It’s just a half-hour.
When I have that extra half-hour every day, when everyone is sleeping their maximum amount, when the childcare shows up and I don’t have extra nighttime commitments, when we don’t go out of town or have extra parenting struggles or get sick, then I have enough free time to really dream big.
And then there’s the rest of the year.
I set goals in January in a time (I’m seeing now) of abundance. Of stars aligning, of enough energy and time for extra goals, extra me, extra doing.
And then things became more normal.
I pulled out my sheet of goals for this year with the intention of reevaluating. Because my life is feeling frustrating right now. What I want to do, I do not have time for. I want to be honest about my goals, and pare down the ones that are just not feasible.
Here’s what surprised me: I was completely wrong about not meeting my goals.
I was definitely meeting my most important goals, and doing more than I’d originally planned.
So why did I feel like I was failing?
Because I had started expecting more of myself than what I wrote down originally. If one week I managed to write for two hours, I started feeling like that was achievable every week. If I got through a classic book ahead of time, going back to a plodding pace seemed unreasonably slow. When I did a blog carnival, and commented on twenty different blogs, and loved the experience, why couldn’t I keep that up after the carnival ended?
I’m starting to see that my historic problem with goals is that I have problems being content with reality. When I break things into bite-sized pieces, and only commit myself to what I know is feasible in a worst-case scenario, I have to stop there.
On best-case days, I might do more. But expecting that everyday is foolish.
This is why it’s good for me to write these things down. So I don’t let my expectations creep, and start aspiring after goals I never actually committed to.
It was lovely, during what was kind of a frustrating week, to look at these goals, and realize, yes, these dreams are still viable, even if it’s not the best of circumstances. These dreams are totally realistic for my life right now. I have gotten almost halfway through the year and accomplished more than I thought I could. And instead of feeling like a failure, I felt refocused and doubly sure I can keep dreaming big.