Dear 43 Things Users,

10 years after introducing 43 Things to the world, we have decided we have met our last goal: completing the incredible experience that has been 43 Things. Please join us in giving one last cheer to all the folks who have shared their goals with the world, as well as all the people who have worked at The Robot Co-op to build this incredible website. We won a Webby Award, published a book, and brought happiness to a lot of people.

Starting today, 43 Things users can export their goals and entries from the site. Starting August 15, we will make the site “read only”. 43 Things users will still be able to view the site and export their content, but we won’t be taking any new content from users. We hope to leave the site up for folks to see and download their content until the end of the year. Ending on New Year’s Eve takes us full circle.

It has been a long ride (one of our original goals was to "build a company that lasts at least 2 years” - we beat that one!) While we wish the site could live on, it has suffered from a number of challenges - changes in how people use the site, the advertising industry, and how search engines view the site. We wish the outcome was different – but we’ve always been realistic about when our goals are met and when they aren't.

As of today, you will be able to download your goals and entries. See more about that on the FAQ page. Thanks for 10 great years of goal-setting and achieving.

- The Robots.

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DivineSublime

DivineSublimeWhat I don't like about office Christmas parties is looking for a job the next day.

Hopefully this isn’t the case, but man I got drunk. The thing is, I did stick to plan throughout foodwise, but drinkwise was a total disaster. And today, I have the paranoid feeling of having made a fool of myself. Ah well, brazen it out and ignore the worry of it all – enjoy being me, and relax. I am not drinking again though, it’s just too darned risky to be honest with you.

Why am I worried about this? I don’t know, I think it was a comment made by my co-worker in a text as a joke. Plus, I work with someone I really don’t like who is a poisonous beeyatch. She has a knack of giving stories to everything, and heightening the drama for effect. I am so disappointed in myself for my extreme strong dislike, but it’s a very powerful feeling, and I know she will drop honeyed words about me today. Ah well, let it go, you know? And I do have a resolution about her for next year, about learning to love her and work out why she has such a strong effect on me. 3 years ago


DivineSublimeHere it is, you may have it all

More provisions bought. Things thrown out. I’m going to have a thorough clean this evening and get my home holiday ready. It feels a little better already, and I’ve made good choices.

I think I worry because of my very poor childhood. There was no backup plan. My weight also contributes to feeling physically trapped and helpless. But that’s just pointless 3 years ago


DivineSublimeA strong capable woman

Oh it’s been a hard week for this goal. The snow storms are freaking me out because of my accident a couple of years ago. I’m fat and unfit, my shoes are flimsy, I just don’t feel capable.

And yet I AM. I have managed to look after myself, go to work, look nice and stick to healthy eating. I have a tendency to catastrophise, and I am tense and unhappy. Long hard winter.

Well, I am going to go to bed and snuggle up in a minute. 3 years ago


DivineSublimeIf I had my life to live over, I would perhaps have more actual troubles but I'd have fewer imaginary ones

I’m pleased by the fact that I recognise and admit my tendency to panic and worry to some degree. I have been working solidly on this throughout the year, and it has helped to a great extent. I think I get where it comes from, but I want to become carefree, to stop that endless catastrophising.

I have done a lot better this year, and I have really tried to take action and make contingency plans for my worries. It’s troubled me a lot less this year. Of course, the downside has been that I’ve felt off colour for months now, and the thought of my own ill health throws up a lot of other issues. Maybe that’s something I can work on next year, as well as the remainder of this year, my anxiety over my health? 3 years ago


DivineSublimeNon-Specific Anxiety, or NSA

Tonight I have NSA – it’s that vague sense of anxiety/dread/worry. It’s something I suffer from terribly, and looking at it logically, I am worrying, and therefore looking around for something to latch that gnawing anxiety on to (seeking the problem). There are lots of minor things I could fret about, you see, so I am sitting here fretting. I think that’s why I have OCD tendencies towards list-making, so I can ward off worries by doing everything. Perfectionism and all that.

Anyway, I wanted to shine a light on this, and for the rest of the evening I cam going to live in the moment. Focus on whatever it is I am doing at that second, and doing it well. So right now, I am focusing on writing this entry…:-) 3 years ago


DivineSublimeAmazing results

I feel a bit teary-eyed writing this, but on Tuesday I had a blow-up with two people in my life – I am not a person who ever rows with anyone ever; I take so much.

Anyway, I had a stand-up fight with D yesterday, which was the most difficult thing I have ever done. But we ended up totally clearing the air, hugging and being better friends than ever. Closer, you know? I woke up this morning feeling fantastic – sticking up for yourself when it counts is so important. I feel wonderful, and I think he does as well. I’m so impressed by my bravery and persistence.

With Person P, I was ready to walk away, and I did say the final walking away line. He didn’t want me to – huh, who woulda thought that it’s so important to stand up for yourself? I feel amazing to be honest. I was so down and unhappy for a couple of days, but had this feeling that it was important to say that I counted and I had had enough, no matter what. And the results were better than I could have dreamed about. 3 years ago


DivineSublimeSometimes you try and that's enough

I had a bit of a final straw moment with two people on Tuesday. In my imagination, things worked out well, but in reality – not so much. But maybe that’s enough, maybe that’s all that I need, to stand up for myself. I can only control myself, not them.

Hmmmmmm. 3 years ago


DivineSublimeConscious no worrying

I made a mistake at work on Monday (not a major one), and I deliberately invoked this goal. It kind of worked too, because it was exactly the sort of thing that I would previously have fretted about all the time.

It was a mistake with the CMO agenda; it could have been disastrous, but I spotted it in time. I owned up to it to my line manager (I could have kept quiet), and all went well. 3 years ago


DivineSublimeWorry once, worry twice, worry three times

1. No worries
• This year is the year that I vanquish and make vanish my constant inner worrying
• I will shine a light on my worries by writing them down, planning actions/outcomes and seeing evidence that they are all false
• I will be mindful and observe my worry thoughts, until they fade into the background
• I will learn how to reframe my anxieties

I said that this was a number one priority of mine this year, and I did start off doing fairly well with it. I would have to say that this has slipped slightly with my constant preoccupation and worry over my health, and my secret conviction that I have cancer. Hmmmmm. Well, okay, let’s do a sheet again about it – these worked fairly well at the start of the year.

I am worried that I have colon cancer or something serious because my abdomen has been mildly hurting for three weeks and I feel like I have a blockage (movements and wind). Am uncomfortable and panicked all the time

Plan
• I will keep a daily diary and if nothing has changed by next Monday (18 October 2010), I will make an appointment with the doctor to get it checked out
• I will not predict what may be causing this, I will focus on Slimming World and healthy eating.
• I will also increase my water intake and do more exercise to try and get my system happier
• I will be able to deal with anything that is wrong, and will tackle it with every fibre of my being!

And now I should just forget about it, right? Just keep a daily diary in the evening. The pain is not unbearable, it’s just worrying.

Other than that, how am I doing? Not too bad, I think this has been a fairly good year. I did a lot of ‘worry’ exercises in the first few months, and every single time they were resolved okay, and not the way that I had anticipated. In fact, the worst moments/events of my life have not been predicted at all. 3 years ago


DivineSublimeOutlook: good

I am a worrier although I acknowledge and recognise this. I have been trying to make myself tackle things head-on without procrastinating about them because I’m scared. So at work, no matter how worried I am, I’ve been forcing myself to do things that are unpleasant – and by doing this, it’s a great strategy that I’m not missing anything by covering it up.

In my private life, I do worry about things a lot, but again, I’ve been setting myself targets of doing things that have worried me. (Like just now, I’ve written to the CP chairman to explain circumstances).

I’ve been writing daily letters to myself, and I have found these to be a source of comfort and inspiration through the day. Fear is no one’s friend, and I want to be braver. I’ve realised that actions are the antithesis of fear – ‘just do it’ indeed!

This is a hard resolution, and I think I am addressing this consciously and regularly and on a daily basis. I’m not there yet, but I’m experimenting a lot with mind-sets and looking at things a different way. Seeing things as opportunities rather than threats. It’s hard to quantify, but I feel/hope that I’m progressing this one well. 4 years ago


DivineSublimeNot a terrible week for worrying

It hasn’t been a terrible week for worrying, so I haven’t had to write things down too much. I feel there is one area where I have improved upon, where I simply refuse to worry about the move next week. I can’t influence the weather, so I’m just not worrying about it. I have bigger anxieties going on, but they are all a bit shapeless and woolly, and it’s not been a huge problem this week. I wanted to read a bit more of my anxiety for dummies, so maybe I’ll do that. But this hasn’t been bad. 4 years ago


DivineSublimeI worry all the time.

I worry all the time. I catastrophise, and feel panicky about ‘what if’ scenarios. I’m trying so hard to work on this goal, but I get incredibly fearful. I am worried about the weather and my mother; the weather and me; the weather and the country. I feel a bit sick to be honest, and am definitely catastrophising.

I even feel stupid writing this down and putting it out there, but I feel sick with anxiety so much of the time. I know a little that it is about my deep dark fears – that I am alone, and if my mum dies, I have no relatives at all. Who would I put down for my ‘next of kin’? Sometimes I have that thought. It’s ludicrous at my age, but I think it’s one of the drawbacks of being single. But I didn’t want to settle for B earlier this year, I made that decision that it was better to be alone than in a relationship if I didn’t have strong feelings for him. But sometimes I think that a lot of my worries are about being alone and not being able to cope. Which kind of leads into another of my goals, that this is really a form of self-pity, and I have had enough of that! I just wish that my brother hadn’t died, you know? I wish I had some family. But there you go, I’m very lucky to have what I have, I want to count my blessings instead of cursing my (imaginary?) drawbacks. 4 years ago


DivineSublimeThis is working well

This is working well, to be honest. I am logging worries through the day, no matter how trivial, and as they build up and are proved not to be true, I can see how silly they were. I just have a sheet which explains the worry in one sentence with a time/date. Then I put some quick bullet points about what I’m going to do about it, with a final point about a time I am setting aside to worry about it specifically (usually about 15 minutes the next day). I have never felt the need to do this worrying, but it kind of frees my mind, because I’ve done something with the worries.

Then of course when I see them all resolved okay, either never coming to pass or me dealing easily with them (almost always never coming to pass), it reinforces the foolishness of fretting about all the possibilities.

This is a really healthy thing for me to be doing, and I feel pretty good that I am shining a light on my inner life of worrying. It feels productive, and like I’m making steps forward. I wonder if half the time owning up to a problem diminishes it straight away? I am feeling good so far about this year (I know, I know!). I have always felt that we can all do whatever we want, so long as we work out what it is and then break it down into manageable steps.

Anyway, I just wanted to record that I had two major worries over the last couple of days, and I followed this process. It really helped me a lot, and both worries were totally groundless, which made me laugh both times and realise consciously the futility of fretting/worrying. 4 years ago


DivineSublimeUntitled

I’ve been thinking and working on this one quite a lot today. At work, I read a website which gave some excellent advice, which I’ve already been following, about writing down worries as they occur, and then specifying a time to worry about them – the idea is that you almost certainly won’t, but writing them down and setting aside a ‘worry’ time means that you have given your brain permission to let go, because it’s accounted for. So I kept a running order of the things that I’ve been worrying about, and printed them off, and to be honest, they are pretty silly; 2 out of 6 didn’t come true, the rest are unlikely to come true. I really want to focus on being free of worry, but it’s nebulous to say the least. So I’m quite pleased to be zeroing in on it.

Later on today, I read a bit from Overcoming Anxiety for Dummies, and there was a really fabulous tip which works: be your own best friend. Imagine that someone with your problems is a dear friend of yours, and they are sitting opposite you telling you about it. How would you advise them? I tried this for The Man, and it was magical, to hear how kind and firm I would be with a friend of mine. Anyway, this technique is called “compassionate mind training”, which involves you learning to provide counter-arguments to your critical inner sound track; it’s apparently (and it really is!) much more powerful to hear yourself say these arguments to a friend than it would be to write them down etc. Must remember this tip, I’ve used something like it before for job interviews (described myself in the third person in practice to get myself in the mode of seeing myself as great!) and it was very effective.

Okay, am pleased with this, it feels like a positive step forward! 4 years ago


DivineSublimeResolution 1 for 2010

This year is the year that I vanquish and make vanish my constant inner worrying
I will shine a light on my worries by writing them down, planning actions/outcomes and seeing evidence that they are all false
I will be mindful and observe my worry thoughts, until they fade into the background
I will learn how to reframe my anxieties 4 years ago


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