From 20 Questions for Planning New Year’s Goals by simplemom.
Vision Questions for 2009
1. What skill do you most want to learn this year?
2. What is one skill you already have that you’d like to improve this year?
Scratch baking, especially cakes.
3. Name three books you most definitely want to read in 2009.
Man Gone Down, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, and Love Walked In.
4. In what specific area do you most want to encourage your spouse? What are some ways you can do this?
I want to encourage my spouse to make some social connections and to nurture the ones he has. I can do this by helping him to remember to touch base with his current friends and suggesting he join a group or class without me where he might connect with others.
5. Think of one of your major life goals. What will you do this year to make you one step closer to reaching that goal?
One of my major life goals is to earn an MFA in creative writing. I’m looking to take some graduate-level courses that will give me a professional certification, but might also add some credits that I can use when I eventually pursue my MFA.
6. Name your kids’ biggest strengths. What are some ways you can specifically nourish those strengths?
Lyra’s biggest strength is that she is a determined problem-solver who with work with an object for an hour (or repeatedly, day-after-day) until she has made it do what she wants it to do. She’s also so rhythmically in tuned that she will dance to the sound of a spoon stirring a glass and begs for music the second we get into the car or the TV is turned on.
I would like to nourish the former by getting her into a Montessori preschool program. I think the hands on, task-oriented approach is perfect for her, and the she would grow tremendously under this kind of program. For the latter, I’m actually looking into gymnastics and dance classes. Though I have previously smirked at the idea of organized activities for toddlers and preschoolers, I recognize that my ability to move and dance with Lyra is limited, and she craves music and rhythm so much, I think she might love a chance to do it with other children.
7. Name your kids’ most prominent weakness. What are some ways you can encourage their ability to overcome it?
Her inability to express herself verbally creates a tremendous amount of frustration for her. Especially when it comes to one of us having to take something from her (generally something she’s not supposed to have). While this will improve in time, I want to keep reminding her to use words to explain what she wants and to try and keep my energy calm, even when she’s falling apart.
8. What is one of your strengths? Think of some specific ways you can exercise it this year.
One of my biggest strengths is that I’m really good at communicating complex ideas in an approachable way. I hope to exercise this strength by finding full time work as an e-learning designer, so that I might put it to use every day.
9. What is one of your weaknesses? Brainstorm some ideas on how you can overcome this deficiency.
I have poor endurance, both physically and mentally. I’m not good at doing the same thing over and over again, or dealing with performing badly at a task and having to work hard for it to get better over time. It’s major reason why I want to learn to sew, so that I can help my mind adapt to learning a skill slowly, instead of the rewards of instant success. I’m also looking to improve my physical endurance, but I don’t have a specific goal in mind, yet.
10. Think of an important relationship aside from your spouse and children. How will you nurture that relationship this year?
I don’t have an answer for this one right now.
11. Name a few ways your physical health could be improved.
I would like to get my blood pressure down to a level that requires attention, but not daily medication. I would like to reduce my weight significantly, but I don’t expect that to all happen this year. Both of these goals require the addition of regular exercise. As my work picture becomes clearer, I will be looking for a way to add this into my schedule. For me, it has to be a scheduled commitment or I just won’t do it.
12. Name a few ways your family’s financial health could be improved.
We need more income. There are no two ways about it. I believe that my husband has done all he can do to improve this, with the exception of taking major risks. So, to improve my family’s financial health I will be returning to full time work.
13. In what way do you want to draw closer to God?
I don’t have this want.
14. What is one area of home management that frustrates you? Think of some specific ways you could improve your attitude about it.
My disorganized pantry would be my largest frustration with now. I pride myself on, and get a lot of strength from, having orderly kitchen cabinets with everything is a logical and easy-to-reach place. But the mobile baby has completely changed that. She poses a constant challenge to my structure, especially since I don’t believe in babyproofing by locking every cabinet and drawer. I’m open to her exploration, I just haven’t found a way to reconcile it with my need for order. I’m trying to just be okay with the mess, knowing she won’t find every cabinet to be an endless fascination forever.
15. Have you ever created a family mission statement with your spouse? If so, why not do one for this year?
This will require some collaboration. I’m not sure we’re both up for it, yet.
16. Name one specific thing you could do with your spouse this year that will deepen your intimacy.
Take an adults only weekend getaway to a place we’ve never been.
17. What is something that is continually undone in your life? What will you do to fully complete it this year?
Great question. Is it fair to say the answer is me? What I mean by that is that I continually fall off the list of To Do’s and HaveToGetDones. I need a lot of intellectual and creative stimulation, but frequently fail to get it, and this has a spiral affect that affects everything in our lives. I think that returning to work and taking a few graduate courses later this year are going to help reverse this trend. Learning to sew will give me a useful creative outlet that I can use to solve a few different problems around the home and doesn’t require the focus and solitude that writing does. and, I’m going to work hard to turn my commuting/passive time into reading time. I am sad when I don’t read, because I crave story and language.
18. In what ways will you be involved with your local community?
It is perhaps selfish and inconsiderate, but I have no answer, and therefore no plans.
19. What is one thing you’d like to accomplish by your birthday this year?
Can we say my birthday next year, as this year’s birthday is just about 20 days away. By my birthday next year I would like reduce our debt by half.
20. Think of three words you’d like to describe your 2009.
Fun, creative, movement.