101 goals

In a fit of wanting to get out of a rut and stop wasting my life in 2013, I stumbled across this challenge:

The 101 Things in 1001 Days Challenge

The Challenge:

Complete 101 preset tasks in a period of 1001 days.

The Criteria: Tasks must be specific (ie. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined. Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some amount of work on your part).

Why 1001 Days? Many people create lists such as New Year’s resolutions or a Bucket List’. The key to beating procrastination is to set a deadline that is realistic. 1001 Days (about 2.75 years) is a better period of time than a year, because it allows you several seasons to complete the tasks, which is better for organising and timing some tasks such as overseas trips, study semesters, or outdoor activities.

The end date of my self-challenge is 16 July 2016 (start date was 19 October 2013).

So, here is my list of tasks to achieve (those in bold green text have been completed):

  1. Read through the Bible in a year

  2. Read 1001 poems (22% complete)

  3. Listen to the entire Bible in audiobook

  4. Read 30 books that I own, but haven’t read

  5. List another 1000 gifts

  6. Preach 15 sermons (20% complete)

  7. Create a budget and stick to it for 12 weeks

  8. Find 20 ways to save $10

  9. Catch tadpoles with the kids

  10. Get rid of 100 things (35% done)

Stuff I have got rid of: books, clothes, shoes, old music cassette tapes,

  1. Pass the grade 3 flute exam

  2. Clean the oven every 6 months (16% complete)

This is one of the tasks my wife hates most, so a good way to show my love for her is to do nasty jobs such as this when I am able to. There are 5.5 periods of 6 months in 1001 days so a generous husband would round it up to 6 oven cleanings to meet this goal.

  1. Take a pilates class

  2. Make something out of wood

  3. Shave with a straight razor

  4. Make elderflower cordial

  5. See penguins in their natural habitat

  6. Go to 5 different museums

  7. Buy only Fair-Trade chocolate

I am convinced that the capitalist system of economics is extremely unfair to those who have very little. However, like democracy it is probably the best system humans have come up with so far. Even within a system which favours the wealthy, it is possible to counter the injustices by being purposeful in how we spend out money. One way to achieve this is buying Fair-Trade certified goods.

A particularly good item to purchase only if Fair-Trade certified is chocolate because it is a treat anyway and if I am not prepared to pay extra for Fair-Trade chocolate, I really should not be eating lots of cheap chocolate anyway!

  1. Buy only Fair-Trade coffee

My rationale for this goal is the same as above for chocolate.

The way I am measuring progress for these two goals is the % of 1001 days that I have gone without breaking my Fair-Trade only’ rule.

  1. Complete Udemy iOS7 online course

  2. Get away with just my wife and I for a whole weekend

  3. Create my own iPhone app

  4. Learn a poem by heart

  5. Cook sausages on a beach with my kids

  6. Build a campfire and roast marshmallows with the kids

  7. Keep a journal for 6 months

  8. Take our family to Milford Sound

  9. Take our family to Te Anau

  10. See Sirocco’ the Kakapo

  11. Take our family to Orana park

  12. Make homemade ice cream with the kids

  13. Cook dinner one evening each week for a month

  14. Renovate the woodshed

  15. Write 100 blog posts

  16. Plant a garden full of flowers

  17. Take my son on a train

  18. Wash the floors every week for a month

  19. Go a day without coffee

  20. Drink only one cup of caffeinated coffee per day for a month

  21. Go a month without drinking coffee

  22. Attend a weekend prayer retreat

  23. Finish and stain all our fences

  24. Do 100 pushups

  25. Do 200 sit-ups

  26. Go a day without chocolate

  27. Go a week without chocolate

  28. Go a month without chocolate

  29. Set up a reliable backup for my home computer

  30. Create an ebook

  31. Write a poem

  32. Walk the Routeburn track with Iona

  33. Take my kids fishing

  34. Learn to identify 10 constellations

  35. Cycle the Otago Rail Trail

  36. Go fly fishing

  37. Plant a tree

  38. Learn to reliably identify 10 native plants I didn’t already know

  39. Lose 5kg

  40. Find 500 geocaches

  41. Hide a geocache

  42. Fill the kids’ sandpit with sand

  43. Grow vegetables at home

  44. Regularly donate to Partners

  45. Save $500 in an emergency fund

  46. Learn to touch type

  47. Landscape and plant our front garden

  48. Empty my inboxes

  49. Take a photo of the same place every week for year

  50. Complete a home renovation project

  51. Donate blood

  52. Give $5 to a busker

  53. Fix all the cupboard door handles

I’m a rather poor home handyman and the handles on our kitchen cupboards were fastened using cheap bolts that were too short for the job so have been falling off. It generally takes me about 6 months to get around to cutting a bolt to the correct size and re-attaching the handle. Finally, in November 2013 they were all fixed!

  1. Learn new ways to relax

  2. Write a list of things that people in my life have taught me

  3. Write a letter to myself to be opened when another 1001 days is over

  4. Slow down and live more intentionally

  5. Watch the sunrise and sunset in the same day

  6. choose another 20 goals!

  7. Donate $50 to charity for each task I don’t complete

Up next Tangled up in blue Tangled Up in Blue: Depression and the Christian Life by Sammy Rhodes. One of the better summaries of the complexities of depression for Christians: When I am weak
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