30 Before 30
A personal challenge I undertook between 2009 and 2011. I might have done better, but I had many unexpected obstacles. See my 6-month and 12-month updates linked below.
This is the page for my 30 Before 30 challenge: thirty goals I mean to achieve before my thirtieth birthday, May 23, 2011.
- Take a vacation–something preplanned, overnight, with hotels, airplanes, guidebooks, and (with luck) a passport.
- Visit at least one metropolitan U.S. city that I’ve never been to before.
- Get a professional massage. Completed: 5/23/2009.
- Have some sessions with a psychiatrist and find out what is up with me. Completed: Fall 2009.
- Take swim lessons or learn how to swim properly through some other means. We had a pool when I was a kid, but it was 4 ft. depth all around and as a result I can only swim when I can launch myself by pushing off bottom with my feet. Hence ‘swim properly.’
- Educate myself in popular music (broaden my music horizons beyond The Killers and Coldplay).
- Go to a karaoke bar or piano bar and sing. Did this once in college, but in the dorms, not a bar, and in a duet with my roommate, not alone.
- Cook a real dinner (nothing microwaveable or pre-cooked, and no take-out) every night for a month.
- Enjoy taking care of the dog I have.
- Take part in some kind of public trivia competition. I came in second in a Simpsons trivia contest in college. I want to relive that glory.
- Get over the need to obsessively tally everything I accomplish. Clearly the mere existence of this violates this rule, but it’s something I need to work on.
- Complete both of AFI’s 100 Best Movies lists and Entertainment Weekly’s 100 New Classics list. Completed: 8/5/2009.
- Get in the habit of going to a gym with some kind of regularity.
- Plan more concerts, trips to museums and sporting events, and general fun outings.
- Pass my MA exam in Spring 2010 and graduate from Case with a Master’s degree. Completed: 5/16/2010.
- Take my nephew on some kind of fun aunt outing. Said outing will, of course, have to be age-appropriate, because he will only be two years old when I reach the big 3-0.
- Actively participate in an academic conference.
- Respond to a CFP with a submission.
- Complete at least one of the large-scale independent projects I am continually envisioning but never do anything about because of lack of follow through.
- Establish weekly library hours and follow through on them for an entire semester.
- When an article of clothing or pair of shoes becomes unwearable due to holes or some other kind of breakage, throw it away AND purchase a replacement item immediately (which currently I tend to put off). Completed: Fall 2010.
- Have a dinner party.
- Discover a new author I love, and read everything they ever wrote. Bonus points if the author is contemporary (i.e. still alive). Completed: 4/17/2011 with Kate Atkinson.
- Go to Melt Bar and Grilled, a grilled cheese-themed restaurant in Lakewood, OH. Completed: 5/23/2009.
- Figure out a wearable hairstyle that looks nice for a special occasion which I can do myself. Right now my creativity begins and ends with ‘ponytail.’
- Figure out CSS so I can be a little more creative with my websites.
- Make a monthly budget and learn to stretch my meager graduate student stipend a little further. Completed: Fall 2010.
- Take part in some kind of social/political activism. I can accomplish this by doing something as small as writing a letter to a congressman, or donating twenty bucks to Habitat for Humanity or something, but not quite as small as, like, eschewing Starbucks in favor of free-trade coffee, or recycling.
- Budget for, shop for, and commit to buying a brand-new piece of furniture. As yet, I have never (by myself) priced and purchased a big-ticket item. Everything in my house is cheap, or a hand-me-down. Completed: 8/7/2009.
- Go “unplugged” for one week. No computer, no TV, no iPod, no cell phone. Electric lights as well as heat or air conditioning (depending on the season) are allowed; nothing else.