Thursday, January 12, 2012

Goals, revisited

Let's look back at last year's goals, shall we?

Knitting plan
I forgot I had a knitting plan until I looked back and saw this post.

The only goal really was to finish the three languishing projects on my needles at the time and I'm happy to say that I did. I've been wearing the Whisper cardigan and Glynis socks a lot, though I haven't used the Bramble Stitch Shawl. Maybe I'm just not a shawl person, though maybe I'd wear a shawl with a different size or shape. This one covers my shoulders, but then comes to a point before really covering any of my back.

This year I feel sort of the same way about my knitting as last year. I've been working on the Coraline Cardigan, Milo Socks, and Cascade Ribbed Socks for what seems like ages now and feel ridiculous that none of them are done yet. Mind you, I just paused everything for a bit to knit a pair of baby booties for a shower, and also a ribbon scarf (which I haven't posted yet - will do soon!) But I'd still like to get back to these projects before so much time has passed that my gauge changes or I can't figure out where I left off.

However, I think my theme for this year is no pressure. If I don't feel like working on something I'm not going to force myself. It's pointless to work on something I'm not in the mood for when I really want to knitting something else. I'd like to let myself be more spontaneous with my projects, which may be better for creativity. Or perhaps I'll just end up with 25 stalled projects and nothing finished.

Reading Plan
Last year my goal was to learn more about US history. I didn't do as much of this as I'd hoped (and I still haven't walked the Freedom Trail in Boston) but I did read a handful of books about U.S. history, more than I normally would have. Some of the books I mentioned in my post I didn't get to, but I did read two of them- The Civil War: A Concise History and American Uprising. I'm not sure how much I retained, which is my real problem.

I had planned to read at least one non-fiction book each month, and although there were months in which I read no non-fiction, my total count for the year was 14. That's a win! Now, some of my non-fiction books were things like Bossypants and Wishful Drinking, but I never said they all had to be scholarly.

As with the knitting, I'm not going to set any reading goals this year except to try and let go of the pressure I keep putting on myself to read particular things. Aside from my book groups (I now have my regular book group and one for work) I'm going to try and read more serendipitously and hopefully ignore my To Read list unless I need to use it for ideas. In an essay from Nick Hornby's Shakespeare Wrote for Money he says "reading begets reading - that's sort of the point of it, surely?" and that's true. I don't want to feel like I need to hold off on something I'm suddenly inspired to read in favor of books that just came in for me at the library. I mean, I work there - I can just order those books again later.

So there are my anti-goals for this year. I wonder if it will make me want to set firm goals again next year.

How did you do with your goals for last year? And what are you focusing on for 2012?

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