I realize I’m 10 days late with this, but it’s still important to reflect, so here it goes. Last year, I fell short on some of my goals, but I also accomplished a lot, so I’d say that depending on how you look at it, it actually evens out pretty well. But let’s go through the goals 1 by 1 from last year:
1. Read at least 25 books
I read 15. Half of my goal isn’t horrible, but definitely not good enough. It’s easy to let excuses like work and grading get in the way, but when I think back to how I managed to read so much during grad school, despite classes and a thesis, I just can’t justify reading only 15 books–especially as an English teacher. So this year it changes. It has to.
2. Write at least 10o blog posts
Well that didn’t happen, but I did write a lot more this year. I may not have final drafts of my new stories, but NaNoWriMo really helped me kick-start my writing habit again. And I may not have written a novel, but I was able to start a collection of short stories about my adventures in Turkey. Why not use my travel as inspiration? I can’t wait to write more this year.
3. Submit at least 3 things for publishing
Nope. Didn’t submit one. We’ll have to reevaluate this goal because I’ve failed majorly two years in a row.
4. Challenge myself more/actively continue my learning
Done and done. Last year I applied to two PhD programs and didn’t get into either, but that’s ok. Life presented me with other opportunities. I moved into my own apartment this year and living in a foreign country on your own is one of the best and worst kinds of challenges. Not to mention, I’ve been learning more Turkish, refreshing my German, taking dance lessons, and reevaluating what I want out of life. This past year was a great year for spiritual growth and though it had some rough patches, it was amazing in so many ways. I’ve learned a lot about myself, about my capabilities, and about where I want to be. Also check. Living on my own has helped me realize what’s there for me. In my second year in Istanbul, I’m still learning new things everyday. I’m using this chance to travel and learn and get as many experiences out of it as I can.
So now the time comes for my goals for 2013.
Continue writing about my adventures. Hell, just continue writing.
I’d forgotten what an amazing feeling it is to lose yourself in a piece of writing and I don’t want to forget that feeling again. This year, I’m going to forget about submitting anything and just concentrate on actually writing it first.
Read at least 25 books
I will do it this year! I will!
As I get older, I realize how fragile we are. True, I’m not exactly old, but in the past year I’ve had bronchitis, two intestinal infections, and a sprained wrist just from slipping on ice. Not to mention numerous colds and allergy related annoyances. So this year I am going to take more time and pay more attention to my health–physical, spiritual, and emotional. If I’m sick, no more staying up late to grade. If I’m feeling lazy, no more staying inside all day. If I’m upset, no more dwelling on negative things. This year will be happy and healthy, dammit.
Get a job back in the States
My plan is to move back this summer, so Inshallah (God willing as they say in Turkish), I’m able to do so. Applications start this weekend.
I would include continue learning and challenging myself, but I think that at this point, they should just be givens. Hopefully this is something I’ll continue doing no mater what.