New Year's goals: Thinking back, looking ahead


Auntie Shawna and baby Satyana. 
If you guessed that my favorite experience of 2013 involved finishing the dissertation or graduating with a PhD or learning how to fly, you'd be close. All of those milestone definitely make the Top 10 Life List at this point. But my favorite moments of 2013? They took place in late August at 3:30 or 4 a.m. in a post-surgery recovery room.

I got to see a family being born.

As I reflect on 2013 and revisit my list of goals, I could choose to focus on the fact that my accomplishment rate was a dismal 36%. I could ruminate that some important plans--oh, getting a full time job, having an article published, lowering my cholesterol--went unachieved. I could stew over the uncleaned grout, the un-taken test, the unwritten posts. But I'd much rather contemplate the miracles I didn't see coming...

... Like witnessing my best friend's labor and getting to meet her baby girl just an hour after she was born.
... Or seeing a father fall in love with his daughter.
... And finding out that my baby sister is going to be a mama soon, too.

... Like getting back in the classroom and understanding it's where I feel the most alive.
... Or realizing that fear and failure are powerful teachers.
... And remembering that productivity and self-worth do not have to be so closely linked.

Of course, lest you think this is the intro to an "I'm quitting New Year's goals" post, let me assure you my excel spreadsheet is already organized. On the list? 65 or so things I didn't do last year plus a few more items including practicing yoga once a week, earning my private pilot's license, cooking with at least 20 new ingredients (not all at once, mind you), and drum roll please... writing 365 blog posts.

Now, I envision that last goal to be more like "writing every day," but after National Blog Posting Month in November, I know that the odds of that happening perfectly are slim to none. So I'm promising a year's worth of posts, with the potential for a break and double up here and there.

The question is, what do you want to read about?! I've heard requests for tangible ways to make the world a better place and understanding privilege. Guaranteed are posts on flying and cooking and gardening. Any special requests? I'm making a long list of things to write about... so let me know what sounds interesting/provocative/inspirational, whatever. Leave a comment below or email bluestmuse(at)gmail(dot)com or tell me on twitter @bluestmuse.

Oh and HAPPY 2014!!

Cross-posted from

Other posts about goals and list making