This month I have decided to pen a set of goals to be achieved within the next six months. As you may have read from some of my previous posts such as It’s okay to ask for help, I have been drowning a little in my self-made world of destruction. And after my post 7 Things People Suffering With Depression Are Sick Of Hearing was featured by Time to Change, I received a lot of comments on how relatable the content was. However, there was only one comment that stood out to me. The commenter received a lot of hate for what they wrote, reiterating that depression isn’t a choice and saying some rather cruel stuff. But what they had said was true.
I wish I could remember word for word what the person had written, but unfortunately the comment was deleted. Basically they said that it was all fine talking about depression and how people don’t understand, but that doesn’t solve the question of what you’re going to do about it. The commenter wasn’t saying that depression is a choice. The choice is whether or not you find the strength to declare war on that depression. Sometimes you can, sometimes you can’t, but you can choose to try and do something about it.
It actually reminded me of something I told my second counsellor after the first one was patronisingly sympathetic about my depression. I told him that I can get plenty of sympathy from friends and family; what I wanted him to do was ignore the tears and help me find ways to actually fight it.
While the comment riled a lot of people up, it actually inspired me. I’ve been in a rut for a while. I haven’t been doing as well as I would have liked, and at times I feel disconnected from the world and from myself.
This six month plan is an attempt to change all of that.
I actually got the idea from a book called The The 4-Hour Work Week by Timothy Ferriss. In one of the chapters, Timothy suggested putting together a six month ‘dreamlining’ time line. Sure, this guide is really for helping you set up a successful time-efficient business, but I thought I could apply it to right now as a goal to improve myself.
In order to put together a dreamline time line, you need to make three lists of five things you dream of having, being, and doing. This can include material wants, skills you want to have, and places you want to visit. From there, highlight the four that are the most important or exciting to you. These are the ones you will pursue. Determine the cost of these dreams and calculate your Target Monthly Income for you to be able to fulfil them. After that, consider three steps for each dream to allow you to fulfil these dreams. (Ferriss has included both a worksheet and sample dreamline on his blog)
And lastly, stick to it!
I decided to use this guide to try and improve myself by giving me a series of small goals and a deadline in which to meet them.
Here are my four goals:
#1) Exercise regularly
As much as I hate hearing everyone go on about how I need to exercise more, they aren’t wrong. I did start running for a bit, and I do have an exercise bike for more convenience. Unfortunately I managed to get behind with some of my coursework, and my exercising plans just went completely out of the window. So now I have decided I need to put together an exercise regime (not too crazy!) with allotted times that I know I can stick to. I have also put a goal in my bullet journal for how many kilometres I should cycle each month, and if I exceed it I get to have apple pie (my favourite!). Hopefully this will work to get some endorphins rushing through my bloodstream more often!
#2) Fluent in German
Be able to have a 5 minute conversation in German. I have been trying to learn German on-off for some time now, and if I don’t knuckle down soon I’ll never learn the language. I’m going to bump up my 5 minutes a day to 30 minutes a day, and I’m going to start getting through some of the homework my dear friend Alan keeps sending me. He spent a considerable 22 years or so in Germany as an RAF armourer, and is thus fluent in German. You may remember Alan from his story of battling PTSD which he ever so kindly wrote for my blog post on the subject.
#3) Start creating and selling jewellery
This is something I have wanted to do for a while, but have been worried about doing. It would give me a wonderful sense of achievement if I started doing it as a little creative haven. However I’m anxious that people won’t like them. Nevertheless, I want to do it so I will. I have drawn up some designs and I finally purchased what I need to get started. There’s no going back now; the ink has dried and it is officially a part of my six month plan.
#4) Put away at least £1000 in savings
What with Brecht and Taylor’s castration, Gideon’s respiratory infection, and Maxwell’s operation to amputate some of his tail and meds, the ratties have cost me quite a hefty sum lately. I have calculated that in order to meet this goal, I would need to put away about £167 each month. This is equivalent to about £5.57 a day, which sounds a lot more manageable.
So that is the gist of my six month plan. That is the product of all of my reflecting time this week.
As you may know from my previous Reflective Friday, my boyfriend Phil has stayed at mine this week. We are in a long distance relationship, so it’s always great to spend some quality time together doing things. We’ve therefore been spending our days at the beach, going on walks, and we also went to Blackpool Zoo. The highlight of the week has got to be seeing the Zoo’s newest arrival: a baby anteater!
So what do you guys think? Can a six month plan work for you?
Let me know in the comments section your goals for the next six months, or if you’re struggling to come up with goals. We can all work together to start the ball rolling and improve ourselves and our mental well-being.
Keep smiling, and remember you are worth it because you are awesome.