It’s time for a mid-year check-in! We are OVER halfway through 2021! What a contrast to what we were all experiencing last year. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed having a normal summer (it’s been summer here in FL for 2 months now) and being able to hang out in groups and plan events. I even saw a movie at a theatre last night.
While making time for friends and fun is a priority, my goals are always on my mind. I do feel that writing them out and publishing them helped me continue working towards them. Unlike a lot of resolutions and goals that usually get tossed after a few weeks, I’ve truly tried to build and stay on track.
With that being said, it’s beneficial to revisit your goals midway through the year to see where you’re at. I know I’ve fallen off in some places and writing down my wins and losses will keep me accountable.
Let’s get started.
Reviewing Goals and Evaluating Progress
I initially divided my goals into categories to zone in on what was most important to me. Having too many goals increases the risk of achieving less or giving up. As I mentioned in my initial post, trying to balance too many things at once is a lot of pressure and you’re setting yourself up for disappointment when you don’t succeed. The four areas I chose to focus on were finances, mobility, decreased social media use, and writing.
Goal: Focus on finances. I wanted to devote more time to monitoring my expenses and budget as well as consolidating my IRA. I planned to have a “finance focus” day each month.
How I’m doing: In full transparency, I’m killing this goal because of my other half. He has (mostly) taken over my retirement accounts and took it upon himself to rollover two old IRAs of mine (how did I get so lucky?). He also makes moves in my investments as the market changes.
I have kept an eagle’s eye on my spending and budgets. I had a very specific dollar amount that I wanted to save during my travel nursing assignment and I’m so proud of myself for reaching that goal. I reviewed my budget for June and was happy that I didn’t overspend on eating out or shopping like I normally do. I’ve been able to have more discipline in not buying whatever I want and instead of online shopping I was able to make money this month selling used clothing and an old laptop online.
Goal adjustment: I still have one more old 401k to rollover. I will keep budgeting every month using the Every Dollar budgeting tool.
Goal: Practice mobility. I wanted to stretch every morning, before and after workouts, and additionally on rest days.
How I’m doing: I wasn’t able to do Crossfit while in NC though I did utilize a gym 3 days a week and hiked trails when the weather allowed. I did spend 5 minutes or so every morning before work stretching out my wrists, back, and hips. I have continued with this habit and while I don’t stretch every single day, at least 5 days a week.
Goal adjustment: Get back in the habit of stretching/meditating before I even make my coffee. I’ve found that I tell myself “I’ll stretch right after I do this” and then that time never comes. My body deserves to move after laying in bed for 8+ hours.
Goal: Decrease social media use. My goal here was to spend less time scrolling, especially at night. I had a great plan in place to curb my addiction, but I did not execute.
How I’m doing: Ok, this one is embarrassing. Not only has my social media use not decreased, it probably doubled. While I was on my travel nursing assignment I had more time than I knew what to do with. Within 2 weeks of arriving, our Covid-19 numbers dropped which meant we weren’t testing as much. Instead of our hotline ringing nonstop, we might get 2 calls an hour. As more people got vaccinated (or chose not to) the less we were needed. It isn’t an exaggeration to say that we worked 2 hours of our 8 hour days. The rest of the time we spent surfing the web, watching Youtube videos, and scrolling on our phones. So, I don’t feel like this is an accurate representation of my phone usage. The week following my return home when I received my screen time report, my screen time was down 35%. Still high, but more reasonable.
My habit of nighttime scrolling hasn’t improved though. I just can’t seem to pull myself away. I’m tired from the day and I can’t seem to muster the motivation to do anything else. I’m not giving up on this goal, but it’s going to take sheer willpower to cut back.
Goal adjustment: There is a setting on the iPhone that lets you put limits on certain apps for a specified time each day. I remember having this turned on at some point in the past but I guess it got turned off, maybe in an update or something. I have it set for a one hour limit for social media each day. I am hoping this will be a reminder to put my phone down.
Goal: Keep writing. I wanted to continue to develop my writing talent and possibly pursue a freelance career. I was content with my current career choices and wasn’t quite sure what moves I wanted to make yet. It was only a few weeks later that I decided to take the plunge back into travel nursing. That has caused quite a change in my nursing and writing career.
How I’m doing: I was replaced at my part-time job when I decided to take the travel assignment. That turned out to be a bit of a relief as that job wasn’t a true fit for me. Taking that risk opened up so many opportunities and I’ve been able to create the flexibility I’ve been craving. I currently have multiple “jobs” (if you call them that) that allow me to work when I want, as often as I want. I still have a foot in nursing but in non-urgent roles. My focus is on my freelance career which is truly taking shape. It’s been over a year of patience, time, and effort, but I am making undeniable progress. I cut out a low-paying client to make room for higher-paying ones more aligned with what I want to be doing. I get to use my medical expertise to educate others. I have doubled my writing rates from what they were a year ago and instead of accepting pennies for hours of work, I get to choose who I work with and for how much. This is definitely a dream I’ve wanted to pursue for the past year, something I’m passionate about, and I’m so excited to keep reaching new goals.
I’m proud that I also kept to my goal of posting to my blog monthly. It honestly hasn’t been easy. While working full-time and continuing to freelance on the side, putting time into my own website and blog has taken discipline.
Goal adjustment: With that being said, in reevaluating our goals we have to consider what isn’t working or isn’t a priority anymore. I am no longer going to place added pressure on myself to post monthly simply for the sake of checking off a goal. The point was to get in the habit of writing and now that my plate is more than full with actual paying clients, my blog has to take a backseat. I still understand the importance of regular posting, and I’d like to post quarterly or as often as I have content to share.
Next Step Goals
The next six months will be an exciting time. One of my top priorities will be my wedding (it’s only 5 months away!!) and continuing to smooth out the details. We have multiple trips planned in the coming months and I’m excited to spend as much time as possible with friends and family.
Our goals change, grow, and sometimes even end. They aren’t meant to remain the same. The real goal is remaining true to ourselves and what we want for our lives. People might tell you to pursue a certain career or move to a new city or to even give up on a dream, but if it isn’t what you want then it isn’t your path to happiness.
I’d love to hear how your goals are going for the year and any adjustments you’ve had to make. Let’s hold each other accountable.