Almost two years ago, over at my old blog (see the link to it in the sidebar) I posted notes on my original list of life goals that I had drawn up about nine months before to see what sort of progress I was making on them. Having read the list and those notes now, it's pretty startling how many things I've actually been able to accomplish. I am very proud of myself, to say the least — I've done things now that I'd never, ever thought I'd be able to do in my life.
Goes to show the power of writing down your goals and dreams, yes?
Without further adieu, here it is! Original goals are from February 2008, notes from October 2008 are in parentheses, and notes from today are in italics.
1. I want to catch up on all the recurring household bills and always pay them on time from now on (I still very much want to do this, but it hasn't happened yet -- I think I am getting close, though!). Goal accomplished! I've been paying my bills on time for quite a while now. It's a great feeling.
2. Same for debts I have incurred (Ditto on this, though there has been progress; I've been studying Dave Ramsey). While I still have student loans, and probably will for a very long time, not to mention the mortgage, I have paid off my credit card debt minus one small one that I will take care of by the end of the year. This was totally thanks to a gift from my mom, for which I am endlessly thankful. It changed my life. I am proud to say that I have been living credit card free for a very long time now, and have no plans to get one again anytime soon.
3. I want to be able to be at home more often (This is something I am going to pursue at my annual review at work -- negotiating working at home a couple days a week). I finally made that happen in August. I now work from home and teach outside the home two mornings a week — the rest of the time is mine to schedule. It is as fantastic as I could have ever hoped or imagined!
4. I want to be free to travel (I'm not even sure how I could make this happen anymore, but it's definitely something that is still on my mind a lot). Working from home certainly opens this up as a possibility. Next year, I'll be traveling to England for a solo show, the first international trip I'll have taken since 1988! Later this week, we're going on a short road trip. Better than nothing!
5. I want to accumulate and always have on hand at least $10,000 as a cushion (Baby steps first, though! I'll start with $1,000 and work my way up). I have been able to accumulate the $1,000 and will do everything that I can to maintain it, and increase it as time goes on. This is a huge thing for me!
6. I'd like to have more time to spend with family and friends (Also tied to money issues... if I have enough money saved, I wouldn't have to work as much...). While I haven't had more time for family outside my house yet, I think within the next couple months after my life stabilizes from the big change, this will be true, absolutely. Also, my mom and I still have our dream of finding a house together, which would mean spending a lot more time with her (right now she lives about an hour and a half away)! Psst! We're looking at one this week! As for friends, yes, I have been able to get out more and have lunches and dinners at least once a week with someone aside from my sweetie.
7. I want to be rid of extraneous crap in my life, and in this I am thinking about hobbies I enjoy but aren't worth the time and expense to me (Blythe dolls, I am looking at you!) (I have been working on this. I still have quite a lot to liberate myself from; it's just making the time to do it). Done, pretty much. Do I have too many books on my "to read" pile? Yes, but that hardly counts as crap, does it?
8. I don't want to live paycheck to paycheck anymore (Again, the money. I'm getting there.) Wow. I'm there, and have been for a few months — it feels amazing and I hope that I can keep it up forever and ever. Seriously. This is the first time in my life that I have NOT had to live paycheck to paycheck. It is pretty f*&%ing awesome.
9. I want to focus on my art as my main pastime/hobby/vocation/whatever you want to call it (I go back and forth on this thought. It depends on the day, but yes, it would be pretty awesome to make my living as an artist above anything else). I feel like I have pretty much accomplished this now. Finally. Sure, not having to teach and only sell my work as income would be the penultimate, but doing what I am doing now is beyond all my wildest dreams to date.
10. I want to invest in other artists (I LOVE buying art, and do buy small, inexpensive pieces from time to time. I'd love to be able to really indulge in supporting my fellow artists someday, though!) I've been doing this on a small scale and will continue to do so! I love supporting my fellow artists.
So, there you have it! I guess I'll have to make a new list to conquer. And you can see why I feel so urgent and passionate about getting my health in order now, too, right? I've managed everything else on my wish list... it is just TIME.