Wednesday, June 1, 2011

May: Month in Review

At the start of 2011, I challenged myself to develop meaningful New Years Resolutions in many areas of my life. To hold myself accountable and maximize my chances of being successful, I review my successes and failures at the end of every month.

Our trip to Jamaica was the highlight of May

+As I admitted last month, getting healthy had really taken the back burner this year. Even though I said it was one of my resolutions, in reality I wasn't making it a priority. But, realizing this made me motivated to make some changes. I am so ecstatic to say that I have followed through! I joined a gym on May 15th (the day after we returned from Jamaica) and I've been consistently working out since then. It took me five full months to go back to the gym and I'm so proud of myself! With exercise and dieting I've also lost five pounds! I know the key is to continue on this path and so my goal for June is to continue to work out four  times a week and lose ten pounds.

+My next resolution is to finish my master's degree. May was quite a productive month for me and I think I accomplished everything on my to-do list. I reviewed my results to make sure I completed the analyses correctly, met with my advisor about my discussion section, finished a second draft of my discussion section, and finished my methods section. I also submitted my thesis for a format check and I have started to schedule my defense with my committee. Right now, it looks like I might be defending June 21st. Crazy soon! My goals this month are to do a final draft of my discussion section, edit the entire document as needed, schedule my defense, distribute my final copy to my readers, make my power point slides, pass my defense, and make any necessary changes my committee requests. The final final final version is due to the graduate school on July 1st and so a lot of work needs to get done between now and then. I have faith in myself that I will be able to pull this off, but I am a little nervous about managing all of this and continuing to work-out. The challenge for me will me to do both. 

+My third goal for 2011 is to make time for my VIPs. In some ways I've succeeded at this and in other ways I failed. Neill and I got to spend time with lots of his family when we were in Jamaica and we also obviously spent lots of time together. Win, win.


But, since we've gotten back I don't think I've done such a good job. I've made time for some of my friends, but I've also declined invitations and not been as proactive about organizing things as I had hoped to be. Working out, being on a diet, and working like mad on my thesis make it hard to be a social butterfly. I just don't have the energy or the time. Since my thesis has such a hard deadline and I also really need to focus on losing weight, I'm giving myself permission to let this goal take the back seat. My goals for June are to have a wonderful one-year anniversary celebration with Neill and to plan a nice birthday celebration for my mom.

+Lastly, my fourth resolution is to be financially responsible. I don't have much to report on this. It's been hard for us to give up credit cards completely, but we've made a concerted effort to pay them off in full. In June, I'd like to look into finding a financial adviser.

How is everyone else doing with their resolutions? Any awesome successes you'd like to share? What are some things you are looking forward to accomplishing in June? Do you have any advice on how to juggle dieting with spending time with loved ones?


  1. It sounds to me like you're doing a great job! Keep up the good work :)

    As for juggling diet with friends/family time, I suggest bringing your own food. As in, offer to bring something (for dinner or snack) that everyone can enjoy and that you know is ok for your diet. Make an effort to make healthier choices. Veggie tray over dessert tray, things like that!

  2. It's so hard to balance all of these things! I know when I tend to focus on one, others hit the backburner. I can't imagine adding school!

    Our goals are so similar, otherwise, though! I saw a financial advisor about 3 years ago. Since then I only use my credit card for travel/big ticket items. Otherwise, if I can't afford it, I don't buy it. Some changes I have made are: keeping a list of things on Amazon for people and buying when they go on sale instead of waiting for birthdays and Christmas to show up and spending money all at once (I have at least 3 Christmas presents for next year already); do major price comparisons on ANYTHING I purchase, including groceries and especially baby items (this usually means I buy a lot of stuff on eBay...clothes and baby items, not groceries).

  3. It sounds like your resolutions are going pretty well! A lot of people forget about them by January I think you're on the right track :) About the weight issue...I've been trying to lose weight for a while as well. It's really tough, but once you get into a routine of going to the gym and eating right, it will get a lot easier. I've also heard that if you do something every day for 2 weeks straight it becomes a habit and you are more likely to keep it going...keep that in mind and stick with it!! You can do it!! :)

    I agree, it is hard to keep up with people. I've made the mistake in the past to decline invitations and just stay at home where I would watch TV or just go to sleep, and I missed out on good bonding time. I've made it a point to meet up with a friend if they ask to (as long as I'm really not busy), and to try and get together with my close friends once a month. Girls nights are always great--have everyone bring a dish to share and play some games at your house, or find a new fun restaurant to try out with some friends...just once a month can make a huge difference in your attitude and your spirit! With everything going on, you need a little "you" time :) Don't feel guilty taking a day for friends!

    I don't really do resolutions because I usually forget about them right away. But I have my 101 Things list and I'm sticking to the items on that. One of the ones I really want to finish is losing weight, and so far I'm just getting back into shape so it's a start :)

  4. Good for you!! I know that it is so hard to maintain any resolutions you've made, but it sounds like you've done a great job.

  5. Wow - that's so exciting your thesis is nearly finished! I think I've got at least another year to go for mine. It seems pretty fair enough to me that social events would be less important at the moment, I'm sure your VIPs will understand!

    My main goal at the moment is to stop having as much sugar (mostly in the form of lollies), and also to take up running. Neither are going well so far but perhaps June is the time to start!

  6. Congrats on joining the gym and the weight loss! You have some great goals for June, I have no doubt you'll rock them all. :)

  7. You're doing great and just having goals written down makes you somewhat accountable. It's so hard to find balance in life. We're all so busy with...something but it can be done. I'm doing ok on my resolutions....not healthy enough either but I did get at least one thing accomplished on my resolutions...a pedicure! You need to treat yourself too!

  8. You're doing really well in your attempt with your resolutions! I, too, made a resolution to spend more time with my loved ones - both friends and family. So far, I'd think that I'm doing fairly well. Just that sometimes I get too carried away and neglect my studies.

    Though on the contrary, I've been doing pretty good with my studies, so thank God for that. :) Being financially responsible and efficient takes time, and I think what the two of you are doing is truly wonderful. :)

    I need to get back to the gym, and start working out already! I'm gaining weight. :\ Eep.

  9. You are doing great, much better than I have been on my resolutions!

  10. Oh my goodness, that must be so exciting to feel like you are almost done with school. I just hit the halfway point and it feels great, so I can't imagine.

  11. I am so impressed that you are still working on resolutions! Keep up the good work!

  12. You're almost 1/2 way through the year! Great work. Some on these goals sound like they're just about balance in your life, like being healthy and connecting with your VIPs. There will be hard weeks or months when something slips, but keep trying to balance overall. Sounds like school will be done soon, which will totally help! That's great!!

    This month I gave up on my resolution, which was to manage our budget using I was getting too stressed out with tracking every purchase, especially when I know we're very responsible with money overall. So my resolution was a bust! Glad you're doing better :)


Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts. Every comment brings a smile to my face!