2014 was definitely an interesting but great year. So much happened. There was certainly a lot of uncertainty and a lot of movement (forwards, backwards, up, and down).
With 2015 finally here, I knew I wanted to ensure that the year would be even better. This is the first year in a really long time where I feel a little bit more settled. As I grew up, I always had 2016 dogeared in my head as “the year.” Not necessarily as the best year or anything like that, but it was always the one I was looking towards. It would be the year I graduated college. I kind of envisioned the murky waters of the Real World as being some sort of scary (albeit exhilarating) adventure. Now that it’s almost here and I’ve had some time to figure it out… I want to do a better job of planning it out. I also realize that I am in complete control of the path I take.
Strangely, I’ve decided to both charge forward and slow down. Sounds impossible, but I think I can do it. The past couple of years, I’ve been establishing “goals” for the year. (I’m not entirely into “resolutions.”)
This year, I’ve come up with an agenda on the things I want to work on and focus on. It should absolutely be noted here that I do all of these things all the time, not just during one specified period of time. But, I want to focus on those particular topics one at a time, in more depth. (So, I won’t ignore my friends for the entire year except for May! But in May, I will focus a little bit more on them!) There is lots of overlap, but I think I will come out on the other side of the year with a better outlook on the aspects of my life that I enjoy the most.
When I started this project, I broke down all the different components of my life. I began by seeing where I was spending my time. I noted what frustrated me, what stressed me out, which things made me unhappy, and things I wish I were doing more of or differently. To keep in order with the year, I grouped the items into twelve buckets, one for each month.
As I go through the year, I’ll do mini reflections to keep you posted on my progress. I want to be able to track what I’ve accomplished, how things change, and if this whole project was even a good idea to begin with!! I will likely be incorporating more posts on each particular bucket depending on what month we’re in. So if you want to join the journey with me, you can either choose to do the same groups as me… or change everything… or swap out a few!
January | Exercise
I used to be a pretty competitive athlete when I was young but the idea of just going to the gym to workout just doesn’t have the competitive edge that playing sports had. I run everyone once in awhile but I need to figure out a way to make it a better habit.
February | Love
To start off, I want to work on loving myself more! I think I need to live up to my own potential and I’ll continue to find ways to really embrace who I am. And, of course, my birthday is in February and turning twenty-one is something that’s seemed so far away for so long, I’ll have to decide how I feel about it on the 17th.
March | Organization
I do this pretty much on a daily basis, but it’s always good to do a big debrief. A floor to ceiling organization cleanse! Finances, closets, drawers, photographs, computer files… you name it!
April | Style
Well, this is going to either be a really frustrating or really fun month. I want to go through my closet and refine my style. I have so many clothes that still fit from high school and can’t really part with… even though they don’t fit me anymore. I want to get rid of the unworn, maybe invest in a piece or two, and come up with some new outfits and combinations. We’ll see…
May | Friendships
Because I don’t live in the state where I grew up and because I didn’t go to my in-state university and my childhood summer camp, I have friends all over the world. It’s the best feeling to know that I will have at least one friend anywhere I go in the world. Pretty awesome. I want to do special things with friends this month and reflect on old stories and also create new memories.
June | Work Life
I think one of the most difficult parts of 2014 was figuring out how to balance being a student and an employee. I’m still figuring out how to make sure I stop working to regroup. I absolutely have to kick off the month with this, as it’s definitely the biggest obstacle I can see right now. I’m not sure exactly where I want to go with my career and I plan on spending this month on figuring it out.
July | Exploration
Ultimately, I want this month to be about travel. But, since I live in New England…. I really want to explore new things about the country! Hopefully, I will give myself enough time to plan a fun trip (or two).. and really start saving for the trip!!!
August | Reflection
August to me, is like the New Year. Too many years of going back to school in this month will do that to someone I guess! This will also mark the beginning of my final year at UConn and I want to make sure that it doesn’t go unnoticed. It will be a good time to also look back to see how I’m doing with this project…. hopefully I make it this far!
September | Skills
I’m obsessed with learning new things. I think that’s one of the reasons why I love school so much. Now I’ve been turning to internet to learn anything I want. I will narrow down something that I’ve been putting off and really get it underway. Whether it’s a new skill on the computer or simply just a fun hobby!
October | Writing
Writing is one of my big challenges. I’m not going to win any awards for my writing, but I find that writing in general is so powerful. In a selfish way, writing is cathartic. I write every day, most of which never gets read by anyone but myself! I recently went back and re-read a lot of the essays I wrote for my favorite English class, and I loved it. I want to really use words to my advantage more often and write regularly.
November | Reading
One of the things I’ve been putting off all of 2014 was reading. I want to revisit books that I’ve been “meaning to read.”
December | Giving
A lot of my giving is in the form of monetary donations. Donating money to my favorite organizations does amazing things and is better than nothing, it’s also the easiest. I want to make sure that I volunteer my time too.