Where to even begin with 2019 lol. It was surely a whirlwind of a year. It feels like it started and then I blinked and it was over. Looking back on the blog post I wrote last year about my 2019 goals, I feel like I did pretty good at accomplishing quite a bit. While I didn’t end up going back to college like I had originally planned (I talked more about why I didn’t here), I was able to quit my part time job like I had intended to and paid off a pretty significant amount of debt. Somehow, I even managed to start my own side business which wasn’t even on my radar this time last year so that was pretty cool too. I also got to travel a decent amount (just got back from my first trip to NYC!) like I had hoped. I also got to go on my first hosted blogger trip which was a ton of fun (I’m slacking on my travel posts because there’s so much to them, but that should be up soon + the NYC trip). This past year, I met a lot of great people and got to experience a lot of new things and I’m so grateful for that.
All in all, I was definitely ready for a new year and I’m beyond excited for 2020. There were a lot of highs, but also a lot of lows last year and I’m just ready for a clean slate. I feel more focused and motivated than ever. I am really determined to figure out what it is that makes me happy in life. It’s important to me that this be the year I stop making excuses and start taking action. I feel like I’ve been in a rut for quite a while now and I want to break free from that. Slowly but surely, I’m learning that if I don’t make changes, then nothing is going to change. If your present life circumstances aren’t making you happy, what can you do to redirect your path? I have spent the last few days thinking about all of the things I want to accomplish this year and decided to share my list with you to not only hold myself accountable, but perhaps it will inspire you as well.
Before I get to them, I just want to share a few helpful tips on goal-setting. First and foremost, I think it’s important to physically write (or type) out your goals. Personally, I think you will have better success on following through with them if you can see them written out and look at them regularly – basically a daily reminder of what you’re working towards. I also think it’s really important to write out kind of a step-by-step guide on how you’re going to get there. For example, I talk in more detail below about paying off debt. However, on the back end for just myself, I’ve also created a spreadsheet of exactly what I’m going to pay towards that debt each month in order to make that goal actually happen this year within the timeframe that I’ve given myself. If I was just freely making whatever payments I felt like making or barely over the minimum, then yes, I would be working towards my goal still, but I would not reach it nearly as quickly as I will with a specific plan in place to make sure it happens in the timeframe that I want. I believe this plan applies to just about anything (weight loss, college, saving money, planning travel, etc.) and I also think it puts you a step ahead in making your goals a reality!
I also think it’s important to set attainable goals for yourself. Personally, I have always had a problem with creating to do lists for myself that quite honestly are just not feasible to complete. I put way too much on there and then what ends up happening is I kind of get paralyzed by being overwhelmed and end up accomplishing nothing because I’m all over the place. One way to address this which I plan to implement more of this year is to create a “master to do list” in a Google Doc or maybe in the notes on your phone. Then, each week or month, transfer 5-10 things (depending on what you think you can actually accomplish or how big the task is) to that week’s to do list. This helps with the overwhelm and makes accomplishing these goals a little easier. I make a to do list every single day and I swear it gets me through life lol.
And lastly, I think it’s also important to not set goals that only have a set ending to them – as in you convince yourself that you will find happiness if you complete them. I’m talking about things such as getting to a certain weight or getting a promotion at work or getting into a relationship. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with those goals of course and they are things you should absolutely work towards if that’s what you want in life. However, just remember most of those things are going to bring you temporary happiness, but the excitement will fade over time. Include continuous goals that will be more permanent and propel your life in the direction you want it to go, like 3 random acts of kindness each month or something along those lines. Hopefully that makes sense.
Ok, now onto my goals for 2020…
Get organized. This year, one of my biggest goals is to get both my physical and digital space decluttered and organized. I have never really had the greatest organization skills, but I feel like I would be so much less stressed out if I did so I’m determined to make it happen! I hope to get rid of things I don’t use or need, keep the things that I love and find a place for them. Even my digital space is unorganized right now and it drives me crazy. So I plan to do things to make that easier on myself as well – like organizing my inboxes, unsubscribing from emails I no longer want or need, etc.
On that note, if you also struggle with getting organized/getting rid of things, I really recommend reading The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo. It is super motivational and actually makes a lot of sense. I have had this book for ages and love it. I’ll honestly probably read it again before I try to tackle this huge project just to give myself the extra motivation!
Pay off my credit cards. I was down to just one credit card last year, but the interest was so high on it that I was barely getting anywhere even paying well over the minimum payment. I ended up doing a balance transfer in November on half of what I owe (because it was 0% for a year) just to cut down on the cost of interest. If all goes according to plan, I should have both cards paid off by this Fall and be completely out of credit card debt for probably the first time in my adult life! I don’t plan on using credit cards ever again unless it’s an emergency honestly. My mindset going forward is if I don’t have the money, then I can’t afford it!
Travel more (again). I got to travel a decent amount this past year which was so so good for my soul! I get burnt out really easily and travel definitely makes me feel a little more human again. So my goal is to keep traveling (even more) this year and more specifically, to places I haven’t yet been before. Not sure on specifics yet, but I would like to take at least one trip out of the country and several around the US. There’s so much out there to do and see and life goes by so quickly. I’ve learned that it might cost you some money, but you can make that back. You can’t get the time back and you’re not promised tomorrow so do it while you have the chance!
Launch my business. As I mentioned above, I started my own little side hustle early on in 2019. It kind of happened by accident, but so far it’s been great. Basically, I just do a mixture of creative work – social media management, virtual assistance, photography, website design, etc. Since I do work full time and also try to be somewhat consistent with my blog/social media among other things (like family life), I didn’t have the chance last year to go all in with my business. It ended up taking off much faster than I expected and I never got the chance to tie up all the loose ends and officially launch so that’s my plan for this year! I’m so excited to see where it takes me and I’m hoping to do big things with it.
Prioritize my health and wellness. This is definitely something I did not do enough of this past year. I’m embarrassed to admit my weight is at an all time high right now. I’m 100% an emotional eater and I also worked nonstop in 2019 which meant not a lot of time being active and mostly just sitting at a desk all day and night. While I don’t really care about the number on the scale, I do care about my lack of self confidence, the long-term effects carrying extra weight around is going to have on my body now and in the future and just the overall way that I feel.
I did successfully complete a round of Whole 30 last January (more on that here if you want to read about it) and while it’s great to do temporarily, I have tried and failed so many other times at successfully completing it that I just don’t feel it’s something I can stick with 100%. I do plan to follow it as closely as possible on most days, but I think it’s much more realistic for me to have the occasional cheat day to maintain my sanity and so I don’t feel completely deprived (aka I can occasionally get Starbucks and/or have a cheat meal). Although I would love to do Whole 30 for 30 consecutive days at least one time around just to get in the right frame of mind again.
I have learned that trying to diet or do something temporary will not yield permanent results which is really what I’m after. It’s going to require a complete overhaul of the way I’ve been living. So my focus this year is to really just get into a routine of healthier/cleaner eating, regular exercise and hopefully finding the confidence I once had again. It’s going to require a lot of self-discipline and pushing myself to make a healthy meal or go to the gym when I don’t feel like it or feel like I have more important things to do, but I think it’s doable!
Try new things. I am so guilty of being a creature of habit and I hate that I’m so predictable. So another one of my goals this year is to be willing to step out of my box and be willing to try new things. Whether it’s a restaurant I’ve never been to, traveling somewhere I’ve never been or just doing something I wouldn’t normally do like sign up for yoga, I want to do all of it. I feel like I’ve limited myself to a lot of things out of habit and that’s something I want to break away from over this next year.
Start preparing myself for the future financially. I will be 30 this year (cringing already) and I realize I need to start better planning for my future in terms of finances and retirement. If the last few years are any indication of how quickly time goes by, then I had probably better get with the program. My job provides me with a retirement plan, but I know that alone won’t be enough someday and I want to be financially sound, both now and in the future. While I’ve made significant progress in getting out of debt (should be completely debt free by the end of next year!), I still think it’s important to start looking at the bigger picture and getting a better understanding of investments and all of those things now. I don’t want to look back and wish I would have done it sooner – it’s already something I’ve been putting off long enough. I think I just get overwhelmed and don’t even know where to begin so if you have some advice, please feel free to share!
Don’t sweat the small stuff. Cliche maybe, but by nature, I am a worrier and let everything stress me out. Awful characteristic to have if you ask me lol, but I can’t seem to help it. However, that’s something I really want to work on this year. I don’t want to continue to allow myself to get stressed over anything and everything because it simply isn’t necessary. If life has taught me anything, it is that things will always work out in the end. Stressing over situations and circumstances (especially beyond your control) isn’t going to make it better, it’s only going to take away your present joy and happiness.
Blog more and ditch the idea of perfectionism. I absolutely love my little spot here on the internet, but I didn’t blog nearly as much as I wanted to in 2019. So my goal is to blog much more consistently and stop worrying about it being perfect before clicking publish. I have so much I want to say and do with this and my other social media platforms and I think the idea of not putting things out there unless they’re “perfect” ultimately just holds me back. I’m hoping to not be so concerned with that this year and really just focus more on what I love which is writing, creating and connecting with other people. I plan to be much more active on my other social media channels as well this year.
I do have some other small goals like reading more, being more present and also just being a more positive person. I would also like to apply to some modeling agencies since that has now been a dream of mine for a long time. That’s something I’ve been putting on the back burner thinking I’m not good enough, but it’s starting to feel like now or never. Not sure what will happen with that, but I guess the point of this post is to write down the things I want to become realities, right? Lastly, I would like to create a bucket list for myself. It’s something I’ve started on, but never really taken the time to be too intentional about. And of course start making plans to check those things off!
Overall, I’m feeling pretty hopeful and optimistic about 2020! I foresee it being a year of growth, happiness and positive changes. I think much of it has to do with mindset and staying committed to your dreams and goals.
What are your thoughts on New Year’s resolutions? Did you make any for yourself? I’d love to know – leave a comment below!