Goals Update: January Recap


I want to do a better job this year of holding myself accountable to the goals I set for myself. I want to make sure I achieve those goals OR I want to be honest with myself if a goal just isn’t the right one for right now.

Word of the Year: Reduce

The idea here is that this word will guide all my perspective on a lot of other goals. I think that I have embraced the spirit of the word, if not yet managed to fully incorporate it into all aspects of my life. Which is clear below.

Major Commitment of the Year: The Compact

Buy nothing new (non-essential) for the year.  If I need something, search for it used OR make it myself. Take other considerations re:ethical shopping into account as well.

  • Michael bought me reusable produce bags for my birthday.
  • I purchased underwear for my husband; I made sure that the brand I bought is made here in the United States.
  • I bought supplies (that I did not have on hand) to make protest signs for the Women’s March. I have leftover supplies; I think I will have plenty of opportunity to make use of them.

Not perfect, but I’m pretty pleased, actually, with my adherence to this goal so far! The produce bags make me feel a little guilty, but they are helping to cut back on waste (which is kind of a tangential goal to the Compact for me). Michael isn’t officially participating in the Compact, but since I do the majority of shopping in our household — he kind of is. Anyway, I personally cannot get behind the idea of second-hand underwear so that’s an allowed exception. The poster board and markers for the signs, though. I probably could have made signs using what I had on hand. BUT. There were size limitations and other things to take into consideration. I felt better knowing my signs met those requirements, although, as per usual, it seemed that my interpretation of rules tends toward the literal. People were carrying all kinds of stuff with no problem. Peacefully. A good reminder to myself that making-do can really apply to almost any situation.

Everyday Goals

  1. Declutter for at least 15 minutes every day.
    1. I failed miserably at this. I went through only a couple of boxes.
  2. Take a walk or somehow be active every day.
    1. I’d say this goal was achieved about 50% of the time. Which is 100% more active than I had been, so not a bad start. I want to do better in February.
  3. Write every day.
    1. Um, sort of. I was doing great updating the blog regularly and then school started. Similarly, my line a day journal got knocked off course a time or two BUT I’m making myself start up again, which is progress.
    2. I did not write any morning pages, which I’d like to change this month. 
  4. Read a book each week (at least).
    1. I read (and reread) a lot of my favorite romance novels this month, as they are comfort reads when I feel stressed. My goal was to read new stuff, but for now we’ll say I’m keeping my head above water.
  5. Engage in some form of political activism each week.
    1. Yes. I attended a city council meeting in support of our HRO, attended the Women’s March and try to call my congressional reps several times a week (goal = every day, but that’s something to work toward — the lines are often busy and since I do this during a work break, I sometimes get caught up in other stuff).

January Specific Goals

The Compact:

  1. Buy nothing new (except consumables).
    1. Kohl’s sent me a $10 coupon for my birthday. I don’t need anything, but my husband does and it’s not something that we’d buy used. I’ll spend as close to this amount as possible.
      1. Well, I did do this as mentioned above, but I was a little off on my estimate of how much I would spend. Still, with the coupon and a discount code, I was able to bring the cost of men’s underwear down below 50% of the original price.
  2. Use it up, Wear it Out, Make it Do, Do Without
    1. Replace heel caps on pumps, generally care for shoes to increase life.
      1. I assembled all the shoe repair supplies, but only managed to clean/freshen up a pair of slippers and a pair of boots.
    2. Determine what clothing in closet needs to be mended and figure out how to make that happen.
      1. I did create a mending basket.


  1. Track all spending and stick to budget. Mostly — I’m a little behind, but will update this week.
    1. Create excel budget for 2017, as well as excel “check register.” Yes.
    2. Login to online accounts everyday to make sure I haven’t missed an expenditure. Sort of — everyday isn’t necessary, but am checking a couple of times a week.
  2. Bring in additional income to maximize saving and debt reduction.
    1. Apply to two part time positions (intermittent).
    2. Investigate Swagbucks and Microsoft Rewards to see if they will work for me. (I tried swagbucks once before and found it infuriating.) As suspected, both of these programs drove me crazy early on. I’m going to opt out, but admire those of you who can make this work!
    3. Get serious about selling possessions that I declutter. I tend to just send things straight to Goodwill, and I suspect I will still donate a good deal, but I also know that with a little time and patience, I could sell a number of things for a small profit. Or…more accurately, mitigate the original, long-forgotten cost. Well, I’m still serious about it, but since I did so little decluttering, I didn’t really make any progress on this goal.
  3. Be a better steward of our resources.
    1. Deposit collected change into credit union account. I’ve been collecting it for a while; I’d like to do this annually. I also want this to kickstart us making better use of the credit union account.Ugh, I still haven’t done this.
    2. Set up file to track maintenance, etc on Sonata. Yes.

Pantry Challenge:

  1. Spend no more than $100 on groceries this month.
    1. I spent about $125 on groceries this month. More than my goal, but much less than my average last year! And I really did focus on mostly necessities.
  2. Eat down stores in pantry, fridge and freezer.
    1. Make an inventory of what is IN pantry and freezer.
      1. Nope. I started and got overwhelmed; I feel like as long as I’m not bringing much new stuff in, I can operate without an inventory for now.
    2. Use this as an opportunity to try out new recipes.
      1. Yes! I’m trying out at least one new recipe each week. 


Since I’m decluttering in the master bedroom this month, my project tasks are in there as well.

  1. Hang shelf for scarves in master closet.
  2. Paint missed spot in closet.

Sadly, I didn’t achieve either of these goals. I’m….not all that concerned about them, honestly, which is probably why they didn’t get done.


  1. Make and send New Year’s Cards.
    1. Nope
  2. Mail fun packages to my nieces and nephews.
    1. Yep!
  3. Make fingerless gloves for myself.
    1. Nope!

Ugh. That was long! I’m going to try to streamline this process for February. Overall, I’m reasonably pleased with my efforts. I can see that the goals I set as my higher priorities for the year got more attention, while the random January specific stuff may or may not have seen much progress.


4 thoughts on “Goals Update: January Recap

    1. Thanks Shara — I’m definitely a work in progress and so are my goals. 😉 That’s a good way to look at things.

  1. I, too, think you did quite well, although I know what you mean because I feel the same way about how many goals I was able to attain. Sometimes, it is hard to find the motivation or the time and energy needed to accomplish some goals. I guess we can carry them onto the next month or review them to see if they are valid goals or need changing. Just do what you can, I guess. 🙂

    1. Thanks Bless! It is so helpful for me to remember that just because I had a goal, doesn’t mean it was something that needed to happen or that can’t change. And just doing what we can is pretty much all we can do!

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