The trap of fantasizing about winning the lottery and not having to work is that you walk around with an apathetic--or even worse, disgruntled--attitude... as if someone has somehow wronged you or screwed you over into having to work. It's a negative mind set that is sure to feed on itself. So, that's why I won't fantasize about winning the jackpot; I'll only fantasize about getting 5 of the 6 numbers. You see, the winnings from matching 5 numbers would mean I'd still have to work...but a LOT less. That's totally healthy, right? That's keeping it in check, I say.
As I let reality slowly settle in, and before I wade through the hundreds of emails that have come in while I was away that now await my attention and force me to...you know, respond...or DO something, I want to take a minute to organize my thoughts so that I can be true to the new goals I've set for this year. Notice I wrote "goals" and not "resolutions". I think I'd be setting myself up for failure if I said I was "resolved" to do anything. Rather, I have set goals. Something to aspire to or work toward. Each year, I try to set goals in different categories to include personal, business, recreational and family. Some are inevitably cliché, BUT I do make sure the goals can be defined and are specific, are do-able and are written down. These are a couple of examples of what I've come up with this year:
1. Personal: Self-improvement. Get Active. (Here is where I take a vague statement and define what my goal REALLY is and then get specific on how to make it happen.) Incorporate 40 minutes of exercise Monday, Wednesday and Friday of each week by doing the following: preparing enough food on Sunday night to carry over for Monday night's dinner, using a crockpot recipe on Wednesday and allowing Friday to be our take-out night. (It would be self defeating to allow myself to think that I would somehow just work in a routine somewhere when our family schedule is pretty crazy already. There is really nowhere I can carve out time without getting up an hour before everyone else--which is not do-able for me. I'm just being honest here. I realize this may be the solution for a lot of people, but this is where I have to get real with myself and set goals that are do-able for me. What's do-able is finding an alternative to dinner to free up the hour I use to prep and cook after work. It frees me up to get active. I wouldn't be able to work in an alternate meal plan EVERY day, but I figured out a way to realistically commit to 3 days a week.
2. Family: Household. Reset thinking. Designate a Daily Thoughts jar in which each person (Ella and Ethan excluded) is to write one positive thing about someone else in the house each day. In addition, ANYTIME someone has a gripe with someone else in the house, that is also written down and put in the jar. This practice will allow all of us to air any grievances in a safe and positive way, giving each of us a voice instead of bottling up anger or resentment, as well as force us to recognize positive attributes and interactions with each other. (Okay, I know this probably sounds a little hokey. Remember it is a goal and not a resolution. And remember I have preteen boys, one of which is the king of internalizing and the other is the king of blurting and personal disclosure, so I feel it is important to reset their thinking and their practice in dealing with and communicating emotions... AND it well help me and Vern approach the boys and each other in a new and positive way, too.)
I won't bore you with remainder of my list. You get the gist. Any goal that has to do with money, I actually designate a dollar value, and any goal that I can apply a timetable or deadline to, I do. Again, this is not an all or nothing way of thinking. It's working toward something specific. This practice may not work for everyone, but it's what works for me.
Really though, I'm excited about the drawing on Wednesday. Just 5 numbers, that's all I need, just 5 of the 6.
Here's hoping that all of us reach our goals this year!