2016: 1/4 Review


The arrival of April means many things. Warmer temperatures. Budding plants. Rain. 25% of the year gone. Gulp. Yes, for those of us with yearly goals, it's time for a quarterly check-up.

How are your goals progressing? Did you already forget about them? Or have you been knocking them out so hard you need to set new ones? I'm kind of on both ends there, which is fine. I'll just be making a few changes and modifications to my original goals as follows:


1Make time for daily prayer and Bible reading, even if it's only 5 minutes.

Well, I was doing perfectly for the first two months, but March threw me off track. The YouVersion app got glitchy and lost my place in my daily devotional a couple of times. After getting frustrated with that more than once, I stopped logging onto YouVersion, which was the source of my daily Bible reading habit. 

I still get out my Bible and read regularly, but unfortunately, I can't say daily any more.

Prayer time has improved greatly, though I still need to step it up. I even devised my own little "war room" after getting War Room at the Redbox (such a powerful, inspiring movie, btw). That said, I'm still struggling to "find" time to pray rather than making time to pray. If I'm gonna get serious about it, I need to block out a chunk of time beforehand and designate it as prayer time.

2. Make a real effort to visit and attend church as regularly as work allows, with or without my husband.

I've gone every single Sunday I've had off work since January 1! Matt has only not joined me once, and it was because he couldn't get out of working that day. Still really enjoying the church and learning a lot from the pastor's sermons. I WISH I didn't have to work Sundays at all. It's bothering me more and more with every passing week; I'm still keeping my eyes open for jobs with weekends off. 

3. Read at least one Christian living classic.

I read Mere Christianity back in January. Nothing else since then, but that was enough to meet this goal. But I am open to book suggestions so I can really knock this goal out of the park!

4. Increase exposure to worship music, Christian radio, and sermon videos/podcasts. Clean up all input, from music and radio to TV and movies. Really think about what you're putting into your mind and spirit.

I keep my radio turned to the Christian station, I only have worship music (and really clean, positive music, like Coldplay) in my car, and I'm working on deleting less-than-wholesome songs from my iTunes library. 

I've actually taken this goal a step further and decided to clean up what I watch as well. I guess it's all the Kon Mari, but I wanted to go through our DVD collection and get rid of things that I felt even the slightest conviction about. The bulk of my horror movies went easily. The boxed sets of Supernatural were a little harder to part with, but I knew I needed to get them out of my life. I sold all of these things to Hastings. 

As you can see, I've modified this goal to keep this "cleanse" going. The hardest part is going to be what I will allow myself to watch on Netflix with my husband and learning to say no when he wants to watch something I don't feel right viewing. 

5. Write out and post a verse each week month.

*sigh* This goal. It should be so easy, yet I always forget about it. So, to make it easier on myself, I'm changing it to every month

1. Eliminate sugar, breads, and pasta. Severely restrict rice and beans. 

Guys, I've been killin' it. I've slipped up and indulged maybe a handful of times all year, and it's paying off. I feel better than ever. And look:


TEN POUNDS GONE SO FAR! And I did the 21 Day Fix in March and lost over 6 inches. 

2. Don't eat (or drink) anything I wouldn't if I were pregnant.

This was a dumb goal. I'm officially throwing it out.

3. Bike, run, walk, do yoga, dance, just move three times each week. Keep working out 5-7 days week.

UM. SO. During the month of January, my goal was to do one yoga session and one cardio session each week. Throughout March, I worked out seven days a week, from cardio to strength training to Pilates to yoga. And now, as I write this, I'm in my final week of round two of the 21 Day Fix, and I'm doing the DOUBLES option. Do you know what that means?!?!?!? TWO WORKOUTS A DAY. Who am I?!?!

So yeah. I had to completely revamp this goal because I obliterated it. Officially back on track and going places I've never gone before! 


1. Write down three things I'm thankful for daily.

This has been downright amazing. Seriously. I've done this at the end of every single day so far, and I find myself being more thankful throughout the day because of it. Like, at work, something tiny but good will happen and I'll stop, acknowledge it, breathe a prayer of thanks, and try to remember to write it down in my journal later. But by the end of the day, I've had so many of those little moments, they greatly outnumber three and I can't even name them all! 

I just feel more positive and optimistic all-around, which is great. 

2. Light candles, do yoga, do facial masks, take lavender-infused showers as needed. Make time for yourself.

I think I've gotten worse at this. I'm outrageously busy now after taking on a second job as a Beachbody coach, getting serious with meal prepping, and uh, working out all the time. I feel so rushed and on schedule all the time, there's always something I need to be doing. Just like prayer time, I'm going to have to write it on my schedule. 

1. Continue preparing a monthly cash budget and planning for all spending.

:) :) :) Killin' it! Check out the latest update here!

2. Find some kind of "side gig" to really ramp up the debt snowball.

YES! I am now officially a part-time health and wellness coach for Beachbody! I got my first paycheck at the end of March, and I'm loving it so far. I'm so glad I took a leap of faith and did it; I can't wait to see where it leads me next! 

3. Save up and pay cash for an anniversary weekend getaway.

Oh golly, it's only a month away! I've saved up almost $100 of my own personal money to use for dining out and such, and we have a sizable chunk in savings for a hotel. I have to work on our actual anniversary, but we'll be taking a trip the weekend after! I CAN'T WAIT!!! 

4. Save up and pay cash for another trip for just the two of us.

One trip at a time, man. 


1. Call/write/text/mail a card to someone back home every week. Make a true effort to stay in touch with family/friends.

I'm getting better at this. I've been pretty lonely and homesick lately, so I've been making a real effort to reach out to people back home. I could always do better though!


1. Pursue a job opportunity that will make use of my bachelor's in English.

I've pretty much decided that it's not going to happen in this town, and I'm trying not to get too hung up on that. I still check job postings frequently, but I always end up frustrated when I find nothing. I'm trying to just focus on the jobs I do have for now and make the most of them while we're here in Missouri. 

2. Stick it out in this position until at least March 2016. YAY!!!!

I can officially cross that one off! I've now made it over six months at my current job, which was my goal. I didn't want to have anything under six months on my employment history, but this job has been so tough, I wasn't sure I could last that long. Well, here I am, still going. 

3. Post monthly blog updates about debt, diet/fitness, and weigh-ins.

:) :) :) :) 

4. WRITE SOMETHING.

It's just not a priority right now. I want to blame my job, because I feel like it's crushed my creativity and sucked out all my energy. But in reality, I am getting SO many story ideas from that place! I'm just not taking the time to develop those ideas into something I could potentially turn into a story. And why is that? Because it's not a priority right now. 

So, that's where I am. Excelling at some goals, slacking on others. But hey, wherever any of us are with our goals at the moment, we still have nine months left of 2016. Let's choose to make an action plan now and not let another year slip through our fingers with accomplishing something! 

1 comment

Anna Marie Schaefer said...

Excellent update!! Really, other than a few goals that need some improvement, you're basically killing it. I'd like to chat soon; I need a total goal overhaul right now. Keep up all the hard work. It's great to see you making such progress. :D