A New Goal for 2018
Every year, I create and track goals. They fall into multiple buckets: personal, business and family (with their input, of course). My personal goals are always a diverse mix of hard, interesting and delightful. For example, a few years ago, I had a goal to do a beauty treatment once a month with a girlfriend. That hit the ‘take care of me’ bucket while also doubling down on community and friendship. It was a win win.
Last year, I did perhaps my dumbest goal ever: learning to do the splits. After attempting some at home programs, I gave up the dream of doing it on my own and went to a yoga coach. After they saw my range of motion, they were dubious I’d ever learn to do the splits. I diligently practiced every night, went to weekly hour-long stretching sessions and did everything I could do to “unstick my hips” (whatever that meant to whatever professional was helping me that week). I did it all: yoga, rolfing, thai yoga, pilates, aerialist coaching, fascia release massage … you name it, I tried it. And the last week of December, on the last possible day, I finally got a split in. One measly, pathetic, ugly, barely-counts split, but it happened.
So, this year, as I contemplate my goals for the year, I’m desiring to be more patient, thoughtful and open with those around me (family and work). I’d also like to cultivate consistency. I’m clear; I never want to try the splits again. That misery was something that I do not wish to repeat. But, in doing the splits, I did achieve some things that were extraordinarily good for me:
Splits training for 20 minutes every night meant that I had to focus on just the movement and the moment. It was almost like a moving meditation every night.
Being consistent was a huge breakthrough. Doing anything daily for an entire year takes extraordinary effort and that willpower muscle can be called upon to do something way bigger than just the splits.
I added professionals and healers to my repertoire of people I can call to keep my body working well.
The splits journey was a hilarious cocktail party story because it was always going so poorly.
I got to laugh at myself.
I grappled the idea that I wouldn’t meet my goal. What would that mean to me if that didn’t happen?
So, this year, I want to make one of my personal goals a physical goal. It could be something along the lines of how many workouts I do per week (been there, done that, already consistent with my workouts). I could sign up for a race and train for it (been there, done that, have the triathlon medals and half-marathon medals to prove it). I could take up an entirely new sport (taekwondo sounds interesting but classes would take me away from my family). I could make a weight or fat loss goal (which fully goes against my philosophy that ‘strong is the new skinny’ and that health and worth is not reflected by the number on the scale). I find myself going back to that awful My Year of Splits and wondering what else I can do to try to achieve that same thing.
I could try to master a handstand.
It would require persistent daily effort. It would be hard. It would require training. It would be hard. It would take into account my whole being and all of my physicality. It would be hard. I might fail. It would be hard. And, it scares me a bit. I have no idea if I can do it. Which sounds about right for a goal.
After all, if it doesn’t scare you a little bit, is it worth it?
I’ll update you once a quarter on the My Year of Handstands goal – maybe even with photos for extra accountability.
What about you? Any big goals that could use some naming and accountability? I’d love to hear them.