Why My Finish Year Failed

Last year, Jon Acuff challenged his readers to make 2012 their Finish Year. I jumped on the challenge with the best of intentions. And failed miserably not even two weeks after attempting to start. I’ve thought about it a lot, and I think the reason I failed was that I expected way too much of myself. Instead of having one great goal to stick to and work through, I had 8. While I am ambitious and driven, that was just a little crazy.

I quickly got obsessed with whether or not I could meet these crazy goals instead of just enjoying life and trying to better myself. After a month, I pretty much freaked out, froze and stopped all together. It was with a little shame that I then deleted my Finish Year Tab on my blog and just kind of pretended it never happened. I would read updates occasionally about how other people were succeeding at their finish year and feel a little bad about myself. But at the same time, I survived a crazy season of work, a crazy time of year, and I feel like that, in itself, was an accomplishment of a kind.

I recently looked back through my goals for last year. One was accomplished – I feel like One Girl was a fantastic retreat. Other than that, I failed miserably at all the rest. Here is what I learned about failing at my first Finish Year attempt:

  • I am only human. Changing one thing in life is hard. Changing eight is almost impossible.
  • I need to focus my time and energy on what I really desire, want and need out of life.
  • Goals are great, but I think I knew even as I wrote them that I would fail.
  • There is a fine line between being realistic and being ambitious. I think I walked the wrong side of that line in 2012.
  • Discipline requires sacrifice. Sacrifice requires priorities. Priorities mean saying no sometimes.
  • Failure is an option, but you don’t feel good when it happens.
  • Giving up is just as hard as trying.

So, as I look to 2013, I want this to be my own Finish Year. The year I get some stuff done. But I’m narrowing down the list.

  • Lose weight. Take care of my body (already doing great on this one)
  • Take time to write, be it blog, book or short story.
  • Worry more about relationships than to-do lists.

Short and sweet. Harder to master and quantify, but should make me a better person.