Well, 2007 is winding down, and the start of the new year is almost upon us. Itâ€™s time to make those traditional resolutions that most of us will just toss to the curb by February 1.
Grown up responsibilities and that thing called Life will get in the way of our goals. We will declare that we have no time to take that cooking class, learn a new language, or start an exercise program. Resolutions will be written down, but without some concrete steps and direction to help us stick to them, nothing will change.
But what if we change the outcome of the annual resolution dissolution this year? What if we were to head into 2008 with some solid goals to reach and some actual plans and strategies to achieve them?
That is the goal of Project Wonder Woman, a collaborative, virtual troop of women who will all pledge to complete the requirements for one activity per month from Lauren Catuzzi Grandcolasâ€™s book, You Can Do It!: The Merit Badge Handbook for Grown-Up Girls (currently available from Amazon.com for the bargain basement price of $6.49).
The book consists of chapters covering sixty fun, enriching activities ranging from competing in a triathlon to learning how to sew. Each chapter includes an overview of the activity, an essay from a female expert/mentor, clearly-defined steps for earning the activityâ€™s merit badge, and recommended reading and online resources. A virtual merit badge is earned for each completed activity. In order to qualify for the badge, each PWW member must document her progress with blog posts, photos, and/or video clips as she completes each requirement.
You Can Do It! will provide the framework for achieving our goals for 2008, but it will still take time, effort, and persistence on our end to earn all twelve of our life merit badges over the next twelve months. This is not a 12-week challenge but an ongoing project that can cover everything from life skills to physical challenges, financial mastery to artistic experimentation. Our rewards will vary depending on which activities we each choose to undertake, but I have no doubt that we will all emerge from the experience more skilled, talented, competent, confident, knowledgeable, and infinitely more kickass than we are today.
With each badge we earn, we are one step closer to becoming a Wonder Woman in truth.
I sent a copy of the book to each of my closest female friends this Christmas, and it is my hope that they will all join me in posting to a group blog called Project Wonder Woman as we check off each proposed merit badge for 2008, one by one.
My current working list of proposed badges is as follows:
- Breaking Bad Habits
- Personal Style/Sewing
- Car Care
- Draft a Business Plan
: This one will be a year-long undertaking. I want to get rid of 6 bad habits and develop 6 good ones by the end of 2008. I will tackle one item per month, starting with Punctuality in January.
: There are so many things in my house that need organizing that this one should keep me quite busy for a full month.
: I’ve been meaning to choose a good primary care physician who can run the full battery of health tests on me and perform a full physical for a while now, but keep putting it off. It’s time to learn where I stand health-wise now that I don’t get regular check-ups from a military doctor.
: Yes, I know I already know how to exercise and stuff, but I will be rolling my 12-week Turbulence Training transformation challenge and my goal of improving my swimming skills through regular lessons into this one for 2008.
: This one combines a skill I already possess but haven’t been applying very much (sewing) with an area in which I have been sadly lagging (personal style) since I started to work in the very casual dress code environment of video game development. I looked in my closet for clothes to take up to Philly for the eHarmony shoot December 16-17 and realized that I had almost nothing but jeans, funny t-shirts, and workout clothes in my wardrobe. It’s time to put my sewing machine to work and my stunted sense of style back into active duty.
: I already budget to some degree using Microsoft Money, but I’ll be tightening it up even more as Chris and I focus on completing a Total Money Makeover a la Dave Ramsey in 2008.
: Yeah…you know how I always harp on being really unbendy and needing to do more yoga? Well, I still am unbendy and still need to commit to a regular flexibility program. I’m making this a badge-earning opportunity since I am horrible at integrating yoga into my fitness routine when there is no obvious reward or punishment involved.
: I’ve always known in the back of my mind that familiarity with the basics of auto maintenance was important, but fear of grease and laziness have prevented me from actually learning much about the machine that carries me 30 miles each way from home to work and back each day.
: 2007 was the year of the neglected yard and veggie patch. 2008 will be the year of flourishing flowers, stunning shrubbery, and eye-popping edibles! This activity will be ongoing.
: Chris and I haven’t really gotten around to decorating our house since we moved in…two years ago. It’s probably time. I don’t think we are going anywhere for a while.
: I have kept my oil and acrylic painting supplies from my one college painting class around all these years for no reason. Ditto for the copy of Painter 8 software that I bought around the same time and never bothered to learn how to use. My bare walls need art. I will endeavor to create some for them.
: A gal can’t stay in video games forever. I am going to learn how to draft a business plan for future reference.