Jolie Guillebeau

Archive for January, 2009

The Year of Self- Discipline

Wednesday, January 28th, 2009

So every year, Chris and I go on a cruise in December. We spend the week getting warm and remembering the Anastasis, and most importantly we plan out our goals for the next year. Chris has an elaborate system, but I just have a notebook and a pen. We break things down in to categories and talk together about what we want to accomplish individually and as a couple. This is kind of like Mondo Beyondo– which I also do every year, but perhaps more detailed (for my OCD side).

Each year we take on new ideas and we each look for a theme in what we’re working on. For example, 2006 was all about completely new ideas, a new place to live, each of us were starting our school programs, and my journal for the year was titled “New.” 2007 became more about finishing well and following through. 2008 for me was the year “to go pro” which was more about transitioning from the attitude of “art student” to actually thinking of myself as an artist. So, it was about selling my work, setting up shows, finding my own studio, keeping up with this blog… stuff like that.

So this year for me is The Year of Self-Discipline. This means I’m going to attempt to acquire some. For a long time, I’ve coasted along with life and my issues, and I’ve started to realize that this is an area that is holding me back from the things I want to accomplish with my life. It’s my greatest weakness. Eating, Exercise, Finances, almost every area of my life could use more self-discipline. And so one of my first steps is to post my goals here so that I’m accountable to someone. (Unless no one is reading?)

Ok, so I have eight roles or categories and several things that I want to accomplish in each category. I’m going to summarize so that this post isn’t quite so epic in length. The roles for me are in order of importance. I’m a total geek and have made myself a little visual diagram for this stuff, because that’s just how I think, but you’ll just have to settle for words here, because I can’t figure out how to upload my diagram…

1. Wife: Call me old-fashioned, but I still think of this as the most important aspect of who I am. My first priority is always going to be Chris. There have been times that my lack of discipline has affected our relationship. I’ve made goals for this, but I’m going to leave them between the two of us. He’ll keep me accountable on this one.

2. Artist: So this one is second for a reason. Because it’s easy to put this behind everything else. But if I don’t paint then I get crazy and can’t do anything else well. I also have to figure out how to handle the business aspect of selling my work. And actually sell my work. So I have to make this a priority over friendships, family, work, the cat, everything. That way, I know I’ll make myself paint– I have to. I want to be a real professional working artist by the end of the year. (Whoa. That’s scary.)

3. Creative Learner: I realize that’s a bit vague. I put lots of things in this category though. Knitting, cooking, reading, crafty stuff… the things I do for myself. Painting used to be in this category, but it became so important that it got its own category. So, my goals here are things like make homemade marshmallows, read 52 books, make a skirt and a laptop sleeve with this fabric that’s been laying around here forever, knit two more sweaters, learn more French. Things that keep me sane and well rounded.

4. Health Nut: Ok, so this is really where the self discipline kicks in. This is one of my weakest areas. I start exercise programs really well, but rarely stick with them. And while I’ve made serious changes to my diet in healthy ways, I think I could do more. So, first, I’m focusing on physical therapy. I have to get my ankle back to pre-surgery status, then I’m going to gradually work my way back into a sustainable exercise program (and STICK with it). I was doing pretty well until just before I had surgery, so hopefully I can find that happy place again. And secondly, since I’ve been a vegetarian for 5 years this year, I’m going to celebrate by going vegan for at least 4 weeks. I’m sure we’ll talk more about this one and I’ll explain the process further.

So, this post is growing and I still have 4 more categories, plus I have to talk about last year’s progress. Why don’t I stop typing for the time being? Meanwhile, what are your goals for 2009? You don’t have to be as detailed as I am here, but I’d love to hear about them…

Update continued…

Sunday, January 25th, 2009

So where were we? I was tired last night, but I’m ready to continue updating you on the Cliff Notes version of my life right now.

So we returned to Seattle and to our house. During the cold weather, a water main had broken two floors up in our building and six units were damaged. Lucky us, our unit was one of them. We were expecting minor damage, but we were not prepared to find our bed in our kitchen or all the carpet pulled up or the drywall cut away. Our bedroom looked like this…

A month later, we’re still dealing with this– new carpet is in, but there are still a few things left to be done. It’s been the most frustrating thing…

Ok, so what else to tell you? Let’s me consult the list…

Ok, so my ankle is better. I saw my physical therapist for the last time Thursday– not because she thinks I’m ready to be done, but because my insurance coverage for physical therapy has run out. So, I’m working on my own, but I really am better.

Now, as for changes coming soon… as part of the Guillebeau goals for 2009 our lives are changing a bit. I’ll keep you posted on those. And another goal involves changing this site… so I’m working with a designer (Hi, BJ!) to make a more professional site representing my work. I’ll talk about this more when I tell you about my goals for the year.

Finally, Plinky. It’s fun. Go look. I think I still like Twitter best, but Plinky is fun. too.


Sunday, January 25th, 2009

Ok, I figure you guys deserve an update. I can’t promise it will be coherent, but since we’re well in to 2009, I want to say something about my life at the moment. So I’m going to make a list of things I need to tell you.

1. The vacation was fabulous.
2. Christmas with the family was lovely.
3. Our house is a disaster.
4. I’ve made my goals for 2009 and I should tell you about them.
5. Some things will change around here soon.
6. My ankle is better–that’s a good thing.
7. Have you heard about Plinky? It’s fun.

Ok, that’s a good place to start…but I guess you need details too.

So, mid-December we left for our annual Guillebeau goal-setting vacation. We went on a cruise to the western Caribbean– we love to cruise because it reminds us of living on the Anastasis, but with better food. We had a great week on the water, though we didn’t explore much because I was still not very good at walking. We returned to Miami on the 21st, and I got to see an old friend from the ship who was sailing out that same day for her wedding cruise (Hi, Lynda!). It was great to see her and meet her fiance and give her a big hug to send her off.

From Miami we flew to visit the family for a busy four days of Christmas, food, photos and fun. We had a great visit, but after two weeks we were ready to return to Seattle and settle in to normal life again and start working on all the goals we set on the cruise. (Speaking of goals, I think I’ll leave mine for a separate post. Otherwise, this post will be so very long.) We had missed all the crazy snow that happened in Seattle, but we discovered that the weather would have a lasting effect.

That’s a good stopping place for the moment. Stay tuned…