Here we are, half way through the year. Doesn’t time fly when you’re having fun?
This half way point seems a good time to take stock thoroughly. Do any of my goals need changing? Am I exceeding my plans? Falling horribly behind? Why (for both of those questions)?
We’ll take each goal in turn.
Original Goal: Qualify as an Actuary.
The exam results come out in less than two weeks, so I’m deferring any comment on this goal until then.
Original Goal: Active Homeostasis.
I aimed to spend some time most days having proper conversations with my family.
At the start of the year I found this very difficult. Every time I lingered over dinner, or sat on the sofa talking, I felt slightly guilty that I wasn’t studying.
Since April it’s been easier, although I spent a fair bit of May catching up on things I’d been ignoring. At least I’ve not felt so guilty about it.
Of course, dialogue is a two-way street, so I asked Dave what he thought.
You still owe me half a cup of coffee from March!
Which he later admitted he only mentioned for the purposes of humour. Slightly more seriously,
Apart from the fact that Brownie leaders keep randomly turning up…
(It’s accounts season, and being Division treasurer I’m doing a reasonable amount of helping people figure out what’s gone wrong).
Overall, though, Dave shares my opinion that it’s been going well. He feels he is getting enough quality time with me. So that’s good.
Does the goal need updating? I don’t think it does. I’m generally happy with my life, and so is my husband. If it ain’t broke…
Original Goal: Provide at least two opportunities from each of the ten “Good Guiding Is…” sections.
I have two Brownie units, but I’m only looking in detail at one of them here.
I spent some time today planning pages for our Brownie scrapbook. I’m a little behind, so there’s a lot to go in there. When I looked at the list of exciting things we’ve done just this year I couldn’t believe it!
I know it’s the Big Brownie Birthday year, but still… a sleepover in a climbing centre, PGL, camp, Starquest, Celebrate, plus all the BBB Challenge Badge activities – a tea party, pretending to be evacuees, team building, codes of conduct, making pancakes on tin cans, litter picking, and so much more.
I might need to buy a new scrapbook to fit it all in.
Exciting activities are not everything, of course. Are we providing a balanced and rounded experience?
The ten “Good Guiding Is…” sections are:
Challenge and Adventure: Celebrate and Starquest both contained adventurous activities. For Celebrate we had the extra challenge of getting to London on public transport, and the extra adventure of Lebanese food for dinner, but it did only include a few of the older girls. I’m scoring 1.5 out of 2 for this one.
Going Away: Sleepover, PGL, CSI Camp. Score 3 out of 2.
Moving on and growing: We had a session on what I want to be when I grow up, as part of the BBB Challenge Badge. That was entertaining – one of the girls’ mothers is a zoo vet, so everyone else looked boring by comparison!
We’ve also done GFI activities with the older girls, and a number of the girls have had proper-serious discussions about how they’ve grown as people since they started Brownies, to finish off their Adventure badge. I’m giving myself a score of 2 out of 2 for this one.
Opportunities and awareness: The new Adventure book has an activity in about the World Centres, which made them aware of the wider Guiding community. I’m only scoring 1 out of 2 on this one.
Developing skills: Fake wounds and how to treat them, a Tea Party to teach sales skills, and a session on hand washing which involved paint and blindfolds. All useful skills, so 3 out of 2.
Decision making and planning: Choosing the BBB Challenge badge clauses was our main decision-making of the year; we also chose some activities out of the new Adventure book that we wanted to do. Planning-wise, the leaders have done a lot of that. Score 2 out of 2.
My other unit had an evening where the Brownies took over, and that’s on the radar for this unit next term.
Learning: For Thinking Day we did International Activities, with each Six teaching the rest about a particular country. 1 out of 2.
Fun: a laughter evening, where we told jokes and played games, a trip to see the Sound of Music, and plenty of games. Plus, every evening is fun in some way… Score 3 out of 2.
Relating to Girls and Young Women: Polar Bear ran a Girls Voice Survey with the Brownies, and the data was all sent back to HQ. I don’t feel like I’m really on top of this one, though. Score 1 out of 2.
Living the Promise and Law: We’ve had a couple of Promise Parties, I actually had a full-blown philosophical discussion about being true to myself with a seven-year-old, and we’ve demonstrated serving our community by going litter picking. Score 2 out of 2.
I’ve exceeded in 3 categories, and only fallen short in 4, for a challenge which was supposed to take the whole year. I think I may need to update the rules of this challenge slightly!
I could simply increase the number of things we need to do, but that feels too simple. I think I’m going to aim for three from each category, four from those which already have three.
I’m going to add a rule that says similar things don’t count.
For example, in “Going Away”, we’ve already got Sleepover, Camping and PGL, so to add another one it would have to be an indoor holiday, or narrow boating, or sleeping up trees or something.
I can’t use “choosing activities from a defined list” for “decision-making” because we’ve already done that.
Does that sound like a challenge to you? It does to me!
Original Goal: Learn all the techniques on my syllabus.
I had originally said that I would focus on lower grade techniques until April. That didn’t go so well, and I’m only just now finishing going through the kyu grade syllabus.
I’m making sure I’m completely happy with which name goes with which technique, as well as which syllabus they’re on. After a while, you forget whether you learnt something for yellow belt or green belt – you just know that you know it. I’m getting more and more likely to be asked to teach people things, which means that I need to know which things they’re supposed to be learning.
Still, I’m pretty much there with all the kyu grades, and ready to move on to the dan grades. With the summer holidays coming up, and fewer Brownie things to do, I should be able to meet the original goal.
Original Goal: Blog three times a week.
It was going ok until this last month. I’ve missed one at the end of May (but I’m not counting that, since I was blogging for the parents on our camp blog), and two in June. Plus, a couple of my June posts were cheats – a re-blog of someone else’s work and a post that was just a picture.
On the other hand, this category was supposed to be fun stuff, so I don’t feel too bad about it. If I’ve nothing to say, I might as well not say anything rather than wasting your time and mine by rambling incoherently.
The goal stands unchanged.
Original Goal: Read 52 books.
According to Goodreads, I’m currently on 17 books read, 8 books behind schedule. Of course, Goodreads doesn’t know about the two which I read which don’t technically exist yet.
Plus, I wasn’t intending to read anything too serious, but I’ve ended up with two books on climate change and one programming book on the list. And some of them are in other languages.
I think I’ll read some easier books – young adult or light fantasy. That’ll sort me out quite nicely, and allow the original goal to stand.
How are your goals going? Are you doing a half-year review?