Mom Self Improvement The SAD Reality

The SAD Reality–Goal-setting and words I hate

Have you seen these candy cakes? Dylan Dryer (of NBC) made a candy cake for her son’s birthday in December and posted an Instagram video of it being cut and sort of exploding candy all over the place. The cake is a treat in and of itself, and then you peel back the layer and find even more. It’s one of those satisfying videos, like watching kids open surprise toys or something.

Lately, it sort of feels like I’m waiting for that in my life.

Let me explain.

There are words and phrases I just don’t like–one’s that sort of make me roll my eyes because they are all touchy-feely. Things like “brings me joy” and “self-care” and “vision boards.”

Blach. What is that? I have no idea why those terms make me feel the way they do, but all I know is that we’ve banned them within the confines of my therapists office because they make me smirk and roll my eyes.

But in the last week, these words have come up so much that I think God wants me to truly listen to the content rather than the words.

Around New Years, I noticed all of these people were posting their words of the year or their goals or resolutions. This makes me *eye roll* because who has time for that? Who takes the time to sit down and meditation or pray about what they want to accomplish in the coming year? Not just career-wise, but as a person. Who actually retains this throughout the year? Don’t most people give up on their goals within the first two weeks? Why fret over it?

Then it sort of nagged at me a bit. What are my goals? What do I want to accomplish? Maintaining a clean house and never having more than 2 baskets of laundry to fold seems like a good goal, but how does that advance me in life?

My internet searching of this “goal-based” life lead to some pretty targeted Facebook marketing for the Commit 30 planner and also Cultivate What Matters. I pretty quickly zeroed in on the Cultivate What Matters Power Sheets because I had heard about them before.

That led me to ask some questions of people on Instagram.
That led me to Lara Casey’s blog. She created the Cultivate stuff.
That led me to listen to the first podcast about setting goals at

In it she says like things:

“Like you, I have a lot of things to take care of in my life, and I don’t have room to add a lot more (I’m guessing that’s like you, too). I get tense even thinking about the pressure to accomplish something beyond my current capacity. (Areyouwithme?) Goal setting. No thank you.”


“Now, you could just stop here and quit before even trying. You could do that and I won’t judge you! 🙂 I’ve given up on a whole lot of things in my life right at the starting line. But, here’s where that might leave you (like it did for me): going through the motions, not feeling confident that you’re on the right path, getting distracted, lacking motivation, not taking care of what you’ve been given, and generally wasting your time.”

I felt like she was preaching to the choir. So, of course, I gave podcast number 2 a try. In it were things like:

“To get uncomfortable.  To think bigger than you. To press into the fear and give it the boot!”


“Wherever you are, you’re right where you’re supposed to be. Write what’s true for you (“I’m not sure what I’m supposed to learn here,” is a perfectly good answer!) and move forward.”

On the podcast version it mentioned a vision board, putting those important images right in front of you. Finding things that bring you joy.

Ugh. Words I hate.

Then, this week, I saw my therapist. We discussed my lack of goals, my inability to recognize the things that bring me joy and the fear that comes along with that. He recommended a vision board.

Fear, joy, goals, vision board. Throw in self-care and I couldn’t roll my eyes harder.

Call it what I want, these words were just springing up around me.

Now, with the Netflix series Tidying Up, people are talk about whether or not something brings them joy.

How do you know? How do you know if something is making you truly happy? How do you know if it brings you complete joy?

At therapy, I mentioned that despite working part time, I still feel overwhelmed a lot. I have piles of laundry, the house needs to be cleaned, the bathroom needs to be scrubbed, the floors need sweeping and mopping. Sometimes, it overwhelms my brain because it’s never ever done.

Maybe I get lots in the details of every day life because I just don’t have goals that pull me through to something more than keeping the house neat and running my kids around town.

Maybe the the seasonal affect disorder and the depression are worse because I can’t see beyond these. Maybe I’m so focused on being the best wife and mom that I’ve completely given up on what I actually want and what actually brings me joy.

My therapist feels like I’m on the edge of something big. He thinks I need to dig at this a bit more and work at it. Of course, he has no clear instructions on how or what will happen on the others side.

He thinks I’m fearful of the next step, of what I might find.

What? What will I find? What will be there? Will it be like the birthday cake oozing out the candy. Surprise! Will it be a good life filled with more good things? Will the depth of my joy and love be increased because of this?

I really have no idea. Instead of being stuck in this place, I opted to purchase the Cultivate What Matters planner. It comes tomorrow. I’ll let you know how it goes. In the meantime, pray for me. Pray I figure out what God is trying to say through all of these words. Is he really speaking to me? Am I just hearing something I want to hear? Will my attachment to goals and the process of unearthing what gives me joy fade by the time the weather breaks and my overall mood improves?

Stay tuned. We’ll find out together.