New Year resolutions are something I used to make every year. It was always the same, to lose weight, just to varying degrees depending on how heavy I was and how ambitious I was feeling at the time. Then by the end (or middle) of January I would give in to some cravings or I would feel I hadn’t lost ‘enough’ weight and I would just give up. Cue year after year of finishing the year heavier than I started and making the same resolution again and again.
This year I realised that I don’t want to make that resolution again, or in fact any resolutions. I want to make goals. Many goals. Things I can work on and develop, get better at. Not things that I either succeed or fail at, but things that as long as I work on them I will reach them eventually-even if that isn’t this year. Goals that have more than one way to succeed at them, if one way doesn’t end up working for me there is always a different angle to approach it from.
I brainstormed different goals and ideas and decided to categorise them into six different areas of my life as well as one main goal. The six areas I’ve made goals in are; financial, health and food, online presence, exercise, career and other. For each of these categories I’ve thought about how I would like this area of my life to look at the end of 2018 as well as set goals to help me achieve this. For some goals I’ve put dates that I’m aiming to achieve the goal by, as they will impact my ability to achieve some of my remaining goals and for others I’m just trying to achieve as much as I can towards them by the end of the year. Some of my goals are SMART like they teach you in school, some of them are fluffy intention goals that I can make a call on later in the year if I feel like I’ve made progress with them or not.
Without further ado, here are my goals to work towards in 2018.
By the end of 2018 I would like my only debt to be my student loan and to have had an amazing experience on my cruise in August. I would like to have purchased what I need and not deprived myself of things like buying new clothes while still setting up a healthy base of savings.
- Pay off the remaining $1,100 of my overdraft by the 20th of June. My Graduate bank account expires around then and after that I’ll be charged interest so I want to get this paid off ASAP.
- Pay off my credit card in full each time I get paid.
- Save the remaining $700 to pay off my cruise by the 23rd of April.
- Save $1,000 spending money by 15th of August for my cruise.
- Save $2,000 to buy a new bed.
- Save $5,000 for an emergency fund by the end of the year.
- Save $1,500 for a new rental deposit and moving costs by the end of January 2019.
- Save $1,100 to attend the NZ Voice Academy Training course.
- Talk to my friends and family more about money. Don’t let it be a taboo subject, it’s something we all need to live and actually work for almost every day. It affects our lives in so many different ways, from how we earn it to how we spend or save it, that we should be able to talk to people about our experiences with money.
- While trying to save for these things and pay off my current credit card and overdraft debt, I need to remember to make room in my budget to treat myself to the things I want and need so I don’t feel deprived and end up spending all of my savings in retaliation to my self-imposed restrictions.
Health and Food
By the end of 2018 I would like to be more confident in cooking healthy and tasty food for myself and be on my way to leading a healthy lifestyle by building healthy habits into my everyday routine.
- Find a doctor who can help and support me in my health and well-being goals and ask them to do blood work to see if there’s anything I need to look out for (e.g low iron levels) while building my new healthy habits. If any readers have suggestions for great doctors around the North Shore of Auckland, please let me know. I’d prefer a female doctor but open to suggestions.
- Invest money in kitchen tools and appliances that will make cooking at home faster, easier, tastier or just more appealing after a long day at work.
- Lose between 0.5-1 kg per week.
- Track my weight and measurements on the first of every month as well as taking progress pictures. I’m hoping by only weighing myself every month it will break the ‘I did really good, treat myself!’ or ‘I did really bad, might as well give up’ mentality that I can often fall into when weighing weekly. Measurements and progress pictures are for the months that I don’t lose much or feel like I haven’t made enough of a change. Having these other ways of monitoring my body will help me to get a wider understanding of it other than the effect of gravity on my mass at any one point in time.
- Focus on the positive changes I can feel in my body.
- Finish the year weighing less than 100kg.
- Track my calorie intake 95% of the time and try to keep to the amount of calories My Fitness Pal is telling me to have. I know I won’t want to track every single day this year and think that’s unrealistic for me, so this goal will let me have days like my birthday, anniversary and Christmas away from tracking without feeling guilty.
- Drink 2L or 8 glasses of water per day.
- Aim for 7-8 hours of sleep each night.
- Follow the 80/20 rule of cooking at home each week. Try to make 80% of my meals home cooked and the remaining 20% can be bought. This ends up being around 4 bought meals per week which is a lot less than I used to have.
For this area of my life I just want to feel like I’ve pushed myself outside of my comfort zone during the year. I want to share my life and my experiences with other people on the internet and hopefully inspire someone to live their life for themselves and not someone else. By making content I hope to learn what I’m good at already and develop new skills for things I’m not that good at yet.
- Publish one item of content per week. This could be anything from a blog post, YouTube video or an audio file and it can be on any topic that I feel like that week. The most important thing is that I make something.
- Post to my personal Facebook and Instagram accounts without worrying about what people will think.
- Post to my blog-related Instagram (@abby_sees92 if you want to follow!) whenever I feel like it. I’ve already posted nine photos in the first week of 2018 which is the amount I posted on my personal Instagram account for the entirety of 2017!
- Maybe one day I will tell my personal Facebook friends or Instagram followers about my blog and goal related content and invite them to take a look.
I would love to finish 2018 feeling stronger, moving my body more regularly and enjoying how I do that. Starting from pretty much zero movement currently, I want to slowly increase my exercise and find different ways to keep it interesting.
- Move my body for at least 30 minutes three days a week.
- Try new ways to move my body that I’ve previously been too scared or nervous to do.
- Giz’ Westlake Zumba classes
- Belly dancing
- Pole fitness
- Complete Couch 2 5K training programme.
- Run a 5km race.
- Walk up Rangitoto island.
- Walk the Tongariro Alpine crossing in November.
While I enjoy working in my current team and I’m good at my job, I know its not something I want to do for the rest of my life. People are always changing and evolving and we shouldn’t settle for something we don’t find joy in. By the end of the year I would like to be in a job that I enjoy and that serves me as much as I serve it.
- Talk to People Support at my current company by the end of February to see if there are jobs that I think would bring me joy and purpose within the company.
- Find a side-job to bring in extra money and help me save for all of my financial goals.
- Have a salary of $55,000 per year by 31st December.
- Find a job that makes me feel fulfilled and that I’m passionate about.
- Try out for voice acting jobs. If anyone knows how to do this in New Zealand please let me know, I’d love to get into it but I have no idea where to start!
- Attend an NZ Voice Academy two day course before the end of the year.
- Keep taking opportunities to learn new skills as they arise, even if I’m not sure that’s what I want to do.
- Speak my mind more often and make myself heard.
These are goals that will help me to live a more fulfilled life and enjoy my life more. There are a few things that I know I should do and some things I want to do. These are goals that will help a lot with achieving my main goal for the year.
- Spend one hour a week cleaning my room. I’m not a naturally tidy person and my room can easily turn into a crazy mess if I’m not careful. Having a clean room makes me feel more organised and makes me feel like I have space to do stuff.
- De-clutter and get rid of things I no longer use or no longer bring me joy. This is an ongoing project throughout the year as I buy more things, I will need to get rid of some too or else I won’t have space for everything. I started the year with a big room clean and purge of the shit that was in there, three big bags worth got chucked! Now I just have to keep on top of it and make sure I don’t hoard things I no longer need.
- Set up a dedicated space for myself in my room, to work on my content and inspire me every day.
- Read one book per month. I know a lot of people want to read a book per week, but I haven’t read books in years and want to ease myself back into them. My favourite books growing up were ones like Harry Potter, Stephanie Plum bounty hunter novels and the Mortal Engines series. If you have any suggestions for awesome books I might like, please let me know and I’ll put it on my list to read.
- Use my Life Planner from Erin Condren to keep myself on track with all these goals. Break up these goals into monthly and weekly goals that will build on each other to end up achieving the big goals. Use the weekly pages to schedule in time to work on everything I need to each week around my other commitments.
- Brush up on my High School French. I’ve started with Duolingo and I will look at different options to continue once I find myself at the end of that journey.
- Have more experiences. Go to shows. Explore the world. Go bush. Watch movies. Do shit I want to do.
- Ask for what I want. Be that help, support or just someone to hang out with. I’m often left feeling sad with unfulfilled expectations because I don’t ask the people in my life for what I want or need from them.
- Stop doing things just because I want people to like me or think I’m nice. Do things because I want to and believe in what I’m doing.
While this is a LONG list of goals and does feel quite daunting, I feel optimistic that I can achieve a lot of these this year. If there’s some I don’t quite get to, that’s ok too. I’m trying to focus on continual improvement, not a complete lifestyle and personality change overnight.
I think all of my other goals will help me to achieve my main goal for the year. If I find during the year some of them aren’t helping, then they will change. Goals are never final and you can always change your mind on them. Sometimes things seem important at one stage of your life but you find when you get closer to them you see they’re not what you want in your life.
My main goal and hope for everyone this year is:
Life is too short to not enjoy it.