Monthly Goals: July

July Goals

Well, I haven’t posted any goals in awhile because the last time that I posted them, I got through three-fourths of the month before excruciating pain stopped my life and all goals, large and small, halted. I know that I wrote that I was a person, even though I was sick, who still needed goals. Unfortunately my body, was like “yeah, good luck with that!”

Again, I am not doing well, but I am determined to reach a few goals. Not only will I use the daily goal tracker, but I have a few other things to accomplish:

monthly goal tracker final

[Again, I can’t figure out how to embed an pin still, so you’ll have to click the picture.]

Daily Goals:

  • Some type of daily activity. This doesn’t have to be classic exercise. This can be physical therapy, PT exercises, washing my hair and going to a doctor appointments, or even just a 10 minute stretch.

  • Taking supplements everyday. I’m terrible about this, but if I check it off, I’ll do it.

  • Drink enough water every day

  • I’m sure I’ll think of a few more…

Monthly Goals:

  • Read three novels from NetGalley for review. I’m really bad about over requesting because I’m afraid of being turned down. Then, I’ll get too many. I don’t want to hurt my percentage (they want you to keep an 80% review rate), so it’s time to get reading.

  • Write more blog posts. I neglected this space for awhile. I still feel horrible, but sometimes taking my mind off of my pain and turning it towards something like writing is helpful.

  • Organize bill due dates so I don’t overpay again this month. (Oops.)

  • Try to keep myself organized so that I don’t forget to call in medication refills, pay bills, etc.

What are your goals this month?


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April Goals: Yeah, I Know…

April Goals
I know that I said that I used to hate posts about goals, but that was because I didn’t have any. I realized I was a person, even though I mostly stay in bed and all of my old goals are gone, so I still need some. They are like the little goals that could help me reach big goals, like having local friends or some semblance of normalcy in my life.

I’ve been working on organizing my papers, goals, and schedules, but because my health changes all of the time – I never know when a medication will stop working or I’ll have to start a new one, which will mean pain from going off the old one, or if my Botox will run out early – I don’t want to set unrealistic goals. I used to think that I could be a runner, but then I tried it and my neck hated it. What will be will be.

I found that cool printable to track if I do something every day. I tried my hardest to embed the pin, which seemed like a cool idea, but it didn’t work. Here is a clickable screenshot?

monthly goal tracker final


My goals for April include:

Wearing my Jawbone everyday: I don’t know how many steps I currently take, but I want to use the buzzing function to make sure that I at least get up to refill my water every 45 minutes or something. Once I get a baseline for how many steps I take, I can slowly increase.

Eat 3 meals a day:  I am on 2 medications that suppress my appetite. Unfortunately, this means headaches, hangry-ness, feeling (more) sick, and even generally horrible. While this wouldn’t seem problematic (weight loss!), it is. Plus Google is REALLY unhelpful. Fortunately, I belong to a great online support group and within 10 minutes, the lovely ladies had tons of suggestions. Some were more practical for me than others, due to certain mobility issues – I heated up some frozen soup the other day and spilled it on my hand, thanks to a tremor, which means that I spilled it on an area where I had a scar already, and have recut myself, gotten blisters, etc., – but I plan on sharing all of the ideas because when you try to search for help on getting enough meals/calories/food in when you’re on medications that make you not hungry, you don’t find helpful information. I rely a lot on my husband for preparing the things that I eat and several reminder systems, but I do have to make sure that I eat.

Average one nice thing a day for someone else: I wrote about how other people can be a good friend to people with chronic illness, but even though I might not have many local friends or be able to get out and see people, that doesn’t keep me from being a good friend or family member. Not every day is a good day, so I’m going for an average! Sending a card, a funny picture, calling my grandma, or whatever–it counts. I love to be remembered, so I want to make sure that I am remembering other people, too.

Fill out my gratitude journal (thank you to my grandmother for giving me one that I didn’t fill out almost every year and Emily for writing about her’s) everyday: and also working toward writing in a regular journal daily. I’ll be happy if I fill out my gratitude journal, but a regular one would be nice, too.

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Oh, Hey. I’m a Person. I Need Goals.

Chronic Illness can rob you of all of your goals. This is how I'm slowly rebuilding mine.

Goals After Chronic Illness

I know a lot of people post their goals at the beginning of the month, but I do things on my own time table. It’s part of accepting my limitations with chronic illness. For years, I thought because I couldn’t “get things done on time,” there was no point in trying to set goals for my life. I had to leave my dream job, drop out of grad school, move to a strange city, and gradually lose more and more ability to care for myself. I’ve always been goal-oriented, so losing the ability to reach even self-imposed goals has been heartbreaking.

Honestly, I never quite saw the point of posting monthly goals, other than accountability. I thought, hey, I could just write these down in private. No one would know that I can’t reach them...

Then I thought, oh, wait. I’m a person, too. Just like I need hobbies. I need goals.

Current Attitude:

Recently, though, I started thinking about my own goal-oriented-ness. I know that I can’t do everything that I want to do at once, so I made a list of HUGE, broad goals. Ones that could take years and years to accomplish. I wrote down the ways that I would measure if I accomplished them, so writing them down was helpful. I will probably start being one of those monthly goal people, but mine’s a running list! I promise that future posts will be shorter and more concise.

Now, I am keeping that really long running list of small goals for along the way. Much like the way that a runner who wants to run a marathon sets small goals along the way, I think of new things that will eventually get me to where I want to go. As I make tiny bits of progress, I add a new daily/weekly/monthly goal. I just have to accept that I won’t achieve everything all of the time, but there is something powerful about writing it down and at least thinking about taking control over my life, since I don’t always have control over my body. I have the kind of goals that take some energy, but some that can still be accomplished as long as I’m not totally screaming in pain.

I really enjoyed reading people’s goals this month for some reason. Maybe it is because I have a little bit more motivation than I had in the past? Because I’m writing my own goals down in my binder? I even got some good ideas for goals! It was fun to celebrate with my favorite bloggers when they accomplished their goals or even to offer a bit advice or encouragement. Because, honestly, I always skimmed through blogs on the first day of the month (too many goal posts). Maybe now that I have goals again, I won’t feel an unconscious resentment.

Some of my goals are meaningless unless you understand my physical conditions, but I thought that I would share a few things that I’m going to try to work towards during the next few months.

I’m not naive enough to think that I can accomplish anything in a single month. Most of these are long-term. Some are like “do this once a month,” or things like that might just get done once. Others are super obvious goals that other people do without thinking twice, but once I got sick, I stopped doing them.

Aside from creating a little accountability, I hope maybe my tiny goals will inspire other people who have felt like they can’t accomplish goals anymore.


A few timely posts from a blog that I love came to my attention after I started working on my own goals. Life in Slow Motion talks about reframing your setbacks and how to symptoms to prevent flares. Personally, I use a mix of apps and paper to track.

Starting at Home

  • Purposeful reading
    > Read a memoir each month
    > Read a literary theory book each month
    > Read a book towards a reading challenge each month
    > Read a book about writing (this may take longer than a month)
    > Read at least part of an anthology of anything
  • Organization
    > Keep my goal list running and add as possible
    > Organize emails for immediate response, respond as soon as possible, and answer when my health allows me to write the best response
    > Track my goals and schedule, as my health allows! (I found some printables on Pinterest that work well for me)
  • Blogging
    > Since blogging is one of my few current hobbies, I set a few goals for it.
    > Keep a running list of ideas.
    > Try to write when I feel well, so I will have a surplus of posts to publish when I don’t feel well.
  • Life
    > Plan one activity with Brian per weekend where we put away all technology at the house or leave the house, if possible.
    > Treat myself to a favorite TV show or two every few days.
    > Keep a “get ready/go to bed” list taped to the bathroom mirror.
    >>>That’s how bad things can get when you’re sick. You need a list to remind you how to take care of yourself.

I’m working on all of these things slowly, but surely.

How do you set your goals? How do you set goals, especially after a prolonged illness?


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Categories: Chronic Illness, Goals Tags: ,