No Goals

The best goal is no goal.    When I first read the title of Leo’s blog post that day, I was shocked.  No goals?  I got through my last semester of working by setting goals as prescribed by Leo’s very own book!  And now he was telling us to ditch them entirely?  I read the post and thought “Well, I’m glad that works for him, but I couldn’t do it.”  How do you accomplish anything without goals?  But the idea stuck around and simmered in the back of my mind.

Fast forward to yesterday.  I had a day to do whatever I pleased while my friend was at work.  I at first starting going through all the things I should do.  Sights I should see.  Places I should go.  And then  I remembered the blog post I’d read a few days earlier about a guy who tried the no-goals thing for 100 days.  So I tried it.  Just for a day.  And it was splendid. I accomplished all sorts of things, and thoroughly enjoyed my day.  If you’re saying, “Oh – but you don’t have kids or a job or (fill-in-the-blank)” then read Leo’s post.  Then read about him.  He’s got six kids.  And a couple businesses.  Just let the thought simmer for a bit:)

After going goal-less, the day got even better.  The friend with whom I was staying came home from work and said, “I was thinking we could cook together tonight.”  Music to my ears.  Cooking!  I get to cook!   The shopping, chopping, simmering, stirring and – of course – the eating.   And to get to do it with someone else – what could be better?  It will never cease to amaze me: how when you put something out there, you get just what it is you need.

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Lapses

“Staying in hostels, I’ve met a lot of people that are traveling for a year, like you, but I couldn’t do it.  I can go away for two weeks, maybe three, but then I want to get back to my space, my stuff.”  This was what the German doctor staying at the hostel with me in St. Augustine told me one night.  Once again, someone had come into my life to say just the right thing at just the right time.  “That’s exactly what I’m feeling,” I told him.  I confessed that I wanted nothing more at the moment than my own space, by myself.  I wanted to curl up in my recliner chair with a good book, my blue crocheted blanket keeping me warm.  Not have to search for food, but being able to go right to my fridge and find exactly what it is I’m craving – my favorite locally made goat cheese, delicious bread, and roasted red peppers I just made that afternoon.  Or pine nut hummus and pita bread.  Or all the ingredients for my favorite quinoa dish, sitting there ready for me.  I want to cook, not have to figure out where I’m spending the next night, or how much money I have left for my year of living without a job or a permanent home.

Instead, I find that I have difficulty enjoying where I am in the present moment as I’m too confused about my future.  Do I really want to do all those things I’ve said I was going to?  But if I don’t, then what will I do instead?  Will I feel defeated if I just go back home?  But home to what? I don’t even have my own space to go back to.  Yes, plenty of friends have offered me rooms in their homes anytime during this year or when I return, for which I am deeply grateful, but it’s not the same.

Do I even want to go back to New York?  Yes, because my family is there and I happen to be one of the very lucky people who actually likes their family (for the most part).  But were they not all in New York, it’s not a place I’d choose to live.  Though I can’t tell you where else I would choose.  Or do I know and am just too scared to, again, move to a place where I have hardly any connections and start – seemingly – all over?

So this is why I haven’t written a post in so long.  I tend to write mostly positive posts and just didn’t have the energy for one of those – because I’m not really positive about my life at the present moment.

But then I realized that might not be the reason at all for my lack of writing.  It’s just that I haven’t been taking care of myself.  I know what I love doing.  Writing.  Cooking.  Spending time with people.  Reading.  I’ve done the last two, but am severely lacking in the first two.  So tonight, having a half hour to myself, I decided to just start writing and see what came.  And here you have it.