My hopefully-realistic ideal

Like I said the other day, I have reason now to hope for improvement for the first time, but it worries me.  Still, I can’t help but think about the future.  So instead of thinking of it as “hope” I’ve decided to create “goals.”  The difference is that hoping for something better is a bit vague.  Goals are more specific.  And I know that the goals may not happen, but I can still hope to reach them.  Well, let me demonstrate:

I often wonder if I’ll be able to return to work some day.  When I left my last job, my health was pretty rotten.  I was working full time and not doing much else.  I wasn’t exercising, socializing, or growing as a person (except for my stomach.)  If I go back to work, I need to be in a better place, one where I can work and also do other things.  Crazy, right?  But what if….?

So that begs the question, what other things do I want to do besides work?  And here’s what I’ve come up with that I think is realistic:

  1. I want to be able to wake up an hour early every day and exercise.  I have never been a morning person, but in recent years I just couldn’t have managed it even with the best of intentions.  I want to be able to wake up and get out of bed within a few minutes, instead of spending an hour gathering the energy to get up.  I want to be able to do light exercise without first loosening up my muscles and joints for several hours.  I want to do physical therapy or take a walk to start my day.
  2. After exercising, I want to get ready for work, then go to work for a full day.  I don’t know yet what kind of work it will be, but my goal will be to avoid desk jobs.  This should be interesting, since I’ve always had desk jobs, but I want something more interesting, and I want the energy to do it, whatever it is.
  3. After work, I want to do something other than watch tv due to a lack of energy to do anything else.  In fact, I want to not own a tv.  Instead, I want to spend 1 or 2 weeknights each week meeting up with friends or going out on dates.  The other evenings I want to read books, work on hobbies, and learn new skills.  I have a few ideas for new skills, such as learning to sing, learning a new language, and learning web design, but I might end up doing something else.  I definitely want to do some form of self improvement, though.  I will also use weeknights to cook, do laundry, and take care of other chores.
  4. I want to walk more and drive less.  I’d really like to ride a bike, but I think that’s not so realistic for me, so I’ll stick to walking and public transportation as much as possible.
  5. On weekends I want to go out each day if I so choose.  A day at home should be because I want a day for myself, not because I am too tired to leave the house.  Weekends should be for the same things as weeknights, but more so.  I want to spend time with family and friends, work on hobbies, and learn new skills.
  6. Each night I want go to bed at a reasonable hour, then wake up 8-9 hours later and get right out of bed in order to exercise.  I want to get tired at night before I go to sleep, but at no point will I be fatigued.

I have been thinking about this for a very long time.  When I started writing this, I was worried that it wouldn’t be so realistic after all but now, seeing it all laid out at once, I’m realizing that this is the very least that someone should aim for.  Maybe my goals should be higher, maybe not.  I do believe that these goals are realistically achievable if my health improves, and I know that I will not go back to work unless I can achieve them, so for me this feels about right.  And I’m pretty sure of one other thing: if I do manage to achieve these goals, I will be happy and content.  I will continue to aim higher after I reach them, of course, but I will not be upset if this is as high as I can get.  To me, this looks like a pretty fantastic life.

4 Responses to My hopefully-realistic ideal

  1. Chris says:

    I really like what you have written here as I can completely relate to it, I too often wonder if I’ll be able to work again some day. The rest of your list like not wanting to watch t.v due to a lack of energy is also something I aim for in the future. You will get there/we will get there.

  2. Sounds totally reasonable to me, and exactly why I wanted more agressive treatment. Coming home from work with no energy does not feel like real life

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