33 by 34: Wrap Up of the Year of Never

Thirty-four hit me faster than I ever imagined it would. A few days in, here’s a look back at what I accomplished at age 33, before the new list for next year. You may notice I didn’t hit as many of my goals this year as the previous one. 2013 definitely ended up being a year of immense personal change for me, as I settled into life in San Francisco, moving a bit past the “honeymoon” phase. I embraced my overall theme of “Year of Never” a bit more than I did my individual goals. You will notice in my next post, I’ve adjusted many of the goals to reflect that I can’t be as restrictive with “weekly,” “monthly,” etc. and instead have tried to spread things out better throughout the year. Balancing my career, volunteer commitments and personal relationships is work enough, so I learned I need to be a bit more flexible. A main lesson from the “Year of Never” – it’s okay to readjust!

  1. Pay off one source of outstanding debt.
    GOOD EFFORT. While my debt load still is more than I’d like it to be, I made a major step in reducing it by moving everything to low-interest accounts. I feel like I have a solid game plan to be on a good financial track by the end of 35 and I am quite happy about that. That said, a winning Mega Millions ticket would be appreciated.
  2. Do yoga twice a week.
    GOOD EFFORT. According to DailyMile I logged 80 yoga workouts in 2013. This is a bit shy of my intended goal, but as noted above, life can get in the way. I’m readjusting this next year so I don’t beat myself up on those travel weeks or weeks when I just can’t get to class. On the positive side, I did go twice or even three times a week on many occasion and feel I’ve immensely benefit from the increased practice.
  3. Visit one of my four remaining states (Arkansas, Oklahoma, North Dakota, Alaska).
    FAIL. My domestic travel didn’t quite allow for this in 2013. Determined to keep trying on this one though. It’s oddly important to me.
  4. Publish one blog post per week.
    FAIL. A miserable fail on this one. I blogged very little at age 33. Again, life. I still want to keep at writing here though, so not trashing the blog yet.
  5. Devote one-on-one time to a different friend each week, either in person or by phone/long email thread.
    UNMEASURABLE SUCCESS. This was a tricky one to quantify. I definitely tried to reach out/hang out with a variety of friends, but found it difficult to keep track of, and frankly a bit strange.
  6. Eat a sit-down meal of one different type of ethnic cuisine each month (burritos & sushi to go don’t count!)
    SUCCESS. Not difficult living in an international city, but didn’t get too crazy either. My favorites were probably the Korean BBQ joints in the Inner Richmond AND Sunset and the wild Bangladeshi spot Yesh took me to in New York.
  7. Go to an 18 reasons event once per month.
    SUCCESS! Farm School played a big role in this. I am so glad to be a part of this food community.
  8. Read one San Francisco-set/authored book per month.
    GOOD EFFORT. I can’t say I hit this monthly, but it drove my “extra-curricular” reading outside of Book Club. Still, the geographic location limited me a bit, so I don’t think I will try this again. Books I read: Max Tivoli, Samurai’s Garden, Brothers Sisters (partially set in SF), Sidewalk Ritual, And the Mountains Echoed, Lean In, Mr Penumbra’s 24 hour Bookstore, Bicycle Diaries (one chapter set in SF).
  9. Send a letter or card to a different person once a month.
    SUCCESS! I love sending mail, it’s true.
  10. Try a new hike once per month.
    SUCCESS! From LA to Colombia to Portland to Connecticut, from the East Bay to the Headlands to the South Bay to our own fair city, I hiked many places during my 33rd year. I plan to continue.
  11. Use my digital camera once a month.
    GOOD EFFORT. Alas, my love affair with the DSLR may be over when my phone camera is much more portable.
  12. See a different Bay Area band in concert each month.
    GOOD EFFORT. Put a lot into this at the beginning of the year, but sort of slacked at concert-going in general. I did see some excellent shows, but again think I got hung up on the restrictive “monthly” timeframe. Highlights were Undercover Presents Kid A, The Rock See Benefit, Nicki Bluhm at HSB, Facing New York and Mikal Cronin.

  13. Get a massage once a month.
    GOOD EFFORT. My yoga studio dropped the massage option halfway through the year, making this a bit more difficult of a goal to execute.
  14. Watch an SF-set movie once a month.
    GOOD EFFORT. Highlights included finally seeing classics like The Conversation and Invasion of the Body Snatchers. As much as I didn’t like Blue Jasmine, I did like seeing a major movie filmed here while I’ve lived in San Francisco.

  15. See a different visual arts exhibition each month.
    GOOD EFFORT. Funny enough, there are some blank months but I KNOW I saw art. Not a bad problem to have, but again while I saw TONS of art, may be restrictive with the time frame. Highlights were the Winograd exhibit at SFMOMA, finally going to The Met in NYC, hitting up some artwalks and of course, Burning Man.
  16. Do a San Francisco stairway or city walk each month.GOOD EFFORT. Dating P. definitely helped me kick this one into gear the last few months of the year. My favorite probably is still the Russian Hill South walk with Macondray Lane. And of course the massive Peak2Peak in September!
  17. Participate in one community fitness event (5k, bike ride, etc.) each month.
    FAIL. This is one area where I really missed the #FitMKE gang. Honestly, it wasn’t as easy/fun to adopt without a massive crew. That said, I ran a few things with Amber, MAB and Hilary, so nice to have that for sure!
  18. Touch the ocean at least once per month.
    GOOD EFFORT. I missed two or three months, but LOVED making an effort to do this.
  19. Bike somewhere new once a month.
    SUCCESS. There are two months where I don’t have anything logged, but I can’t imagine that I did not bike at least one new place. Loved biking on new (to me) routes in Milwaukee, Portland, New York and Bogota, and of course those in my own backyard. I do love exploring on two wheels.
  20. Plan six SF outings, one in each of the following neighborhoods: Inner & Outer Sunset/Richmond, Bernal Heights, Glen Park.
    GOOD EFFORT. Got half of them and Inner Sunset/Inner Richmond more than once.
  21. Use each of my SF organizational memberships at least once per quarter.
    FAIL. I never even quantified which memberships I had, but on the plus side I let many (I used to get them like candy from Groupon) expire since I didn’t ever use them!
  22. See two movies at The Roxie each month.
    GOOD EFFORT. This fell off due to both myself and some issues with their membership program. That said, saw many great films at this cinematic gem. Favorites included A Band Called DeathUpstream Color, The Jeffrey Dahmer Files (made by Milwaukee filmmakers), and Room 237.
  23. Go to at least four performing arts events.
    SUCCESS! Hit this one very early on in 33. And happily kept going to events even after it was achieved.
  24. Attend one live game of each professional sports team in the area (Giants, As, 49ers, Raiders, Warriors, Sharks)
    GOOD EFFORT. An ambitious and expensive goal. I did hit most though! Giants, As, 49ers, Warriors…and I have Sharks tickets for 2/1. Sorry, Raiders.
  25. Do at least four things I previously said I’d never do.
    OVERWHELMING SUCCESS. One day I will write about all of my Year of Never. Perhaps after that Mega Millions ticket. I challenged myself so much last year, pushing myself to new limits. I have a tattoo! I went to Burning Man! I went to therapy! And so, so much more.
  26. Learn each of the San Francisco supervisors and their districts.
    SUCCESS. My increased involvement with bike and pedestrian issues definitely helped this along.
  27. Schedule 1 hour per week to work on writing projects.
    FAIL. Very sad about this one.
  28. Go to Yosemite.
    FAIL. Somehow this did not end up being in the cards last year.
  29. Run at least 500 miles.
    SUCCESS! Ended the year with 514.
  30. Do a one week cleanse (no coffee, alcohol or processed foods).
    GOOD EFFORT. Realized a full cleanse wasn’t in the cards for me, but managed a detox 8 days at the end of my 33rd year.
  31. Travel to a new continent (Africa, Oceania, South America).
    SUCCESS! Colombia took care of South America for me! Such a wonderful trip.
  32. Participate in a homebrew batch.
    FAIL. Tried to join up with a group at the beginning of the year, but my schedule just did not work out.
  33. Relearn six words in Spanish each month.
    FAIL. I definitely *used* my Spanish more than in previous years, but alas, didn’t put in the full effort I’d hoped.

Alright, I guess I maybe was a little harsh on myself in the intro. I didn’t do too badly at all. Still, glad I’ve learned where I need to adjust to hopefully turn those “GOOD EFFORTS” into “SUCCESSES” for 34.


About Meghan A.

creative & professional creative professional | communications, content & community | nasty woman | adventurer & inspiration seeker | bicyclist & feminist | walk san francisco board | current: Adobe Typekit Product Marketing Manager, former: TYPO SF magic maker
This entry was posted in 33 by 34, Challenges and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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