To start with, I should probably say that I'm feeling much better today. Apart from the rather fabulous party, of which our spectacular dancing session was definitely the highlight, I'd been feeling highly miserable up to and including yesterday, when I got home from the pub, sat on my bed and sobbed for a good five minutes for no apparent reason. This morning I was still feeling rubbish until about 11am, but surprisingly being back at work, which was one of the things that was stressing me out the most, actually cheered me up, and by the afternoon I was my cheerful old self again. I decided that all the work I'd been worrying about was easily do-able and I remembered why I enjoy my little daily routine. I'm now feeling very positive again which is quite a relief!
Everyone was discussing resolutions at work today, and while I gave my usual answer of "I haven't made any" I realised that I do actually have some longer term life goals that I'd like to work towards this year. I've drawn these up gradually over the past year but not actually done anything about most of them, so this year my semi-resolution is to do one thing each day that will bring me closer to reaching one of my goals. You'll see in a minute that this really won't take much effort, but it's definitely an improvement on going along in a wishy-washy fashion and not actually doing anything towards achieving my aims.
Goal One - Australia
I'm absolutely set on my trip to Australia next year, and my first goal is therefore to save £200 every month this year so that I can afford to keep my flat while I'm away. My budget this month has allowed me to do this, and I'm determined to continue the good work throughout 2007. In order to save the money I have to earn it, and therefore the action I can take towards this is to go to work! (You can see why this is going to be quite easy!) I also aim to resist spending money that I don't have and to go for the cheapest option wherever possible, which I did today by choosing the six day photo processing option instead of the 24 hours. They're only tiny steps but it all adds up. I apologise now for the constant refrain of "I can't afford it" and "Somewhere cheap please" which will no doubt get very boring within about three weeks.
Goal Two - Career
In the words of the Performance Review that I wrote up today, my current aim in this area is to "Increase my earning potential". I can do this by not just turning up to work, but by doing my best each day, pushing myself out of my comfort zone and improving my skills through external training and practice. I also aim to be more professional and not burst into tears at my desk again! As part of this I'm also going to wear a bit of make-up to the office every day which is a major step for me, as I've noticed recently that getting up at 6am gives me dark circles and makes me look washed-out and shiny. This has no impact on my work as such, but makes me feel slightly less confident and a bit less professional when I meet contacts in other departments.
Goal Three - Pass my Driving Test
Having just started learning, I aim to pass my test as soon as my instructor thinks I'm ready. I can work on this by continuing to take lessons, learning and revising the theory questions and taking mock hazard perception tests on my DVD. This is something that I aim to do mostly at weekends when my brain will be fresher and I will have less opportunity to work on my other goals.
Goal Four - Reach my Target Weight
At some point within the next two years, I would love to reach the target weight that I set for myself in February 2005 when I first changed my diet. I have never reached this target, even last February when I was the thinnest I've ever been. To achieve this goal, I will continue to go to the gym on all of my free week nights, something I've been doing very successfully since October. I will also aim to eat much more healthily than I did last year, and for this to be a day's achievement it doesn't count if I just haven't craved anything fatty - I have to have wanted to eat chocolate, biscuits or cake etc but resisted the temptation. I suspect that many of my male readers won't understand this, but I think most of the girls will know just how hard it is to stop yourself from eating sugary food when you really want to! I do however have lots of Christmas chocolate (fairly traded of course) so I will be allowed to eat small amounts of this after meals at the weekend. I also have no intention of giving up drinking, although I might swap wine for vodka and cranberry a bit more often!
Goal Five - Find a Boyfriend
I know that this is something I can't really control, but I can certainly make more of an effort than I did last year. Steps that I can take towards this goal include emailing people, refusing to let myself be put off people by petty things that don't really matter (smoking, having children and being 40 are still definite reasons for the Family Fortunes "eh-er" noise to go off!) and maintaining a positive mental attitude, horrible American phrase though that is. In other words, I will force myself to make an effort and not allow myself to take the easy way out and give up. I may be contented at the moment, but that's not good enough when there's complete happiness to be found.
So, as you can see, I can make one step towards my goals for five days out of seven just by turning up to the office. However, I hope that this semi-resolution will move me a lot closer to the things I really want during 2007 and will stop me from spending more boring Sundays achieving precisely nothing. I'll let you know how it goes!