150 Steps for May '09

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150 Steps for May '09

Postby Mannix » Thu Apr 30, 2009 3:57 pm

OK, here's the challenge. Take 150 steps towards your goals this month. Nothing big - just little steps that take you where you want to go. A step is something that moves you towards your goals, and either takes at least 15 minutes or is emotionally difficult (like making a call you've been dreading). A goal is anything that moves you forward towards what you want. It doesn't have to be part of a lofty, thought-out goal. If you want to get in shape, your exercise sessions are steps. If you think you ought to get out more, getting out is a step. Each day, check in with the steps you've made so far.
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby Unity » Fri May 01, 2009 10:16 am

Mannix, I hope you feel better after your break away from home.
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby JeannetteLS » Fri May 01, 2009 1:46 pm

Did my interview for the Stanford piece, so Sunday I hope to write the rough draft--and early next week the draft I'll submit. Painted for an hour. developed my plan for a private art session with a friend, thought of how to tailor it to HER dreams. That was FUN. That's it for today.
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby Mannix » Fri May 01, 2009 3:33 pm

Unity wrote:Mannix, I hope you feel better after your break away from home.
Thanks, Unity. I'm back home now. Had a great day with the ponies and then just meandering around Charles Town. Sorry about your "d" efforts fizzling last month. Maybe another, better alternative will present itself for you in May. -- Mannix
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby An8el » Sat May 02, 2009 7:42 pm

Jeanette, you inspired me to get out my art materials. Amazing what I have to play with that has been laying around. I'm going to assume that I NEED to make art! At the very least I can make the art, take a photo of it and put it on my blog, if nothing else. Part of the reason I don't make art is because I do not know what to do with it after I make it. OK I admit, goal setting has helped me a little. I really fell off the wagon last month because I slipped back into depression-land, which was probably a result of my thyroid problems. I got sucked into Emotional Freedom Technique these last two weeks. Let me tell you, affirmations don't really work much better than a giant placebo. I guess for some people that will work... but for me, it was pretty much a distraction. But now I'm back in the saddle with great intentions that this month will result in lots of productive stuff that is about to blossom for me because I'm going to actually finish what I've already started. Specifically, I need to get the stuff that I've already made into action making me some money...Got to get my car fixed....and generally put the money machine into action again.
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby Jane B » Sat May 02, 2009 10:22 pm

Happy May everyone, Signing on for another month to help keep track of my progress with my musical activities. Also thinking this month I'm going to include any steps I take to improve my social/dating life. One of the challenges I currently face is that pursuing my music and improving my dating/social life are two very important goals for me, but they demand contradicting behaviors. For instance, working on my singing/songwriting, etc. requires a lot of solitary time, and I sometimes have to refuse social invitations to get things done. On the other hand, if I want to meet people, I have to be open to social invitations. Got to find creative ways of doing the two I guess. Steps so far 1-2 listening to music each day 3 went to the gym 4 Did about 20 minutes of songwriting 5 Started listening to some audio products by a dating coach; the content inspired me to take step 6: 6 Went to a party at my neighbour's house where I barely knew anyone (except for my neighbour); although I would normally tend to avoid such situations because of possible discomfort/boredom, etc. I made an effort to go and engage in conversations with everyone and had a really good time. 7 Did some voice exercises 8 Browsed some craigslist musicians ads
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby JeannetteLS » Sun May 03, 2009 1:52 pm

Thank you An8el. The thought that I inspired someone makes me happier than you know. Taking care of my spine has been the focus of the last two days. There are times when I must pay close attention to the warning signs of tingling, numbness and a particular type of pain. Quite simply, going to bed and being still--antithetical to my nature--are what I must do. I did that and it is a bit better today, so that tomorrow I can focus on the first draft of my Stanford piece. YAY. I also was by the sea for an hour yesterday, at a state park that's an old mansion and its grounds. Beautiful, beautiful drifts of daffodils to the sea. My friend was willing to walk slowly with me, taking all the rests I needed to. But that helped my back as well as my soul. We had an unexpected gift of a sunny afternoon, so we went there, to a ticky-tacky drive in institution of the area, and to a lovely garden center. A few hours of gentle exercise and beauty--necessary to feed art of every sort. Sometimes it feeds the left brain, even. I don't know whether these are tangible steps to a goal... Yes, they are. One goal of which I don't write is to keep walking. I was told by several doctors I would be dead by forty, and if not dead, then wheelchair bound for sure. Not yet. I'm 57. But sometimes I forget to listen to the signals. I get so hung up by the messages of thinness and exercise, that I try to do more than my back allows and get into trouble. I had to stop the gym for a bit, for finances AND for my back. I kept overdoing. It is has deteriorated again, something that's inevitable. The art workshops in my home were also an attempt to earn money from my home by bringing people I could treasure into it. I have not given up, but this assault of the neighbors hurt more than they know. A goal for this month is to return to my happiness of the beginning of last month, REGARDLESS of what others do. A huge step toward that is adjusting to this worsened phase. Not giving in, but learning what it means. And to draw and paint on my own, to garden, to laugh. Is that nuts? Perhaps. But it's the Serenity Prayer in action. I need to know what I CAN change, but to accept that which I cannot and to understand how that will translate into my daily life. Not sure yet. Thank you all again in here. My life is too solitary and the virtual group has led me to join a "real time" group, for those essential, casual contacts. Another goal is to continue to connect with this new group of people on a regular basis, and to try to be someone who gives in this forum, not just takes.
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Re: relevant to one of my own steps

Postby JeannetteLS » Sun May 03, 2009 1:57 pm

About my trying to give, not just take in here. I'd suggest folks take a look at the Doing Good thread. Tituba posted a need for the Breast Cancer site.
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby Unity » Sun May 03, 2009 4:07 pm

:? my post isn't here -can't remember what I wrote now. Jeannette - glad that the forums are beneficial. I often find that the 'self' type conversations don't always go down too well in real life. But online it's the sort of thing that people expect and enjoy reading and contributing support and advice.
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby Jane B » Sun May 03, 2009 10:04 pm

Hello folks, Posting a few more steps. Music stuff 9. Did some voice exercises 10. Did a bit of songwriting Social stuff 11. Went out and did my work at the library instead of staying inside the house, talked to some people, ran into some acquaintances 12. Exercised While I'm at it, maybe I could ask you guys to help me brainstorm. One of my absolute favourite bands has reformed 10 years after their breakup. They announced they would be touring Europe throughout the summer, but there is no guarantee the tour will extend to North America. Therefore, the European dates may be a once-in-a-lifetime thing. Since I learned about this, I've been considering planning a trip to a European city, but I'm having a hard time finding friends who are available or who can afford the trip with me. I'm usually comfortable going to see concerts alone in my own city, but in a different continent, that's a different story. I'm wondering what to do. Should I lend one of my broke friends the money? (not sure I can afford that). Should I go alone? Do you have any other ideas? Thanks, JB
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby Unity » Mon May 04, 2009 5:14 am

Hi Jane, Have you tried looking at fan club forums, perhaps there could be some organised trips you could join?
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby Mannix » Mon May 04, 2009 5:42 am

Good morning, everybody, Rather than try to number steps, I think I'm going to stick with the narrative format this month. :) My day is at the mercy of the home repair people. We have no hot water in the house! My husband talked with someone first thing this morning, described the problem, and the service people said they'd call back. Meanwhile, I guess I'll work on stuff I didn't get done yesterday. Had a stressful gig last night, which is now making me think about giving up this stuff, too. I continue the inner rebellion against all forms of authority! Anyway, we performed music for a large convocation (graduation) ceremony. To make a long story short, the arrangement we selected for the graduates' procession needed a keyboard part, which we didn't have, so there were all these weird "holes" in the music. Plus we started at a very slow, stately tempo, but the piece is normally supposed to be faster so we started rushing. My gig friend, who gets me 99.9% of my gig work, was very upset with us afterward because of the tempo rushing. (The contractor who hired us was also there and she was afraid he'd heard the music and wouldn't have been happy.) After a break, we had to go back in to play music for a hymn and the graduates' recessional. I just wanted to run away. I get really rattled when someone gets upset with how I'm performing. Fortunately, the second half went much better and we received several compliments on our playing. But who needs that stress? I'm thinking about taking July off. :? Current steps for me: 1. Come up for a plan for what I want to do with future teleconference meetings. Continue? Discontinue? Take a break and come back to them in a few months? 2. Come up with a few CONCRETE goals that I would LOVE to have! This part is harder than I thought it would be. For example, one goal is make time for more roadtrips. OK, how often would I like to go? I'm pretty sure I don't want to do this every day. Where do I want to go? The hard part is the goal has to please ME. There can be NO elements reflecting efforts to gain somebody else's approval. 3. Read some more of William Ury's book, "The Power of a Positive No." Comments for others in a separate post. Hope everybody's well, -- Mannix
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby Mannix » Mon May 04, 2009 6:03 am

Jane, I was going to suggest something similar to Unity's about fan clubs. Or maybe there's a travel agency that has group tours of the city you want to visit. You could break away from the tour to attend the concert, and then rejoin afterward. Maybe you could find someone in the group who would like to accompany you. Re loaning money to a broke friend, I have to say I watch those afternoon court shows and they are filled with people suing ex-friends who didn't pay back a loan to go on a trip. The borrower usually says the person knew they wouldn't be able to pay them back, or insists the trip was a gift. Not to say your friends would do this, but perhaps a cautionary tale. As far as dating versus singing/songwriting, maybe this is your underlying reason for finding a compatible song-writer. If someone else is doing the writing, you'll have time for the dating! :D Yes, Jeanette, a visit to a beautiful mansion counts! Finding pleasure in day-to-day life is a lost art. And, with your physical challenges, perhaps you should exclude yourself from those standard exercise messages (get personal trainer; push yourself to the limit, etc.). Sounds like walking has been a wonderful elixir for you and I hope you can get back to it soon. An8el, sorry to hear you ran into a depression. I hope the thyroid medication has taken care of it. I like the idea of putting photos of your art in a blog. Maybe you can set up a virtual art gallery for yourself. Hmm .. when will that hot-water heater person call back? Is he/she going to interfere with my teaching today? Should I cancel today's lessons? Reschedule them? Stay tuned for the answers to these exciting questions in a later post ... -- Mannix
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby JeannetteLS » Mon May 04, 2009 2:25 pm

Jane, Unity came up with and Mannix agreed with the step I thought might work. Same with loaning money--my experience with friends is to either GIVE outright without expectation of return, or leave it alone. I heard or read that somewhere or other, from someone who actually has diverse experience and credentials. Walking. It's been hard to let go of walking distances. Very. Even with a cane, unless I MAKE myself break often, I will wind up on the ground. Literally. Feh. Oddly enough hiking is better than straight walking--less repetitive action, but even there it doesn't work well. So Saturday felt like a little miracle in the middle of a hard time. No, toward the end of it. I've let go of the full-blown workshops for now. I will let it all percolate in the back of the brain and see whether some other iteration can appear in August, to promote for the fall and that will be palatable to the town. I closed my business account for now. I want NO signs of any subversive artist activities. Three of my friends are considering joining me on my lawn to chant, possibly dance barefoot while I play my tambourine. Preferably on a weekend afternoon, when the families are jogging and riding bikes in the middle of the road. In the meantime, I paint and that is a good thing. I go downstairs and realize I have my very own studio. And I work on my stuff for Stanford and feel grateful. For now that is plenty. Mannix. In this economy, does it not feel weird in this economy, that contractors and repair people still have no senes of urgency with regard to keeping on schedule, or letting us know when they will be late? (As opposed to calling an hour after they are due to say, casually, they WILL be late. Duh.) Hard to figure out what to do about gigs, I would think. Funny. This month I really don't know what my goals are. Last month was so tangible and then got blown up. While I have emotionally regrouped pretty well, I haven't figured out where I am going from here, except to apply for disability again. That's a hard one to do again and I have NOT done more since I tried to contact my lawyer. I will do it, but everything inside rebels. Maybe the goal is to pointedly breathe, to take what comes my way and be grateful, and simply breathe. regroup. We'll see.
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Re: 150 Steps for May '09

Postby Mannix » Tue May 05, 2009 7:45 pm

Hi, everyone, Well, the repairmen showed up around 11 am yesterday. However, no one called to say when they were coming, so it was a good thing I'd gotten dressed! And I was able to teach all my lessons yesterday and today. The only thing I missed was my Monday workout. I'll get back on track tomorrow. I have resolved to conclude my teleconference meetings, at least for awhile. I'm going to tell my teleconference buddy tomorrow. I'm not sure how she'll react. She could be disappointed because it may seem like I'm giving up. Or she may be glad for the break since she seems to be somewhere she really wants to be, even though I don't think it was what she'd planned when we first started this. As for me, I'm trusting myself to be creative, and happy, on my own terms. I don't want a life with constant deadlines. Still, I'm nervous about our phone conversation tomorrow. I'll be glad when it's over. Yes, Jeanette, about the repairmen, at least they showed up! The company they came from is fairly reliable when it comes to sending people out, although sometimes you have to call them twice to see what's going on. How did things go for you today? Hope things are starting to fall in place. Hope all are doing well, -- Mannix
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