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Juliebarkley's questing map


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I have never felt the need of a battle log before, but my planning feels unwieldy and it would just make sense to have it all on NF since this is where I work out my plans and progress. So! This will not be a battle log of daily updating. It will be a battle log of bird's eye view planning and archiving, to ensure that all of the challenge quests have at least a general sense of direction.

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I have grouped my goals based on D&D stats both because it's fun and because if you include all of the secondary proficiences and tweak a few of the definitions, it's surprisingly comprehensive. I define them thusly:

 

STR: strength-based physical adventures, such as pistols or pullups

DEX: skill-based physical adventures, such as handstands or parkour

CON: endurance/health-based physical adventures, such as long-distance walking or hiking

INT: learning-based adventures, such as reading or taking courses

WIS: religious/spiritual adventures, such as prayer or meditation

CHA: social adventures, such as working on making friends or strengthening existing relationships

Occupational Proficiencies: work adventures, such as projects for my day job or a side hustle

Arts & Tool Proficiencies: hobby/organizational adventures, such as decluttering or sewing

Language Proficiences: language adventures, such as improving or starting a new language

 

Five-Year plan (2020 edition):

Spoiler

By December 31, 2024:

STR:

I have picked up at least 5 new strength skills and am actively working on more.

DEX:

I have picked up at least 5 new dexterity skills and am actively working on more.

CON:

I have walked across Ottawa the long way.

INT:

I read regularly and have a 100-book list set up. I have read at least 20 of the books on the list.

WIS:

I do all 5 prayers every day.

I read Quran daily, and read the whole Quran every year.

I watch a khutba and read for 30 minutes every Friday.

CHA:

I will have a strong relationship with Jasper where we spend time together doing fun things.

Occupational Proficiencies:

Be location independent and able to move, such as to Mexico, if desired.

Arts & Tool Proficiencies:

No big backlogs that aren’t being actively worked on.

A maintenance plan is in place for all danger areas.

Language Proficiences:

I speak Spanish at an intermediate level.

I have improved my French and Esperanto by one level.

 

Organizational Categories
 

Spoiler

Inbox (paper)

Podcasts

Repairs

Book listing pile

Yahoo email

Gmail email

Browser tabs

Computer files to be dealt with

Overdrive

Library

Openlibrary

Pocket

Ebook categorization and sorting

ROMs

Book sorting

To do one at a time

RSS from Mini

General Konmari

 

 

 

2020:

Spoiler

STR:
I can do 5 pistols on each side.
I can do 3 pullups.
I can do 10 knee-high decline pushups.
I can do a 180-second plank.
DEX:
I can do a 5-second handstand.
I can do 5 parkour movements.
CON:
I have done at least one 25km walk.
I am brushing my teeth at least once a day with the proper routine.
I am walking 10,000 steps per day.
INT:
I have made my 100-book list (maybe more than one).
I am reading for 30 minutes per day minimum.
WIS:
I will be doing isha every day.
I will be listening to a khutba every Friday.
CHA:
I will complete the 10x10 game challenge.
I will stay in touch with Sandi and will email 1 family member per month.
I will get to know Greg and Olga better.
Occupational Proficiencies:
I will earn enough from VO to pay for my training and any equipment purchased. I will make enough from audiobooks to pay for a training package from Pat Fraley.
Arts & Tool Proficiencies:
I will have no repair pile (or 1-2 very recent items max).
I will have all RSS feeds from the mini moved.
I will be completely finished with my physical book project.
Language Proficiences:
I will have a gold Duo tree in French, Esperanto, and Spanish.
I will have reread Fluent Forever and started creating cards.
I have tested my French level online.

 

2021:

Spoiler

STR:

DEX:

CON:

INT:

I am reading for 1 hour minimum per day.

I have read at least 5 books from my reading list.

WIS:

I will be doing dhuhr every day that I am at home.

I will be reading Quran on Fridays and at least one other day per week.

CHA:

Occupational Proficiencies:

I will earn $13,000 from online sources and investments.

Arts & Tool Proficiencies:

I have dealt with all of the to be dealt with computer files.

I have listed all of my books for sale.

I have gone through all of the books on Overdrive (or at least checked them).

Language Proficiences:

 

 

2022:

Spoiler

STR:

DEX:

CON:

INT:

I have read at least 10 books from my reading list.

WIS:

I will be doing asr every day that I am at home.

I will be reading Quran 3 non-Friday days.

CHA:

Occupational Proficiencies:

I earn $20,000 from online sources and investments.

Arts & Tool Proficiencies:

My Yahoo and Gmail boxes are clear.

I have no more than 15 browser tabs open.

Language Proficiences:

 

 

2023:

Spoiler

STR:

DEX:

CON:

INT:

I have read at least 15 books from my reading list.

WIS:

I will be doing maghrib every day.

I will be reading Quran every day.

CHA:

Occupational Proficiencies:

I earn $29,000 from online sources and investments.

Arts & Tool Proficiencies:

I have checked my for later books for duplicates and removed them. I have begun to download as well.

I have checked my ebook library for misnamed files and have begun labelling them.

I have completed downloading ROMS.

I have started working on OpenLibrary books.

Language Proficiences:

 

 

2024:

Spoiler

STR:

DEX:

CON:

INT:

I have read at least 20 books from my reading list.

WIS:

I will be doing fajr every day.

CHA:

Occupational Proficiencies:

I earn $40,000 from online sources and investments.

Arts & Tool Proficiencies:

I am working through the to do one at a time links.

I have completed a full Konmari.

I am reading more Pocket articles than arrive each day.

I have less than 2GB of podcasts.

Language Proficiences:

 

 

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I love the idea of a five year plan! I also love that teeth brushing is a CON task, it goes to show just how much resilience is required to keep going at it day after day. xD

 

Just now, juliebarkley said:

I have no more than 15 browser tabs open.

Looks like we're browser siblings. :D I'm looking forward to learning how to acquire that feat.

 

 

What are your online business ventures? Selling your crafts or ideas?

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Legally bound to hug people in need.

 

Living life as a Druid is about walking with the beasts. It's about being scared, looking your fears in the eyes and going on anyway. Dread doesn't go away, you just learn to know it. It's still a beast, it still has fangs, but you walk among it.

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21 hours ago, Jean said:

Looks like we're browser siblings. :D I'm looking forward to learning how to acquire that feat.

I have more than a thousand open, I think. 😳Clearly I have trouble letting go of information. I am trialling having the things I want to open every day, or that are all related to one project, in a folder on my toolbar so that I can just hit "Open All in Tabs" when I want them and close them afterward. Then at least I won't have to open new tabs for them because I lost them in the morass of other opened tabs. I also got a little "go to random tab" add-on to help me clear the backlog. I love randomizing things; it saves the mental effort of having to choose what to work on.

 

21 hours ago, Jean said:

What are your online business ventures? Selling your crafts or ideas?

I am working on building a voiceover business primarily, but I also dabble in other things. I sell books online. I do transcription from time to time. I'd like to put up some knitting or embroidery patterns at some point. And I might set up an Etsy shop, but that would be more to dispose of the crafts I would be making anyway than for profit as such. I can think of other things that might be fun to try at some point, too.

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Success and failure on 2020 goals below. Some were made more difficult by the shutdowns, some a little easier, and some just plain irrelevant. In general, I was too ambitious, it seems. Or didn't work hard enough. But let's just go with too ambitious because that's generally how I fail at planning. Still, there was progress, and there are a few good successes in there, too.

 

STR: Mostly failed, but made steady progress towards the goals.

Spoiler

I can do 5 pistols on each side. - Nope, but real progress has been made here. I can do one on each side and the strength is slowly building. Maybe in 2021?
I can do 3 pullups. - Getting closer to one.
I can do 10 knee-high decline pushups. - Yes, achieved in May or June.
I can do a 180-second plank. - Hmm, not sure. Let's find out. 147 seconds. Not too far off, but not there yet.


DEX: Failures all. My Assassin status is in question. :P

Spoiler

I can do a 5-second handstand. - Cannot do a freestanding handstand of any length. Handstand practice has been largely abandoned since midsummer.
I can do 5 parkour movements. - Barely attempted.

 

CON: Also pretty terrible. No real progress.

Spoiler

I have done at least one 25km walk. - No, Covid made this one weird.
I am brushing my teeth at least once a day with the proper routine. - Still no.
I am walking 10,000 steps per day. - If I get my daily walk in I hit maybe 6000 on workdays, much less on non-work days when I become one with the couch.

 

INT: A bit of work needed, but not bad overall.

Spoiler

I have made my 100-book list (maybe more than one). - The list ended up being a bit different, but it exists.
I am reading for 30 minutes per day minimum. - I got there during quarantine, then lost it when work resumed. When I have a lunch break at work I hit it. Less often if not. But I do read a little every day.

 

WIS: Mixed bag.

Spoiler

I will be doing isha every day. - Built the habit, then lost it again. Why is it always so hard? Probably because I need to interrupt what I'm doing, and I'm bad at that.
I will be listening to a khutba every Friday. - Generally, yes.

 

CHA: Success, but not in the way I was planning. Overcame obstacles that were not anticipated at the start of 2020.

Spoiler

I will complete the 10x10 game challenge. - Surprisingly enough, I don't think so.
I will stay in touch with Sandi and will email 1 family member per month. - No, not at all. However, my efforts at outreach were totally unreciprocated and ended up making me feel rejected and unwanted, so I stopped to save my poor wounded self-esteem. I never did email family. I should at least try to keep in touch with my brother, though he also never answers email. D&D with NerdFitness people sort of filled this void. I feel like I've gotten to know a few people better, maybe even well enough to call them real friends. Hard to judge on the internets whether people really care about you specifically or are just being nice because they are nice to everyone. At any rate, it made me feel like maybe someone wanted me around at least some of the time, though I still struggled a lot with cycles of crushing loneliness (feeling like no one cared or would even notice if I died), insecurity, and doubting people's intentions and then feeling really bad about it.
I will get to know Greg and Olga better. - Pretty hard to get to know your coworkers better when work shuts down. I am starting up a French chat now though, which they are both looking to take part in, and we had weekly chats while work was shut down with all the staff. That was actually really great for getting to know work people. I feel like I can talk to Greg and Anita more easily now and they seem more relaxed and fun with me as well. We have good wacky conversations these days.

 

Occupational Proficiencies: Did not hit goal, partly because it was ambitious and partly because Covid made it near impossible. Progress was made though, and weaknesses identified.

Spoiler

I will earn enough from VO to pay for my training and any equipment purchased. I will make enough from audiobooks to pay for a training package from Pat Fraley. - Nope. Everything was delayed due to the lockdowns, and I didn't even get my demo till September when it should really have been in March. I have earned some money though, and if I'd tried harder I would have earned more (though I would not have hit goal). I need to learn more about how to market audiobooks to earn enough from them for the training package. I have a learning curve ahead of me.

 

Arts & Tool Proficiencies: Success!

Spoiler

I will have no repair pile (or 1-2 very recent items max). - There are actually five items in there, but they are bigger things or things I lack the stuff to finish at the moment. I say success.
I will have all RSS feeds from the mini moved. - Nope, but I should be able to do it tonight or tomorrow. It's a pretty quick job.
I will be completely finished with my physical book project. - YES!

 

Language Proficiences: Not really so much.

Spoiler

I will have a gold Duo tree in French, Esperanto, and Spanish. - Oh Duo. I did so well at you during the lockdown and so poorly after.
I will have reread Fluent Forever and started creating cards. - Not even close.
I have tested my French level online. - This one I did. I tested higher than expected, but I have enough holes in my knowledge that I'm not too cocky about my level.

 

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58 minutes ago, juliebarkley said:

But let's just go with too ambitious because that's generally how I fail at planning. Still, there was progress, and there are a few good successes in there, too.

Ambitious goals carry us forward even when we don't reach them all, as long as you have gained a few levels, you haven't failed just because you didn't reach lvl 100. It becomes a negative thing when reflecting on your achievements makes you feel bad. I hope you're not there and am impressed by the progress you got in this year.

 

Rock on!

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Legally bound to hug people in need.

 

Living life as a Druid is about walking with the beasts. It's about being scared, looking your fears in the eyes and going on anyway. Dread doesn't go away, you just learn to know it. It's still a beast, it still has fangs, but you walk among it.

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Hello fellow browser siblings :D I started using the OneTab plugin (for Chrome, and I also saw it for Opera).

 

You can Onetab a bunch of tabs, give the tab collections titles, lock and unlock - so when you open them again, the locked ones stay put or disappear from OneTab... It has been a saviour :D

 

 Good luck on your journey. One step at a time 😊 You are also always taking care of one other human (and making plans/curriculum for them). Upwards and onwards!

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Level ☆ human [uncategorizable]
STR 2 | DEX 3 | CON 2 | STA 3 | WIS 5 | CHA 5
Current challenge: Athena focuses on the physical | 
Battle log

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To help me think about goals and what I might want out of life in order to direct them properly, I have spent some time thinking about what I value in life and how that has influenced the directions I have taken and the directions I might take in the future. These are not big new thoughts that are revelations to me, but still, getting them all front of mind should help with planning things that are likely to be meaningful to me.

 

A lot of people value security in life and seek it by looking for a good job with benefits and room for advancement, buying a house, and then surrounding themselves with things that anchor them in life. I'm sure it works for many people, but his life model has never really resonated with me (or at least not as long as I can remember, though it is very much the model I was pushed towards in my youth). Partly this is because I am really truly unmotivated by ambition, status, and material things. Partly it is because in my eyes, that life model does not offer real security. A job loss, a fire, any big change in life really, and the life you have been planning and building for decades is destroyed. It is the stability of the mighty oak - strong and impressive, but only until the storm hits. I prefer instead to flow like water. I have learned to live on very little and be happy that way, which is very freeing. Should I lose a job or want to move, I can replace income with a low-paying job relatively easy (since those are easy to find in general), so I am unlikely to be in a bad situation for long. I seek multiple streams of income rather than one big stable job, so that when job losses come, I never lose everything. With fewer things, I am able to be more open to opportunities - my things work for me rather than tying me down. I learn a range of skills rather than specializing in one narrow thing which, again, makes me flexible and adaptable. The ability to flow with the changes life inevitably brings without being thrown into crisis over and over - this to me is true security.

 

So freedom, flexibility - what other things to I value that affect the plans? I love to learn - nay, I need to learn, always. If I didn't have new things to learn and be curious about, I might as well be dead. (Another reason I won't hyperspecialize in a job; I would get bored and miserable after only a few years.) I love to have new experiences and challenges as well - closely related to learning new things. My work is not the focus of my identity and how I define myself, nor has it ever been so (this does not mean I do not like my work!). I value relationships (friends, family, etc.) and am very loyal in them, though not the most attentive or demonstrative, it's true. I don't have an easy time forming them though. I also have a strong sense of place. It's the one thing where I tend to go very deep and narrow. I learn about the places I live or frequent in great detail, so that they belong to me and I belong to them.

 

So that's my basic approach to and outlook on life. Now to look at the goals I made, why I made them, and whether I should keep them.

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Now to look at the specific goals that I laid out, and what I had in mind when I made them.

 

STR and DEX

I shall treat these together because my thoughts about them are near identical. My goal in these two areas is to gain (and maintain) enough strength and flexibility to be able to do fun things like hiking, canoeing, ziplining, and anything else I might like to try without hurting myself, and for as long as possible as I age. So in short, be healthy and have fun. The trouble is that this is too nebulous to be a good goal. Since I don't have any one activity that I direct my energies at, I feel like my training lacks direction and it can be a struggle sometimes to maintain interest. It doesn't help that it tends to be quite repetitive, and as I think I established above, I end up rebelling against too much sameness eventually. I did recognize this by making the goal to pick up a series of skills over time. The trouble is that I am not super into fitness as a hobby and am only passing familiar with the cool moves that can be done (basically when I see other people working on them for challenges). I am not sure how to identify cool tricks or activities that might interest me while also working on strength and dexterity. I think this is the right approach, but I feel at a loss on the implementation of it.

 

CON

I have two main aspects to the CON stat: healthy habits that are not about strength or flexibility, and long-distance walking. The first are things like brushing your teeth, taking vitamins, not destroying the skin on my hands - basic long-term health stuff. Not super exciting, but still important. I haven't done a lot of work on those yet and I don't have big lofty goals in mind; it's just a place to throw those habits when I want to build them. The walking, though, is a different animal.

 

I like walking a lot. I walk slowly, so slowly that I am regularly teased about it. But the thing is, at my walking speed, I can walk all day long without getting tired. (Muscles and feet may get sore, sure, but you only tend to feel that when you stop.) My son and I walked from our house to Quebec in 2019 I think it was as a planned adventure. It was roughly 50km total with an overnight, and it was amazing in every way. I loved having a big exciting thing that we could do together that was just us. I loved the feeling of being on the walk, the singlemindedness of it. You always knew what was coming next - more walking - and in a mere morning it felt like a way of life. You keep walking because walking is what you do and who you are right now. We were walking without a map - I just wrote down the key turns on a scrap of paper and studied the map before leaving - so other than keeping an eye out for the turns when they came, there was nothing for the mind to do but enjoy the companionship and just appreciate the present moment and what it had to offer, and when not doing that the mind and imagination can run free in all sorts of directions. And at the end, you have a real feeling of having accomplished something special. I want to do more of this. We almost immediately started thinking about what the next big walking adventure could be. I started noticing books about walking the Appalachian Trail, the Pacific Crest Trail, the Camina de Santiago. My natural hiking/camping style is ultralight survival style without a ton of creature comforts, as one might predict, and these long-distance adventures mesh really well with that. I had picked a nice step up from the last adventure: walking across Ottawa horizontally, which is about twice as long a trip as the last one. But then Covid hit and it was clear that even practice walks out of my immediate area were going to be difficult. The plans were shelved. I would like to resume them, but it is too hard to plan when I have no idea what the accommodation situation will be like. At any rate, no training for this is really possible until spring, so this goal is on hold (but not abandoned) because of reasons beyond my control.

 

INT

As I mentioned earlier. I love to learn new things. I don't need a goal to do this; it's going to happen anyway. And it's hard to set goals for, because I go where my interests take me at the time, and I am a curious person with pretty wide-ranging interests if my bookshelves are anything to go by. So my goal here was twofold. First, to set aside time for reading, because I have a bad habit of ordering in books on things I am interested in and then not reading them because I have not made the time to do so. Second, to build an acquaintance with the classics of literature. On my own, I tend towards non-fiction, because it teaches me about things directly. But I am also fascinated by the concept of the Great Conversation, where through their writings, great writers and thinkers throughout time have been able to talk to and build off each other. The fact that a person who lived a thousand years ago can write something and I can read their thoughts as if they were talking directly to me just blows my mind. I may not be adding to the Conversation myself, but I don't want to be left out of it either. Hence my goal to plan to read more classic works of fiction and key works of philosophy, history, and so on.

 

WIS

Wisdom is a hard category. It is the place where I run hard into the "should want" problem. It's a bit like fitness, really. When you are at a low point, your motivation is always lowest, even when you know you should want to do something more. Once you start, it can still feel unrewarding and hard for a while because the foundational muscles that you need to work need time to develop. Once the momentum is going though and the habits are in place, you start to see rewards from your practice. The more you put in, the more you get out, in a positive feedback loop. Then the actual genuine wanting takes over and it all gets easier. I have so much trouble getting habits going here, yet when I have practice going, I see the benefit and can, for example, read and study for a really long time. It's the getting going and being consistent that is hard. Perhaps I need to try another approach than focusing on the things I know I "should" be doing (and then probably subconsciously rebelling against them for that very reason). The goals here are still things I would like to achieve, but the way I get there may need a rethink if I don't want this to feel like a chore and therefore set up a negative mental association (which of course I do not want).

 

CHA

Oh, CHA, my great nemesis. My goal here is to build and deepen relationships, really. I'm just not very good at it. I have had relatively few friends over the course of my life, but I'm not great at staying in touch, so most of those have faded. The majority of friends I have made have either been where some more extraverted person sort of adopted me (out of pity, perhaps?) or where I was thrown into a situation (like a long car drive) with a person where we had a lot of time to sit and talk one on one. (I'm really at my best one-on-one since I don't like talking about myself or being the centre of attention; even small groups or internetting sends me into listening mode.) I have been married (somehow; how did that happen?!), but I don't think more relationships of this this type are at all likely for me in the future. This is also an area of life that, for whatever reason, leaves me feeling insecure most of the time. So all in all, not the greatest starting point. Ironically though, this Covid year has been the best year for CHA that I may have ever had. I joined a D&D game early in the pandemic which included two NFers who I felt a bond with since quite early in my NF journey and got to interact with them in a new way and get to know them better (we all started not too far apart from each other and have followed each other's journeys with a few DMs thrown in). I started a business accountability group after a short entrepreneurship challenge that ended up doubling as a support group when our lives were disrupted by the pandemic. My day job also started weekly chats during the pandemic (and hosted a couple of distanced picnics), which gave us all a chance to get to know each other on a more personal level. Now with the French chats with a few of them and long periods with no customers and just time to talk, it really feels like the bonds are getting stronger there, such that if any of us left, we might still want to keep in touch. (There are days where there are only two of us working, which I love because one-on-one, and the conversations are super varied. Today's conversation was about how to identify quality art supplies; yesterday's was about assisted death.)

 

This Covid relationship building was all wonderful but also accidental. I don't know how to replicate it going forward. I don't know how to consciously build on and deepen these connections, and I don't know how to not torpedo them with my own insecurities. Said insecurities were greatly boosted by my failure at connecting when I was actually consciously trying. So I guess the goal is don't screw up a good thing, and try to believe that people aren't just pretending to like me but would really rather I shut up and go away.

 

Occupational proficiencies

My goals here line up with my life approach and indeed were directly motivated by it. The area where I live has seen cost of living rise faster than incomes for more than a decade. Personal debt (not mine, the general population's) is through the roof as a result. The bits of one's budget that are the largest categories for a person like me on the lower end of the income scale (housing and food) are the things that have risen the fastest in price. There's no point going into the whys of it here, but it's not likely to get better and is quite likely to get worse. When I lose my rather cushy current living situation (and I will in not too many years, guaranteed), I will not be able to afford to continue to live here. I am not wedded to this area, particularly given my utter failure to make local friends, but my job is not one that can be done from home, and it is paying me a higher per-hour rate than is normal for the sort of work that I do, so even shifting to another place and doing the same job is not a super attractive option. My goal of building something for myself that I can take with me wherever I go is partly for the freedom to live elsewhere, and partly from stark necessity.

 

This sounds really harsh, but it's not that bad. I've started over from near nothing before. I've moved countries, if you count a year studying abroad, three times. I would be willing to move within Canada to a place with a lower cost of living, but I think the ideal solution might be to move somewhere with a lower cost of living and where the values are more in line with my own. I have heard many good things about Mexico and some of the South/Central American countries, but I would have to try them out for a while before making a final decision. That also requires flexibility that a fixed-in-one-place job cannot provide. It all really comes back to having an income that can move with me, no matter its size. So I really need to work on building that. This goal is critical.

 

Art & Tool proficiencies

This category also has two wings: minimalism/organization and general hobby stuff. They both have different issues, though a bit related. Have I mentioned that I like to learn things? I have? Well, this means that I end up dabbling in a lot of different hobbies, and also collecting information. Both of these can be a problem as it is underpants collecting really - having the materials for hobbies I'd like to try is not the same as actually putting in the time and effort to try them, nor is having information come in the same as having the time and energy to turn that information into knowledge. So I end up with growing piles and backlogs of both things when really what I need to do is use what I have and cut back on what's coming in. My goals have getting rid of the piles included, but need to be modified to deal with the inflow or they will simply build again.

 

Language proficiencies

This goal is for interest because languages are cool, and also to support the whole life flexibility thing. The three languages that I am learning, French, Spanish, and Esperanto (Arabic is for WIS) provide a good variety of uses. French and Spanish are both languages that give me access to living in a lot of different places, especially as I already speak native English. Esperanto is useful in a different way. It is spoken by small numbers of people in various parts of the world, with significant numbers in places where English, French, and Spanish are less useful, such as Eastern Europe, Russia, Iran, China, and Japan. A lot of these people open up their homes to travellers for free or low cost, so it gives a good travel option with a built-in way to know the place on a deeper level than a tourist with no language knowledge ever normally could. And it gives you direct access to people who are not the westernized elite in places that are often little known or demonized in North America. This is very useful indeed for understanding what's going on in the world. As to which languages I want to strengthen or work on, my interest and incentives for learning them are not equal, but my goals treat them as if they are. I could use more focus here.

 

Actual goal (re)writing is going to have to be another post.

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Last post was WAY TOO LONG, so back to the spoiler-for-each-topic format.

 

Thoughts on goals for the year:

 

STR

Spoiler

I'm struggling to make full-on goals for the whole year, since I'm struggling to find goals at all. So what I'm going to do is have a small goal, which may not be an end-of-year goal, for each subcategory of movement in my current exercise routine so that I feel like I am working towards something, and a then separate goal to identify interesting potential directions to take things should I progress to higher levels.

 

Squats - I can do 5 pistols in a row on both sides.

Pullups - I can do one good, solid pullup.

Handstand pushup - I have moved onto the feet-on-wall step of the progression ladder.

Leg Raises - I can do basic L-sit on the floor.

Pushups - I can do 5 ring pushups.

Dips - I can do one dip with full bodyweight on hands.

Horizontal pull - I have moved on off the rank on the ladder I'm at right now.

Plank - I have moved on to the next plank in the progression.

I have made a list of interesting things to learn and what foundational skills are needed for them, so that I have something to look forward to.

 

DEX

Spoiler

I did the benchmarks for the Nerdfitness flexibility challenge a while back, but without having something to compare them to, it's hard for me to know where I need more work and where I don't. I do know I need to work on my straight-leg flexibility. I still want to do handstands and parkour moves, but struggle with motivation (and space).

 

I have passed the zero line in the pancake stretch.

I have solved my space issues and am working on a parkour/handstand move for at least a few minutes on every non-strength day.

I have made a list of moves that I could do with the resources I have available so that I have exciting things to try out and work towards.

 

CON

Spoiler

As I said in my "why I made this goal" post above, until the future becomes stable enough to allow for planning that involves overnight stays at an AirBNB, firm walking goals are on hold. Conditional goals, on the other hand...

 

At the end of March, if the situation looks promising, I will train for a horizontal walk across Ottawa and hopefully be able to execute it. If it does not look promising, I will restart either Zombies, Run!, The Walk, or both, to get long walks into my weekly routine.

I brush my teeth once per day with proper routine.

If I identify other healthy habits that I need to form, I will set a plan to achieve them without overwhelming myself.

 

INT

Spoiler

I think the hour per day that I assigned when I first set up these goals is too ambitious with the rest of my schedule. I'm not realistically going to sit down with a timer for my reading, either - I do hate to stop things when they are not finished! So looking at my why post, my goal reasons were to keep learning new things, make sure I set time aside for reading, and expose myself to more of the classics. Cool. I don't currently have the time to look into courses beyond things I need to learn when they come up, so the focus for the year is reading.

 

My reading falls into three categories: short-burst reading (while eating or waiting for something), long-session reading, and lunch break reading. Short-burst reading by definition means that I'm not doing it for a long time at a sitting. The books I use for this have chapters, sections, or subsections that are fairly short - no more than 2-3 pages without a natural break - and don't require immersion. Most of the books that fall into this category are non-fiction, which is probably why I read so much non-fic these days. I'm getting through these at a reasonable pace, and don't feel the need to make more time for them. Lunch break books are books I read for language practice. It's basically forced language practice. I don't feel the need for more time outside of this at the moment either. The intention of the goal was really to make time for the long-session reads - books that require immersion to really enjoy, or room to digest the ideas being presented more deeply than two-page reading bursts allow. My library shelf suggests I am not getting around to these books as often as I'd like. So, with that in mind...

 

I will read three times per week from a book that requires dedicated attention and immersion.

I will have read at least five classic works (fiction or non-fiction).

 

WIS

Spoiler

More thinking on this has made clear that "should want" is firmly entrenched in my mind and I am already internally rebelling against it. This is a problem I need to fix by reframing things in my own mind. Rather than setting quantitative goals here, I'm setting nebulous ones with no clear point where I can say "Aha! I have achieved it!" because I can't think of another way to do it.

 

I remind myself daily that any practice that I do, be it prayer, Quran study, free prayer, or anything else, is for me and my benefit only. Details of the thought process below as it cluttered the goal.

Spoiler

Why are they required or recommended? Not for God's benefit, that is clear. God needs no one's prayer or worship and tells us so quite clearly. Certainly not for the sake of judgy members of the community. No, these things are gifts to us for our own benefit, to make our lives better and ourselves better people. They exist for no other purpose. To view them as obligations or duties is to miss the point. So be aware of the general options for worship, yes. But less pressure on myself will likely result both more practice and more joyful and meaningful practice.

I take time every day to notice things that I am grateful for, that are worth appreciating, that I am lucky to have, and that bring me joy, peace, contentment, hope and so on.

 

CHA

Spoiler

I think I adequately explained in the previous post why my social friendship-type goals are simply "keep doing what you're doing and don't screw it all up". I'm going to leave them there for the time being.

 

I have been thinking about a different aspect of CHA lately: volunteering. I have a few causes that I am very interested in and passively follow, but what is the point of passive following? My current volunteering (with the Beavers) is somewhat rewarding, but I'm enjoying it progressively less as time goes on. It's in the duty category, where I do it because they need me rather than because I really want to. I would like something that I do because I really care about it. I'm going to spoiler this mental hashing out both because it touches on the political and because I have to talk about my own strengths, which I don't like doing.

 

Spoiler

The issues I am most passionate about are anti-war issues and civil liberties, especially those that relate to freedom of thought, belief, speech, expression, and the press. There a limit to what I can do about the former, since my country is not heavily involved in overseas conflicts. I could write to politicians, possibly, when appropriate. Or try to educate a public that mostly doesn't care. I don't know. I feel rather hopeless and helpless here. Civil liberties seems a more promising direction, since these rights are enshrined in the constitution and therefore the courts can be invoked to help when governments infringe on them. I've looked up some organizations and joined their mailing lists to try to figure out if there's a way I can help, even if it is only writing to politicians.

There is another possible direction that I could try. I have two qualities that play together in a useful way: I don't get offended or emotional easily, and I seem to have a talent for relating to people from a wide variety of backgrounds and beliefs (my library background helps here - the world comes into libraries: from wealthy to homeless, and of every colour and creed under the sun). I have had a lot of people tell me that they find me a calming influence, that they admired the way I handled a difficult customer (that I didn't always even realize was "difficult") or my ability to be "unflappable" in situations that make them a bit panicky. I don't have any fancy scripts or other secrets. I just listen to people with respect and try to understand things from their point of view with whatever information I have. It turns out that if you do that, and thereby show that you genuinely care about their problems and what they have to say, they listen to you and respect you as well. And they see you as a safe person to talk to. It would be great to be able to use that talent to bring good things to the world. Maybe bring some humanity and understanding where there is currently only hatred and ignorance. Like this guy - he's a true hero in my book. Or these people. I've had a few of these hard conversations just by random chance because I'm kind of visible as a not-much-loved minority and they've always ended well, often with the person becoming a casual friendly acquaintance. It's rewarding, and you learn a lot about your own subconscious judgments and stereotypes as well. But I'm not sure how to do so in more than a chance-encounter kind of way, especially in pandemic times. This is really a face-to-face kind of thing. The internet is VERY poorly suited to this sort of interaction, unfortunately. The potential downsides: I suspect I can come off as arrogant and condescending sometimes.

 

I have identified at least one cause that I am eager to volunteer my time and effort for and found a way to support it that isn't simply donating money.

 

Occupational

Spoiler

I need to check how much money I am currently making from sources outside my job, which will conveniently happen when I have to do my taxes, so for now I'm just going to roll the goals I had before over without thinking too much about how realistic or otherwise they are.

 

I earn $13000 from sources other than my day job.

I have earned enough back from VO to break even on training and equipment.

I will make enough from audiobooks to pay for a training package from Pat Fraley.

 

Artistic/Skill

Spoiler

Just going to copy/paste these as well, as I spent quite a bit of time when I was making the original goal list choosing when to do which task to avoid overwhelm. I would throw in some goals related to the musical instrument I am learning, but I don't feel like I know enough to make realistic goals right now.

 

I will have no repair pile (or 1-2 very recent items max).
I will have all RSS feeds from the mini moved.

I have dealt with all of the to be dealt with computer files.

I have listed all of my books for sale.

I have gone through all of the books on Overdrive (or at least checked them).

 

Languages

Spoiler

I'm still not sure how to focus this goal better. Ideally, I would have some sort of schedule for practicing speaking, listening, reading, and writing for all of them, but speaking and listening are probably the most important.

 

I have a gold Duo tree in all three of my Duo languages.

I am speaking and listening to each of my languages at least once per week.

 

Reminder to self: update the five-year plan with the 2021 goals.

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I said it before, but wow this is so well structured. And it still creeps me about a bit.

 

On 1/24/2021 at 10:45 AM, juliebarkley said:

I started noticing books about walking the Appalachian Trail, the Pacific Crest Trail, the Camina de Santiago. My natural hiking/camping style is ultralight survival style without a ton of creature comforts, as one might predict, and these long-distance adventures mesh really well with that.

From what I heard about the Camina de Santiago is that you can absolutely get a lot of creature comforts, there's delicious food everywhere. :D It is very touristy at this point though. But if you ever decide to do it anyway let me know!

 

On 1/24/2021 at 10:45 AM, juliebarkley said:

Esperanto is useful in a different way. It is spoken by small numbers of people in various parts of the world, with significant numbers in places where English, French, and Spanish are less useful, such as Eastern Europe, Russia, Iran, China, and Japan. A lot of these people open up their homes to travellers for free or low cost, so it gives a good travel option with a built-in way to know the place on a deeper level than a tourist with no language knowledge ever normally could. And it gives you direct access to people who are not the westernized elite in places that are often little known or demonized in North America.

This is so interesting, I'd never expect that perk simply from speaking an obscure language.

 

23 hours ago, juliebarkley said:

I'm going to spoiler this mental hashing out both because it touches on the political and because I have to talk about my own strengths, which I don't like doing.

Thanks for sharing that. I love the Daryl Davis story, it's quite amazing. If you can find a way to bring some of your strengths into the world I'm sure it will become a slightly better place for it. :) 

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On 2/12/2021 at 4:10 AM, Mad Hatter said:

I said it before, but wow this is so well structured. And it still creeps me about a bit.

 

From what I heard about the Camina de Santiago is that you can absolutely get a lot of creature comforts, there's delicious food everywhere. :D It is very touristy at this point though. But if you ever decide to do it anyway let me know!

 

This is so interesting, I'd never expect that perk simply from speaking an obscure language.

 

Thanks for sharing that. I love the Daryl Davis story, it's quite amazing. If you can find a way to bring some of your strengths into the world I'm sure it will become a slightly better place for it. :) 

I hope so; I worked pretty hard on it. 😁Why creepy though? I'm curious.

 

No Camina this year, certainly! But I'll be sure to invite you along if/when. :)

 

I wasn't, either. I started learning because it sounded interesting, and kept going because it was easy. The hidden perks only manifested themselves later. The travel perk was one I did know about from the beginning though - Pasporta Servo has been around since 1966. It's like Esperanto Couchsurfing, but better.

 

I know, right? I wanna be like him when I grow up.

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Five-Year plan (2021 edition):

Spoiler

By December 31, 2024:

STR:

I have picked up at least 5 new strength skills and am actively working on more.

DEX:

I have picked up at least 5 new dexterity skills and am actively working on more.

CON:

I have walked across Ottawa the long way.

INT:

I read regularly and have a 100-book list set up. I have read at least 20 of the books on the list.

WIS:

I do all 5 prayers every day.

I read Quran daily, and read the whole Quran every year.

I watch a khutba and read for 30 minutes every Friday.

CHA:

I will have a strong relationship with Jasper where we spend time together doing fun things.

Occupational Proficiencies:

Be location independent and able to move, such as to Mexico, if desired.

Arts & Tool Proficiencies:

No big backlogs that aren’t being actively worked on.

A maintenance plan is in place for all danger areas.

Language Proficiences:

I speak Spanish at an intermediate level.

I have improved my French and Esperanto by one level.

 

Organizational Categories
 

Spoiler

Inbox (paper)

Podcasts

Repairs

Book listing pile

Yahoo email

Gmail email

Browser tabs

Computer files to be dealt with

Overdrive

Library

Openlibrary

Pocket

Ebook categorization and sorting

ROMs

Book sorting

To do one at a time

RSS from Mini

General Konmari

 

 

2020:

Spoiler

STR: Mostly failed, but made steady progress towards the goals.

I can do 5 pistols on each side. - Nope, but real progress has been made here. I can do one on each side and the strength is slowly building. Maybe in 2021?
I can do 3 pullups. - Getting closer to one.
I can do 10 knee-high decline pushups. - Yes, achieved in May or June.
I can do a 180-second plank. - Hmm, not sure. Let's find out. 147 seconds. Not too far off, but not there yet.

 

DEX: Failures all. My Assassin status is in question. :P

I can do a 5-second handstand. - Cannot do a freestanding handstand of any length. Handstand practice has been largely abandoned since midsummer.
I can do 5 parkour movements. - Barely attempted.

 

CON: Also pretty terrible. No real progress.

I have done at least one 25km walk. - No, Covid made this one weird.
I am brushing my teeth at least once a day with the proper routine. - Still no.
I am walking 10,000 steps per day. - If I get my daily walk in I hit maybe 6000 on workdays, much less on non-work days when I become one with the couch.

 

INT: A bit of work needed, but not bad overall.

I have made my 100-book list (maybe more than one). - The list ended up being a bit different, but it exists.
I am reading for 30 minutes per day minimum. - I got there during quarantine, then lost it when work resumed. When I have a lunch break at work I hit it. Less often if not. But I do read a little every day.

 

WIS: Mixed bag.

I will be doing isha every day. - Built the habit, then lost it again. Why is it always so hard? Probably because I need to interrupt what I'm doing, and I'm bad at that.
I will be listening to a khutba every Friday. - Generally, yes.

 

CHA: Success, but not in the way I was planning. Overcame obstacles that were not anticipated at the start of 2020.

I will complete the 10x10 game challenge. - Surprisingly enough, I don't think so.
I will stay in touch with Sandi and will email 1 family member per month. - No, not at all. However, my efforts at outreach were totally unreciprocated and ended up making me feel rejected and unwanted, so I stopped to save my poor wounded self-esteem. I never did email family. I should at least try to keep in touch with my brother, though he also never answers email. D&D with NerdFitness people sort of filled this void. I feel like I've gotten to know a few people better, maybe even well enough to call them real friends. Hard to judge on the internets whether people really care about you specifically or are just being nice because they are nice to everyone. At any rate, it made me feel like maybe someone wanted me around at least some of the time, though I still struggled a lot with cycles of crushing loneliness (feeling like no one cared or would even notice if I died), insecurity, and doubting people's intentions and then feeling really bad about it.
I will get to know Greg and Olga better. - Pretty hard to get to know your coworkers better when work shuts down. I am starting up a French chat now though, which they are both looking to take part in, and we had weekly chats while work was shut down with all the staff. That was actually really great for getting to know work people. I feel like I can talk to Greg and Anita more easily now and they seem more relaxed and fun with me as well. We have good wacky conversations these days.

 

Occupational Proficiencies: Did not hit goal, partly because it was ambitious and partly because Covid made it near impossible. Progress was made though, and weaknesses identified.

I will earn enough from VO to pay for my training and any equipment purchased. I will make enough from audiobooks to pay for a training package from Pat Fraley. - Nope. Everything was delayed due to the lockdowns, and I didn't even get my demo till September when it should really have been in March. I have earned some money though, and if I'd tried harder I would have earned more (though I would not have hit goal). I need to learn more about how to market audiobooks to earn enough from them for the training package. I have a learning curve ahead of me.

 

Arts & Tool Proficiencies: Success!

I will have no repair pile (or 1-2 very recent items max). - There are actually five items in there, but they are bigger things or things I lack the stuff to finish at the moment. I say success.
I will have all RSS feeds from the mini moved. - Nope, but I should be able to do it tonight or tomorrow. It's a pretty quick job.
I will be completely finished with my physical book project. - YES!

 

Language Proficiences: Not really so much.

I will have a gold Duo tree in French, Esperanto, and Spanish. - Oh Duo. I did so well at you during the lockdown and so poorly after.
I will have reread Fluent Forever and started creating cards. - Not even close.
I have tested my French level online. - This one I did. I tested higher than expected, but I have enough holes in my knowledge that I'm not too cocky about my level.

 

2021:

Spoiler

 STR

Squats - I can do 5 pistols in a row on both sides.

Pullups - I can do one good, solid pullup.

Handstand pushup - I have moved onto the feet-on-wall step of the progression ladder.

Leg Raises - I can do basic L-sit on the floor.

Pushups - I can do 5 ring pushups.

Dips - I can do one dip with full bodyweight on hands.

Horizontal pull - I have moved on off the rank on the ladder I'm at right now.

Plank - I have moved on to the next plank in the progression.

I have made a list of interesting things to learn and what foundational skills are needed for them, so that I have something to look forward to.

 

DEX

I have passed the zero line in the pancake stretch.

I have solved my space issues and am working on a parkour/handstand move for at least a few minutes on every non-strength day.

I have made a list of moves that I could do with the resources I have available so that I have exciting things to try out and work towards.

 

CON

At the end of March, if the situation looks promising, I will train for a horizontal walk across Ottawa and hopefully be able to execute it. If it does not look promising, I will restart either Zombies, Run!, The Walk, or both, to get long walks into my weekly routine.

I brush my teeth once per day with proper routine.

If I identify other healthy habits that I need to form, I will set a plan to achieve them without overwhelming myself.

 

INT

I will read three times per week from a book that requires dedicated attention and immersion.

I will have read at least five classic works (fiction or non-fiction).

 

WIS

I remind myself daily that any practice that I do, be it prayer, Quran study, free prayer, or anything else, is for me and my benefit only. Details of the thought process below as it cluttered the goal.

Spoiler

Why are they required or recommended? Not for God's benefit, that is clear. God needs no one's prayer or worship and tells us so quite clearly. Certainly not for the sake of judgy members of the community. No, these things are gifts to us for our own benefit, to make our lives better and ourselves better people. They exist for no other purpose. To view them as obligations or duties is to miss the point. So be aware of the general options for worship, yes. But less pressure on myself will likely result both more practice and more joyful and meaningful practice.

I take time every day to notice things that I am grateful for, that are worth appreciating, that I am lucky to have, and that bring me joy, peace, contentment, hope and so on.

(On the 2020 list, things to work on for my own benefit:

I will be doing dhuhr every day that I am at home.

I will be reading Quran on Fridays and at least one other day per week.)

 

CHA

Maintain current friendship/social level.

I have identified at least one cause that I am eager to volunteer my time and effort for and found a way to support it that isn't simply donating money.

 

Occupational

I earn $13000 from sources other than my day job.

I have earned enough back from VO to break even on training and equipment.

I will make enough from audiobooks to pay for a training package from Pat Fraley.

 

Artistic/Skill

I will have no repair pile (or 1-2 very recent items max).
I will have all RSS feeds from the mini moved.

I have dealt with all of the to be dealt with computer files.

I have listed all of my books for sale.

I have gone through all of the books on Overdrive (or at least checked them).

 

Languages

I have a gold Duo tree in all three of my Duo languages.

I am speaking and listening to each of my languages at least once per week.

 

2022:

Spoiler

STR:

DEX:

CON:

INT:

I have read at least 10 books from my reading list.

WIS:

I will be doing asr every day that I am at home.

I will be reading Quran 3 non-Friday days.

CHA:

Occupational Proficiencies:

I earn $20,000 from online sources and investments.

Arts & Tool Proficiencies:

My Yahoo and Gmail boxes are clear.

I have no more than 15 browser tabs open.

Language Proficiences:

 

 

2023:

Spoiler

STR:

DEX:

CON:

INT:

I have read at least 15 books from my reading list.

WIS:

I will be doing maghrib every day.

I will be reading Quran every day.

CHA:

Occupational Proficiencies:

I earn $29,000 from online sources and investments.

Arts & Tool Proficiencies:

I have checked my for later books for duplicates and removed them. I have begun to download as well.

I have checked my ebook library for misnamed files and have begun labelling them.

I have completed downloading ROMS.

I have started working on OpenLibrary books.

Language Proficiences:

 

 

2024:

Spoiler

STR:

DEX:

CON:

INT:

I have read at least 20 books from my reading list.

WIS:

I will be doing fajr every day.

CHA:

Occupational Proficiencies:

I earn $40,000 from online sources and investments.

Arts & Tool Proficiencies:

I am working through the to do one at a time links.

I have completed a full Konmari.

I am reading more Pocket articles than arrive each day.

I have less than 2GB of podcasts.

Language Proficiences:

 

 

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13 minutes ago, juliebarkley said:

I hope so; I worked pretty hard on it. 😁Why creepy though? I'm curious.

I don't know. Maybe because it seems like black magic to me? To put it into perspective - right now I'm paralyzed by the decision on what to eat for breakfast. And if I'm too bored by breakfast, how could I possibly make life goals FIVE years in advance? Madness I tell you! 😄

 

I do love seeing it written out like this though, and while part of me is reeling away, part of me would looooove to have that kind of clarity (even if it of course might change)

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3 minutes ago, Mad Hatter said:

I don't know. Maybe because it seems like black magic to me? To put it into perspective - right now I'm paralyzed by the decision on what to eat for breakfast. And if I'm too bored by breakfast, how could I possibly make life goals FIVE years in advance? Madness I tell you! 😄

 

I do love seeing it written out like this though, and while part of me is reeling away, part of me would looooove to have that kind of clarity (even if it of course might change)

It took me couple of weeks and a whole lot of sitting and thinking to get the first version made up, and some categories were a lot harder than others. And yup, it's absolutely subject to change. I forget what prompted it exactly. Probably a combination of a general sense of life being short (ie. seeing lots of people let their lives drift without ever attempting to achieve their dreams, and a realization that that would be me if I did nothing because a lot of goals require advance planning, effort, and intentionality) and a well-timed trigger in the form of an article I read or something. I know all the stuff I read said to dream BIG for the five years, because you can get less than you think done in a day, but more than you think done in a year. Those little days of effort add up. It's really just the challenge structure taken to a higher level of planning.

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