pacing the workload monthly review

Monthly review – pacing the workload

One of the reasons I have found that yearly goals work so well for me is because it allows me to pace the workload. For at least the last seven years or so, I have accepted that February is a month that I tilt towards family, and such need to be realistic about what I can achieve outside of that.

February is the start of the school year and it brings with it:

  • the need to assist the kids settling into new routines
  • scaffolding any gaps they may have for this next step in their educational jounrney
  • start of the school year information evenings
  • start of the school year social events
  • afterschool activitities

So if you read my monthly review below, you will see that for February I wouldn’t have scored a pass mark for two out of the four habits that I want to establish. One of them I new from the start of this year that I wouldn’t really get into it until the end of the first quarter. Having a yearly goal gives me the time I need to set some habits first before adding more to my plate. Setting new habits takes time and energy initially and I have found that starting small and not overloading myself makes it easier and more sustainable in the long term.

There are also some months, like February, where my time is needed elsewhere. If this were to happen every month, it would mean that I would not achieve my goal for the year. But as I knew February was going to be like that, I went to more new activities in January and will do so in March as well. The yearly goal allows me to pace the work I need to do to achieve it so that it doesn’t become a burden to me or I don’t stop working towards it completely because I felt like I failed in one month. I can plan ahead and space the work out.

If you would like to find out more about how I set my goal for this year, you can read about it here – My goal for 2022.

Now on to my progress review for the habits I have set to help me achieve my goal for 2022.

Read for a minimum of 15 minutes per day

australia day stand grant

Connection to goal – Cultivate routines to expand my knowledge and experiences – There is so much to learn from both fiction and non fiction books. I have a huge list of books that I have wanted to read for some time, so this year to help expand my knowledge I am committing to read more. My target for the year is to read 25 books.

Quote to connect to – “Think before you speak. Read before you think.” – Fran Lebowitz

February performance – February was another solid month of reading for me. I finished reading the following:

  • Australia Day by Stan Grant – I began reading this around the 26th January and I think for the first time I really beagn to understand the true pain that celebrating on this day causes our First Nations Peoples. It is a collection of essays where Grant on talks about our country, about who we are as a nation, about the indigenous struggle for belonging and identity in Australia, and what it means to be Australian.
  • How Brands Grow by Byron Sharp – this book has been a game changer for me in how I think about growing Adapt Drinks. I borrowed this book from the library but will buy my own copy as it has so much information in it that I want to refer back to.
  • Boys Will Be Boys by Clementine Ford – having four sons I think a lot about the impact I can have to make sure they are respectful to women, understand consent and be allies to women. This is a powerful and confronting book. Not only does it highlight the damage that toxic masculinity and misogyny causes to women but the impact it also has on boys and men.

Invest one hour a week learning about our First Nations Peoples

 Looky Looky Here Comes Cooky on SBS on Demand.

Connection to goal – Cultivate routines to expand my knowledge and experiences – Reconciliation NSW recommends learning and understanding more about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples’ histories, Cultures, Languages, technology and land management techniques as educating yourself is the first step in the journey towards reconciliation. My knowledge and understanding are severely lacking and I want to change this.

Quote to connect to – “Knowing is not enough; We must apply. Willing is not enough; We must do.” – Bruce Lee

February performance – One of the books I read – Australia Day certainly helped provide me with a much better understanding about why it is so important that we change the date.

I also watched Looky Looky Here Comes Cooky on SBS on Demand. This documentary is very entertaining as well as providing a more informative perspective on Cook. Presenter, co-writer and slam poet Steven Oliver talks with other First Nations Peoples to highlight a different view of Cook than what we might have been taught at school. The concept of songlines is strong throughout the doco. Songlines trace the journeys of ancestral spirits as they created the land, animals and lore. Integral to Aboriginal spirituality, songlines are deeply tied to the Australian landscape and provide important knowledge, cultural values and wisdom to Indigenous people.

Frontier War Stories – Dr Mariko Smith – Unsettled – Dr Mariko Smith is a Yuin & Japanese museum curator, visual sociologist, historian and works at the Australian Museum. I found their discussion on Aboriginal resistance leaders, massacres, battles that are highlighted in the exhibition compelling and with each episode I listen to of this podcast I gain more understanding as to why it is called Frontier War Stories.

Volunteer on a weekly basis

Connection to goal – Cultivate routines to expand my knowledge and experiences – Volunteering is an activity where you can be of service to others and learn so much from the experience. It has been some time since I have volunteered outside of schools etc and I want to get back into it for 2022.

Quote to connect to – “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” – Mahatma Gandhi

February performance – I am yet to settle on a regular volunteer role but didn’t plan to do that until the end of the first quarter so I have time to settle in my other habits above and settle the kids back into school. This month I volunteered at my local church for an hour a week.

Spend one hour a week planning and visiting new attractions

Connection to goal – Cultivate routines to expand my knowledge and experiences – There are so many great attractions and experiences in Melbourne both free and paid and when the kids were younger we used to visit them frequently. Since the kids have stopped wanting to do this, I have stopped going too. But there is no reason why I cannot go on my own or with Phil or with friends!

While I have allocated one hour per week, this can be averaged out across the month as my overall aim is to visit two new (to me) attractions per month.

Quote to connect to – “Fill your life with experiences. Not things. Have stories to tell, not stuff to show.” Unknown

February performance – This month was very different from last month but I knew it would be. With school starting back up and myself starting in a pre-accelerator program I knew February would be a full month. While the pre-accelerator isn’t the type of activity I had in mind for this habit, it certainly fits in with my goal of expanding my knowledge. It is giving me the opportunity to meet with other founders who are trying to grow their businesses and tap into the knowledge of the mentors running the program. On top of this, I also had plenty of social activities and catch up with friends this month which was fun.

I did more than my average last month and I already have a number of events planned for March including a weekend away. I don’t want this activity to become a chore so I need to make sure it fits in with current life activity levels.

Have was February for you?

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