I have a list of a hundred goals to accomplish, but it seems every time I start pursuing one of my goals it happens at the expense of another goal. Then, three weeks later, I’m torn. I feel accomplished for pursuing one thing but guilty for abandoning another.

So here’s my NEW goal. Find a balance. This is my life, and I want to enjoy every bit of it, be proud of what I’ve accomplished, find real contentment, and never settle. So for the next two weeks I’m going to blog about my successes and struggles with finding balance, because if I’ve learned anything about myself, it’s the fact that I talk my way to solutions. Also I respond very well to accountability, competition and goal setting.

To get started, here’s an unedited brain-dump of my current goals:

Become an expert in marketing and communication
Establish a successful blog (and share it with people!)
Practice freelancing
Fall more in love with Jesus
Watch less TV
Read my Bible more
Connect with family and important friends more often
Train for a half marathon
Finalize my website for a real launch
Use my time more effectively
Become less selfish with my time
Be organized outside of work
Learn everything I can about social media
Finish my online copywriting course
Spend more quality time with my husband
Journal daily
Read more books
Pray more often
Eat healthy more consistently

Now that I see the list written out, I see many patterns and similarities. The real challenge comes when I decide to go for a run one day after work then don’t have time to write a blog post. Which leaves me feeling half accomplished, and half guilty. So how can I accomplish some goals, and not feel guilty about the ones I don’t? I think the key is planning.

I recently learned about decision fatigue. Basically our brains are wired to make a certain number of decisions per day and after that we’re toast. By planning things more in advance and not relying on myself to make the right decision when I’m tired, hungry or crabby, I’m more likely to be successful. If I have everything planned out, I don’t have to decide whether or not I’ll go for a run, I’ll just do it, the same way I brush my teeth before bed. No convincing required, just a habit and a pre-made decision.

This past week was an insane one for me. I accepted my first freelance job, I spent multiple evenings with my church family, I stayed late at work, I used my lunch break for volunteering, I checked out four books from the library about marketing and social media and I slept less than normal.

My stress levels were quite high, and I didn’t like it. I’m excited about all of these things,  really excited or I wouldn’t be doing them. But I have to find a way of getting the important things done, and remaining content with accomplishing the rest in due time.

More than anything, this whole process will come down to my goals about my time. Becoming less selfish with it, and using it more effectively. 

My tendency when I get home from work is to make dinner, watch TV while I eat, then get sucked into the black hole of endless watching until I look up at the clock and shriek, “It’s already 9:30?” At this point I race to get ready for bed because I don’t trust my ability to breathe the next day (let alone be a functioning and productive adult) if I don’t get at least 8 hours of sleep.

My accountability:

Today I’ve already accomplished running, blogging, and working on my website. I will finish the day with reading, praying, and meeting with my new employer for my freelance job.

Tomorrow I will cook some healthy meals to make life easier for next week (leftovers are lifesavers), go to church, spend some quality time with my husband and call my parents.

That leaves very little time for TV watching and time wasting. This is your life KirstenElsa, don’t squander it by sitting in front of a rectangle for the next 75 years.

If you’d like to chase productivity and goal-smashing with me, leave me a note. I’d love to check in with you and help hold you accountable.

There’s life to be lived,