2 min read

91 days of writing

91 days of writing
Photo by Towfiqu barbhuiya / Unsplash

At the beginning of this month, I set five goals for myself:

  1. Run 8 miles
  2. Complete the Your Money or Your Life 9-step program
  3. Cook twice a week
  4. Frame my wedding photos and send thank you notes
  5. Publish a total of 91 posts on the View from JQ

Here's how March turned out:

  1. Run 8 miles: A month later, I can happily say that I did indeed run 8 miles (twice!) I surprised myself as each weekend I ran distances of 5.10 miles, 5.86 miles, 7.92 miles, and 7.93 miles. I'm excited to be on track to run the Brooklyn half-marathon at the end of this month!
  2. Publish 91 posts: I successfully published 91 posts on the View from JQ. For those of you who subscribe to the newsletter, you'll know that I had a couple of slip-ups with my daily publishing rule. I made up for missed days with double posts the following day. As Rumi says, "Live life as if everything is rigged in your favor." In this case, rigging my publish date helped me adhere to my goal of publishing consistently.

However, I didn't make significant progress on my other goals. This was in part due to a lack of having systems in place for achieving them. Unlike running and writing, where I had clear plans, my other objectives lacked defined strategies.

I also underestimated just how hard it would be to come back from vacation. Planning my wedding consumed a lot of my time in January and February. I still reminisce on that week when I listen to the music, watch the videos, and listen to Chandelier. However, the time involved in planning my wedding did cause me to neglect fundamental aspects of self-care, like eating well and sleeping regularly. I've also felt sadness with my father-in-law passing away, swamped with home errands, and overwhelmed with a demanding job. It has been hard to keep up.

Readjusting to work post-vacation was also more difficult than I anticipated. In my first week back, I experienced unexpected levels of anxiety and panic. In the following weeks, I found myself feeling regularly dismissed, and pushing myself to hold my boundaries, focus on being successful over being right, and optimize for effiency over niceness. This led me to explore areas where I was experiencing burnout, question the incentives in place for me, and ponder whether it was time to explore alternative paths. Additionally, I found myself overwhelmed and unable to allocate sufficient time to tasks, further exacerbating my stress.

Moving forward, my goal is to establish more effective defaults and implement a systems-based approach to manage various aspects of my life. For instance, James and I recently came up with a meal planning system to simplify our grocery shopping and cooking responsibilities.

I also intend to prioritize having more fun. Rather than feeling like I'm drowning in things I don't want to do, I want to ask myself more frequently: "What would this look like if it were fun?"

By prioritizing home errands and introducing new routines, I hope to reclaim control over my time and energy in April, and tackle both personal and professional goals more effectively.