2021 New Year's Goals

Rather than lumping my recap of the previous year's accomplishments and failures with my goals for the new year, like I've normally done, I'm trying something new. You can see how 2020 went for me and the things I wanted to accomplish by clicking here

With that out of the way, this post can be focused on my goals for 2021. I'm going with "goals" this time around to set some hard numbers that I can work towards. I did this last year with "accomplishments", but that phrasing always sounded a bit off to me. I'm going to be very ambitious this year and set 6 goals in 2 categories. In the first category, each goal averages doing that thing once a month. The second category are more projects that I want to get done. These are all focused on me and take away any possibility of blaming others as to why they don't get done. No excuses. Find the time. Do the things.
Make 12 Pies
Let's start off with the tastiest of the goals. Last year I wanted to make at least two baked goods each month and I dominated that. I'll definitely continue baking all sorts of things, but wanted to be more specific this year. I LOVE pie, so why not have more of that in my life? Each month I'm going to make at least one pie. I thought of maybe making a list of pies to choose from or assign one to each month, but I think just seeing where each month takes me sounds better. I might want pumpkin pie in July and something like key lime in February. It also allows me to find and try all sorts of new flavors and techniques. Check out my Top 10 Favorite Pies post for a preview of what might come. If there is one goal that is most likely to be met in 2021, it's this one.

Read 12 Books
I go through phases where I want to read a lot and then really don't feel like doing it because there are thousands of other things to do. I know I haven't averaged a book a month since I was reading the Goosebumps books back in the day. This goal came about because I've wanted to spend less time looking at screens, something I wrote about a few years ago. I stare at a computer all day at work, we watch a couple hours of TV each night, and my phone is always around to distract me. Replacing just some of that time with reading physical books will be a good thing. Just before Christmas, I finished Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less after reading most of it and then stopping for no reason. Then I read the books in the Y: The Last Man graphic novel series. I have a few books that I've been meaning to read on my nightstand, as well as, an influx of graphic novels from the new guy at work.

Complete 12 Exercise Challenges
Part of my exercise regimen towards the end of 2020 was doing the 30 day challenges, that start at the beginning of each month, on Darebee. I plan on continuing to do that and including it as a goal will encourage me to stick with it. Part of me felt like this one was cheating, but I could decide I don't want to do those monthly challenges depending on what they are. In that case, I'll just find a different challenge on the website to do. What I like most about this goal is that I get to learn new exercises and get healthier in the process. It's also a good counter balance to the Make 12 Pies goal. One of the "easier" challenges I've been working towards is being able to do 50 consecutive push ups. I've hit 40 once so I still have a ways to go. 

Cook Through A Cookbook
Ever since watching the movie Julie & Julia, where the main character attempts to prepare all 524 recipes in Julia Childs' landmark cookbook, "Mastering the Art of French Cooking", I've always wanted to do something similar. I thought it would be a fun project and would give me a great source for blog posts as I report back on each dish. The question has always been, what cookbook to use? We purged a lot of what we had just before moving into the new house, leaving us with mostly baking and technique specific books like canning, dehydrating, making ice cream, etc. I have what is essentially a textbook on baking and pastry from the Culinary Institute of America, but I think trying that would be too ambitious with everything else I'm doing. So instead I'm going to try and cook my way through Food52 Genius Recipes. It's a collection of 100 recipes "passed down from the cookbook authors, chefs, and bloggers who made them legendary, these foolproof recipes rethink cooking tropes, solve problems, get us talking, and make cooking more fun." If this goes well, I'll probably take on cookbook with more recipes next year.

Trade, Sell, or Donate Games
I have a habit of keeping board games way longer than I should, especially after I've determined they should go. So in 2021, I want to actively get rid of the games on my For Trade list. I've done a good job of playing my unplayed games over the past couple of years, so I didn't want to include that one again. This one will also help me keep my collection small-ish, give me more shelf space, and possibly bring in some some funds to put towards new games or expansions.

Meditate Regularly
If you have read this blog in the past, you know I've attempted this goal before. I've had...some success with it, but I would consider my attempts as mostly failures. For some reason, I just can't get this one to stick. However, I hadn't really made any good habits a thing when I tried previously. I've since made exercise an important part of my routine, so applying this as just another exercise might be the trick. I hemmed and hawed over including this one because there's a very good chance I might fail. Not because I don't want to do it, but because I'll find excuses not to. I have very little free time and lots of things I want to do, so it's easy to justify not finding the time. Of all of the goals on this list, this will be the toughest but it's also the most important. My goal for "meditating regularly" will be at least 3 times per week. Ideally, I find time to do it everyday, but I'm approaching this with baby steps like I did exercise.


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