A wise woman once said..…… Well, I tried to find what she said about success and passion, but it was only on page five of Goodreads that I found an applicable quote from a woman on the subject. Note, this is not a lack of brilliant and informative insights by women on success, more a reflection of the lack of publication, circulation, and acclaim that these quotes receive. However, the complex entanglement of gender bias and notions of success is a Ph.D., or angry rant that I will reserve for another day. Because today, I am talking about goals.
So, a wise woman (five pages into the Goodreads quote section might I reiterate) once said: “I want to do it because I want to do it.” Her name was Amelia Earheart, and she was an aviation pilot and writer. She was the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic, and the fact that her name was Earheart (Read: Air-heart) seems as sure a sign as any, that for some of us, our providence is entrenched into our very names. Some might even call it destiny. While Earheart eventually disappeared and the exact circumstances around her death are unknown, she lived a life that was true to herself, and she courageously and passionately followed her dreams.
Anyway, Earheart said she wanted to do what she wanted to do, and this got me thinking about some of the things that I would like to do. While I won’t fly across unchartered territories, or follow a successful course that is symbolic of my namesake (Marais means ‘marsh’ in French, and the prospect of finding success, or rather passion in a marsh seems somewhat uninspiring, albeit not impossible), I might reach some goals.
So, I decided to be a bit cheesy, and choose 27 things I want to do, before I am 27! The prospect of turning 27 in 10 months is equal parts terrifying, and incomprehensible since I still feel about 18 on most days. Perhaps 22 when I wear a button-up shirt and listen to Taylor Swift. Anyway, my 27 list looks something like the list below and perhaps in writing it in a public space, I am making myself more accountable. Sticking to things is not my forte. If I were glue, I would certainly not be superglue. I would be a wood glue on a good day, but mostly a Prit. And no, not the real-deal red prit, rather a shabby Pick n’ Pay generic found on the shelf below the real prit, and always, somehow on special.
If I am honest though, I might not even cut it as glue. I think I am perhaps some press stick. Somewhat capable and committed at the start and always meaning well, but quick to melt when the heat rises and things get tough. Shit, did I just compare myself to a melting piece of press stick on a hot day? Sadly dripping down walls and fridges in a fashion that makes me think of Edvard Munch’s The Scream? I think I just did and at some point, I think I should unpack this rather dreary comparison. But today is not that day, and perhaps that day is best set aside for the psychologist’s office…..
The Scream, Edvard Munch, 1893 [Fun facts : This painting inspired the Scream mask in the Scream films, it was stolen twice, It is not one piece, but in fact 4.]
The point of this strange comparison of myself to a drooping blob of press stick, is that I am not the best at sticking to things (ahem… the sporadic postings and rambles on this blog as one such example!) so in writing this list, I hope to marshal just a wee bit of accountability. Even if it just gives my Mother another excuse to nag at me (Thanks for being my number one blog fan and Naggypants extraordinaire, Wendaline! )
So, here it goes. In no particular order.
1) Stop Apologizing So Damn Much and Start Saying Thank-You!
2) Commit to one blog post a week, even in the busy times! This will recquire me to not be a stringy piece of press stick, and to commit, like a blob of wood glue does to a piece of pine.
3) Green up my space! This includes getting savvier with recycling, using more earth-friendly products, and continuing and improving my water saving efforts amid the drought.
4) Take more leaps in love and career. I want to say yes to more things, be that writing gigs, friendships, dates, events, networking opportunities. I want to jump out of my comfort zone.
5) Let Go : Even if on the really tough days this means blasting Frozen and singing Elsa’s formidable theme song! Sometimes, I just need to let some shit go.
6) Read for pleasure more and FINISH the books I start. Again, superglue, and not press stick.
7) Get my gym membership fee down………..by actually going to gym! 😉 And today is the day I begin this somewhat daunting task. The Dreadmill as I have no dubbed it, awaits.
8) Get published. Anywhere. And that means getting off my butt and out of my head and submitting my work. It also means embracing rejection and perceived failure and using it as a launching pad for inspiration, rather than an excuse to not try.
9) Start saying No, and stop feeling guilty about it! As a people pleaser with epic anxiety this one is going to be difficult, but I need to start putting myself first and not burning myself out with the weight of peoples expectations.
10) RUN, an entire Park Run. Not power walk, or crawl, or curse at speedy grandpa’s whizzing past me in their hot pants as I normally do, but actually RUN! Even if I come last in my age category (as per usual!), I want to run it, just once and then never again, for me!
11) Pick up every piece of rubbish that I find in my path. I am usually good at this, but there have been times I have felt lazy and have let rubbish slide. And then I think of all the plastic in the ocean and feel awful about it. So this year, is my year of being the litter poooo-lice. Just realised this reads ‘poo-lice’, and not the hip and happening accent I intended. Oh well. You get the drift 🙂
12) Invent my new body scrub: I have been threatening to create a grapefruit and rose sugar body scrub for two years now (to add to my existing flavours of lemon and vanilla and coffee.) This is the year darlings!
13) Write 27 letters and notes, to 27 loved ones, or people I admire. Yep. Because I adore writing to my loved ones, and I want to do it more.
14) Go to the theatre more. I adore the theatre and find such inspiration when I make the effort to attend. Cultural enrichment is certainly pretty high on my todo list this year. Be that theatre, book launches, films, musical performances, or literary festivals.
15) Stretch More: Coz I am getting V. old and I am highly inflexible.
16) Stop to smell the roses: Literally, and figuratively. I want to stop, pause, and enjoy the moment. Rediscover my wander and curiosity for the world and all of its magic.
17) Wear sunblock, every damn day! Insert some Baz Luhrmann, because this song is the freaking bomb and his advice is on point!
18) Dance more. This includes a serious commitment to my tap dancing classes, but also a commitment to go out dancing more and to have more fun and to use my body as an expression of creative outlet.
19) Learn one song, completely, on my guitar: This goal has been on my list for about 7 years, but maybe this is the year!
20) Get my daith pierced: Coz it’s preeeeeeeeeeeeeety and I love it!
21) Learn to cook a totally new recipe. I adore cooking and I want to broaden my repertoire.
22) Say YES to more invites.
23) Stop focusing on heartbreak and loss. And start focusing on healing and gratitude ❤
24) Visit a new country, or place. My heart says Croatia, my finances say Benoni.
25) Get over my newfound fear of public speaking. After a dreadful panic attack in front of my entire Politics Class and a year of extreme stress, I lost my self-confidence when it came to public speaking (Something I used to love doing and find easy.) So this year, I want to channel my inner self-confidence and put those fears to rest.
26) Volunteer more. I want to commit to volunteering at the SPCA at least two times a month, and hopefully more. Because puppy cuddles are good for the soul, and all the pups deserve a second chance at life and love. Their ability to trust after the trauma they have endured astounds me and I hope to take just a little bit of their loving nature into my own life.
This is Frankie. He is the cutest. Let’s find him a loving, forever home!
27) Find and believe in 27 things I love and admire about me. Because in acknowledging and appreciating the things I love about me, I will naturally begin to find things that I love and admire about the world, and others more. I also think an attitude of gratitude and love is the perfect counter to chronic anxiety and stress.