“Not everything worthwhile can be measured, and not everything that can be measured is worthwhile.”Albert Einstein
Now is the time of year to look back and see what you’ve accomplished, right?! What boxes you have checked and what kind of numerical achievements you can share. 😍
Did you make it to all 63 National Parks this year? Only 28?! Hm. How about hiking all 2500 miles of the AT? Only 1000? Good for you! 👏
But if your goals or worthwhile accomplishments weren’t necessarily tied to hitting a certain number of any kind? It can leave you thinking…did I miss something?? Should I be doing this or that?
Goals are hits of sugar that make you feel a temporary high. Intentions are wholesome meals that make you feel satisfied all the time. Trust me, you don’t want whatever your goal is. Think about the last time you achieved a goal, how long did that feeling you desired really last? Weeks? Days? Hours? Minutes? -Stephen Warley
The things that I think are most valuable, most worthwhile, and meaningful are the ones that can’t always easily be measured. Or, if they can, they just might not sound very exciting…
☀️Every morning I wake up early and go in the other room to meditate. I either sit in silence for 15 minutes or follow along with a meditation on a favorite podcast. It’s become an important piece of my morning routine in order to start the day on the right foot but is it really exciting to share that information with others?
Probably not as much as hitting every National Park or visiting 10 new countries this past year. But where does all that get you anyways, I wonder…🤔
At the end of the day we all come back to a place. Whether it’s a temporary apartment, a home we own, or a rolling van. We come home to ourselves and our thoughts. Does visiting a new country each month or making a certain amount of money make someone happier and more satisfied? We know one doesn’t make people happy and I’m sure we can all think of someone (maybe even ourselves!) that’s returned from a trip to the same anxious thoughts or circumstances they were trying to escape.
What likely brings the most pleasure and satisfaction rather than fleeting happiness is the quieter accomplishments. Ones that are either hard to quantify or maybe that don’t sound too exciting on the outside. It could be the little daily habits like exercising, not drinking, or spending quality time with people you love.
Success is a result of small, seemingly insignificant, moment-to-moment choices that add up to big results!Darren Hardy
So instead of thinking about how you filled a whole year’s time and comparing it to other’s lists, think about how you filled each day. After all, the building blocks of the day lead to a week, a month, and a year!
In trying to recognize the big and the small, looking back, I wonder – did I start the day on the right foot instead of waking up at the last minute and rushing off to work most of the days? Did I enjoy the little moments with the dogs on our daily walks? Did I even do the daily walks? (Most people probably don’t even walk everyday!) Those are accomplishments and habits that can help you feel satisfied each day.
The point is, when you look back on the things you’ve done this year, no matter how small they are, those are the things that make a true difference. It’s the little things we do each day that accumulate and add to the person we are and, I think, to our overall successes.
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”Will Durant
Speaking of goals, I feel like I’ve been setting similar goals the last couple of years and just inching toward them. So instead of setting the same ones (because I think doing the same thing is the definition of crazy ;)) I am going to focus on the systems I need to put in place to help me work toward those goals.
You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems.James Clear
One goal I have is to post on the blog here once a week. It seems like a big task with a full time in person job (for me that’s teaching) that often takes time outside of work as well. But building in time each day to write, whether I feel like it or not, is something that I know will help me feel satisfied within because it’s something I enjoy even though it takes work.
What I think can help us all be more successful in the New Year is perhaps the things we do when no one is watching. The little wins and daily habits that will inch us toward our goals and, more importantly, shape who we are!
How many times have you noticed that it’s the little quiet moments in the midst of life that seem to give the rest extra-special meaning?Fred Rogers (AKA Mr. Rogers 🚂)
Hope you enjoyed reading! I would love to hear if this article resonated with you at all. What systems or habits are you looking to add to your days this year? Happy 2023!!🎉