30 goals before 30.

guys, i am almost 30.

i'm not so good with my birthday.  i don't like getting older much.  it's funny though, because each year i like myself more and more.  i have more things to look forward to in life, i think, and with each passing year i learn more about who i am and who i am becoming.

you can see where this is going.  in 2014, i am not doing a new year's resolution, or any balanced goals + objectives like i have in previous years. no, no, no.  this is more than that.  in an effort to make turning 30 a wonderful, happy occasion to look forward to [which i will admit, i kind of am], i am going to start crossing things off my 30 before 30 list.

PI started his back in october when he turned 29, and it's been inspiring to see him crossing things off his list.  we both had our lists done over the summer but i've been waiting to share mine - so you will notice there are a few things already crossed off.  i'll make sure to clue you in on the progress of the rest.

while i know 30 before 30 lists are somewhat common, i actually got the idea for mine last year when i read this list: thirty things every woman should have and should know by the time she's thirty, from glamour.

by 30, you should have...
1. one old boyfriend you can imagine going back to and one who reminds you of how far you’ve come.
2. a decent piece of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in your family.
3. something perfect to wear if the employer or man of your dreams wants to see you in an hour.
4. a purse, a suitcase, and an umbrella you’re not ashamed to be seen carrying.
5. a youth you’re content to move beyond.
6. a past juicy enough that you’re looking forward to retelling it in your old age.
7. the realization that you are actually going to have an old age -- and some money set aside to help fund it.
8. an email address, a voice mailbox, and a bank account -- all of which nobody has access to but you.
9. a résumé that is not even the slightest bit padded.
10. one friend who always makes you laugh and one who lets you cry.
11. a set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra.
12. something ridiculously expensive that you bought for yourself, just because you deserve it.
13. the belief that you deserve it.
14. a skin-care regimen, an exercise routine, and a plan for dealing with those few other facets of life that don’t get better after 30.
15. a solid start on a satisfying career, a satisfying relationship, and all those other facets of life that do get better.

by 30, you should know...
1. how to fall in love without losing yourself.
2. how you feel about having kids.
3. how to quit a job, break up with a man, and confront a friend without ruining the friendship.
4. when to try harder and when to walk away.
5. how to kiss in a way that communicates perfectly what you would and wouldn’t like to happen next.
6. the names of the secretary of state, your great-grandmothers, and the best tailor in town.
7. how to live alone, even if you don’t like to.
8. where to go -- be it your best friend’s kitchen table or a yoga mat -- when your soul needs soothing.
9. that you can’t change the length of your legs, the width of your hips, or the nature of your parents.
10. that your childhood may not have been perfect, but it’s over.
11. what you would and wouldn’t do for money or love.
12. that nobody gets away with smoking, drinking, doing drugs, or not flossing for very long.
13. who you can trust, who you can’t, and why you shouldn’t take it personally.
14. not to apologize for something that isn’t your fault.
15. why they say life begins at 30.

so here's to turning 30 in 2015 - but starting on this list in 2014.

**except that i actually already crossed one off this year before i published this - reunite with 'us three'.  

balanced goals.

what a boring blog post title, right?

last year i mentioned that i don't do new year's resolutions.  thanks to my mom, i do something called balanced goals and objectives for the coming year.  they are so much better than resolutions, because they aren't big pie-in-the-sky unachievable wishlist type of goals.  they have to follow a certain criteria.

S - they must be specific
M - measurable, so you know if you've achieved it
A - they have to be achievable, not too out-there
R - realistic [see above]
T - time-based for quantifiable results

there are six different categories plus three additional categories that may not fit other goals.  there should be at least one goal for each category, or as many as you want.  

career/financial - can be both business + personal
relationships - family, friends
well-being - health + physical condition
spiritual - spiritual + intellectual growth
personal - what are you going to do for yourself

what am i going to STOP doing this year?
what am i going to START doing this year?
what am i going to CONTINUE doing this year?

so they sound kind of labor intensive, but it's not that hard.  i mean, think about a typical resolution: 'i want to lose weight,' or 'i want to cook more.'  what is more?  what is exactly losing weight?  making goals that are specific and measurable are so much easier to achieve. 

this will be my third year of making these goals.  and to help keep myself on track, i thought i would share some with you [but some i am keeping to myself ;) ]

career: find a fulfilling, meaningful career using my new degree
relationships: see my brother at least once a week, trip out to nyc at least once per quarter
well-being: run a 5k
spiritual: find an organization to volunteer with in boston within my first three months here
personal: cook at least 3x a week
wild card: make photo albums of all our trips [carried over from 2011 's goals!!!]

what am i going to STOP doing: stress eating [big vice of mine]
what am i going to START doing this year: surprise pi at least 2x a month with something special
what am i going to CONTINUE doing this year: blogging - upping it to at least 3x a week

hopefully this will help keep me on track.  i have a lot of things i want to do this year, and i want 2013 to be MY year.  now that school, the election and everything else has settled down i am so looking forward to a fresh clean slate.

feel free to take the SMART criteria and make your own goals + objectives... and stick to them.

have a happy and safe new years eve all!  see you in 2013!

til next year...