My 30 Days of Organizing: Part I

If you’ve read my previous post, you know that I started the year with my first goal being organization. I typically do this 2x/year- my birthday and the start of the new calendar year. My birthday is my BIG new year, and I always want to make sure I’m entering another year of life with as little baggage as possible. I usually spend the week leading up to my birthday cleaning and organizing my personal space. January is sort of a check-in time to keep myself on track.

This January, I wanted to completely overhaul my life and establish structure in every area- home school, how I manage my time, get clear on my goals, and just generally establish order.

I want to first note that I didn’t start in January. No. I wanted to start the year off in a clear space so that I could have the intentional focus to do everything else. So during the final week of December 2018, I began decluttering and cleaning my house. I cleared away large trash bags of STUFF- old mail, toys, books, clothes. I didn’t know I had so much stuff in my house. This is because I went into the hidden spaces and opened up things I hadn’t opened in ages. The stuff that was already “organized,” but were really just condensed junk. Whew! That’s a sermon! For later though.

take out the garbage
photo retrieved from https://www.rd.com/advice/work-career/garbage-collector-secrets/

I threw out everything that was useless or hadn’t been used or even looked at in the past three years. Yes, even the old business cards that I was going to eventually transfer into a database (eyeroll). Also, the old clothes that were gonna be so cute on me when get back down that size. I boxed up clothes of mine and my son’s and drove them down to Once Upon A Child and Plato’s Closet. Got a few bucks to give the kid for spending money.

I threw out old food containers- you know the ones with missing or broken or melted tops? Yeah those. Utensils with broken handles. Bottles of shampoo, soap, etc. with half-ounce quantities of whatever substance was supposed to be in them, because I hate to waste and was gonna shake the bottles until I was sure there was nothing left. Old makeup. I even threw out books. If you know me, you know that is historic.

All of the old mail that contained sensitive info was put into a book bag so that I could later have my son run them through the shredder. He gets a kick out of shredding paper. He can have at it! By the way, if you live in Dallas or Houston, here are the dates for Resource One Credit Union’s Shred Day events.

Once everything was decluttered and organized,I went about cleaning from top to bottom. I placed new plugins in every room of my house. Then I moved to the car, throwing out the junk, wet-wiping the seats and dash, vacuuming, and putting in a new car scent.

New Year’s Day was spent taking care of me. I washed my hair, gave myself a nice long, hot bath, and put on my favorite scent. Then I saged the entire house and spent the remainder of the day meditating, enjoying peaceful music, writing, and napping. It was so sweet and exactly the loving and pampering that I needed.

Photo by bruce mars from Pexels

Later, I also saged the car.

So all of that created the perfect environment for me to focus on organizing the rest of my life.

In my next post, I’ll share my time management tips and the system I implemented to stay on top of keeping my house clean. If you enjoyed this post, drop a line letting me know what your takeaways were and what else you’d like to see talk about here. Thanks for reading!

12 Personal Goals For 2019 and How I Established Them

Do you ever get tired of setting the same goals year after year, only to let them taper off somewhere between months three and five?

Whether you celebrate a new year on January 1st or are part of the growing trend of people who celebrate your new year on your birthday, if you’re like most people, you have “New Year resolutions” or goals that fall into one of the following categories: health & fitness goals, money goals, professional goals, or personal development goals.

Setting goals is the fun part, yes? In the beginning, you’re pumped up, your energy is high, you’ve given yourself a clean slate, and you’re ready to dive in head first. You start off doing great! You’re doing about 75% – 80% of the work. And then. . . .

Gif taken from tenor.com

So what happened? Two things: Your goals weren’t specific enough, and/or there was no end in sight. These are the two most important aspects of goal-setting. Keeping this in mind, I set twelve goals and gave myself roughly 30 days to focus on each.

Personal development has been the major theme in my life over the past year, and I wanted to continue down that path in 2019. I’m going to share with you some goals that I set for myself, and I hope that this will inspire you to use this method to set and accomplish some of your own. Here goes. . .

Getting Organized

goal setting 2019
Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels

I started the year off with organization. I wanted to organize my home, school schedule, my time, get clear on my goals, and establish general order in my life and home. Getting organized was the foundation of 2019 and set the stage for me to do everything else I want to do. It was the most freeing thing. I threw out tons of stuff! I have a system in my household. Disorganization and lack of structure will be the death (or terminal illness) of anything you try to accomplish. Later, I will blog about the specific steps that I took and how they have helped me thus far.

Research Homeschool

how to set realistic goals
Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

This is a personal goal that I set because I knew I wanted to homeschool my son, but I didn’t know where to start. The whole idea seemed daunting. I’d actually asked my Facebook friends a few months ago and gotten a little help there, but I knew I needed to arm myself with knowledge and resources to feel completely comfortable. Being the procrastinator that I am (because school doesn’t end til May, right?), I needed focused time explore the idea and all of our options. My goal was to join groups, make homeschool family friends, and familiarize myself with Texas laws around homeschooling. I will also have a post up on that topic soon, so if you are interested in homeschooling, make sure to subscribe via the little black box on the right so that you can be notified when it posts.

Learn Couponing

couponing for beginners
Photo taken from thenextweb.com

Couponing is something I’ve been interested in and curious about for quite some time. I’m all about saving money! The goal was to go to YouTube University (isn’t YouTube great?!) and find a live class or two, then immediately put into practice what I learned. That was my March goal. I’m gonna be honest here. March was such a crazy month, I didn’t get to touch it. However, I am not beating myself up. Maybe I can squeeze in a little bit here and there over the coming months, but I’m not stressing about it. Each month the focus is the goal for that month. I won’t be derailed by being too judgy of my own shortcomings. If you or someone you know teaches couponing, or if you know of any resources that may be helpful, please reach out via the contact button and let me know so that I can share with other readers.

Improve Communication

nonverbal communication practice
Photo by Jairo David Arboleda from Pexels

This one may go against popular opinion. I’ve never liked the RBF (resting bitch face) for several reasons, one of them being that it reflects or dictates your mood. It can repel people who might otherwise be drawn to you for one reason or another, and while that may be the goal some (or for most people some of the time), I don’t generally want to be a people repellent.

Negative people are drawn to negative people, and pleasant people are drawn to pleasant people. I want to bring and attract light wherever I go.

So. . . .I invented my own term- the Resting Pleasant Face. Thirty days of conscious awareness of how I present myself in public and at home. If you know anything about the show America’s Next Top Model, you know what I mean when I say I’ve been practicing my smize. The lady in the picture above is a perfect example of smizing and Resting Pleasant Face.

Remembering to make eye contact with, smile at, and say “hello” to everyone who comes within 5 ft of me, because I love getting people out of their own heads, and most people appreciate it. I also want to practice intentionally speaking kindly to others and keeping my tone neutral even when I’m frustrated. This article explains something I’ve realized for quite some time now.

No Complaining

how to remain positive in the midst of turmoil
Photo taken from allforwomen.co.za

Gratitude is a trendy topic and practice right now, but that’s not what this goal is about. Have you ever caught yourself putting a “but” before your gratitude? Like needing to list everything that is wrong with life before conceding that things could be worse? That is not true gratitude. My goal with this is to practice nipping complaining in the “but.” I will practice remaining silent if and when I cannot think of anything positive to say.

Accepting Support

receiving support in completing your goals
Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

One of my long-time struggles that somehow became more of a struggle as a single mom is accepting support. The strong Black woman syndrome is real! After going through a really tough time a few years ago, I’ve gotten better at accepting support from people. However, I still struggle with asking. Why? I don’t know, and I’ve been exploring that. For thirty days this summer, I’m challenging myself to be consciously cognizant of opportunities to ask for and receive help when I need it and to challenge what a “need” looks like. If you’re reading this, whoever you are, I would love it if you embarked on this challenge with me.

Consciously Feeling

setting goals using your love language
Photo by Edward Eyer from Pexels

One thing that I have been actively practicing is feeling my feelings. You should try it. Make it regular practice to be still and feel. . .everything from the inside out. However, the focus with this goal is to feel from the outside in. To use touch in communication with others (and myself) to comfort, when appropriate and with permission, of course. To love on myself, give myself massages, nurture my hair and skin. I will use touch to communicate with nature, stopping to feel the texture of flowers and other plants, bury my feet in the grass, take any opportunity to feel the wind in my face. We live in such a time of go go go, and I just want to take the focus off of the next thing and put it back where it belongs- in the present.

Confident Posturing

setting SMART goals with confidence
Photo by Godisable Jacob from Pexels

This goal will be a focus on how I walk. It may sound funny, but this is a thing. Hear me out. First of all, if you’re a woman and busty like me, you know where I’m going with this. I sometimes catch myself slouching a little, because these babies need breaks! Lol! However, if you’re person with low self-esteem or social anxiety, you may find yourself doing the same as a way of sort of shrinking yourself. Don’t do it. Come along with me. My intent with this goal is to own the space I move within. To let my presence be felt, not only by others but by me. To move slower, purposefully, and put folks on notice with my gait that I’m coming. If this resonates with you, reach out via that contact button and tell me you’re in. I’d love to include the experiences of others in the feedback post.

Laughing

make laughing often a goal
Photo by Luis Quintero from Pexels

We often hear (or read) that laughter is the best medicine, and it truly is. There’s nothing like a good laugh to take your mood from sour to lighthearted when you’re feeling pouty, discouraged, or worried. The goal here is to look for opportunities to laugh and not take life so seriously. I will give myself permission to laugh and not to hold onto anger, fear, or worry, recognizing that they give me no power. I also just want to be always enjoying life. On the flip side of that, I will be conscious of that annoying nervous chuckle I sometimes do and use my words and feelings to determine how I should respond to any given situation. I will find the humor in my mistakes and let them be medicine rather than poison.

Try A New Dish

new year new recipes
Photo by Dana Tentis from Pexels

Or perfect an old one, because most of the “You Should Do/Have This In Your 30s” lists mention having a signature dish. Not sure which I’ll do yet, as I love cooking and experimenting in the kitchen. I cook many things well, but I don’t think I have one dish that I can say, unequivocally, I’ve made it mine. I just thought this would be fun. If you’d like to see me try a new dish, send me your suggestions. I may choose one and blog about the experience!

Be Social

setting dating goals in 2019
Photo by bruce mars from Pexels

As some of you may know, I am in school. The further I’ve gotten into my studies, the more I have cut back on social activities to focus on what’s important at the moment. I am on the homestretch, and I’m looking forward to regaining a social life!

You’re probably wondering what this picture has to do with being social. I’ll tell you. The focus and intent of this goal is twofold: 1. To regularly put myself in places to meet more guys while I’m out. 2. To come out of my introverted shell and be more open and inviting around said guys. I mean, I’m dating to be taken. How else is a girl supposed to be taken off the market? I’m all for being a little hard to get, but I want to make sure I’m not hard to approach.

Learning Makeup Techniques

easy makeup techniques for women who don't wear makeup
Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

I’m not a “wake up and slay everyday” type of woman, but I do like wearing makeup from time to time. I had gotten pretty good at doing my own makeup at one time. However, it’s been at least two years since I’ve worn makeup, and I feel like the whole makeup game has changed! Like, where did all you regular people learn these apprentice mua techniques? I will need the whole thirty days just to be basic! YouTube University, here I come! I definitely want to take my going out look up a notch. If you’re reading this and can suggest some vloggers to watch, I would really appreciate it. FYI, natural looks like the one above are more my speed.

So these are the twelve personal goals I established for myself in 2019. I wanted them to be bite-sized, manageable, and attainable. It’s said that it takes 66 days to form a habit. I think 30 days is a good start, and the intent is to begin habit-stacking. I may or may not write a separate post on habit-stacking, but it’s basically building on your habits one at a time.

If you struggle with juggling and trying to maintain consistent actions toward all your goals at once, I encourage you to break them up into manageable parts that you can reasonably accomplish in a 30-day time frame. Be sure to switch up what you’re focusing on from month to month; otherwise, the work can and will still feel monotonous and you’ll become fatigued and discouraged. If this post helped you in any way or if you would like to join in one or a few of the 30-day goals, send me an email via the contact page and let’s talk! Be sure to subscribe for updates, as I’ll be writing about my experiences and takeaways from these each month.