In January, I shared my aspirations for purposeful and balanced living especially in relation to my PhD programme and my health and wellbeing. I did say that I will make a follow-up blog post at the end of the year to share my lived experiences while trying to achieve my goals. However, I have decided to write a short reflection because I feel that although in mid-year, I have made some progress.
I had three goals for the year: produce a thesis draft before year-end, run a 10k race before mid-year, and deepen my connection with God; all for which I conducted a goal setting exercise to keep me on track.
To produce a draft thesis, I scribbled a 4-hour-a-day-minimum reading-writing plan which I updated weekly. I stuck to the routine of developing and working through the reading-writing plan until April. But as I progress with my thesis writing and now have a thesis structure, I have decided that the structure will be a replacement for my diarised plan.
To run the 10k race, I completed a 3-month racing course with a local running club, and have continued with my independent and group runs. I ran my first 10k on the Wednesday before Easter Sunday and then ran another 10k on Easter Sunday for which I earned a tractor medal. I have since completed my 50th Parkrun, and although I am yet to beat my PB of 26 minutes, I have lost 15 pounds since April. I am chuffed.
I stuck to feeding my spirituality to some degree especially with fasting once a fortnight. But other than that, very early into the year, I temporarily put my religious rites on hold for personal reasons and I stopped keeping a journal because it became a place where I was documenting some painful things that happened to me this year. I still think spirituality keeps me grounded but when I grapple with (in)humanity around me, I question the unseen. I have now circled back to spirituality in the past month because a part of me missed it.
Half way into the year, I am finding that life cannot be completely planned like a project in a controlled environment. But as I have been able to achieve some goals earlier than anticipated, I will be spending the next half of the year just writing my thesis!