>Most of my goals/resolutions for this quarter are carryovers from fall because, except for finishing a yearlong crochet project, I pretty much failed at all of them. I did add some new ones, though.

  1. Smile more, even if I have to fake it sometimes, and gradually get to the point of actually meaning it most of the time. I realized a few days ago that I don’t smile nearly as often or as genuinely as I used to, and that made me sad.
  2. Spend 10-15 minutes every other day tidying my apartment. That way, I won’t have to spend two hours every two weeks digging myself out from my various piles of detritus.
  3. Since my spiritual discipline goals were too nebulous to be met last quarter, here is the plan from here on out. I like the structure and meditative intent of lectio divina, but I also want to just go through the Bible again in a year, and I know I don’t have time to meditatively read all of it at once. So I have a Bible reading plan that will take me all the way through in one year, and I’ll read the daily selection when I wake up in the morning, followed by some brief prayer time if I can manage it. (It’s really hard to focus on much more at 5:15 in the morning, no matter how hard I try.) Then, either when I get back from teaching around lunchtime, or before I go to bed, I’ll meditate on a short passage from the day’s selection and do the entire read-react-respond-prayer cycle for that passage.
  4. Give my best time and energy to being God’s best, not my own personal obsessions. Concretely, this means working out in the evening rather than the afternoon and skipping the gym if other priorities come up. This gives me the chance to eat a proper lunch and dinner, nap if I’m lucky, and get my school work done before I am exhausted at the end of the day. This will probably also make me less cranky in my late afternoon classes, which will help in my pursuit of goal #1. Also: Bedtime by 10:30 except in extreme circumstances.
  5. Plan and cook complete, balanced meals. My friend gave me Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything Vegetarian and that has been very inspiring. I’ve already got about a week’s worth of meals on ice in the freezer, but I’ll probably cook and store some more this week while I have more free time. At this point, I’m still using the calorie tracker to make sure I get the right amount and types of nutrients, but it’d be nice to get away from it once in awhile and eventually off it completely. I do have a weight loss goal in mind, but I need to pray about it some more and possibly tweak it according to my body’s responses.
  6. Pray specifically for a friend every other day. In order to do this, of course, I have to spend time with people, sharing in their lives, whether through phone conversations, letters, or meet-ups.
  7. Pray for my mission every other day: the approval process; support-raising; lesson planning; my students, colleagues, and supporters; and the country of Niger.
  8. Take my vitamins and floss every day.
  9. Keep chipping away at the never-ending To Read list.
  10. Write out some form of The Story.

Ambitious, I know. But, “Ah, but a man’s reach should exceed his grasp – or what’s a heaven for?”


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