I Need More Life In My Life

One month in…

Follow my progress on Instagram @ineedmorelifeinmylife

It’s been a month since I decided on these 30 goals for myself and in all honesty, when I set them I wasn’t sure how achievable they would be in just under a year. While I’m really only just getting started, it feels like a reasonable amount of progress has been made so far.

It might sound exaggerated but the most significant change I’ve noticed has been feeling like I have purpose to my life again. The goals do feel overwhelming at times and I’m still putting off thinking about the more daunting ones but I also feel more of a sense of fulfilment and achievement than I have for a long time. I’m starting to build momentum with things like meditation, running and reading which in turn is helping to boost my motivation and helping me continue to make progress in other areas.

Here’s what I’ve learnt so far.

It’s nice to share more about yourself

As someone who’s naturally more introverted, you won’t find me shouting about my life to just anyone. To me, sharing my goals meant sharing aspects of who I am and who I want to become that I haven’t told anyone in their entirety before. They’re very personal so I felt vulnerable sharing them, especially on Instagram for anybody to see.

I don’t know what I was actually expecting the reaction to be but everyone I’ve spoken to about this has only had positive and supportive things to say. Some have also said they’ve been inspired to write their own list of goals or think about what they want to work on.

When you share what you’re doing, the support and information comes

This is more than just my phone targeting ads based on what I talk about (although that happens too). Sharing what I’m working on and the things I want to achieve seems to be bringing me the people, resources and opportunities that will help me get there.

I’m amazed how many people have said they also want to skateboard, swim wild, run and stargaze when they see my list. Many want to try these things with me so it’s great to have company, accountability and share the journey together.

I’m also coming across different resources that will help me. Online, I’ve seemingly coincidentally come across free taster public speaking courses, different tools for learning languages and adverts for TV extra roles. Friends are also passing on their own ideas, resources and experience to help.

All the preparation doesn’t stop it being hard to get started

You can do everything you’re supposed to – set the goals, learn the theory, buy what you need, find a friend to join you – and it can still be difficult to start.

Ultimately, this is something I just had to push through. Having others hold me accountable really helped and I also made taking the first step as easy for myself as possible. I’d tell myself I was just going for a walk while wearing running kit, or sit down with a cup of tea and nothing but my Italian phrase book. Removing all other distractions or barriers gave me no choice but to start.

It’s never as bad as you think it might be

Getting started with skateboarding has been my biggest hurdle so far. I delayed buying a board and I didn’t buy knee pads at the same time so I’d have to wait until they arrived too. There’s a 2% chance it will rain later? Better wait for another day.

When I did finally test the waters at home, standing with one foot on the board whilst holding onto the kitchen counter, it whipped straight out from underneath me and I was off before I’d got on. I knew I was going to fall off a lot and I knew it was going to take a lot of practice but this immediate ‘failure’ still caught me by surprise and made me even more nervous to practice in public.

Yet, when I did make it out, it was so much fun! It definitely took a while to even stand still without falling off but progress was much quicker than I thought and it gave me a real sense of achievement. I’m now much more enthusiastic and committed to finding more time to keep practicing.

People really don’t care what you look like

One of the reasons I’ve been reluctant to start some of these goals in the past was the fear of what people might think of me. What if they saw me running really slowly or not being able to stand on the skateboard? On some level, I know everyone has to start somewhere and it doesn’t matter what anyone thinks but this still played on my mind.

At worst, other people are indifferent and at best, they’re actively interested and encouraging. Shout out to the teenagers who came across me wobbling along on Skateboarding Day One, asking if they could have a go and if I could teach them how to do it! People aren’t so bad after all.

It’s far easier to keep going once you start

Tony Robbins describes the ‘science of momentum’ as the notion that once you set accomplishment in motion, you can keep it in motion with much less effort that if you were trying to accomplish something from a standing start. I’ve definitely found this to be true.

After going for 3 runs consistently, it was surprisingly easy for me to rationalise skipping the next one and a runless week went by. When I got back into it, I noticed how much the stamina I’d developed had reduced and I was back to running shorter distances with longer rest periods in between. The day off wasn’t worth losing the progress I’d made but at least now I have another motivator to help keep me focused next time I want to give it a miss.