Since I wrote not once, but twice at the end of 2014 about setting goals for the new year, and then posted a worksheet for getting your goals down on paper, I thought it was only fair to share a little bit about the goals I’ve set for myself. I know it’s only three weeks into the new year, but it felt like the right time for me to assess a bit. So here we go.
As I was reflecting on the past year and thinking about the upcoming one, a single word popped into my head that I could not shake loose. That word was stretch. So I decided that was the perfect vision word for me for 2015.
My vision word for 2015 is: Stretch
Some of my goals for 2015 are to:
- Network more (a lot more) with others in the creative community
- Learn to use my DSLR camera on manual mode
- Improve my free motion quilting through drawing and machine practice
- Finish more books
I suppose in some way the word stretch embodies the meaning of the word goal – both imply moving past your current state and into something new and improved. So I questioned whether that was a legitimate vision word in the first place! But ultimately I decided that it was, for a couple of reasons.
In 2015 I want to embrace the word stretch in the most literal sense – physically stretching more. I’m naturally flexible and have taken yoga on and off over the past 10 years, but never went back to class after I delivered baby Jack over a year ago. And yowwwwww, I can feel it. So I want to get back to yoga class to stretch and strengthen in a way I haven’t for a long while.
Some. I’ve gone to one class at my yoga studio and am going to another one this weekend. It's not a lot of progress, but it's some, and that’s better than I did all last year.
Last year my friend Anjeannette made her vision word into a small quilt to have a visual reminder of it throughout the year, and I loved this idea, so I decided to do the same.
I’m interested in the concept of hand drawn type in fabric, so I decided to work on one of these vision word quilts myself by drawing out the word “stretch” to execute as a small wall quilt. So I took to some tracing paper with pencil and eraser and let’s just say that I got more use out of the eraser than the pencil. My lettering was OK, but I really wanted something more than OK. I spent a couple of hours at it before putting it aside for more pressing projects (this was a few weeks ago) and haven’t gotten back to it. I’m not satisfied with it yet and it’s going more slowly than I hoped.
The drawing of the type is going slowly, it’s a challenge for me to draw it as big as I’d like. I’ve been erasing a ton of it. However, just the fact that it’s so hard and I’m having to draw and erase and redraw and repeat is a stretch in itself. This project is so meta!
Progress on my networking goal:
Some. This is hard for me because I’m such an introvert. But I’ve been spending more time on Instagram commenting on people’s photos – people other than those I actually know in person. I’m surprised that I’ve been able to strike up a few conversations, and I’ve even planned a meet-up with someone at a conference next month. So I’m calling that progress!
I’ve also been pitching women like crazy for the Motherhood by Design series. This also does not come very naturally to me, but I can’t get guests without asking…so I’ve done it. I’ve been really pleasantly surprised at the reception I’ve gotten, and that’s felt really nice.
Progress on my camera goal:
Basically, none. I do have a few downloaded PDFs about shooting in manual mode, and I have a book, but I haven’t tried any of it yet.
Progress on my free motion quilting goal:
Some. I did watch a full Craftsy class by Christina Camelli on free motion quilting, and I learned a lot. I took some of the ideas she taught and practiced them on paper, and I’m feeling pretty good about them. The next step is to practice them on fabric scrap quilt sandwiches, which I’ve already made, but I haven’t sat down to practice the designs yet. I’ve had the chance to, I just haven’t done it yet. So naturally I question what’s holding me back, and I have no idea. But I am prepared for when inspiration strikes!
Progress on my reading goal:
I don't have a problem reading books, I have a problem actually finishing books. In the past several years I've given up reading several books that just didn't hold my interest (and that's fine of course), but there are plenty that I only made it partway through before starting on a new one. This is the year I hope to break that habit! I haven't finished any yet in 2015, but I haven't started anything new either. Baby steps here, baby steps.
So overall, I’m pretty satisfied with the progress I’ve made on these various goals. I’m a little annoyed with myself that I haven’t done anything new with my camera, but I have accomplished some unexpected things so far this year like garment sewing – I’ve made two dresses, one top, and six scarves. And all of them were from knit fabric – so that’s a literal and a figurative stretch! So I won’t complain. And although I haven't made a lot of progress with my stack of books, I've gotten some good writing done, so it's not a bad tradeoff.
How about you? Did you set goal for yourself this year, or do you have a vision word? How are you doing with working toward them so far this year? Let’s cheer each other on!