As 2016 comes to an end, think back 365 days, are you closer to your dreams?
The End of the year is the perfect time to reflect on where you have been and where you are going.
Setting goals is the best way to outline and track the road to meeting a goal. Setting goals can increase motivation and increase achievement. Was there something you wanted to do in 2016 that you did not get done? Did you set out goals to complete this thing? Most likely not.
Most dreams we want to accomplish will take many small goals. When all the small goals are met our big dream can be fulfilled. People say "just set a goal and work toward it" but setting goals is a skill. You need clearly defined, written goals to be most successful. I am partial to the SMART Goal mnemonic—Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely.
Specific: Clearly state simple, sensible, significant goal. You should answer: Who, what, when, where, which, and why.
Measurable: Meaningful, motivational. You should answer: How many, how much, how I will know I am done?
Attainable: Agreed upon, achievable, acceptable, action oriented. As you work toward goals you will stretch yourself and build your self-image toward the goals.
Relevant: Reasonable, realistic, results-based. Your goal needs to be something you are WILLING and ABLE to work toward.
Timely: Time-based, time limited, tangible. You want to set a specific time table that is realistic.
Today, December 31, 2016, I have met two goals. One goal was a long term goal….28 years to reach the goal. The second was a short term I set January 1, 2016. Let me walk you through these two goals.
Goal 1: Raise all my children to the age of 18 years old without them being pregnant or getting someone else pregnant.
Goal 2: Start my social media foot print as Dr. Christy Moore in FaceBook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and a website with at least 24 blog post by December 31, 2016.
Note both goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely. I know who (my kids), what (not parents), when (by 18th birthday), where (not relevant, anywhere in the world just not being a parent), which (all the kids), and why (I did not write that in the goal but the why is because I want better for them than I had). Both of these goals had sub-set goals. I set a goal of producing X amount of material for social media by March. A goal set to have logo by summer, have all platforms up by fall, etc. Both goals are goals that took a lot of time, work, and sacrifice. The only way to be successful is to do a little work each day toward the goals. Don’t set goals thinking they will be reached overnight and without effort.
So look back at 2016, is there things you wanted to start but didn’t? Don’t let The End of 2017 be the same. Sit down take some time and set your SMART Goals! You can do it!
Turkay, S. (2014). Setting Goals: Who, Why, How?. Manuscript
So I decided to take a few weeks off from social media before my daughter’s wedding. I was just getting ready to jump back in. Then, Hurricane Matthew came barreling up the coast and everything was not "alright, alright, alright".
Like most of the East Coast I spent a few days last week glued to The Weather Channel. Once again Savannah, Ga was extremely blessed as Hurricane Matthew turned east ward at the last possible moment. Don't get me wrong, we have a ton of damaged trees, homes, businesses, and a few deaths due to Hurricane Matthew. BUT it could have been way worse!
My only complaint would be the lack of information on if evacuate would take place, what the evacuation timeline would look like. CEMA would not disclose when those evacuations would take place, used jargon that lay people do not understand, and just gave out minimal information. I heard from many people “All I want to know is if we evacuate what day and estimated time will it happen?”. I know South Carolina said on Tuesday “if things stay the same, we will begin evacuations Wednesday at 3”. Chatham county island residents went from “consider leaving the islands” to “all of Chatham county evacuate east of I-95” in just a few hours. This lack of transparency on CEMAs part left employers scrambling at the last minute to close and families that weren’t even being told to consider evacuating to have to leave, quickly. Those on the barrier islands were planning and ready to evacuate but many of those inland but east of I-95 were surprised that they were be considered to evacuate.
OK, that’s it for the negative. Once we evacuated everything was ‘alright, alright, alright’. I am driving my son crazy saying that every time I hear Hurricane Matthew. Hey, in stressful times we take our laughs anyway we can.
I am impressed with how well our community has come together to help each other secure their homes, clean debris, and help out strangers. I used my super ninja like skills and snuck back onto to island Saturday just as Matthew left the area. My husband and I drove through Whitemarsh and Wilmington Island assessing over 30 homes for friends and families. We did not go down one street that wasn’t blocked with downed trees, power lines, or both. Every road, subdivision, major and minor areas on the islands had damage. Rows and rows of houses with trees in them and then a random house or two with no noticeable damage.
The picture at the top of this blog is from a friend’s house. His truck was sitting next to the tree. During the hurricane the tree blow over with such force that the truck was pushed up. The roots to the tree and the tree feel. The truck came back down resting in the large whole the roots left behind. The only reason the truck did not fall farther into the whole is because of the boat attached to the back of the truck.
The damage is great here in Georgia but the community spirit is greater. We are Savannah Strong. We showed Mathew that everything in Savannah will be ALRIGHT, ALRIGHT, ALRIGHT.
(Sorry for any typos, I am work on little sleep on an air mattress with no power)
There are a few chapters I have struggled with and have rewritten...multiple times. This is one of those chapters. A chapter about the death of a great friend. I cannot seem to capture Barry's spirit. So read this chapter with the knowledge that it is a work in progress.
This is for you Barry. I miss you everyday but today is always the hardest.
Aside from not being a good house keeper or being able to make an edible meal I have taken to domestic life like a duck out of water. I love being a wife and hopefully I will love being a mom as much. With the excitement of the wedding and honeymoon over, the real world and the rest of my life begins. Pretty much overnight I go from a fairly popular cheerleader, to a pregnant dredge of society with a total of one friend. In the spring of 1989 I would have told you I had a dozen friends to turn to when in trouble. In a sad reality late one July night I realize that Roy and I have lost all our friends. This is a hard pill to swallow at any age but at seventeen it is very sobering to think that my ‘friends’ were just my ‘friends’ until things got ugly. On second thought since Roy and I have one friend together we really only have half a friend each, that’s even sadder! I have half a friend, I’m married, and living on the wrong side of town. This is not the road I want to be on but I don’t know how to get on any other road. All I know is at seventeen I am all alone and this sucks.
Barry Davis was a fun-loving, lactose intolerant, color blind angel and our one friend. What Barry did for Roy and me during the first few months of our marriage cannot be measured. He kept me sane while Roy worked three jobs and I was alone in a bad neighborhood. Of course our family was around and I did a lot with them but they weren’t there at 11PM when Roy was still at work and there was a scary noise. I was still just a scared seventeen-year-old.
Barry would show up at our door in time for dinner. Roy would be working so Barry and I would eat something easy to fix since I couldn’t cook. Then Barry would be ‘too tired’ to drive home, two miles away! I would insist he slept on our couch. He would accept, and then we would put together a puzzle. After getting tired for telling him which pieces were green, blue, brown, etc I wrote the colors on notecards. I then separated the pieces into piles. Then it was fun to put together with Barry.
Barry stayed on our couch for weeks. Late at night I would say I’m going to bed. Barry would say he ‘I’m going to couch’. Twenty-three years later and 22 years after Barry’s death I still tell Roy ‘I am going to couch’ when I am going to bed.
Before Barry left for boot camp he told me that a baby’s first poop did not stink. After Rebecca was born and we named Barry her god-father, he asked if her poop stunk. We sent him, all the way to Alaska, Rebecca’s first poopy diaper wrapped in an airtight bag. We attached a note that said “does it smell?”, he did not think this was funny. He called in the middle of the night pissed and gagging from the smell.
It was cheaper to call Alaska then to call my sister, Cindy, in Atlanta. I called Barry a few times a week. Barry had smile that took over his face. He smiled to his soul. He was just a kid himself when he left for Alaska. He missed Savannah. He missed his family. He missed warm weather. He was unhappy and made poor decisions on how to handle his depression. While drinking one night, he left his car running in a closed garage. He died in a friend’s garage on a cool September night, alone. It was 22-years before Roy could talk about him without getting teary and years before he would even say his name. The day Barry left for boot camp broke my heart because I knew I would be alone again. The day he died my heart crumbled.
Barry was my first true experience in a true friend. Without asking this eighteen-year-old kid stepped up and said ‘I don’t know what to say but I am here if you need me’. I have carried this lesson with me and hopefully I am making him proud up in heaven. Sometimes friends do not know what to say or do. So they say or do nothing. Don’t be that friend.
Now as an adult I realizes that my friends did not leave me when I ended up pregnant and married at seventeen. I realize they had their lives and I was out of sight and out of mind, or they didn’t know how to handle the adult situation I was in, or their parents told them not to talk to me.
Guest blog post from Adam Scott at Accelerated Lives.
Think about what you told your mother or father that you wanted to be when you grew up. As children we had great aspirations of being veterinarians, doctors, baseball players, and even astronauts. Yet most of us now sit at a desk reading this and are counting down the time until five o clock. We do this five days a week until Friday afternoon hits. Suddenly we are free. Let’s face it, most us are simply working for the weekend. It’s been years, even decades, since we had those childhood dreams. Ask yourself today “what happened?”
Gallup released a report in 2013 that stated that there are twice as many actively disengaged workers in the workforce as there are engaged workers who love their jobs. Gallup also found that only 13 percent of workers felt a sense of passion for their jobs. Take a second and truly digest that statistic. That means that roughly 87 percent of individuals surveyed are surviving their nine to five jobs. This is what I refer to as the “complacent lifestyle.” This is the area where those childhood dreams are slowly drifting from shore and leaving you with a feeling of being “stuck”.
Truly ask yourself again, “What happened?”
What occurred is a very simple concept. We started believing that no matter what we do, the world will keep us where it wants us to keep us. We’ve all felt it before. No matter what we do, nothing seems to work out or we come up with excuses before we actually try. This leads to what I previously referred to as “stuck” and the “complacent lifestyle”. We become complacent to the point we stop trying and start believing that this is the way it will be forever. Slowly but surely we go to work and sit at our miserable desk jobs with our only passion being the weekend. We sit and hope that things will eventually get better.
A mentor of mine once offered the most valuable advice that I can give you. No one is coming to save you. Read that again. No one is coming to save you. We wonder what differentiates successful and passionate people from the average nine to fivers. What could possibly be missing from your complacent life?
THE THING MISSING FROM YOUR COMPLACENT LIFE IS ACTION!
You didn’t become a veterinarian, doctor, baseball player, or astronaut because you stopped taking action in your daily lives. You stopped chasing your dreams because it was easier to make an excuse than to actually make a conscious effort to change it. Most of you would rather complain about how bad or hard it is than to take the simple first step. When did “knowing the struggle” become an achievement? Yet, if you simply took small action steps each day you would realize that you are capable of doing anything you put your mind to.
As most of you reading this know, Dr. Christy Moore initially dropped out of high school. She could have easily have chosen the complacent or stuck life. Yet she took action like so many successful people before her. She knew that the better life was out there and went and got it. She doesn’t have a “Dr.” before her name because she sat on the couch hoping for a better life. She now inspires and serves as an example to others to become more in their personal lives. She knows that it’s never too late to take action.
I come to you stressing that you take action. Around eight months ago I too was at a point where I was working two jobs, living for the weekend, and simply hoping my situation would change. This year I took action on something I have been procrastinating on for several years. On March 8, 2016, a dream of an outdoor company that inspires individuals to find themselves outdoors was born. Starting Accelerated Lives was something I took action on and I continue to take action on to this day. It hasn’t been the easiest thing but I wake up each morning excited for life. Most people cannot even say that. For the first time in my life I have found my passion and it is all because I took action.
So, I leave you with this one simple piece of advice.
No matter how hard it may be
No matter how much time it will take
No matter how much money it will cost
We only get one chance at this beautiful thing called life
SO START TAKING ACTION!
Excerpt from working copy of my memoir...
My dad practices tough love when he tells me I had to act like an adult now that I was one. My parents could not do this part for me. I knew he was right but my heart sank as I drove slower than usual down Highway 80 headed to Ardsley Park. I sat outside Mi-Mi’s apartment on 48th Street frozen with fear.
My old beat up Datsun 810 didn’t need a key to crank up; anything flat and thin would work. I used a butter knife as a key on more than one occasion. The classical music station that the radio was stuck on was playing softly in the background as I thought back to my Pa-Pa’s funeral. Sitting in the limousine on my uncle’s lap I stare out the window at the church stairs. I have climbed the stairs to Aldersgate United Methodist more times than I could count, many of those times holding Pa-Pa’s hand. I slowly become aware of the conversation going on between my dad and uncle “Mom says getting out of the car is the hardest part. She would know she has buried sisters, in-laws, and Worry Wart”. The conversation tails off and we sit for a few more minutes before exiting the limousine.
Sitting outside Mi-Mi’s on this hot summer day I ponder how true my dad’s statement was, the hardest part is getting out of the car. Getting out of the car is like seeing a decision all the way to the end. I decided to have sex. I decided to keep the baby. I decided to get married. I now had to decide to get out of the car and tell my 96-year-old great-grandmother I was pregnant. I decide on this sweltering July day I will never stay in the car and let life move on around me.
Mi-Mi was a great cook and made the best macaroni and cheese. I watched her make it for years. She was making it for me as I walked in to have lunch with her. She thinks I am here just for a visit and to take her to the grocery store. I learned the hard way a trip to the grocery store with her meant I was buying the groceries because conveniently she always left her wallet at home when she went out. She was still worked doing alteration by feel because her eyesight was so bad. And she lived by herself! So the least I could do was buy a few groceries (which I in turn made my dad pay me back for).
I watch her in the kitchen but I can’t make the words I need to say come out. As we start eating Mi-Mi breaks the ice and asks me say what was on my mind. Her response to my news was shockingly different than I imagined. My sweet Mi-Mi showed me grace beyond what I thought possible. Her advice has stuck with me all these years later. She told me:
When life gives you lemons you don’t just make lemonade, you can
make anything you want with those lemons. This one decision in your life
does not make all the decisions in your life.
We finish up lunch and I drive her to the Red-n-White. She buys a few bags of groceries; well, I buy a few bags of groceries. I walk her back into her little apartment and put away the groceries. I quick hug and kiss goodbye and I am on my way back home. My day ended better than I thought it would. I drove away from my Mi-Mi’s thinking she was right this is just a bump in the road.
Don't let your speed bumps sidetrack you,
Edited July 9, 2016
I removed "All lives matter" from the post just a few minutes after posting. It was pointed out that this phrase can be considered a slap in the face of those that a part of Black Lives Matter. I did not mind deleting the phrase and did so quickly. BUT I have had a few emails questioning why I removed the phrase. Some of the emails are down right rude and made the assumption that can only support one or the other. Really, are we that simple minded? The phrase is not ONLY black lives matter, it is black lives matter...it is not exclusive. More than one thing can matter. For example:
Heart beats matter.
A lot of things matter.
Or an even better examples:
Children lives matter.
Elderly lives matter.
Asian lives matter.
White lives matter.
Christian lives matter.
Jews lives matter.
Muslim lives matter.
Native American lives matter.
Indian lives matter.
Latino lives matter.
LGBT lives matter.
The problem with All lives matter is it negated the real issue...Blacks are being targeted.
You neighbors. Your friends. Your co-workers. Your peers. They are being targeted. Trying to redirect to ALL lives matters takes the focus off the problem. Even if you do not believe the statistics (which I believe), the Black committee perceives they are being targeted. Shouldn't we speak up and try to help find a solution so the problem (real and perceived) can be fixed!
On the same topic you can believe and say Black lives matters AND Back the blue all at the same time! In Dallas, the police were walking hand in hand with the peaceful protesters of the Black lives matters group. A radical crazy man shot the police not a Black lives matters supporter.
How do we, White people, speak up? How to we support African Americans and police?
Originally written July 7, 2016
I woke up this morning and began my morning like any other. I picked up my phone, checked my email, text message, and remind app all for work since it is a clinic day and students regularly have issues on clinic days. Then I check USA Today, twitter, Instagram, and lastly Facebook. I realize once I am in Facebook that the news articles I skipped over in USA Today are not about the shooting of the CD man but of yet another black male.
I watched the Facebook live video of Philandro Castile. I rewatch the video a second and then a third time. I cried each time. Castile was shot 3-5 times by an officer in the St. Anthony Police Department in Falcon Heights, Minnesota with a 4-year-old child in the backseat. After the third viewing of the video I got myself out of bed, had coffee, and dressed for work.
I did a lot of driving today and had time to think. In respiratory therapy we care for all ages and are usually in the room when patients pass. I have watch many people die over the years from working in the hospital. I have witnessed newborns, children of different ages, young adults, elderly, trauma patients, burn victim, and terminal patient’s deaths. I know this will sound cold but I do not linger on death. I think of the part of my job dealing with death is an honor. I am blessed to help people pass with dignity and hopefully without pain; but I do not linger on their deaths. It is a coping mechanism.
I could not get the image of Castile bleeding to death out of my mind. Hours after watching the video I am still numb. The shock is lingering. I was not going to write anything. I was just going to go home and ignore this feeling; but then I thought about the poem by Pastor Martin Niemöller:
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
I am a supporter of the police and I know every officer is not a bad officer. The good officers need to speak up and call out the bad ones. Just like we (white people) need to speak up and support the African American community.
If we, White people, do not speak up then who will? If we don’t demand the killings to stop, then who will? If we don’t embrace our friends, neighbors…hell, strangers of color WHO WILL?
We, need to speak up. We need to demand justice...this is where I was stopped in my track by that small voice in the back of my mind.
Who are the “we, white people” I was writing about?
I need to speak up.
I need to demand justice.
I need to embrace my fellow man.
So here I am a white middle aged woman saying:
Stop the murdering.
Officers, stop covering for bad officers.
If you are white SPEAK UP!
African Americans should not be afraid of the police. They should not be the only ones protesting. They should not be the only ones speaking up!
How do we, White people, speak up?
How will you SPEAK UP?
I have the honor to say I was raised by two great men. One, is my father. He worked multiple jobs but always put his family first. He showed me unconditional love and challenged me to never settle for average. He taught me to question everything and to always be curious.
My second father, is my father-in-law. I married at 17-years-old and still had a lot of raising to be done. He has the patience of a saint, which he needed when this obnoxious teenager married into his family...questioning everything.
I am blessed to say for 44 years I have had a great example of determination and for 27 years I have had the great example of patience.
Today, I want to tell my dad thank you for molding me into a determined curious adult. And to my father-in-law, thank you for showing me how patience is a strength!
What did your dad teach you?
I mentioned to a colleague a few months ago that I was leaning toward starting a minimalist lifestyle. She then told me about Project 333. I was mulling over the idea of the Project 333 when I came across The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo. I read the book cover to cover in one night. Between these resources I was hooked. I knew ‘fixing’ my closet would be the only way for me to find my style.
I had NO STYLE! I wore t-shirts and short 8-months out of the year and t-shirts and jeans the other 4-months. I need a style that would be mine, easy to maintain (I am t-shirt and shorts girl at heart), and looked put together. I am lucky I work in a department with no dress code, so I can make my wardrobe really comfortable.
So I took the basic rules for Project 333 and The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing (Rules are spelled out at end of post) and tweaked them to fit my life.
Here are my steps to a minimalist wardrobe according to me:
I have been doing this for 8-months now. I started with the Fall/Winter closet. I am now on the Summer closet. I can count on my hands the number of complements I had on my clothes before I started this. I now get complements daily…. on t-shirts! What the heck!
I did not have 40 articles that fit correct and made me happy. I had to purchase items to complete my closet for Fall/Winter. I did this slowly over a few months and only bought things that fit correct and made me happy. My Summer closet had more than 40 articles. I weeded out the ones that did not go with more than one outfit. I placed those article in the pack-away bag. If I get bored with my current 40 items I can rotate some of those items back in later.
The specifics of my summer closet is in the gallery below.
My morning routine is shorter, less stressful, and I am happier. Less is more…more time, more happiness, more at ease with myself. Yes, it took one whole day but the time was well worth the reward.
Do you have a minimalist closet? What rules do you follow?
Less is more,
The Rules (Project 333)
The Tips (The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing)
1. Sort by category, not location: Don't do the bedrooms first, then the living room, then the rest of the house. Do all your clothes, then all your books, etc.
2. Tidy in one go. Don't draw it out. If you tidy a bit each day, you'll find that you're tidying forever. Do it all at once and you'll have the system in place to stay tidy.
3. Pick up each item one at a time and ask yourself, "Does it spark joy?"
4. Fold your clothes so that they stand up vertically. This way, you can put all your t-shirts (or other items) in a drawer and see every item at once, rather than digging through piles of fabric to find the shirt you want.
5. Don't repurpose clothes to loungewear. Don't justify keeping a torn, ratty T-shirt just because you think you can repurpose it as a pajama top.
6. Recycle your papers. For important legal documents, scan them! Everything else you should get rid of.
7. Don't keep gifts out of guilt. After the joy of the gift-giving moment is through, you can donate the gift without guilt. It has served its purpose.
8. Storage experts are hoarders. A "clever" storage solution never really solves anything. A new box or organizer won't make you tidy. Pursue ultimate simplicity.
9. Start with what you know will be easy to get rid of. If you start with mementos or items you attach a functional value, it will be harder to know if they spark joy. Start with items that are easier to make decisions about, and then you will be in the right mindset to tackle mementos later.
List from Today.com by Meena Hart Duerson
This is a quick post to celebrate all those that have survived or are surviving cancer. Do something special for yourself today!
I am a huge promoter on early screening. My colon cancer was found at Stage 1, which made it very treatable and not life threatening. Knowing my body and the changes that occurred with my body was a huge part of my early detection. If you notice changes in your normal body (bowel changes, lumps, shortness of breath, fatigue, fevers, sweats, brittle nails, etc) see you doctor. If you are not satisfied with what your doctor tells you or your gut tells you it’s not right, get a second, third, fourth opinion. Do not put your head in the sand and take the word of one doctor if you know something is wrong. Be your own advocate! Be a fighter!