It’s now halfway through August and I still haven’t decided what my next “project” will be. I know I don’t have to have a project. But I would like a focus at least.
I was so pleased with how my Happiness Project went, I want to design a similarly profound program for this upcoming year. I’m just not sure how to do it.
Where my Happiness Project was designed around a breadth of activities, I would like this year to be more about depth. I want the assignments I give myself to be free from the “one month” duration. If I feel like I want to focus on an activity for longer than a month, I’d like to postpone the next activity. If I don’t like the chosen activity and want to move on after nine days, I want to feel free to do that without feeling like I’m breaking the rules.
Of course I could have done this even with my Happiness Project. But that would have broken the rules I’d set for myself, and we can’t have that. Living outside the rules is chaos. Anarchy. Or something like that.
I also know that right now I’m hungry for learning. I want to absorb information, assimilate it, digest it, make it my own.
In addition, I recognize that right now, I’m not really in a position to add much more to my plate. I’ve got a homeschooling first-grader and a toddler who just learned to jump with both feet at the same time and a new home and a blog. Either I need to drop something, or I need to find a way to be more efficient so I can eke out more time for new projects.
With all of this in mind, I’ve got a whole slew of ideas of things to do for this next year. I cannot do all of these. I know that. But I’m having trouble narrowing down the list, which means I can’t seem to pick a manageable number of things to work on, which means I can’t seem to decide on anything to work on.
Here are some of my ideas:
-Finish Levels 1, 2, and 3 of Rosetta Stone Latin American Spanish.
-Complete a naturalist course so I can be the smartypants who names all of the plants and animals on our hikes.
-Join Toastmasters and attend weekly meetings.
-Read Classics of literature, poetry, biography, drama, history, math, and science, and start a book club in order to discuss these Classics.
-Continue the two other monthly book clubs I’m part of already.
-Enroll in the online/off-campus Master’s Degree program through George Wythe University.
-Take piano lessons.
-Take a sign language class.
-Take an online Buddhism class.
-Go to a bible study at at least two different churches of different denominations.
-Attend the weekly Buddhist meditation at one of the local UU churches. (There aren’t any Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples in Massachusetts. I’m a little surprised at how much I miss going to the Shin Buddhist services.)
-Write a novel for National Novel Writing Month in November (again).
-Implement the FlyLady housework, meal planning, and self-care routines.
-Join a gym, buy some personal training, and become buff (as buff as a 35-year-old mother of two can be in no more than thirty minutes a day).
-Play flute in a community band/orchestra.
-Do a 365 photo project.
-Attend an entire Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction series (I only attended three classes worth before we moved from Utah, so I’ve reduced my stress a little, but imagine how laid back I would be if I went through the entire series).
-Just going to town on my vast “to-read” list on Goodreads, reading like 50 books in the course of the year or something ambitious like that.
I was going to do something like a zero-waste challenge or a “buy nothing for a year” challenge something trendy like that, but I just don’t think I can do that without it being tremendously taxing to me emotionally. I already agonize over expenses and waste. No need to intentionally increase the intensity of that agony.
So I’ll just agonize over my wish list instead.
(Update: I forgot the online fermentation class I’m considering. That should be added to the list, too.)