Thursday, January 4, 2018

2018 Goal: Maximize Enjoyment, Minimize Guilt

My 2017 goals were too ambitious. Plus, they read like a business plan and I do not have a business. I assessed my performance of them in the tail end of my post for 12/27/17. I truly do not think I am exhibiting the sour grapes behavior as in the Aesop tale about the fox and the grapes - criticizing my goals because I achieved so few of them – but I now realize I need to rethink what I want to strive for in my quilting, sewing, knitting, and crocheting.

Most important and foremost is to know myself.
  • First off, my crafting is a hobby and a means of expression for me.
  • Being organized makes me more creative – not less so.
  • Trying new things should be part of the equation. 
  • Liking the process and not just the product should also figure in. 
  • I am a list maker and like a visual show and reminder of my accomplishments so having a TA-DA list per Katie Fowler’s An Artist’s Journey through Wonderland is every bit as important as having a TO-DO list. 
  • I like to write and take pictures so keeping up my blog is a positive. Having people comment on what I do gives me a lift. 
I took a strong interest in the posts promulgated through The Quilt Show that proposed the Seven Habits of Highly Effective Quilters in the Steven Covey way of thinking. Here are those links. They are worth reading in Anna's original words but I summarized them for my own behalf as I apply them to myself. So here are some guidelines to being an effective quilter.
  1. Make my binding when I make my quilt top so I avoid frustrating delays
  2. Organize beautifully so I can see my stash
  3. It’s never too late to repurpose abandoned projects
  4. Allow inspiration; do not avoid shows and stores for fear of overbuying
  5. Quilt in a group can be interpreted as quilt guilds or online networking
  6. Stitch in time whatever moments I can grab
  7. Regular inventory; stroke that fabric and remember what I’ve got
But what does effective mean to me in my world of quilting and crafts? The wisdom of self-knowledge, a TA-DA list, and effectiveness guides all combine to boil down to one goal for me.

Maximize Enjoyment and Minimize Guilt

These gentle reminders, roughly correlated to those seven effectiveness guidelines, will help me attain that goal.
  • Organize only for the frustration free joy of finding what I want when I want it (1, 2)
  • Take a serious look at those UFOs and assess my true level of interest (3)
  • Buy for aesthetic appeal, not bargain price, thus avoiding guilt and buyer’s remorse (4)
  • Enjoy my blogging. Comment regularly and generously on other's posts (5)
  • Leave projects in progress out to continue in a moment, for a moment (6)
  • Refold and admire my fabric to my heart's content (7)
Hmm. But how do I measure success in this goal? I guess I will just be HAPPIER!

Sharing these thoughts with other quilters at Let's Bee Social #210.


  1. Diane, I found this to be quite interesting. I checked out the book using your link. I admire your commitment to creativity, honing your craft, and inspiring others.

  2. Diane, I really enjoyed this post. I am beginning to find that the blogs I enjoy the most are from those ladies who quilt for the pure enjoyment of it and they aren't trying to make a living at it. I don't begrudge anyone who wants or need to make money blogging and I wish them much success but sometimes the pushing of products gets to be a overwhelming. That's probably my own fault for not searching out the "just like to quilt" bloggers. Thanks for sharing the guidelines for being an effective quilter!

  3. So have you already missed Goal #1, given your massive (and not-so-enjoyable) re-org of your sewing room? Or met it. since presumably stuff is easier to find now?

    Overall I think this is a good set of goals. I know it's important to challenge oneself, but quilting *is* a hobby, and hobbies are supposed to be fun. I think my goal this year (as it was last year) is just mainly to buy fabric at something *closer* to the approximate rate I use it, so that I'm "using it at the peak of liking it" and not 2 years later.