It’s fun to write. Sometimes it feels like a to-do list you can’t lose. As I sit down and start thinking through what 2016 could look like, I need to first look back at what 2015 was like. I gave myself the following goals back in January: I want to commit to writing at least twice a week, I want to go to India, I want to pay off my debt, I want to explore what it could look like to do some freelance writing, I want to run another half-marathon, I want to gain better control of my finances, and I want to buy fewer clothes.
So how did I do?
I wrote at least twice a week for the first 5 months of the year. I went to India. I paid off my debt. I ran another half-marathon. I may have bought fewer clothes, it’s hard to tell.
Out of seven goals, I accomplished three and a half of them. That’s 50%. If it was an uncurved test, I would have failed, but if that was my batting average or my three-point shooting percentage, I’d count it as a great success. I’m an optimist, who is not all that goal oriented, so by my personal standards, we’ll call it good.
These goals do not tell the full picture of my year. My year was full of experiences that make better memories than any achieved or unmet goals.
This year I had an awesome girls weekend in Houston with two of my sorority sisters turned life-long friends.
I watched my sister graduate Magna Cum Laude from college.
I lasted eight weeks with less than 50 items in my closet.
I flew to Las Vegas for the third time in 18 months to celebrate a best friend’s 25th birthday.
I watched the 4th of July fireworks with the Chicago skyline in the background while on a speed boat in Lake Michigan.
I vacationed with ten of my closest friends to Florida coast where we focused on our tans and our relationships with one another. It will go down as my favorite week of the year.
I visited Lake Papakeechie for the second year in a row with some of the best college friends I could ask for.
I watched my dad undergo open heart surgery and spent a week at home with him and my brother during his recovery. I learned what humility looks like that week.
I paid off my student loans and then quit my beloved job at J.Crew. I am still adjusting to life without a retail discount.
I moved from my sweet little apartment where I started to build my adult life into The Bungalow full of character and new friends.
I spent two week in India sharing the Gospel with people who have never heard of a God who loves His people with grace. I will remember my time in India as one of the richest experiences of my life.
I celebrated Thanksgiving with extended family and enjoyed a day wandering New York City with five of my favorite people.
I experienced some professional success as we reflected as an organization on our year.
I met an entirely new group of women at my church as we studied the book of 1 John and grew in our knowledge of who God is and what that means for us.
I have started settling into a new normal, learning what it looks like to have free time again, and praying about what God would ask of me in 2016.
It would be easy to look at my goals and feel like a failure because of what I didn’t accomplish. But here’s what I continue to learn – God cares more about who I am becoming than what I am accomplishing. So as I look forward to a new start, a blank slate starting in two weeks, I want to focus on becoming. Becoming more brave and less afraid. Becoming more patient and more settled. Becoming more confident. Becoming more me.