It's been fifteen days since the my last "goal cycle" ended. And it's only now that I'm finally getting to talking about the spring semester in all its glory and disaster. After an incredibly productive fall and a failure of a winter break, I initially set out to make the spring semester one of many words written and many goals achieved. And though I do feel like my spring semester had incredible value, especially in the learning department, the goals that I set for myself in January were, unfortunately, largely ignored.
Let's take a look at those goals, shall we?
Study The Bible Every Day
This year I had set out to study the Bible every day, not simply read it. Though there were many days that I did this, there were many days where I simply read the Scriptures and not digest them in the way that I should. If I had given myself the simple goal of reading the Bible every day, I would have passed with flying colors, since there was not a single day that went by this entire spring semester that I didn't read at least one verse.
Though that in itself is a victory for me, since it begins a months-long streak that I hope to never break as long as I live, I definitely didn't read as much as I would have wanted or study nearly as much as I should have. I'm all caught up on the When We Understand The Text podcast, and so I had plenty of good Bible-learning transmitted into my brain, and I'm always reading articles on good theological topics, but going forward, I need to focus on spending time devoted simply to an inductive study of God's Word.
As for a grade for myself; I'd say this goal has given me a B+. Room for improvement.
Write Ten "Life" Posts
Arbitrarily setting a certain number of posts in each category to write by the end of the semester didn't necessarily work as well as I wanted it to, probably because I didn't often check how many more I had to write. My final count for posts in the Life category is six, which really isn't that bad, all things considered. It's easier, though, for me to write out a post about my life than some of the other categories, especially when something important has happened, like the trip to Budapest I took.
I'll give myself a B+ for this as well.
Compliment Someone Every Day
As I said when initially writing out this goal, I do this almost automatically most days of my life. I set out to be more conscientious about it, but unfortunately the goal just didn't internalize, and I have no real idea how well I did on this goal. I'm sure I complimented plenty of people this semester. I just can't remember any of them. And so I'm gonna give myself a C on this goal.
Write 6,000 Words Every Week
I flat out did not accomplish this goal. It seemed pretty reasonable, but apparently either my brain just didn't work well with the idea of writing a certain amount every week, or I had put down too many words. There was also the fact that I spent far too much time reading than I maybe should have. *sigh* Well, there's nothing I can do about it now.
Checking Novlr real quick, it looks like I wrote exactly 13,448 words from January to May. Not the worst word count in the world (it's not like I didn't write at all), but it's insanely lower than the 130,000 words I could've written if I had stayed with a consistent weekly schedule.
And so it looks like I'm giving myself a D+ for this goal.
Have A Chapter Of To Look Skyward Out Every Monday
Haha nope, this didn't happen. Turns out, when you don't write words, you don't get chapters, and when you don't have chapters, you have nothing to put up on your website. I had a few chapters out this semester, but nowhere near every monday at all. D+ again here.
Make It To The 75% Mark On To Look Skyward
Again, with the above goals, it didn't happen at all. D here.
Have a 4.0 GPA Semester
Unfortunately, I didn't do as well as I hoped in the school department this semester. I ended up with a cumulative 3.7 GPA for all of my semesters, which is still honor-student level, so I'm not really worried at all, but it still bothers me all the same. I very well could have had a 4.0 this semester, if I had put in more elbow grease, but life got in the way, and parts of college got pushed to the side. B for me here.
Write Fifteen "Learning" Posts
I did not do very well in this area. Because any excess time I had to think about school was focused on, you know, finishing my homework, I didn't have a lot to say about my school experience on my blog this semester. Part of that was there were points where I was really worried about my classes, and it bothered me to think about putting that out there for the world to see. College, as opposed to my own little creative projects, seems to have a lot more weight to it. I'll give myself a C for this, only because I feel like I had a good excuse to only put out four posts in all.
Apply What I'm Learning To My Writing
All of this said, I do feel that I learned an incredible amount of really interesting things this past semester, stuff that I won't easily forget and will definitely apply to my writing at some point (my Asian Philosophy class is definitely influencing To Look Skyward). But, because I didn't really do a whole lot of writing this semester, the application that I did do this semester was mostly in my head. And that's not quite enough to earn a good grade. B- here.
Write Four New Songs
I ended up only writing two new songs, since songwriting has taken a bit of a backseat spot in my life for a year or two now. Well, I guess you might be able to say three songs, if you count the silly tune my dad and I came up with a few months ago. Maybe I'll count that. Either way, I'll give myself a B+.
Record Four Songs
As I started writing this section, I was trying to think of how many songs I actually did record this year. And it turns out that it's four. I actually succeeded in one of these goals. I recorded one original song, one medley of songs, and two covers. And so I'm gonna go ahead and give myself an A+ on this one.
Write Eight "Music" Posts
Well, I didn't write eight Music posts, looks like I only have two up, but that makes sense with the little I've actually spent with music this semester. Oh, I've been listening to plenty of it, but not much writing, and that's what usually gets into posts here. And so a C here for me.
Release An Episode of The Christian Artist Every Week
There was an episode of The Christian Artist every week this year so far. And I'm hoping that I can keep that momentum going all the way to the end of the year. This is one of the things that I am really super proud of this semester. I successfully released 23 episodes of the podcast in a row, without a break. That's pretty dang cool. A+ here.
Record/Edit Two Different Projects
I actually ended up doing a lot of film-related (if not directly film) projects this semester, such as our Easthaven Dreams Twitch stream, recording my role-playing game sessions that I run for some people online, as well as a travel vlog and two song cover videos. And so I'm giving myself an A+ here as well.
Polish Up The First Draft of The Core Istoria Rules
Unfortunately, there was very little time for role-playing games (at least among my normal group), and so the Istoria rules got put on the backburner. I was hoping to get back into it once we headed into the summer, but that's proven very difficult as well. And so I'll give myself a C here.
Create A Set Of Rules For The Worldbuilding
We did not really do this either. Boo that. D here.
Looking back through my goals, I don't think the semester was as much of a failure as I thought it was. Sure, I didn't do nearly enough writing, and some of the other projects I had planned ended up falling under, but all in all, I think the semester was incredibly valuable for me as a person. I learned so much, and I don't just mean at college. I learned so much about life, about my relationships with other people, about my relationship with God. And in the grand plan that God has unfolding, predestined and ordained from the beginning of time, that semester was meant to go that way, and that means I can have peace. Sure, I still have responsibility in the choices I made and the words I said, but God is so gracious and merciful, to forgive me for those things and sanctify me further through those mistakes and suffering every day.
And so, let's tally up my final score. Looks like I got a C+ for the combined letter grade for all my goals. Yeah, that's about what I expected. I hate to leave on a depressing note, so let me just say how great the summer has been so far and how productive I'm starting to feel going forward. I have a lot more planned in the future, so you'll just have to wait and see where I go next.
Adios, and thanks for reading.