So. It's a day and a half before a new year begins. If we're being honest here, I cannot wait. 2013 hasn't really been a banner year for me in any way at all, so a new one cannot get here fast enough. And it's not like I am sitting here thinking that the new year is going to just magically change everything and make it all better. In reality, it's not any different from any other new day - each day brings with it the opportunity to make changes, to make improvements, and to start something amazing. But there is just something about looking down the barrel of a whole new year that makes it hit home a bit harder, I think.
So I have been thinking, and I have decided there are some things I want to do differently in 2014. I am not going to call these resolutions, per se... more just like, general goals for improvement. I understand that pretty much all of these things are going to be a work in progress, and I don't want to set myself up for disappointment by pushing a bunch of new goals on myself all at once and then failing miserably. But I am going to post them on here, and make them public, both because the accountability will help me stick to them, and also, I can probably use the encouragement.
- Talk less, listen more. I have a tendency to talk too much. I process everything by talking it out, and "words of affirmation" is my love language, so speaking generally comes easily to me. However, I sometimes use this as an excuse for my failure to really listen to others, and give them the respect and courtesy that I expect of them.
- Get healthy. Sure, I'd love to lose some weight. Okay, a lot of weight. But at the end of the day, I am more concerned with my health than I am with the numbers on the scale. Well, most of the time that's true, anyway. And it should be true all of the time. To this end, I want to get myself into a regular workout schedule. Even doing a little bit each day is better than doing nothing.
- Write more. I keep saying that I want to do this, and then I never do it. I get nervous that whatever I DO write would be total crap, so you know...why even bother, right, since it's just going to be awful anyway? I want to try and get out of my own head with that, and just write. Even if it's terrible. Even if I never show anyone. Even if I do show people and they think it's terrible. I just want to do it.
- Take at least one photo every day. I am no kind of photographer, nor am I really interested in becoming one, but I do often find myself wishing that I had more documentation of my life so I could remember it better for myself. I don't know yet how I want this to look - maybe it will just be a folder I keep on my phone, and all of my dedicated one-a-day photos will go in there. Maybe I'll post them somewhere. I don't know. All I know is that I want to do it.
- Read 75 books. I know it's a stretch, but I think it's doable, especially because I'm not making this all about reading books that are non-fiction, or that are supposed to make me smarter or whatever. I mean, yes, I'm all for that too, so bring it on, but right now at least, I want to focus on the quantity more than the quality. Maybe the quality reading goal will come next year. Also, because of this goal, I am soliciting book recommendations - what are your faves? Follow me on Goodreads!
- Be more assertive. Care less about what people think, and more about what I think. I don't mean this in a selfish, kind of "screw everybody else" sort of way. I just mean it in the sense that for most of my life, I have been a people pleaser. I have pushed aside my own wants and needs in favor of what other people want, and in case anyone was wondering, it hasn't turned out so well for me. Gee, what a surprise. So because that's been awful, I want to start being more vocal about what I need and want, and pay some more attention to making sure my needs are met as well, and not just the needs of the people around me.
- Learn to cook something awesome every month. I love cooking, but it is tough when you have a tiny kitchen and are cooking for a really small number. I want to be all gourmet about it, and get fancy, and try and make a perfect presentation, and when I can't do that, I get frustrated and then end up giving up on the whole thing and just throwing in a pizza or something. Lame. So my goal is to each month, find a new recipe for something that is delicious and relatively healthy (or maybe not super healthy - it can be a cheat meal, I suppose), and can at least look really fancy, even if it's not. And then I want to make an awesome dinner with said recipe. I will plan to post the recipes and my failures/successes here as well, since I'm sure you'll all be dying to know what happens.
I have more improvements I'd like to make, but I think this list will do for now. What are your goals for 2014?