February in Review, March Goals

It’s March! While yes, we have had an unseasonably light winter (and there is always the possibility of more snow) I am so excited to be getting closer to spring! I am not a fan of winter and have been feeling a bit down from it for the past few weeks. Anyone else struggle with winter as time goes on?

Anyways, March is here and I have a lot I’m looking forward to. Not really so much for this month specifically, but there will be plenty of prep going on now for those future events! But before we get to that, a quick review on how February went!

February Review:

Highlights:

  • I turned 30! I wrote more about it here, but I’ve decided to view 30 as an exciting and new adventure. Plus I had a great birthday, so it definitely comes in as a highlight!
  • I got to see a Broadway production of Chicago! It was wonderful. A couple girlfriends and I decided to go as a late birthday celebration. We got very dressed up for the show, followed by a delicious dinner! It was a perfect night and so much fun!
  • This might have been my best month so far for sales for my jewelry!goals

Low Points:

  • Well, I did a full weekend market this month selling my jewelry. But it did not go at all how I had hoped it would. It was very discouraging and exhausting at the time. I’m feeling a bit better about it now, but it left me feeling quite down for a little while afterwards.goals
  • I did not hit anywhere near what I would have liked to for my workouts.

February Goals:

Personal

  1. Yoga once a week! This was the goal that I was the most disappointed about not being able to do last month, so that is being carried over. – I did manage to do this one and I’m so glad. Definitely something I’m going to try to carry over in the future!

Blog

  1. Contact 2-3 people about the big project I have in mind about design and implementation – Nope. I did talk to some people and get a few leads about who I can talk to about it, but I didn’t actually get in touch with the people I really needed to.

Business

  1. Finish up 10+ new pieces before market on the 10th – Yes! Plus more finished up at the market itself. It was a good month for creating!goals
  2. Get studio cleaned out for remodel – Nope. I do really need to get a move on with this one.

So, now for March! I really want this month to be productive and get me set up for the coming months!

March Goals:

Personal

  1. Keep up with fitness challenge! I just started a 10-week fitness challenge and can’t wait to see how it goes. Since it’s a new program and experience for me, so I’m not going to get specific with my goal. I just want to keep up with it!fitness-challenge-goals

Blog

  1. Finish online course I started at the beginning of this month. I got a little off-track through February, but this course seemed really good and helpful. So this month I’m going to finish it!
  2. Make appointment with someone qualified to help me with that big project I have in mind. Since I didn’t actually talk to anyone about it in February, I’m going to actually make sure to make an appointment for this month!

Business

  1. Make 20 new pendants. I have 2 live markets coming up in April, so now is my time to get ready!

That’s it for this month! How did February go for you? What are your goals for March? I would love to hear about them, so please leave a comment below!

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January in Review, February Goals

Wow, what a start to the new year!! January was full of ups and downs, but I’m feeling pretty positive about what is to come! I promise that this coming week we will be back to normal here on the blog, with meal prep posts and everything.

January Review

Highlights:

vegetable-food-prep-process

  • I did a full meal prep photo session! I can’t wait to show you all what I have planned for a lot of the pictures. They turned out great.
  • My jewelry shop is now set up to sell at 5 upcoming markets! It’s just a start, but a great one!
  • I launched a new series on here that I am super excited about. Sharing Sabrina’s story with you was wonderful and I think you are going to love the ones that are coming up!

Low Points:

  • I got sick with the flu and two ear infections for around half of the month. Needless to say, this made a lot of things I had planned pretty difficult. I’m getting better now, but my regular routine is still really off and I’m having a hard time getting back into things.
  • I strive to be honest on here, so I will share this with you all….I’ve been having a hard time this month with feeling pretty down about my jewelry business and the blog. I love them both, but neither are where I would like them to be. I’m not quitting, not by any means! But it’s been a rough month. Some of that is probably from being sick, but regardless, I’m having a difficult time feeling upbeat about my work lately.

January Goals:

Personal

  1. Spend a day taking down old decorations and putting up new. Put on some music and make it a fun and relaxing day!
  2. Have one “date day” with Draz
  3. Have one day where I spend at least 3 hours on self-care
  4. Go to yoga class once a week

I really did none of these, although up to getting sick I was doing great with the yoga class. And I suppose I spent a lot of time on self-care, but it wasn’t really by choice, so I don’t think that counts.

Blog

  1. Shoot new photos for a planned meal prep project
  2. Shoot photos for an upcoming fitness project

The photos for the meal prep project are done! The fitness shoot ones…nope. These aren’t even set yet, though I am hoping to do them this month.

Business

nymph-in-the-woods-jewelry

  1. Contact 2 bloggers about possible collaborations
  2. Make 10 new pieces of jewelry – This one is only if physically possible. My fingers are still healing from some lingering symptoms from when I was sick back in September.

I’m going to call this one a win! I did make 7 new pieces of jewelry and contacted 4 bloggers. 7 isn’t 10, but considering I was sick half of the month, I say it counts!

Overall, January didn’t go how I hoped it would, but all things considered, it didn’t go to bad. I have high hopes for February though! I have a lot of exciting events coming up this month, so I think it’s going to be great! Due to all of the stuff going on this month, I’m going to try to be a little more reserved in how many goals I set.

February Goals:

Personal

  1. Yoga once a week! This was the goal that I was the most disappointed about not being able to do last month, so that is being carried over.

Blog

  1. Contact 2-3 people about the big project I have in mind about design and implementation

Business

  1. Finish up 10+ new pieces before market on the 10th
  2. Get studio cleaned out for remodel

That’s it for this month! Hopefully this month goes better, with no horrible flu or anything!

How did January go for you? What are some of your goals for February? I would love to hear about them!

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turning fitness into a habit

Can you believe it’s November already!? The year seems to have flown by! And as the year is coming to close, many people will start thinking about how 2016 went and how they want 2017 to go. For many, this process usually includes declarations of “I’m going to eat healthier, work out more!” and so on. Fitness is one of the most common things that people think of when setting their annual goals. But sadly many of those same people won’t make it past the one month mark. Why is that?

Well, a lot of it comes down to habit. Too many people depend on motivation to get them to their goals, which is simply not enough. Motivation is great for the first week or even the first month! But eventually motivation dissipates and the goals that seemed so important suddenly don’t rank so high on the to-do list. So how do we change this and go from depending on motivation to creating a habit? This is a question I have struggled with myself.

I’ve had many starts and stops when it comes to my fitness journey. I can look back 10+ years and see different points where I tried to include fitness into my life more, but it never lasted. I would lose motivation or hit a roadblock and I would give up. I tried obsessive calorie-counting, programs at gyms that made big promises, and many other things. And most of them probably would have worked! Except the obsessive calorie-counting…that one was terrible. The problem was I didn’t know how to turn fitness into a habit and so I was never able to keep it up.

Fast forward to 3 years ago. I had lost a decent amount of weight already through some lifestyle changes and a highly physical job and was feeling pretty good! But I knew I wanted to make a bigger change and put more focus on my health and my fitness. So I started trying to work out more. There were some more start and stops, but there was less time between them.

And finally to last year. I started getting more consistent and even started a great program! If you were with me back then, you know that my attempts at Kayla Itsines’ BBG didn’t go smoothly and there were a lot of obstacles! But I did finally complete it and the community around BBG really helped me to make fitness into a habit!

And now? I am at the gym 5-6 days a week, I am active outside of the gym and I do a few workouts at home too! Are there are days I don’t really want to work out? Of course! But most of them I do anyways and I always feel better afterwards!

Working out has become a habit in my life and I know it can in yours too! These 5 methods helped me make the transition from depending on motivation for my workouts to having a steady fitness habit!

To succeed in your fitness journey you need more than motivation...fitness needs to be a habit! These 5 tips can help you build that habit and succeed at your fitness goals!

5 Things that Can Help You Turn Fitness Into a Habit

Schedule your workouts

Just like any other appointment, you need to make appointments with yourself. Write down when you are going to exercise and what you are going to do. At the beginning of each week I sit down and write out my schedule for the week, including my workouts!

Find something you enjoy

Don’t like walking on the treadmill? So don’t! Especially at the beginning of your fitness journey, finding things you enjoy is so important. There are so many activities out there that will improve your fitness, so try some out! Take a kickboxing class, go hiking, try out a climbing wall! There are even groups in many cities that you can join that are centered around fitness. If you aren’t sure what you want to try (and you have the budget for it) you can join a gym that has a variety of classes and try them out! I recently joined the YMCA and have been loving the classes available, especially kickboxing!

Find your “why”

Now, I understand that finding your “why” might sound a little silly, but it works! Knowing your reason or reasons for wanting to work out. Really give this one some thought and preferably find a “why” that is long term. If you goal is to look great in that dress for an upcoming event, you may have a hard time keeping your focus after the event is over!

Find other like-minded individuals

This can either be on-line or in person (I do both!) but having a community is so helpful. There are many challenges that can come with changing your lifestyle and making fitness a priority. Having others to turn to and find support from can be the difference between pushing through them and giving up, especially at the beginning! Also, it’s just a lot of fun!

Look for the small victories

It can be disappointing when you are starting to work out and you don’t see a huge change right away. It can feel like all your hard work isn’t paying off and can really kill that motivation that got you started. Instead, look for the small victories! Did 5 push-ups last week? Maybe this week you can do a few more! Maybe you can lift something that last month you wouldn’t have been able to. Or you are sleeping better and having more energy. Paying attention to those smaller things can really help you push through the difficult moments and be reminders as to why you keep going!

Have you turned your fitness practice into a habit? What techniques have helped you do it? I would love to hear your thoughts, so please leave a comment below!

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2016 goals check-in: 3 months to go!

I can’t believe that we are mid-way through October already! One of the things that I find really important this time of year is to check back in with my annual goals and see how they are going. It can be easy to write down your goals for the year and be super excited about them for a month or two. Then you can start to forget what was even on that list of goals! So I like to check in every 3 months or so. Have you checked in on your annual goals lately?

So here are how my goals are doing so far!

Checking in on your goals is one of the most important things that help you accomplish them!Read More

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life outside of your comfort zone (+ 5 tips to pushing your boundaries!)

Do you like to try new things and push your limits? I know I do! This wasn’t always the case though. I used to avoid new situations, especially if I was trying them on my own! My comfort zone was well established and I liked it there.

It can be easy to stay in of our comfort zone. After all, they are by definition “a place, situation, or level where someone feels confident and comfortable” We avoid a lot of stress, insecurity and self doubt by staying there. They are where we feel the most self-assured and capable. But while comforting, those feelings can be deceptive.

Getting outside your comfort zone and pushing your boundaries can be difficult, but so important! Click through for my top 5 tips, plus my story of how I am working to push myself too!Read More

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2016 goals check-in

Can you believe it’s halfway through June already!? I know I can’t. This year seems to be flying by! And with that realization, I want to do something I think it really important to goal setting. I want to do a check in on my goals for 2016. 🙂 Maybe it will inspire you to do the same?!

A lot of annual goals are set and then forgotten. To achieve them, it really is important to check in on them throughout the year and see how you are doing. It can be really easy after a few months to forget what you even set as your goals!

So here is how I’m doing on mine!

CC_CreativeMinimalism_V9Read More

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Creating Your Own “Day Zero Project” – And Why You Should!

There are many ways in life you can go about pushing yourself and your boundaries, finding new challenges and improving yourself. There are the always favorite annual goals, along with monthly goals and sometimes even weekly goals! There are bucket lists and “30 before 30” and the list goes on. None of these seem to quite do what the Day Zero Project does.

This project allows you plenty of time to achieve some pretty big goals (1,001 days), enough items on the list that you can feel okay including some small and/or silly items (101 things) and finishes soon enough that it doesn’t seem ridiculously far off (again, 1,001 days). All of these things combine together to form one of the most fun and challenging projects I have ever tried!

Those of you who have been with me for a while know how much I love lists and setting goals. But as you saw in this recent post, 6 months ago I decided to try setting goals in a bit of a different way!Creating a Day Zero Project

101 Things in 1,001 Days. It seemed like both a lot and not very much at all when I got started making my list. But even making the list was a challenge! So now I would like to take you through why I think you should do a Day Zero Project yourself and how I created mine!

Why I Think You Should Try Completing a Day Zero Project

  1. Push your boundaries.
  2. Makes you think about what you want in your life to look like over the next 2.8 years (and beyond!)
  3. You have long enough to choose some major goals.
  4. But not so long that you can’t see the “end” of the project.
  5. Enough items on your list that you can pick some silly or less serious items.
  6. Gives you an extra push to work on projects you have been putting off.
  7. 101 Things really pushes you to think outside the box – It’s harder than you may think to think of that many items.
  8. It can be the excuse you need to do those things you keep putting off for a later date!
  9. Increases your motivation.
  10. It’s fun!

Why 1,001 Days Instead of a Bucket List or Annual Goals

So why this instead of just your normal yearly goals? I definitely set goals for 2016, and I am working towards them. And they are related to a few things on my Day Zero list. However, I like that I can put silly things on my Day Zero list that I would NEVER put as a year goal (build a snowman anyone?). Also, there are things that I put on my Day Zero list that would be really overwhelming to try to accomplish this year. It’s just not in the cards right now.

Ok, so why not a bucket list then, if it’s out to make them yearly goals? Personally, while I like the idea of a bucket list, for the most part I don’t think they are helpful in actually getting you to accomplish anything. It’s too big, too open-ended for me. The idea of things I want to accomplish in my lifetime is interesting, but I’m not going to be actively thinking about and working towards those things on a daily or weekly basis. They aren’t always going to be on my mind. My Day Zero list is pretty much always there in the back of my mind, and I am regularly thinking of activities I would like to do that are on that list!

Getting Started

Keep it Possible

To even start working on your project, you have to have your list of 101 things. It doesn’t sound like a huge thing, right? We all have things we want to do, so thinking of 101 should be easy! And yes, I could have easily filled the list with all the incredible, out there things I want to do someday. But that’s not the point of the project for me. The point is to push myself, to try new things, to create improvements in my life. It’s not to create a list that is impossible to complete in 1,001 days.

So while I was working on my list, I kept that in mind. Travel the world?

San Ildefonso in Peru - amazing place, not reasonable for me in the next couple years
San Ildefonso in Peru

Probably not reasonable. Take a weekend trip out of state? A lot more likely, but still pushes me! (If you don’t understand why this is a push, I haven’t been on an actual vacation in YEARS, even for a weekend)

Waterfalls in Portland a few years ago
Waterfalls in Portland a few years ago

If you travel a lot and it’s totally possible that you could travel to 10 different countries and you want to do that, put it on there! Your reasonable and possible is not the same as mine!

My point is, I want to actually have the chance that I could finish every single item on this list, if I try hard enough.

Push Your Boundaries

The other thing I had to push not to do was to censor myself. This was more difficult than I originally thought it would be. Some items I listed I initially resisted putting down….some because I thought they were too silly and didn’t belong on a goals list (hello there snowman) and others because they scared me to put out there in the world. Or even admit them to myself that they were goals I have. Other items seemed selfish to put down, or, and this was a big one for me, a waste of money.

Day Zero on a Budget

I have a hard time spending money on things that are not essential. I am better about it than I used to be, but it is still a struggle. And I’m not talking about irresponsibly blowing money…I’m talking about any money at all. So some of the items on my list are specifically activities that I have wanted to do for years but haven’t been able to justify to myself, like going to the opera or a play.

That being said, I don’t want you to think that you can’t do a Day Zero Project on a budget! I tried to pick a variety of items and costs, but notice that a decent amount of my items are free or very cheap! While I do hope to better my finances over the next 2 years, I didn’t want all of my items to require that to be completed. My suggestion would be to keep your list within your planned capabilities, whatever that may be. Again, I would not put travel the world on mine, because there is really no way I could afford that in the next 2 years!

One of my favorite pictures from one of my free items on my Day Zero Project - A year-long, once-a-month photo project at Ada Hayden Park
One of my favorite pictures from one of my free items on my Day Zero Project – A year-long, once-a-month photo project at Ada Hayden Park

Take Your Time

The last thing I want to point out is to make sure to take your time while making your list. I took around 2 weeks to make mine! That might seem like a lot of time, but along with all the stuff I talked about above, I really wanted to put thought into the items I listed. I wanted them to be things I really want, things that matter to me (yes, even the snowman). So I kept a running list on my phone and added to it as I thought of them. Don’t feel as though you have to get the whole list done at once!DailyEssentials

Go!

So now you have your Day Zero list and can start! I don’t have a huge amount of tips for this, as I’m still working through my own list. One thing I would say is to keep a copy of your list somewhere on hand. I actually have a couple different copies! One on my computer, one of my phone and one in a journal that is dedicated for the project! Each item on the list has a space within the journal for me to take notes, make plans and write my progress out. Now, you don’t have to do all these, or even any of these, they are just what works for me! But I would keep a copy somewhere easy for you to access when you are out and about so you can keep working towards the items on there!

Lastly, make sure you calculate your end date and write it down with your list! There have been a few times I have had to check mine to figure out when I HAVE to start an item by to complete it in time.

I really hope you think about creating your own Day Zero list, if you haven’t already!

Sara

Already doing your own Day Zero Project? I would love to check it out! Leave a link to your list in the comments below and I will include it in my next update!

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Day Zero Project-101 Things in 1,001 Days: My 6 Month Update

Hey everyone! I have been anxiously waiting to share this post with you and I’m so excited that it’s FINALLY time! 6 months ago I started my Day Zero Project, or 101 things in 1,001 days. I had seen this on a few other blogs before and was intrigued, finally doing some research and deciding to start my own! To read more about Day Zero, head over here for their site.

Basically, I set a list of 101 things in 1,001 days. I spent a while creating this list (I think around 2 weeks) because I wanted it to be things that were realistic while still pushing my boundaries, my comfort zone, and/or my expectations. I believe that everything on this list is possible. Some of it may be very difficult to accomplish, but it is possible.

Once I started this project, I decided that I will update all of you every 6 months on my progress. We are finally at the first update! Things in regular bold are finished, things in bold italics are in progress and everything else still needs to be done. I didn’t make quite the progress I hoped to on some things, and more than I expected on others!

101 Things in 1,001 Days

Start Date: October 6, 2015

End Date: July 3, 2018

  1. Get $2000 in Emergency Savings
  2. Take a day trip to a state park I’ve never been to
  3. Complete Kayla Itsines BBG1 – Started 10/12/15 Finished 1/17/16 (Check out my progress though the guide on these posts: Month 1, Month 2, Complete!)WorkoutGear
  4. Complete Kayla Itsines BBG2
  5. Take a trip to another state (for at least 3 days)
  6. Attend a BBG Meet-up
  7. Start my business- In Progress. Launch expected in next 2 months!jewelry business card glass fusion
  8. Blog 5 days a week for a month
  9. Take a weekend trip with Mom
  10. Meditate daily for a month
  11. Complete a 365-day photo project
  12. Take a cooking class
  13. Take a metal-working class
  14. Upgrade my camera
  15. Take a photography class
  16. Run a 5K
  17. Attend a blogging conference or workshop
  18. Go to a jazz festival
  19. Make a piece of wood furniture
  20. Complete a pull-up
  21. Do 30 consecutive full push ups
  22. Learn to can vegetables
  23. See a ballet
  24. See an opera
  25. Write a recipe ebook -In progress Started 10/13/15
  26. Have a picnic
  27. Learn to sew
  28. Finish 5 crochet projects
  29. Go to an art museum
  30. Attend the local crochet & knitting group
  31. Learn Japanese to a conversational level
  32. Take a pottery class
  33. Go zip-lining
  34. Bake a birthday cake
  35. Get dressed up for a special dinner
  36. Go to the Omaha Zoo
  37. Get a massage
  38. Take a ballroom dancing class
  39. Go rock climbing
  40. Take a yoga class
  41. Create a gallery wall – Complete! Finished Early Dec 2015
  42. Read a book of poetry
  43. Wear a two-piece swimsuit
  44. Go to a drive-in movie
  45. Bake a pie from scratch
  46. Make a new friend
  47. Find and buy the perfect LBD
  48. Find and buy the perfect shoes to go with the LBD
  49. Complete a coloring book -In progress. Started early Jan 2016
  50. Learn basic HTML
  51. Wear a skirt or dress every day for a week
  52. Have fresh flowers in the house every week for a month
  53. Have a date night once a month for six months
  54. Learn how to make sushi
  55. Do something special for my 30th birthday
  56. Build a snowman
  57. Wear nothing black for one week
  58. Meet an online friend in person
  59. Save $10 for each task completed
  60. Volunteer for Habitat for Humanity
  61. “Re-learn” how to ride a bike
  62. See 2 stage productions
  63. Visit Hindu Temple and Cultural Center
  64. Pick 10 books by unknown (to me) authors and read them – In progress
    1. “Eat Pray Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert
    2. “Essentialism” by Greg McKeown
    3. “Show Your Work!” by Austin Kleon
  65. Go to a personal clothing stylist
  66. Do a handstand
  67. Send in a card to PostSecret
  68. Do henna on someone else
  69. Refinish deck
  70. Build pergola
  71. Take parents out for a nice dinner
  72. Do yoga outside in a public place
  73. Go ice skating
  74. Go to a local town festival
  75. Plant and maintain a raised garden for one summer
  76. Plant a fall garden
  77. Visit two friends from college
  78. Make a meal entirely from the garden
  79. Learn to play the guitar
  80. Take another bellydance class
  81. Do an outdoor photo-a-month project: Ada Hayden -In progress Started 10/13/15

    One of my March photos for this project!
    One of my March photos for this project!
  82. Go to a poetry reading/event
  83. Write a letter to my college mentor
  84. Go on the Boone Scenic Valley Railroad
  85. Go minigolfing
  86. Make a healthy pizza from scratch
  87. Go canoeing or kayaking
  88. Find a daytime job
  89. Go to an arts festival
  90. Go to a crafts fair
  91. Attend a holiday service with my parents
  92. Attend a religious service of a religion I’m unfamiliar with
  93. Run a charity race
  94. Donate any clothes I don’t use anymore
  95. Go to a big fireworks show
  96. Declutter and organize basement
  97. Go to hot balloon festival
  98. Take a floral arrangement workshop
  99. Read 100 new-to-me books- In progress (Next update I will have a better way to list these!)
    1. “Icebound” by Dean Koontz
    2. “Dead and Alive” by Dean Koontz
    3. “Mockingjay” by Suzanne Collins
    4. “Essentialism” by Greg McKeown
    5. “Show Your Work!” by Austin Kleon
    6. “Eat, Pray, Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert
  100. Make treats for everyone at work for no reason
  101. Go to 2 cultural festivals

So that’s it! That is what I have gotten done or worked on in the last 6 months!

  • Complete: 2
  • In progress: 6

I have a few that are planned out or forming, but not officially started yet. I’m going to have to step up my actions if I want to get all of this list done! All 101 things in 1,001 days….wow that sounds like a lot! It definitely gives me something to work towards though!

Have you ever tried a 101 Things in 1,001 days project, or something similar? I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences on it, so please leave a comment below!

Sara

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