Monday, October 31, 2011

Complete a 500+ Piece Puzzle

I've pretty much always hated doing puzzles. I've never had the patience for them. I'll start them, get maybe half way, and then abandon them due to frustration. This time I pushed myself to get the whole way through. I'm glad that I did it, but I don't intend on ever doing it again. Every moment I had difficulty finding a piece, I remembered why I hated puzzles. The sense of accomplishment at the end was almost the only enjoyable aspect.

Sometimes it's good to make yourself try something again that you've always hated to see if you might like it now. This time I discovered that I still hate it.

Goals Accomplished: 5
Days Remaining: 984
Money Saved: $67

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Make an iTunes Playlist of My 101 Favorite Songs

This was too easy. All I had to do was go through all my music and put my favorite songs in a playlist. And when I thought of something and realized I didn't have it, I bought it and put it in the list. Took me about 2-3 hours. And about 1/5 of the list is Tom Petty. Figures.

Goals Accomplished: 4
Days Remaining: 996
Money Saved: $45

Monday, October 17, 2011

Make a List of 25 Things I Like About Myself

This was actually more difficult that I thought it would be. I thought of 10 things pretty easily, but then came to a standstill. I would think of something, but then realize I already had it on the list either worded exactly the same way or just slightly differently. I'm glad I did this goal, however, because it really made me reflect on my personality and my body, discover things about myself, and develop some pride for who I am and what I do. Plus, I now have something to refer to that will make me feel better on those days I'm feeling ugly, fat, and stupid.

In no particular order:
  1. I'm meticulous.
  2. I have pretty hair.
  3. I set goals and accomplish them.
  4. I'm a good listener.
  5. I'm determined.
  6. I'm good at managing finances.
  7. I'm realistic.
  8. I have pretty skin.
  9. I'm smart.
  10. I have a good sense of humor.
  11. I love to learn.
  12. I have integrity.
  13. I have beautiful eyebrows.
  14. I'm organized.
  15. I'm good at doing my makeup.
  16. I'm trustworthy.
  17. I'm a good baker.
  18. I know how to build a successful business.
  19. I develop amazing client relationships.
  20. I'm a good trainer/teacher.
  21. I'm a good singer.
  22. I have a pretty collarbone. 
  23. I'm a fast and detail oriented waxer.
  24. I'm empathetic.
  25. I'm willing to admit my mistakes and learn from them.

Goals Accomplished: 3
Days Remaining: 998
Money Saved: $33

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Answer the 50 Questions That Will Free Your Mind

Answering these questions took me a couple of hours. I thought it would take longer. I guess I'm pretty well in touch with myself and my beliefs. All of the questions and my answers are below.
Goals Accomplished: 2
Days Remaining: 999
Money Saved: $22
  1. How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are? 28
  2. Which is worse: failing or never trying? Never trying is worse because you don't know if you could have been successful, and you wouldn't learn anything from the experience in order to make you successful next time.
  3. If life is so short, why do we do so many things we don’t like and like so many things we don’t do? I think we do things we don't like for several different reasons. Perhaps we feel obligated to others, we need to in order to survive or provide for ourselves the quality of life we want, they are a means to acquire the things we do want, or we want to make someone else feel good. Conversely, I think we don't do so many things we like because we are often too busy doing the things we don't like, we think we will get to them eventually but don't actually make time, or we are afraid to try them.
  4. When it’s all said and done, will you have said more than you’ve done? I really hope not. I try to live my life with integrity, and I try to take advantage of every opportunity that comes my way.
  5. What is the one thing you’d most like to change about the world? I would like people to understand that religious wars are pointless, and I would like for them to end.
  6. If happiness was the national currency, what kind of work would make you rich? I love being an esthetician and making people feel and look beautiful. My current job consistently makes me rich with happiness.
  7. Are you doing what you believe in, or are you settling for what you are doing? Like I have answered for other questions, I always try to live a life of integrity, so I don't tend to do things that I don't truly believe in. I have settled before, and it doesn't feel good. I make it a point not to settle anymore.
  8. If the average human life span was 40 years, how would you live your life differently? Work less and play more.
  9. To what degree have you actually controlled the course your life has taken? I think I have actually controlled quite a lot of the course my life has taken. I believe that everyone is given many choices every day, and each one of those choices can affect the next choice you need to make. Some decisions weigh more heavily than others, and can affect your life at a greater degree, however.
  10. Are you more worried about doing things right, or doing the right things? My instant reaction is to say that I'm more concerned with doing things right because I am a perfectionist, but doing the right thing is also very important to me. Like I said in my answer to question 4, I like to think that I live my life with integrity.
  11. You’re having lunch with three people you respect and admire.  They all start criticizing a close friend of yours, not knowing she is your friend.  The criticism is distasteful and unjustified.  What do you do? I question why these three people are criticizing her. Maybe they know something that I don't. I also decide for myself if my friend deserves the criticism, and choose whether or not to defend her. I think that there is a big difference between just cutting someone down or talking badly about someone behind their back and discussing something that someone could do better. So my reaction would depend on how I understand the tone of their conversation.
  12. If you could offer a newborn child only one piece of advice, what would it be? All of the decisions you make now will affect the rest of your life; choose wisely. The instant gratification may not be worth it later.
  13. Would you break the law to save a loved one? Yes
  14. Have you ever seen insanity where you later saw creativity? Not that I can recall off the top of my head, but probably.
  15. What’s something you know you do differently than most people? I take a lot of pride in my work and I challenge myself every day to do better. I always strive to give my clients the very best service I possibly can that includes tailoring it to their specific needs, and therefore building my client base and developing a reputation of integrity and expertise.   
  16. How come the things that make you happy don’t make everyone happy? Because everyone isn't me.
  17. What one thing have you not done that you really want to do?  What’s holding you back? Seems like this is two questions. Hmm... I don't know. I generally just do the things I want to do. I wanted to open my own spa at one point, but I've come to realize that a business like that is just like having a baby, and I don't want to be tied down to something that way.
  18. Are you holding onto something you need to let go of? Yes.
  19. If you had to move to a state or country besides the one you currently live in, where would you move and why? If I had to move to a different state, I would move to New York. I would love to live in NYC! If I had to move to a different country, I think I would move to England and live in London. I love the culture there.
  20. Do you push the elevator button more than once?  Do you really believe it makes the elevator faster? Yes, I often push the button more than once. Usually it is when I'm feeling frustrated or I'm in a hurry. I don't believe it will make the elevator faster; I do it to make myself feel better.
  21. Would you rather be a worried genius or a joyful simpleton? Worried genius.
  22. Why are you, you? There are so many different ways to answer this question. I'm me because no one else is. I'm me because of the way my parents raised me and the experiences I've had. I'm me because of the decisions I've made that have led me to where I am.
  23. Have you been the kind of friend you want as a friend? Yes.
  24. Which is worse, when a good friend moves away, or losing touch with a good friend who lives right near you? When a good friend moves away is much worse. If you lose touch with a friend who lives right near you, I don't think you're that good of friends.
  25. What are you most grateful for? My life.
  26. Would you rather lose all of your old memories, or never be able to make new ones? I would rather lose all of my old memories. I'm happier where I'm at now anyway.
  27. Is it possible to know the truth without challenging it first? Yes. Sometimes we just know things intrinsically.
  28. Has your greatest fear ever come true? No.
  29. Do you remember that time 5 years ago when you were extremely upset?  Does it really matter now? Yes, I definitely remember it. And no, it doesn't really matter now because I've been able to overcome the situation, but it was everything I had at the time.
  30. What is your happiest childhood memory?  What makes it so special? My happiest childhood memory is a day I spent on our boat on the St. Croix River. I lied in the sun, napped, and read. I was alone, but I never felt lonely. The day was warm and beautiful, and the sound of the waves was magical. I cherish that memory, and use it as my "happy place."
  31. At what time in your recent past have you felt most passionate and alive? None of your business! ;-)
  32. If not now, then when? Whenever it feels most appropriate. I can't do everything all at once all the time!
  33. If you haven’t achieved it yet, what do you have to lose? I don't think I have anything to lose. And just because I haven't achieved it yet doesn't mean I'm not going to later. The important thing is to keep the goal in sight and strive to reach it a little more every day.
  34. Have you ever been with someone, said nothing, and walked away feeling like you just had the best conversation ever? Yes, a few different times in my life with different people.
  35. Why do religions that support love cause so many wars? I think because they actually only support love of their own.
  36. Is it possible to know, without a doubt, what is good and what is evil? Yes, I think you feel that intuitively.
  37. If you just won a million dollars, would you quit your job? I don't think I would quit my job, but I think I would definitely go to part-time.
  38. Would you rather have less work to do, or more work you actually enjoy doing? I would rather have less work to do because then I could spend my time engaging in other activities that I love.
  39. Do you feel like you’ve lived this day a hundred times before? No, because I did something new today!
  40. When was the last time you marched into the dark with only the soft glow of an idea you strongly believed in? I don't tend to go anywhere with the "soft glow of an idea." I like to do my research and choose wisely. I think this question makes it sound like this is the best way to do things, and I have to disagree. While it works for some people, this is not a comfortable strategy for me.
  41. If you knew that everyone you know was going to die tomorrow, who would you visit today? I would spend the day with my husband, but I would make sure to call my mother, father, brother, and best friend.
  42. Would you be willing to reduce your life expectancy by 10 years to become extremely attractive or famous? Nope!
  43. What is the difference between being alive and truly living? Just because you are alive does not mean that you are truly living. Truly living means enjoying life and challenging yourself.
  44. When is it time to stop calculating risk and rewards, and just go ahead and do what you know is right? When you just can't stop thinking about it.
  45. If we learn from our mistakes, why are we always so afraid to make a mistake? Because it always feels better to be right than to be wrong. I think we also don't want to deal with the fallout of making a mistake.
  46. What would you do differently if you knew nobody would judge you? I don't care if people judge me. That's their problem, not mine. So, nothing.
  47. When was the last time you noticed the sound of your own breathing? I focus on my breath daily. It helps me to relax and slow down.
  48. What do you love?  Have any of your recent actions openly expressed this love? I love helping others and making other people feel good about and with themselves. This is something that I do everyday at work, as well as something I strive to accomplish in my personal life. I believe that relationships flourish when both parties approach it with the idea that their own benefit will be achieved by creating benefit(s) for the other person.
  49. In 5 years from now, will you remember what you did yesterday?  What about the day before that?  Or the day before that? I think I'll remember that I was working, but I don't know if I'll remember the specifics of which clients I saw and what services I provided.
  50. Decisions are being made right now.  The question is:  Are you making them for yourself, or are you letting others make them for you? It depends upon the decision. I am happy to let my husband make the decisions regarding what I eat for dinner. As a matter of fact, I often ask him to make that decision for me. I think the important thing is to know which decisions are those that we actually need to make for ourselves, and either give up the control on the others or delegate them away. I think it is also important to remember that not making a decision is actually making a decision.

Volunteer at an Event

Today Rich and I volunteered as pie servers at the Bucktown Apple Pie Contest. The idea was to get out and interact with people in our community in hopes of meeting some potential new friends. That didn't really happen, but we had a good time anyway.

We each chose a table of amateur competition pies to serve to the public. It was quite a messy day, but actually pretty fun. I wish that we had known more about the pies we were serving because people would ask us questions about them that we couldn't really answer. And at $3 per slice, I don't blame them for wanting info before purchasing.

I'm not sure we will do that again next year. I'm debating on whether I'd like to enter a pie for competition - gluten free, of course! I wonder if it would be the first one entered...

Goals Accomplished: 1
Days Remaining: 999
Money Saved: $12

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Day Zero

This is my second time participating in the Day Zero Project. I actually just finished my first 101/1001 yesterday, and I'm so excited to do it again! This time I intend on finishing this whole list plus the ten items from my previous list I didn't get to.

Start Date: October 15, 2011
End Date: July 11, 2014

The Mission:
Complete 101 preset tasks in a period of 1001 days.

The Criteria:
Tasks must be specific (ie. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined.Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some amount of work on my part).

Why 1001 Days?
Many people have created lists in the past - frequently simple goals such as New Year's resolutions. The key to beating procrastination is to set a deadline that is realistic. 1001 Days (about 2.75 years) is a better period of time than a year, because it allows you several seasons to complete the tasks, which is better for organising and timing some tasks such as overseas trips or outdoor activities.

Some common goal setting tips:
1. Be decisive. Know exactly what you want, why you want it, and how you plan to achieve it.

2. Stay Focused. Any goal requires sustained focus from beginning to end. Constantly evaluate your progress.

3. Welcome Failure. Frequently, very little is learned from a venture that did not experience failure in some form. Failure presents the opportunity to learn and makes the success more worthy.

4. Write down your goals. It clarifies your thinking and reinforces your commitment.

5. Keep your goals in sight. Review them frequently, and ensure that they are always at the forefront of your thinking.