

      But time management was good, wasn't it? :)

  3. Hello Ness,

    Gratitude is the key to so many things...

    I am always striving to Strengthen my Faith.

    I did some more decluttering it was mainly craft items and a few

    I don't know if you have noticed this but when I declutter or
    clear a space I always seem to find something I thought I had
    lost or needed. It's as if decluttering brings it's own little
    rewards apart from the obvious more space etc.

    Very well done to your Daughter I am always happy to hear
    when hard work and dedication are acknowledged.

    Glad to know your Prayer Gathering went well.

    That is good news that you no longer need to take your
    Blood Sugar medication.

    You have had a very busy month.

    Thank You for your visit.

    Take Care x

    1. Hi Fiona, yes, I try to focus on gratitude for the daily blessings I receive and try not to focus on the negatives.

      Craft items are very difficult for me to declutter! I keep thinking, I can use that for something, I can do something with it! LOL. I had to stop looking at things on Pinterest for that very reason!

      I hope you have a great start to your month, Fiona, and thank you, again, for stopping by. :)

  4. This was a big month because you officially retired. It will be interesting as time goes on to see if the way you implement your goals will change. I have heard many people say that they are busier after retirement than they were before.

    1. Well, I was certainly busy, last month! This month is a little less so, in terms of cleaning, simply because I am not hosting a bit event. However, my daughter will be coming down for a week over Thanksgiving, so I expect there will be some activities, then.

  5. Oops! I think my last comment got submitted before I was done. Oh, well. I've run out of time at the computer, so good job with decluttering. Slow and steady wins the race in this area, I think.

    1. I hit the publish button before I am done, quite often, myself! Thank you - the decluttering takes more effort because I am now down to those items that got skipped over in previous sessions. But, one or two items a day; slow and steady, as you say.

  6. Replies
    1. Thank you, Regine. I appreciate you stopping by to leave a comment. :)

  7. Not only a balanced life, Bless, but a very full one too. I'm especially impressed by the decluttering goal. Every time we try one of the children comes home for a while and our loft gets full again!

    1. Yes, Eloise, a very full life, for which I am very grateful, although it makes attaining balance a bit more challenging! Oh, my! It's a good thing you have a loft in which to store the children's stuff! :D


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