305 Days

There are three hundred and five days left of 2016.

photo credit: Hey Paul Studios via creative commons

photo credit: Hey Paul Studios via creative commons

Next week I will eat better.

Next week I will finish that book.

Next week I will do whatever it is I have been pushing off for weeks.

These are several things I have been telling myself throughout 2016. I procrastinate about procrastinating. I am good at handling certain things but others I will put off as long as possible. I’m trying to find a balance between handling everything and being at peace with a lack of perfection. I’m never going to watch every movie I want, read every book which interests me, or visit everywhere.

It’s not the most optimistic way of viewing things but it is realistic and it brings peace. Attempting to do everything you want to do brings frustration. Deciding what you want to do and making it happen is satisfying. I find a lot of the stress in my life is brought on by worrying about what I am not doing.

There are certain things which I am never going to want to do. Scheduling a doctor’s appointment is not something I want to handle but I find the quicker I do things like this the better.

I’m a stickler for a budget. I make sure it is set before every month begins and put every dollar in its place the Dave Ramsey way. However, there are always unexpected expenses which happen. An emergency room visit, water line exploding in the front yard, and a million other things can and seemingly do go wrong. When it happens I don’t throw away the budget and spend like crazy. I don’t wait for next month to roll around and decide I will do better then. I prepare for these things by having money set aside for the problems. For some reason I don’t treat other situations the same way. I’m learning to adapt my goals and things I want to achieve to this model. I’m creating margin in my life to complete the things which are most important.

Chasing perfection is something which is consuming me recently. I am learning there will never be a perfect house, perfect day, or perfect candidate. I was encouraged by this post from Allison Fallon last week about the damage this way of thinking can bring.

I hope you hit all of your goals for 2016 but don’t let your satisfaction with life depend on it. There will always be a never ending to-do list and something you want to improve. If you wait for happiness to come when you are done with everything you need to do it won’t happen.

A year from now you won’t remember your to-do list but you will remember the people who matter most in your life. You will remember the time spent with them and the memories you made. Make sure to focus on what matters most for the next 305 days.