I feel like a lot of people set their goals, work toward them for a couple of weeks or a couple of months, and then slowly forget about them or give up on them. I mean, if you really tried to reach those goals and then realized that they were ridiculous or unrealistic or you no longer wanted those things, that's fine. But, you know, if you still want to reach those goals, let's try, try again. You can re-invigorate/re-jigger your goals at any time. No one's watching you and saying hey, you dropped the ball on that goal for six weeks, so you don't get to have that goal anymore. Right? It's silly to tie self-improvement to a time of year. So what are you waiting for?
1. Live a more active lifestyle-While I'm definitely not where I was hoping to be fitness-wise, I've really improved my healthy eating habits and am continuing to improve on that front. I have a small group of ladies on Facebook that I talk to online pretty much every day--we have a private group page where we post what we ate, what exercise we did, what health-related questions/problems/concerns we have, good resources and recipes that we come across, and all kinds of other stuff. This has seriously been the best thing for me. I've gotten turned onto some really great free exercise resources (I'll be sharing these with you soon!), and am generally much more conscious of what I eat because I know I'm reporting it to this group of ladies who are also focusing on their health (makes me so much less likely to scarf down a whole box of Girl Scout cookies or have Taco Bell for lunch while I'm running errands). I seriously cannot encourage you enough to get with even just one or two other people to work on a similar goal together. Having that support system (and also accountability) makes all the difference. Another thing I've done is create a healthy living inspiration board on Pinterest with some inspiring words and images and little items I can purchase as rewards when I reach certain goals.
2. Be smarter with money-This is one that I haven't been as great at. I've been really working to hone in my kind of random spending (you know, like walking around Target when you're bored and just buying a bunch of stuff in the dollar spot), but with my healthier eating has also come negotiating a healthier grocery cart and keeping my spending down, so that's something I'm still figuring out. I'm also starting to take stock of what stuff I'll need to buy when I move out on my own, so that's been encouraging ot help keep me from buying stuff I don't need because I know I'd rather spend that money later on a nice blender and set of knives.
3. Reach out to people more-This is one that I was doing really well at earlier in the year and have slacked on, so it definitely needs re-invogorated. I've gotten sick and busy and tired and in weird lonely funks and spent a lot of time alone. For my part I have rarely turned down invitations to go out, but I haven't been good at inviting people I want to hang out with to hang.
4. Write every day-Epic fail. I've been in revising mode this semester with my thesis and just haven't been writing new stuff, not creatively, not here on the blog, not anywhere. So need to really kick this one up.
5. Read for fun more-This one has been a bit of a fail as well. I've been reading a good bit about fitness and health, but I haven't really been reading much creative writing beyond what I'm teaching in my class or even magazines. I honestly think part of this is being in the last semester of my program and just needing a break, but I've had it now, so I need to get back into it. I love reading, but sometimes I seem to forget that. I guess spending six years where reading and writing is your job will do that to you.
6. Have some time away from screens and just relax and wind at the end of the day-I've been doing part two. I've gotten really into candles this year and have started lighting a candle at the end of the night and really relaxing while I do my evening routine, but I haven't been good about keeping away from screens before bed. I think doing a better job of this will help with my reading goal as well!
So that's where I'm at right now. How about you?
Yours Truly, Jen
P.S. I'm starting a new post series: do yourself a favor. This might sound bossy, maybe, I don't know; my goal is never to be bossy in this space. But, you know. Anyway, I wanted to do this series to inspire you to do little and big things that are good for you, or at least I think they will be. Mostly, these are things that I've done that are good for me, and I assume would translate well to others. So sue me if I want to encourage you to live a happier life. So, that's this series.