I realized this summer that I was three-quarters through my twenties, and there were some major things I wanted to accomplish, Three-Quarters, meaning 7 1/2 years past my 20th birthday, and I still had major things to do. In an attempt to rectify the situation, I began making a list of the things I wanted to do by the time I am thirty. Many are things I have hoped to accomplish before now, but somehow never did. I plan to chronicle my attempts to complete this list in writing and pictures here.
Part of the reason I haven’t done some of the things on the list are because I live my life extremely fearful – of what people will say/think, of having what I need to make it to the next paycheck, of rejection, etc. It has taken a lot to get me to the point where putting myself out there in this way is tolerable. I know this will all be hard, but I also know that continually living in fear will hold me back from being happy.
I’ve limited my list to 15 for now, because I don’t want to overwhelm myself, or set unrealistic expectations. Also, I know my list might change a little bit as I get closer to thirty. Some of the things on my list are self explanatory, but I will go into more detail about them anyway. I hope to begin making progress right away.
1. Lose weight, so I (finally) weigh what is on my driver’s license.
I have struggled with my weight for a while now. For years, I have tried to eat less, eat healthier, workout more, sleep more, drink more water, all (it seems) in vain, as my weight keeps gradually increasing, then fluctuating back down again, all the time. I have a few medical conditions that factor in – hypothyroidism, sleep apnea – but mostly, I just like to snack, to eat sweets. My goal is to get all this in check, so that I can lose the weight I desperately need and want to!
2. Finish writing a novel.
Ever since I was little, I’ve wanted to publish a book. I’ve begun many stories over the years, attempted NaNoWriMo, etc., but nothing has worked. I really want to finish something, but always manage to get stuck somehow. I have begun reading some books on the craft, and hope to read more on the subject soon, all in the hopes of increasing the amount that I write.
3. Get another stamp on my passport, possibly Europe.
Even while the ink was still wet on my stamp from Costa Rica, I had caught the bug, and was ready to travel again. A trip overseas is expensive, though, so it is something I will have to save up for. I’ve wanted to travel to Europe for a while now, so I can’t wait to start planning that.
4. Fall in love.
I’ve never been in love. I’ve never even been close. I’ve had crushes, even close friends I’ve liked as more than a friend, but I’ve never been in love. I want to put myself out there more, meet someone, and fall in love.
5. Pay off debts, and actually build a savings.
I am notoriously bad at saving money. I spend my money on books and yarn, and struggle when I try to budget or manage my money. I have about $6,000 left to pay off, and would like to start a savings, and saving for retirement as well.
6. Move out of parents’ house.
I moved back in with my folks during grad school for a number of reasons, one of which being to save money. I’ve stayed this long for a variety of reasons, the main one being that I can’t really afford to move out on my own, yet. I want to change that this year. I’ve given myself a move out date of August 2015, and unless something drastic happens in the interim, I’m working hard to meet that goal.
7. Take a train to California.
I don’t know if I will actually accomplish this goal, but I’ve wanted to go to California for so long, especially to visit family out there. The train would give me ample writing and knitting time, which I relish.
8. Read all 8 Jane Austen novels.
Jane Austen was such a prolific author, and wrote so passionately about love and marriage, despite the fact that she never married. I’ve read Pride and Prejudice and Emma, and I started Sense and Sensibility a while ago. Emma is by far my favorite, but I only have a limited sample. I’d like to read more of them!
9. Learn a new language.
I took German in school, learned a bit of Spanish in CR, and have picked up a bit of French through my work. However, I speak none of them fluently. I read and write German pretty well, but my conversational German is atrocious. I think I want to improve these languages more than anything. Also, when I was in middle school, I wanted to learn many languages: Spanish. French, German, Italian, maybe even others!
10. Read The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings.
Although I read these books in high school, I feel like I didn’t quite get them. So now, after seeing the movies, I feel like I should re-read the books. It just seems like something I ought to do.
11. Learn to spin yard and buy a wheel.
I recently picked up a new hobby – spindling! While I sort of enjoy it, I feel like using a wheel might be more up my alley. I’d like to learn to use a wheel, and save up money to buy one. We’ll see if this one happens, though, as it might take a while to learn and save up for one.
12. Spend a year saying “yes!” to God.
I’ve spent so much of my adult life saying “no” to God, despite my desire to live for Him. I want to make it to my 30th birthday having spent at least 1 year saying “yes” instead of “no”.
13. Spend a year knitting entirely from stash.
My yarn stash has quietly been increasing over the years, but I haven’t been knitting enough to keep up with it. My goal for 2015? To knit entirely from stash – i.e. no new yarn into stash! I have been purchasing sweater’s quantities of different yarns so that I can knit sweaters next year. A few exceptions: events and commissions. If I go to a yarn event, then I may buy directly from vendors. If someone specifically says “can you knit me…?”, then I can purchase what I need for that.
14. Spend a year writing EVERY DAY.
I’ve let my writing habits fall to the wayside, not making it a priority. I want to write a blog post, or a chapter in a novel, or a poem, or short story, every day for a whole year. Hopefully, this will make it enough of a priority, and enough of a habit, so it will stick.
15. Build an overall healthier, more simplistic, lifestyle.
I want to cut refined sugar, soda, chips from my diet. Also, I want to cook more, spend less money eating out, saying “no” to purchases, and purge what is not necessary for living. I’d like to think that all of my goals really filter from this one, in some way.