Wednesday, May 4, 2022

Balanced Life Monthly Goals - April Review and May Goals

As mentioned 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.  I do realize that the wheel can be perfectly round with short spokes, but, that would be an indication that there is overall dissatisfaction!  My ratings for each segment are shown within the parentheses, with the beginning of the month ratings in black and the end of the month ratings being shown in blue.

Monthly goals:

Spiritual (10)(10):   The goal is to live a spiritually meaningful life:
- Continue with daily prayers, meditation, being grateful, positive, and joyful
- Continue to cultivate non-attachment by being generous and giving to the extent I am able

I continued with my daily prayers, meditation, and being grateful; I continue to try being positive, generous, and joyful.  I feel that I do live a spiritually meaningful life and, although I am not attending any Temple services, yet, I feel that I am doing very well in this area of my life!

I will continue to keep the rating at 10.

May Spiritual goals will be the same as above.  The Temple will be observing Vesak (which commemorates the birth, enlightenment, and death of the Buddha) in mid-May, but, I will not attend it in person and, at this point in time, it doesn't look like it would be possible to participate online.  

House & Garage (9.5)(6.5*):  The goal is a home that is pleasant, comfortable, and welcoming:
- Clean - Clean the house and garage as needed
- Organize - Continue to find a place for everything and keep everything in its place
- Well maintained - Keep "erasing the evidence"; implement daily and weekly cleaning schedules
- Decluttered - Continue with the decluttering process
*  I have readjusted my rating system for the house to make it more realistic.  The house is fine for the most part, BUT, it needs some work done - repairs and renovations - which I am not yet ready to do.  Yes, I am "tolerating" and that is probably not OK, but, I am accepting of it.  I am only focusing on the things that I CAN do under the circumstances, cleaning what I can, organizing, decluttering, etc.  But, I have adjusted the rating to acknowledge the fact that all is not as well as I'd like it to be.

I've kept up with the housework, doing the routine cleaning, etc., in April, and decluttered 120 items.  The garage cleaning was mostly going through and decluttering old files.  

May House & Garage goals will be the same as above.  I am planning to continue with the cleaning and decluttering in May, too.  The May decluttering goal is 31 items from the house (files being decluttered from the garage will not be included in that goal).  

Garden (7.5)(7.5):  The goal is a garden that is productive, yet drought tolerant:
Maintaining (water, fertilize, and weed)
Prepare for planting summer vegetables!
- Start improving the parkway in the front

The garden did well in April and produced a lot of peapods and broccoli side shoots and leaves, etc., which we harvested.  The fruit trees we planted last year made it through their first winter and have leafed out and flowered.  The peach tree has fewer peaches this year than in previous years, but, I think that is due to the trauma of having branches and the top of the main trunk break off, last year.  I'm thankful that the tree itself is still alive.  M has been watering, fertilizing, weeding, and pruning as needed.  
The parkway improvements are still being considered.  New watering restrictions will go into effect in June and I am leaning more and more towards hardscaping the parkway - setting down large pavers and filling in with pebbles or mulch.  I'd rather use my water allocations for food producing plants.

I am keeping the rating to 7.5.     

May Garden goals will include:
Maintaining (water, fertilize, and weed)
Planting summer vegetables!
- Start improving the parkway in the front

Daughter (10)(10) The goal is to continue to have a close relationship with her:
- Continue to enjoy the rest of the time together before she has to go back 
- Keep in daily contact once she does go back

My daughter returned to Berkeley in mid-April.  We celebrated her last week at home by enjoying our favorite take-out meals and spending time together.  She returned to her apartment safely and has transitioned well to living on her own and going to the office in person twice a week.  We keep in daily contact by phone, texts, and video chats.

I am keeping the rating at 10!

May Daughter goals will include:
- Keeping in daily contact with her

Family & Friends (10)(10):  The goal is to have a close connection with family and friends:
- Regular phone calls and emails to check on them
- Curbside visit with friend R
- Attend A's mother's funeral

In addition to phone calls, emails, texts, etc., there were also a few in-person visits in April.  I did a curbside visit with friend R,  attended A's mother's funeral and attended the prayer gathering at her home, visited cousin V and went with her to visit friend A.

I am keeping the rating at 10.  

May Family and Friends goals will include:
- Regular phone calls and emails to check on them

Community (10)(10):  The goal is to be involved in my community:
- Continue to participate in the various community groups to the extent possible in the following ways:
  - Participate in the blogging community
  - Participate in the online organizing group
  - Weekly phone calls with neighbor T
  - Participate in temple events when safe to do so

I participated in the blogging community, etc. and interacted with my neighbors, too.  I didn't attend any Temple events, but, spoke with the monks.

I'm keeping the rating at 10.

May Community goals will be the same as above.

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

I continued to budget and spend as mindfully as possible in April.  I had a big bill to pay at the end of the month, when I took my car in for a service, and I went over budget when it came to eating out as we celebrated daughter's last days at home, but, it was done mindfully!  LOL

I am keeping the rating at 10.

May Financial goals:
- Continue budgeting and spending mindfully, with purpose 

Health & Well Being (8.5)(8.5):  The goal is good health:
- Focus on continuing to improve my health through diet, hydration, etc.
- Do the additional tests my doctor wants me to do
- Attend my doctor's appointment
- Schedule my second booster shot

My health goals are on-going.  In April, I received my second booster shot, did additional blood tests, and showed up for a doctor's appointment that had been cancelled without my knowledge!  The appointment was rescheduled for May.  I am keeping the satisfaction rating at 8.5.

May Health & Well Being goals: 
- Focus on continuing to improve my health through diet, hydration, etc.
- Attend my doctor's appointments (there are two scheduled)
- Do additional lab work before the second doctor's appointment

Time Management (7)(7.5): The goal is to spend my time in a mindful manner:
Spend time purposefully, mindfully
- Continue to focus on making my schedule work for me
- Procrastinate less

Time management continues to be a struggle for me because I feel that I am not spending my time as purposefully and mindfully as I should.  I spend too much time staring at a screen!  

I am tempted to lower the rating, but, I will keep it at 7.5 for now.  

May Time Management goals are the same as above.  

Leisure/Crafts/Hobbies/Self-Care (10)(10):  The goal is to relax doing something I enjoy doing for the pleasure of it.
- Continue with craft projects that are in progress
- Participate in the Monthly Photo Challenge
- Watch some videos with my daughter

I continued with projects that are in progress and I started at least one new one!  LOL.  I participated in the Monthly Photo Challenge and my daughter and I watched some videos before she went back, although not as many as I had wanted to.

I am keeping the rating at 10.  

May Leisure/Crafts/Hobbies/Self-Care goals include:
- Continue with craft projects that are in progress
- Participate in the Monthly Photo Challenge

April was a good month; most areas retained their ratings, with the House/Garage area getting a revised rating.  I will continue to focus on the house and the garden and on health/well being and time management in May, too.  

How was your April?  Did you make any monthly goals for a more balanced life?  What are your goals for May?


  1. Another positive month. I admire your focus in each individual area, especially the close relationship you have with your daughter.
    My goals for May are to continue with my decluttering. Have less, do more. X

    1. Thank you, Jules. I like your motto: "Have less, do more". :)

  2. You're doing so well. As for the house and garage just call the maintenance issues a work in progress, it takes time and money to get everything sorted but you are doing well especially sorting and decluttering.
    I take each day as it comes but have made some plans for this month to celebrate our wedding anniversary which we are looking forward to.

    1. Thank you, Eileen. Yes, the house is a work in progress! I do plan to get to the various repairs, eventually, but, now is still not the time. In the meantime, I will focus on the things that I can do, such as sorting and decluttering.
      I am glad that you have made some plans to celebrate your wedding anniversary. It's good to have something to look forward to, isn't it? :)

  3. I love seeing your posts on the life balance. I have never managed to do anything like this myself, but seeing this makes me think that is possible. Thank you.

    1. Thank you, Lyssa. You might try doing something similar and have fewer areas or spokes such as home & garden, family, writing, health, etc. I started out with really low ratings in several areas and things have slowly improved.

  4. April was a kind & generous month to you. Happy May. I'll be working on improving my time management in May :)

    1. Yes, it was. :) Thank you; hope May will be a good month for you, too. I'm glad to see that I am not the only one who wants to improve her time management skills. :)

  5. I continue to be impressed with the purposefulness in which you live your life. An inspiration for all of us.
    As far as house maintenance and improvements go, all it takes is time and money. And I'm keenly aware of that at the moment. :)

    1. Thank you, June; it's very kind of you to say so, because, some days, I feel that I've just drifted through the day, rather aimlessly!
      Yes, house improvements and maintenance takes a lot of effort, time, and money; usually more than initially estimated. :)

  6. These are impressive. Your recent garage clean up should also move your house and garage rating up! You have done great on the goals that really matter most, relationships, community and especially your daughter. Celie

    1. Thank you, Celie. Yes, the important goals are being met. It was the recent clean up of the garage that led to the readjustment of the ratings for the House & Garage category. It's a moving target! :)

  7. You've had another good month with the ratings staying the same or an improvement. Is the reduced rating for the home to do with jobs that you'll need to arrange professional help for?

    1. Thank you, Eileen. Yes, the rating for the home was readjusted due to the jobs requiring professional help. They are tasks that will eventually get done, but, until they are done, I can't say I am 100% satisfied with my house!

  8. I feel that 6.5 is rather low for your house even if it does need some professional work. I seem to have noticed lots of good action in that spoke of the wheel. Give yourself credit!

    1. Thank you, Bushlady, I appreciate you saying that. I am trying to focus on the things that I can do, but, every now and then, I do have to acknowledge the fact that a few repairs and a fresh coat of paint will do much to improve the state of my house! I will continue to do the little things that I can do to improve things - declutter, clean, organize, etc., and look forward to the day when I can get some repairs done and upgrade a few things. :)

  9. Your month was a good one and reading through your goals shows that.
    I commend you for being honest about repairs you need/want to make to your home and lowering your rating. I find myself accepting of things too and will often find myself letting things go too long. (Pus it's hard to find someone to fix things!)
    My neighbor's fence on the west side is in an awful state - I replaced the fence along the north property line last year and was hoping this neighbor (since it is their fence) would repair this one. But they have not and now some sections are collapsing! I've thought about asking her if she wants to split the cost but I fear she doesn't have the money and don't want to have an awkward conversation. I think I will just proceed and get my own estimate and let her know of my plans - maybe she will offer some money towards it but if not, then I will just have her fence removed and replaced.

    I meant to say something on your decluttering post from the end of April about your 20 folders of paperwork. Gone! Your shredder is coming in handy.

    1. Thank you, Debra. I have put off doing certain repairs and renovations simply because I don't have a reliable, trustworthy person to do them and now, due to Covid concerns (not quite ready to have people working in the house).
      It is quite possible that your neighbor is overwhelmed by what is involved with getting her fence fixed. Maybe just chat with her and offer to help her with getting estimates, finding someone to do the work, and split the costs?
      Two more file folders of papers got shredded, today! The shredder is definitely coming in handy! :)


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