Every now and then, I’m inspired to create a life plan. The last one was in 2005 when I turned 30 (although I did update it in 2010 when I turned 35). With the prospect of starting a new business and living consciously, this year was screaming for a life plan.
I decided to try something different though. This year, I made a 2013 binder because over the years, my attention span for long documents has deteriorated considerably. I jazzed the binder up a little by creating a cute cover from a photo I found in one of my fashion magazines. Because of said long-windedness issues, the binder is divided into the following categories:
- General 2013. This section has general 2013 information: goals (social, financial, health and spiritual) and a letter to myself to describing how I see 2013 right now.
- 52 Changes. This is from an e-book on Zen Habits that I received as part of my membership to the site. It allows me to make 52 positive changes in my life one week at a time. Although they are outlined in a specific order, I decided to start with one that I needed to change immediately: Mindful Eating. I created a form to mark my progress each week that will help me stay focused.
- Weekly Plans. It’s a basic calendar. It’s much easier for me to plan my posts, activities and time with friends if I can visually see everything in one place. From there, I put everything in my Google Calendar for the week and let it remind me of what I need to do. This works for me because I do much better with structured time than telling myself I’m going to do five different things when I get home from work and then looking up at 11 p.m. and realizing nothing got done.
- Visuals. I’m a visual woman. I love pretty pictures and inspiring and funny quotes. I decided to choose a new picture or quote each week to inspire me to accomplish what I set out to do or something that just makes me feel good. There is no limit to the number of these I’ll collect, but there will be a guiding one for each week.
- Gratitude. I love recounting the things that I overlooked, but brought me positive feelings. I used to write 10 things I’m grateful for each morning, but I think I’m going to switch it up and do 5 things for the day at the end of the night an hour before bed. At the very least, maybe it will help stave off weird dreams.
- Thinking of You. I realized that I don’t reach out authentically enough. I have an unlimited everything plan, but instead of calling, I’ll text everyone. I made this section simply to keep track of intentionally calling or handwriting a note to two people per month. And not calling The Kid, but calling someone I don’t interact with on a regular basis, like my aunt in Houston or some friends from high school. It’s working great so far for my close friends, but I need to reach out to those outer circles.
- Projects. I don’t really have any projects that I’m working on yet, but I think a Projects tab just makes me feel better.
Right now, the binder is HUGE, but I figure by the end of the year it should be completely filled. Also, because it’s so big, there’s no way I can just put it somewhere and NOT see it. If for no other reason, I’d feel compelled to at least flip through it and realize I need to update this or that during the year. Plus, it’s cute. Who can resist cuteness?