Tuesday, January 22, 2008

A Tale of Success and of Not So Much Success

Yesterday, I finished reading the book "Endymion" by Dan Simmons and figured this would be a good time to discuss the progress I've been making on my resolutions.

Obviously, the "read a book a month" is coming along nicely, as I've finished ten days before the end of the month and have already started reading the sequel, "the Rise of Enydmion" by Dan Simmons. It seems likely that, if I continue to put at least a moderate amount of effort into making the time for it, I should be able to read about one and a third to one and a half books a month.

The "do the dishes like someone suffering from an obsessive compulsive disorder" is also coming along magnificently well. Without conscious thought, I've expanded the dishes to include making sure that there is always coffee ready or ready to be made. Additionally, though to a lesser extent, I try to keep the counters in the kitchen clean. I think I will have to analyze this further and see if there are other, obvious areas I could expand into.

With regard to the "make a meal per week" goal, I've been doing well enough. The first week I made the vegetarian chili and last week I made taco chicken, both in the slow cooker. This week, we might not have much opportunity to eat much of the food, so I am purposely holding off. I might start trying to plan on immediately freezing some portion of the meal so that during weeks like this, I can still eat a healthier meal.

Something that hasn't been going well at all is the "make the phone calls" resolution. While I have made a number of them, such as to the cable company, there are a good portion of them that I know would be time consuming and finding time during the day is not a non-trivial task. Mostly, I will try to use time during lunch for these calls, since I often go home for lunch and can have all the information I need handy. This doesn't work well for the calls that I know will take too long to do during lunch. I think I need to start planning on making a marginal number of these calls during breaks at work, otherwise I don't see how I will ever make them at all.

"Exercise once a week" is, technically, a success. However, I often so dread expending the effort that the workout is a bare minimum. The problem, again, seems to be with scheduling and when it is being scheduled. Typically, after I put Katy to bed, I'll go into the basement and run on the treadmill for a bit, and / or use the weights. I think that I really just don't like working out that late, but see no hope for correcting it; the concept of getting up early to workout is unfathomable to me. I might just need to try to adjust my motivations.

"Write more" is ho-hum. I am easily writing at a more regular interval than I have if compared to years passed. However, I am also clearly not posting at the goal number of three times per week. This comes down to wanting every post to be of great substance and hesitating if I don't have a truly worthwhile subject. I also pause knowing that it will often take a lot of time to write that meaningful post. I think the easiest solution is to come up with a plan for what type of stuff I will post about at different times during the week.

The "Better Attitude" is a hard one to judge. I have been more open to visiting others and going to parties, but I am not aggressive about pursuing additional opportunities. This resolution might just be a feel-good wish. I either need to more clearly define what I want to accomplish, or abandon the resolution. I'll consider what I really meant this for this resolution and will decide what should be done about it.

Thus, there are several clear winners, some clear losers and a number of in-betweens. Although, the effort of tracking and making strides toward these improvements, especially continually coming back to them and re-evaluating them provides at least some positive effect: persistence.


mike said...

have you read Hyperion? I have it on my to-read list. Looks like the rest of the series is good to.

Andy said...

Yeah, I read the Hyperion books and then Endymion. They are all good, but the endings are all a little too much "and they all lived happily ever after" in my opinion. And, the two Endymion books introduce a very strange concept that is sometimes hard to accept.

At the very least, I would highly recommend the first one, Hyperion. It's similarity to Canterbury Tales is amusing.