Goals or perhaps….?

The recent post on Goals dated August 7th has led to me receiving more emails than for any  other blog post.  I was amazed and humbled that people would take the time to post a comment or to send me an email.  It was a surprise to me that the topic was engaging with so many.

Three different emails voiced their concern over the use of the word goals.  It is a word I have and difficulty with myself.  For some people the word goal sends shivers down their backs and it certainly used to with me.  Goals can sometimes seem to be these insurmountable objectives  or aims which cannot possibly be achieved.

There have been many times when the goals I have set for myself have not been achieved and I have beaten  (verbally) myself up over  the failure.  However many times those goals were not my goals but goals which others thought I should be aspiring to.  One lady always perceived the word goal as being a “male” word.   She doesn’t know why but it has led her to ignore the word and use the word “objective” instead.

Yet another lady wrote how once she substituted  the word project  for the word goal and since doing that she has achieved much more.  While another lady  uses a journal to tease out what she would like to achieve.  She usually starts this in September and uses word picture and together with actual pictures to set up what she would like to TRY and achieve.  She states that it is the trying that is so important to her.

Now I must admit I really like the way this lady thinks.  I like the idea of word pictures but I must say I really like the idea that it is the journey that is so important.  Many times I have found myself deviating from the goal I had set and finding something so much more enjoyable or something more important to me even though I hadn’t realised when starting out.

One email had me laughing right out loud.  This lady wrote that at age 60 she retired and only set one criteria for herself.  That was, that she was having a year without setting targets, goals or whatever.  She is now 72 years of age and still doesn’t set any goals  but on reflection has achieved so much that she ” couldn’t possibly list”.  She is busy, lives life which has included hospital stays and burying her partner but she states ” that I will never be confined again by goals.  I am a happier person without them.”

All the correspondence I have been privileged to receive, has shown me that first and foremost we are all different.  Secondly, goal setting is not the prerogative of any one age group.  Thirdly the title “goal” has different meanings for different people.

The Oxford Thesaurus  gives the following variations to the word goal: “object”, “aim”, “purpose”, “end”, “objective”, “target”, “ambition”, “ideal”, “aspiration”.

The last suggestion has led me to the word “aspirational” which according to Bloomsbury English Dictionary means ” a desire to achieve something especially self-improvement”

Thank you for reading. A special thanks to those who have posted comments on my blog or who have emailed me directly. Thank you.

Goals Again

I received an email from a lady who follows this blog. This is the first time I have received an email from her.

Her email refers to my recent blog on goals and she queries how I can possibly say that goals are for everyone irrespective of age. I quote with her permission “ how can you possibly infer that goals are for everyone. I can honestly say that goals are only for the young in order to make the most out of their lives..”

She saw goals as huge life changing ideals. They were to be set, worked upon and accomplished in order to progress in one’s career. There was no need for anyone to make goals otherwise. She did not see how retirees or stay at home mums, could possibly have goals to make, as these people were “not contributing to society”.

I was taken aback by this email. Firstly , that goal setting was the prerogative of the young. Secondly, the idea of stay at home parents could not possibly have a contribution to make to society  nor could retirees which is an idea I totally reject. Where did these ideas come from?

Wow, I was flabbergasted. After exchanging a few emails I learnt a few things about this lady. Firstly, she is articulate with a great turn of phrase. Secondly, she is a retiree of two years having been a teacher for over forty years. Thirdly what I would have thought of as setting goals she saw as mere trivial dreams. She also concluded that I must have more time on my hands if all I could really blog about was dreams but she would still continue reading my blog.

I think I will keep to my goal settings and just show the world I can do it even if I am a retiree having been a “stay at home” Mum. 😊

What do you think? Are you a goal setter? Do your goals help you to get the best out of life? Or perhaps you don’t need them. I would love to hear what you think.

Thanks for taking the time to read.

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Did I Really Miss It?

How did I miss it?   August 9th was National Book Lovers Day.  I mean I love books, adore reading, have some perfect places in which to read.  I have the snuggler for when it is cold and of course have the tea-tray with all the accoutrements for the perfect cuppa.

So how did I miss it?  i totally forgot to note it on my calendar!!

If you are a book lover I hope you enjoyed your day.  I hope you had time to read.  I hope you enjoyed the book.  I hope you are enjoying your reading if you are still reading your book.

What book do you have on hand?  At the moment, I am reading a series of books by P. F. Ford.  They are a British Police detective series and which I am thoroughly enjoying.

 

 

Where My Books Go

By W.B.Yeats

 

All the words that I utter,

And all the words that I write,

Must spread out their wings untiring,

And never rest in their flight

Till they come where your sad, sad heart is,

And sing to you in the night,

Beyond where the waters are moving

Storm-darkened or starry bright.

Goals

I don’t know about you, but I have the habit of noting down sayings, adages or words which evoke a response.   It may be years months or days before I reread them or even remember them.   Then there are the quotes which keep on appearing in various reading locations.

I found the following quote when I found a journal buried in the bottom of my Christmas fabric box.   The quote I had written on the first page, but I had also found it written on numerous other pages in the same journal.   Obviously, it had resonated with me years ago and it is really resonated with me today.

Don’t let others define you.

Don’t let the past confine you.

Take charge of your life with confidence and determination.

There are no limits to what you can do or be.

(Michael Josephson)

Can you imagine what a world we would have if we could instil this into our young people?   Can you imagine what the next generation could achieve?  However, I believe that this idea is something any person could take on board at any stage of their life.   That this quote could enhance the quality of anyone’s life.

I really like the line; “take charge of your life with confidence and determination”.   Wow that is so powerful.   Taking charge of my life is something I have been trying to do but to do it with confidence, now wouldn’t that be something else.

Confidence grows with accomplishments.   Instead of setting impossible goals I have set goals which I know I can achieve.   In fact, this year on reflection I have set and achieved numerous goals.   And yes, my confidence has grown in the sense that I know that I can accomplish goals which are important to me and not to anyone else.

I do not need others to endorse what I have achieved but with every goal achieved the confidence which leads to the determination to set more goals.   Personal goals have ignited passions within me and together with the determination I have scrapped some goals.   And that is liberating.

Sometimes we may set goals based on what others think they should be rather than being true to ourselves and the goals which we know are good for us.   Sometimes we need to have the confidence and determination to listen to our inner voice and ignore those who really don’t know what ignites our passion.  “Don’t let others define you”.

Sometimes it is difficult to let go of the goals which were set 20, 30 even 40 years ago.   I have found  the goals of years ago which I had  set but had not achieved had been hanging around me like this big ball and chain.   This year I realised that one goal in particular was not going to define me.   I actually admitted to myself that I had felt a failure for not having achieved it.   However , on reflection I realised that it hadn’t really been my goal but instead I had thought that it should be and it would give me a sense of worth.   The relief of finally saying that I didn’t need to take on someone elses goal was immense.  It was also liberating.

It is good to set goals but it is even more rewarding when the goals are one’s we set for ourselves and follow through with confidence.  Sometimes as we grow older we forget that goals are not just for the young.  Setting personal goals keeps us going. It adds spice to our lives and enriches our lives.

 

 

 

 

Girlfriends

Today is National Girlfriends Day and what a fantastic thing to celebrate. I personally think that friendship among women is something very special.

There are those friends who are only in your life for a short period. Perhaps it is during the school years or perhaps during various stages of one’s working life. They keep us going. When those friendships come to a natural conclusion that is fine. Life intervenes and to be honest I think it would be impossible to keep every friendship going.

There are the friends one meets during difficult times. They support you and then as those difficult times ease you both move on with your lives and again that is ok.

There are those friends which one meets through perhaps pastimes, hobbies, shared interest. Perhaps you only meet them during those shared interests, but they are an integral part of the enjoyment of those interests.

Perhaps you have some friends who are years or decades younger and their perspective on life adds to your knowledge as we are always learning.

I was listening to someone recently who looked on her local librarian as her friend as every two week she knows that there is going to be a new book waiting for her which will stimulate her, intrigue her or even get her riled. These books have been chosen by someone who cares and that is the definition of friendship for her.

Then again there are those friends who you may be privileged enough to have had them for twenty years or more. They have become part of the fabric of your life.  That is such a special blessing.

I have been blessed with so many gifts of friendship that I am humbled. Today I am remembering with great fondness but also with a heavy heart some friends who have died. I still go to the phone to ring them or I am just about to send them a text, or message them and even had a card made for one friend when I realise “No “they are no longer here. However, their legacy of friendship remains within my heart.

I have been privileged to have received the gift of friendship from so many.

Happy Girlfriend Day.

 

 

Friendship

Friendship is everything in life, 
Life without friendship is like life without air…
Life without friendship is like eats without food
And
Life without friendship is like body without soul…

(excerpt from Friendship by Qistina Zani)

Imperfections

 

 

The beauty of handmade lies in the imperfections”

What a great thought.. by keeping this thought in mind it immediately removes the pressure of “having to make something perfect”.

A few months ago, I purchased a bundle of fat quarters.  I wouldn’t normally but I decided that the colours would make a lovely quilt.

Before I go any further let me explain what a fat quarter is.  Fat quarters are pre-cut pieces of cotton, which are taken from a yard of fabric which has been cut in two length ways and each piece cut again width ways.  Each fat quarter measures approximately 46cm by 56cm or 18 by 22 inches.

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I decided I would make a quilt top by sewing eight fat quarters together and then I cut those fat quarters into strips.  Any blogs or books which I have read on quilting constantly talk of measuring three times and cutting once.  So, this time I followed that rule!!

The first cuts went great and I joined up those strips and everything looked pretty good.  I returned to the quilt top a few days later and cut those strips up to form narrower strips and again joined them up.

Now I haven’t a clue what I did but I ended up with a quilt top that did not have one matching square, but I did have a few marching rectangles.  How I got rectangles I have absolutely no idea.  It certainly was not what I had intended.

I was very disappointed as I thought I had been very careful with the cutting.  What I have now is a unique lob sided quilt top.  It is very quirky.  Now could I gift to any one?  I honestly don’t think so.

I don’t mind that corners don’t match.  What am I saying? There is absolutely nothing which matches never mind the corners.  So, I have decided that this will make a great reading quilt.    1531125420651

A reading quilt is one of those throws which one needs during winter, when one becomes engrossed in a book and one needs to be cosy.  If the skies are grey outside this quilt will bring a bit of colour indoors and enhance the reading experience even more.

Saying all that I must admit I love my wonky, lob sided quilt top and need to quilt and bind it in readiness for those hours of reading during the winter.So for me the quote ” the beauty of handmade lies in the imperfections” is very apt.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

An Early Morning Dance

Standing on the back step, underneath an umbrella, mug in hand watching the rain.  It was a beautiful scene.  The wooden garden furniture had taken on a different hue.  In the rain the wooden seat seemed to glow as it was washed by the rain.

The rain drops were dancing on the glass table, making a dance as they tapped their way along to the edge.   A bucket had been placed strategically to catch the encore of the dance.

Looking up at the seomra or man shed a spider’s web glistened in the early morning light.  The gossamer web was bejewelled with drops of rain.  There was magic all around as this suburban garden was dressed by the rain.

The air smelt so differently.  It was so fresh and clear.  It was as if the rain has rejuvenated everything.  There was a richness abounding this oasis.

It reminded me of a blog post I read recently written by Honey Barapatre which talked of being rich https://inspireart.in/2018/07/15/being-rich/.

I realised that this morning I was so rich with the sights, sounds and smells brought by this shower of rain.  I have always loved the rain but perhaps because of the long hot dry summer which Ireland has been experiencing this shower of rain was even more special.

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