See the inspiration for this post here: 11 Things My Life Doesn’t Need. Thanks to Jeff and Stephanie Padovani for sharing this great exercise on Twitter!

Despite my ever-so-sparkly lifestyle, I’m only human. I make the occasional excuses. I like to procrastinate. My time management skills are far from flawless. Here’s the short list of habits and vices I plan to kick to the curb in 2011 and beyond:

1. Weapons of Mass Distraction – Ever since the bellydance forum Bhuz.com got a “facelift” and became a non-user-friendly eyesore, I’ve picked up literally hours of free time to work on costume projects and to practice dance! Now, if only I can do the same with Facebook. And Twitter. And those darned cute videos of confused-looking pugs tilting their little heads.

2. “Default” Songs – While everyone has tried-and-true favorite pieces of music to fall back on, expanding your repetoire is key. Next time I catch myself thinking, “Oh, I know! I’ll do something totally new and exciting that I’ve never done before and open with Drama Queen!” I might consider something by Setrak Sarkissian instead.

3. Taking My Eyes off the Prize – Within the next two years, my goal is to build my business solely around weddings. Weddings are, hands down, my favorite gigs, and I love being a blank canvas on which brides can create their ideal reception entertainment. Not that I’ll ever quit doing birthdays or bellygrams, because many of my best shows have actually been smaller events. But if I spin my wheels or get derailed from my long-term goal, please get me back on track!

4. Going to the fabric store without a shopping list. That’s how I end up with 25 spools of off-white button thread (because I could’ve sworn I needed it!) and forget to buy hooks or interfacing or whatever I went there for in the first place.

5. Ineffective Forms of Advertising – One particular lead generating site I’m on attracts price shopping customers in droves and encourages dancers to underbid each other. It stresses me out and I don’t even book any gigs on there.  Time for a change!

6. Impulse Costume Purchases – If I had a penny for every time I said, “Ah, I swore off Egyptian costumes because I can never get the bras to fit and the skirts always slide off my hips – OOH SHINY! A Sahar! I need it NOW!” I’d probably have enough to buy a closet full of well-fitting custom-made Bellas, Sims and Legends.

7. Stress and Sleep Deprivation– Getting 8+ hours of sleep, eating right, and doing yoga will be top priorities.

8. Excuses Not to Practice – If can look me in the eyes and tell me point blank that you’ve never said, “I can’t practice today because I ate too much at the Indian Buffet,” or “I can’t practice because my dog can’t stand my zilling,” you are full of beans. Lord knows, I’ve been lazy, myself – especially since the days started getting shorter, colder and darker. If all goes according to plan, I’ll have a home studio by the end of next year – and ZERO excuses!

9. Frenemies, Debbie Downers and Other Toxic People – Enough said!

10. Critique from the wrong people – Don’t get me wrong. I love constructive criticism and I’ve been known to actively solicit it from trusted peers. But I know myself and my audiences better than anyone else. So next time somebody tells me that I might want to get off my high horse and start doing more pro bono restaurant work and Turn Uncle Bob Into a Sultan gigs, I will respectfully say, “I think we can agree to disagree on this one.”

11. More costumes. OK, I lied. Just wanted to see if you’re paying attention!

What are you getting rid of next year?

What Do You Think About All This?