It's that time of year again! It's time for a brand new year and new beginnings! Each year we set goals for ourselves that sometimes seem so far out of reach that we often give up after only a month or two. Dieting, exercising, and saving money are all pretty common but do we ever really achieve them they way we wanted to? Sure, maybe you lost some weight but not as much as you wanted to. Or maybe your goal was to save $2,000 and you only save $600. While those are amazing goals to have, I have compiled a list of smaller, achievable goals to make this year a great year!
1) Start a Budget.
There are many reasons people start budgets. To save money, to see where their money is going, and to just better organize their finances. Figure out what your money goal is and try setting a small budget for each month or week to track your spending. Limit yourself to buying coffee twice a week instead of everyday, or try buy off brand food at the store to save some money. Tracking your spending, even just for 6 months to a year can go a long way when trying to save up for a big purchase or to pay off debt.
2) $5 Shoebox (or Envelope)
This is one that I actually did this last year and saved almost $400! It's simple, every time you get a $5 bill, you put it in the box (or envelope) and don't spend it. You just keep adding to it. Another thing I do with this is in addition to $5 bills, at the end of each week I take all the $1 bills left over from change in my wallet and add it in the box too. You'd be surprised at how quickly it adds up!
3) Stop Drinking Soda!
It's literally that simple. Try it for a year. A single year without soda! It forces you to drink more water and it even saves you some money when you go to restaurants. It's been 4 years without soda for me and I certainly don't miss it!
4) Find a Good Skin Care/Face Wash Routine
It may sound a little silly, but your face will thank you years from now. A great moisturizer is a life saver and will make you feel so much better! Find a product and brand that you like and it's worth it to spend a little extra money on something you love! Set a morning and night routine that will keep your face soft and fresh. (Extra Tip: Make a point to always take your make up off and clean your face good afterwards, again your face with thank you!)
5) Read Books
Pick a new book to read each month. If you've never read Harry Potter, thats 7 books and 7 months already planned for! Reading allows you to have some time to relax, so pick some books and enjoy the read!
6) Take Weekly Walks
When it's warm outside make it a point to take 20-30 minute walks a few times a week. Get some fresh air and enjoy the scenery.
7) Posting Positive Messages
Do yourself a favor and set a goal to not post anything negative on social media! Keep your complaints to yourself and add some good stories and comments to your newsfeed! Especially with Facebook Memories and Time Hop its hard to look back a read all the bad things you have posted in the past!
8) Reach Out To Old Friends
Oftentimes we get so busy in life that we lose touch with people who used to be so important to us. Make it a point to reach out to someone and make plans! Even if you meet up 2 or 3 times a year, you both will appreciate the time spent together so much more than a Facebook post!
9) Eat Breakfast Everyday
Another very silly goal, but you will feel so much better throughout the day after eating a nice breakfast. Pre-made smoothies, oatmeal, and eggs are very quick and easy options in the morning and your body will thank you!
10) Self Care (Make Time For Yourself)
Take baths, use face masks, and just take some time for yourself! Make sure you spend some time each week just doing something small. Paint your nails, go sit at Starbucks and listen to some music, write in a journal, whatever it is that helps you unwind. It's so important for your mental health to take some time to yourself.
11) Getting Rid of Excess
This can be anything! Old clothes, or movies and books. This can even mean people and responsibilities. Get rid of things that are holding you back and slowing you down. Do you really need to go to book club every week for a book you're pretending to read because you're too busy doing everything else? Do you really need all 5 of your credit cards even though you only use 3 of them? When was the last time you wore that jacket? Get rid of it and cut it out!
12) Volunteer or Donate!
This goal can be a weekly, monthly, or even a one time thing. Find a place or organization that you can get involved in and help out! Find a cause and donate money. Find something you love and do what you can to make a difference, whether it be with animals, kids, or senior citizens.
13) Try New Hobbies
Make a list at the beginning of the year of things you would love to try! Learn how to plan an instrument, take a pottery class, cooking, join yoga! Just make a list and try something new each month! Find some friends to do it with you or make new friends as you go! Allow yourself to enjoy all the things life has to offer and take any opportunity you have to try something new!
14) Get Organized!
Spend the first week or two of the new year organizing your life. Organize your room and clean your car! Get a planner to help keep yourself on track with bills, assignments, and work. Even if your organization is very basic, you will feel so much better about having a place for everything and it will make life easier as the year goes on.
15) STAY POSITIVE
I can't stress this enough! It is so easy to let life knock us down. We all go through rough patches for many different reasons. Try to remember each day the things you are thankful for and why you keep striving every day. Practice healthy self-talk and surround yourself with people who support you and will get you though those hard days. Staying positive and having a good outlook on anything (even failure of all of the above resolutions) will make this upcoming year a great one!
Good luck with these resolutions and maybe the ones you have for yourself! Pick a few that are the best fit for you and go with it. Also, remember that it's okay to fail! Don't beat yourself up for having a soda when you've already finished 7 books by April and volunteer at the animal shelter once a week! Find your groove and stick to it! I wish nothing but the very best for the upcoming New Year!