Thursday, May 2, 2019

May Balanced Life Monthly Goals

It's May, already!  Time to post my goals for living a more balanced life in May.  My April balanced life goals update is here.

But, first, I thought a little more about my goals.  In general, I don't consider myself as a deep thinker.  I don't do a lot of analysis in my life.  I think, in a way, this was a coping mechanism I developed when I was a child as there was a lot that happened to me that didn't bear thinking about.  I just accepted life as it happened and generally, went with the flow.

Along the way, however, I acquired some goals in life, although, at first, they were the goals of others for me, specifically, my mother's goals for me: a good education, leading to a good profession, resulting in being able to earn a good living, with marriage and a child to follow.  I rarely questioned these goals, however; I just accepted them and made them my own.  Now, looking back, I believe I've achieved most of them, if not all.

But, it wasn't a straight route from point A to point B to point C.  There were detours and resulting adjustments to my goals along the way.  For example, the profession my mother wanted for me (becoming a physician like my father) just didn't happen; I didn't have the ambition to make it happen.  Instead, I modified the goal and chose a different subject to study.  I went to university, I earned a bachelor's degree, and then, a master's.  I thought about a PhD, but decided not to pursue it.  That was my education goal, attained.  Initially, I couldn't find a job in my field of study and I found other employment, but, eventually, my degrees paid off and led to a career that lasted for 35 years, which enabled me to earn a good living.  Goal achieved!  Unfortunately, my marriage didn't last, but it resulted in a wonderful daughter!  With the birth of my daughter, my overarching goal became to raise her to the point where she would be able to manage on her own, if needs be, and I believe we are getting there!  I feel truly blessed to be where I am, today, where my overall life goals are concerned.

But, there was a period when I was working full time, raising my young daughter, taking care of my increasingly frail mother, the housework, etc., when I felt my life was very out of balance.  There were many demands on my time and I was juggling a lot of things.  That's when I learned about the balanced life wheel and started this exercise.  At the time, I believe I had some 16 or so areas and I combined some and eliminated others until I had a more manageable 12 or so.  These days, I am down to 10.  The last area to get eliminated was my "Career" spoke, when I accomplished my goal of working 35 years and retired!

All this is by way of explaining that, for me, a goal is an end state.  It is what I aim for, what I hope to achieve or attain, a place I wish to reach. I think it is important to review our goals from time to time.  Circumstances change.  Sometimes, goals have to be modified to make them more attainable and it is okay to do so.  Sometimes, goals have to be discarded, completely, and that can be sad, but it is being realistic.  Sometimes, certain goals are actually attained, and when that happens, it is truly a blessing to be celebrated with a grateful heart. 

My overarching goal, now, is to live a life that is meaningful to me, well-balanced, joyful, and fulfilling.  I have reviewed my goals in the different areas of my life with that in mind and made one or two slight modifications to my on-going goals.

As I've explained before, my monthly balanced life goals are similar to the spokes of 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.  Ideally, all the spokes are of equal length and the wheel will roll along smoothly.  If the spokes are of unequal lengths, then, the resulting wheel will be lop-sided and wobbly.  My current ratings for each segment are shown within the parentheses.  The main goal is stated at the top of each area and the ways in which I plan to reach that goal are listed below.

May Balanced Life Goals:

Spiritual: (10):   The goal is to live a spiritually meaningful life:
- Continue with daily prayers and gratitude; focus on being positive and joyful
- Take time for meditation - maybe attend some of the Friday night meditation sessions again.
- Be more giving
- Attend Vesak celebrations (commemorating the birth, enlightenment, and death of the Buddha) at the Temple
- Attend the monthly rosary prayer gathering

House (9):  The goal is a home that is pleasant, comfortable, and welcoming:
- Clean - do one deep cleaning task per week
- Organized - focus on the spare room
- Well maintained - continue to implement the cleaning schedule

Garden (8):  The goal is a garden that is productive, yet drought tolerant:
- Maintain (water 2x per week; weed)
- Plant additional seeds (vegetables and flowers)
- Landscape - develop a landscape plan for the front garden

Daughter (10):  The goal is to continue to have a close relationship with her:
- Daily texts, phone calls, and video chatting, etc.

Family & Friends (10):  The goal is to have a connection with family members and friends:
- Regular phone calls and emails
- Visit aunt T
- Will be seeing several members of the family and friends at this month's prayer gathering  
- Get together for lunch with friend R

Community (10):  The goal is to be involved in my community:
- Continue to participate in the blogging community
- Participate in the Summer Photo Scavenger Hunt
Weekly phone calls with neighbor T
- Continue to participate in the online group of which I am a member

Finances (10):  The goal is financial security:
- Continue budgeting and spending mindfully, with purpose 

Health & Well Being (7):  The goal is good health:
- Attend this month's medical appointments
- Continue to work on the following life style changes:
   - better diet - eat more vegetables, less carbs
   - better hydration - drink 8 x 8oz glasses of water, daily
   - better sleep habits -  get 6-7 hours of sleep
   - more exercise - implement a walking schedule
- Lose 5 lbs

Time Management (7) : The goal is to spend my time in a mindful manner:
 - Make time to do what needs to be done (exercise, sufficient sleep, housework, etc.)
 - Procrastinate less

Leisure/Crafts/Hobbies/Me-Time (10):  The goal is to relax doing something I enjoy doing for the pleasure of it.
- Engage in daily joyful activities
- Finish at least one, if not two, of the three quilts in progress!

Those are my goals for a more balanced life in May.  Yes, they are basically the same as the ones I always make, as many of my goals are on-going.  But I made one or two small changes  to the mini-goals  Is anyone else making goals for May?


  1. I always admire how you manage to find a such a good balance, Bless. I keep telling myself I should try this method, as it seems to work so well for you but I think I'm in that time of my life when there are a lot of demands on my time. I suspect my wheel would not be very round. X

    1. Thank you, Jules. I'd say you are at a very good time in your life to do this exercise. That's when I started working on my balance wheel, too - when my life was very unbalanced. I learned to scale back on things and to say, "No" to some demands on my time.

  2. Good luck with your goals for May. I appreciated your explanation of the background to your goal setting and how you have arrived at your current goals.

    Are you following a low carb diet to lose weight or because your doctor advised it for another medical reason? You seem to like your carbs, which is my reason for asking.

    I’ll update my goals and progress as soon as I can get to my laptop.

    1. Thank you, Eileen. Yes, I love my carbs! Which is why this diet is so hard for me! I'm trying to do it to keep my blood sugar levels down without having to take medications. My next blood test will show if it is working or not!

  3. A nice reflection about goals. I think we all start out with goals from our parents that we gradually change to become our own. Goals are important, but I have to remind myself to appreciate the path in getting their. Using you wheel model helps with that.

    1. Thank you, Live and Learn. Yes, it is important to appreciate the path, because that's really where life takes place. Our lives are an accumulation of days, lived one day at a time. :)

  4. Thank you for the back story of your personal wheel. I have always enjoyed reading your aims, goals and daily recaps.
    Though I do not think of mine as a wheel, I have similar compartments I keep for lists of what I need to accomplish each month, season or year. (generally they all need improvement)

    1. Glad you enjoyed it, Anne. I guess we all strive to improve in the different areas of our lives. Sometimes we manage to do so, sometimes not, but, what matters, I think, is that we keep trying.


Thank you for visiting my blog and commenting. Your comments are much appreciated. Please comment in English. Thank you.