I love the beginning of years! Why the plural form of years? Because I have been lucky enough to have several new starts within each year- the real New Year, the academic year and, much less importantly, the tax year and fiscal year. Overall goals are for Jan 1, focused academic goals are for 1 Aug, making sure I’ve contributed the max to my IRA-R by 4/15 and noticing my pay raise on 1 Oct.
Anyway, part of why I love the beginning is that I can make resolutions. I love resolutions even more than New Year’s parties (and I LOVE NY parties) which is strange because I typically look at other’s lists and think there’s something off about it. Like the one blogger I read who had >100 resolutions broken down by different aspects of her life. Or the people who get really worked up about not having been successful at achieving their resolutions. I think that I’m really happy with my life so far and the choices I’ve made and while there are certainly some I may lean towards wishing I hadn’t picked, I truly have no regret regrets. You know (or maybe you don’t), the type that people perseverate on and can’t shake even years later- or so I’ve read in women’s magazines.
I think I really like resolutions because it refreshes my prioritization and allows for some self-reflection. If I end up with the same resolutions every year, that’s ok! It’s about making progress and targeted efforts rather than checking off boxes and marking things as “done!” While I love crossing things off my TTD lists, larger goals in life are usually a work in progress. And that’s ok.
But I thought I’d lay out monthly goals to make my focus a little sharper. It seems pertinent now because I do not have a lot of free time and feel a little off in my work-life balance so I want to prioritize how to spend my time during my months at MDA, which are particularly grueling.
1. Workout 3-4 x week. This week was a wash b/c I didn’t go running last weekend while Mechen was here and the workweek was completely ridiculous thanks to a hugely busy inpatient service. I would like to get back on track by working out 1-2x/weekend and twice during the week. I’ve thought about trying to get to the gym by 5 each morning but if it’s that bad, I think I’ll forego my exercise since I’m already super sleep deprived during the week anyway. I like working out in the morning in San Diego, but there we don’t round until 0630 so it doesn’t feel rushed and more importantly, I’m out by 1800, latest. Here, it’s routinely 1930, 2000. Seriously, my workdays are 12-15 hours. Ack! Enough whining and back to goals!
2. Sleep. This is a little out of my control. But at least I’ll catch up on weekend. But this is not so much a goal as a biological imperative
3. Thanksgiving! I love, love, love Thanksgiving dinner and leftovers. Mechen is coming (yeah!) and we’re going to cook together. I want to pick out great recipes and have an amazing dinner with lots of post-Thanksgiving sandwiches on sourdough bread for the few days after.
4. Academics. Ok, the listing of this indicates that I don’t always address things in proper order/maybe a slightly avoidance behavior but I do hit things head on eventually. ANYWAY, this is a busy month. Grand Rounds 11/29, possible abstract submission for a Spring/Summer conference, resubmit a project that expired to the IRB and develop a good study plan. I really want to spend this week working on my external projects and develop a plan for my “internal project,” my own knowledge base for the inservice and overall ENT smartness.
5. Food planning: I’ve been doing better at buying food for 1 and not wasting food. So, keep up the good work!
6. Getting ready for Christmas. Ok, will this finally be the year I really mail out Christmas cards? It might fall through again (4 years and counting!) but I’m going to do better this year (4 years and counting!). Hey, come on self! For real this time!