Babe, You Need a Goal

Why You Need a Goal - Josie Feather Blog

A few weeks ago I finished Rachel Hollis’ second book “Girl, Stop Apologizing.” I read her first non-fiction book earlier this year and found myself really surprised how much I enjoyed it (I may not agree with her on everything, but her overall message is one I can definitely get behind). Before I read “Girl, Stop Apologizing” I had a friend tell me “oh, that one’s okay, but it’s more of a business book, so it didn’t really apply to me.” I was really disappointed when I heard that so I had actually put off reading it, thinking it wasn’t going to apply much to me either.

I am so glad I decided to just dig in.

I’m not here to sell you on the book, although I did love it and would actually recommend it more than her first one. I honestly don’t care if you read it, but after reading it myself I was so disappointed in my friend’s viewpoint on it. I’m definitely not disappointed in my friend, it just breaks my heart to realize that so many people, especially women, are so quick to view goal-chasing as something for “business people” that doesn’t apply to them. Maybe it’s not even that - Maybe, like me, they’ve been scared to death of it. Scared of falling short if you set goals and don’t reach them, so it’s easier to write off goal-chasers as being a different type of person altogether.

But everyone should have goals.

Seriously, I believe that with my whole heart. I think we’re creatures created for goals. Unlike animals who live for the moment (God bless ‘em, I often wish I could live that way) we actually have the mental complicity to envision and plan for the future, and we were made to use it. Goals utilize those abilities.

No one said your goals need to be huge. They don’t have to be monumental. You can (and probably should) start small, but make sure they challenge you in some way. You don’t need to want to start a business, you don’t have to want to climb Mount Everest, but I firmly believe we should all be reaching for more. Pushing ourselves on a regular basis, so we can surprise ourselves with what we can do.

I’ve talked about it before, but I was terrified of exercise. It was actually physically painful, so being afraid was completely understandable, and was even a form of self-preservation. When I started running I set small goals and worked my way up. Run to the end of the block, run a half mile, run a mile. I didn’t start with the goal of running a marathon. Some people do, and that’s awesome if that can work for you, but for me, small is what finally worked, and continues to work best for me when it comes to my fitness goals.

Other areas of my life I reach bigger. I have some big freaking long term goals. It took me a long time to really figure those out. I had to push myself to find those goals and also make them specific things I can break down to make them achievable. Some are so big, they still scare me. They very well may be failures, but I definitely won’t know unless I try.

Maybe your goal will be to save and go on a cool vacation, maybe it’s to write a book, maybe it is to climb Mount Everest. There is no “right answer” and the most important part is that you have them and that you are actually trying. So ditch the idea that goals are only for high achievers or fancy pants business people that carry around briefcases and use terms like “corporate synergy” and get yourself a damn goal.

What Renovating a House and Working Out Have in Common (besides me)

Josie Feather Blog

Here’s a riddle for you, what does working out and renovating a house have in common? You know, besides leaving you sweaty and muscles sore that you hadn’t the faintest idea even existed.

Baby steps, and a hell of a lot of patience.

We’ve been renovating our house for over 5 years now. I’ve been running for over 3 years, and working out almost daily for over a year. When we started renovations I thought we’d have a mostly picture-perfect looking house in a year. When I started working out I thought I’d have abs in a month.

I can hear you laughing at your computer, you know. So rude.

It sometimes feels like the themes of my life are resilience and patience. I can, unfortunately, relate too deeply with Violet Beauregarde when she yells “I want it now.” I’m impatient and itchy. I hate to admit it, but I do want it now. but the reality is that nothing works like that, especially not the good stuff. Well, maybe it does for Paris Hilton, but even she has to work to get abs (unless they have plastic surgery that can do that now? Don’t even tell me, I don’t want to know).

“The key is over time. Success is built sequentially. It’s one thing at a time.”
- Gary Keller

Every house project, every work out, every run, has only been finished by me focusing on each step. One at a time. One foot in front of the other. One piece of wallpaper scraped at a time. One painful burpee by painful burpee at a time. Usually, it’s at best dull, and at worst physically painful (both the workouts and the house work), but every time I’ve finished, I step back and feel the pain of the work melt away and satisfaction wash over me. The workout over, I breathe deeper. But it’s only with bull dogged determination and willingness to take those baby steps that things get done. I always walk away feeling like queen of the world after, even when rewatching The Office on Netflix for the 800th time sounded so much better then going to the gym or spending hours spackling a room. In the end I am always so glad I took those first steps, otherwise I wouldn’t be running now.

Slow it Up : The Magic of Slow Mornings

The Magic of Slow Mornings - Josie Feather Blog

I have this tendency to pack my life similarly to how I pack my suitcase - clearly overstuffed and needing me to sit my entire body weight on it to get it to zip closed. I fill every little moment and try to squeeze every ounce of productivity out of each second. It’s both kind of a necessity of life right now, as well as how I tend to function best - but we all have our limits. After spending the weekend in Atlanta for a Pickleball tournament, waking up at 5 each day and then getting home from the airport at 2am and heading to work at 7am on Monday, you could say I was tired. Maybe tired isn’t the right word - zombieque might be closer to the horror show of me surviving solely on coffee and dry shampoo. I also had a personal project I was working on, so the few quiet minutes I had this weekend were spent trying to extract any sense from my brain to put towards that.

Now ya’ll know I am a certified gym rat. Exercise is a huge priority in my life, because I know I feel better physically, mentally, and basically all ways when I’m sweating it out on the daily. It’s usually the highest priority on my to do list each day, because I know everything else will feel like I piece of cake after that. Usually I wouldn’t miss it for the world, but today I decided I needed to skip it. Instead of waking up and running non-stop from the second my alarm went off I decided to just have a slow morning. I still got up early, but was able to take my time, get a shower, play with my pups, change my outfit thirty or so times, and pack my lunch without feeling the need to check the clock every few seconds.

Sure, I could have woke up a little later. Sure, I could have fit my workout in. Sure, I could have done a hundred more productive things in that hour and a half - but I didn’t, and that’s not just okay, that’s awesome. Slow mornings can have such a huge benefit for mental health. It’s like a mini spa day for your brain. Not needing to rush rush rush helps your brain reset, turn off that fight or flight response for a few minutes, and actually let your brain switch back to a healthy thinking pattern.

So, yeah, It’s Wednesday and I’ve only gotten one workout in this week, but I’ll survive. Sometimes you just need a morning to reset and play with your puppies - at least, that’s what they told me.

(P.S. - Ten points to anyone who got that Office reference in the title - a truly classic Angela moment)