18 for 2018: Setting Goals for the New Year
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Happy New Year!!!
I LOVE the start of a new year! Yes, I know we are 2 months in, but sometimes I need the chaos of the holidays (and birthday season in our house), to wind down before I can start looking ahead and figuring out what I want the new year to bring. I love setting new goals and resolutions and just making a fresh start. This time of year always seems to lead me back to writing a new blog post as well (considering that my last post was in February 2017 and titled “happy new year-ish), so here I am.
Something about having my goals in writing (and sometimes public) feels encouraging and motivating. It helps me remember them throughout the year and it holds me accountable to someone other than myself, even if no one else actually cares or even reads them. I don’t always accomplish my goals each year, but that’s not even the point. There is still so much value in looking at the areas of your life that you want to change, improve, or expand, and acknowledge where you want your priorities to fall. It may take you many “new years” to accomplish the goals that you set for yourself, or you may realize that some of your goals are no longer even a priority as the year goes on. Every once in a while though you can take something that you really want to do, and actually get it done, and it feels so good! Regardless, it’s a new year, there’s nothing wrong with a little self-reflection and self-improvement, right?
This year I am doing 18 for 2018, so I am setting 18 goals!!! I know it sounds like a lot, and it is, but I don’t care, it’s a new year and I’m setting goals! I also know myself enough to know that I will not beat myself up over not accomplishing ALL of my goals in 2018. I am fine with going big, and then re-evaluating any that don’t get accomplished down the line to see why I may not have made them a priority. Some of these goals are to bring more creativity into my life (again…see last year’s goal), some are nagging to-do list items, and some are things that I just want to make more time for.
I heard about 18 for 2018 on the podcast Happier with Gretchen Rubin, (episodes #147, #149 and #152) if you want to hear more about it. You can also search #18for2018 on Instagram to see many other people’s goals for the new year. I would also love to hear yours!!!
My 18 for 2018
1. Stitch People family portrait: I have wanted the Stitch People cross-stitch book for a few years now, and I finally got it for Christmas, so my goal is to cross-stitch a little portrait of my family. I always enjoyed cross-stitch when I was in grade school, but I haven’t attempted it at all in my adult life, so I am really looking forward to that.
2. Participate in the 100 Day Project: Okay, this one slightly terrifies me. The 100 day project is a creative project that you take on for 100 days and post what you are working on to Instagram…every day…for 100 days. I really want to do it. I think I need something like this to really make me follow through on a creative project, but I am so nervous about it. 100 days is a lot! This year it starts on April 3rd, so stay tuned, I will be posting more about it as it gets closer. Until then I will sit here and nervously bite my nails as I think about what creative outlet I want to devote 100 days to.
3. Read 24 books: Last year I read 23, which I still can’t believe. I think that is probably the most books I have ever read in a year, definitely since finishing school, and absolutely since having kids. I read all my books on a Kindle Paperwhite (which I love!) and borrow free e-books from my local library through the Overdrive app. Hopefully I’ll get a post up soon sharing which books I loved/didn’t in 2017 and share a little bit about how I made time to read last year. Since I was able to do 23 last year, I am shooting for 24 this year. I think two books per month is about my max. Progress so far 4/24
4. Run outside 20 times: I try to run on a pretty regular basis, usually in our basement on a treadmill because I am a stay-at-home-mom and can do it while the kids are with me. I really enjoy running outside though, which is a little trickier, but totally doable if I make it a priority. We have miles of trails literally out our backdoor and a few parks nearby with great running paths. I set my goal at 20 for the year so that I push myself to get out there more often. Progress so far 1/20.
5. Organize a girls night: I have a great group of girl friends, who I just don’t get together with enough. Our husbands all keep in touch with each other more than we do, and that is just not okay! I want to organize a girls night with this bunch this year, because it is always so much fun, and we definitely don’t do it enough.
6. Refinish a piece of furniture: This is another one that makes me nervous. I love watching people refinish/paint pieces, but it’s so nerve-wracking to commit to a design idea and do it myself. I have a very large china cabinet sitting in my garage just waiting for a paint color to get picked so that it can get moved into our dining room. The size of the piece and the fact that it will be a pretty big focal point in the room definitely makes the project a little daunting though. See it just staring at me?
7. Tone arms: Okay, of course I wanted to just put lose 20lbs, but I figured I needed to be a little more specific and a little more realistic. I won’t go into detail on this. We all have our “trouble spots” that we can’t ignore, and over the past few years, mine has become my arms. I am hoping with a stronger focus on strength training this year, I can make a difference in this area. Progress so far 0/2
8. Paint bedrooms: Last year my goal was to get our whole house painted in 2017. Well we renovated our entire kitchen/dining area in 2017, so getting the house painted on top of it turned out to be a little insurmountable. This spring will be 2 years that we have been in our house, and the entire bedroom half of the house is still the (unevenly painted) stark white that we moved into, so I really want to focus on the bedrooms this year. They all have new curtains, and some decor, but to me, they definitely feel unfinished, so I am hoping to paint the master and both of our kids rooms. Fingers crossed. Progress 0/3
9. Paint the hall: I probably could have lumped this in with #8, since it’s the hall that connects all the bedrooms. This hall, however, is its own beast with 8 doorways to cut in around, so damn it, it needs to get its own check mark on the old to-do list when it gets accomplished, plus I don’t want to complete #10 on my list without first getting the hall painted.
10. Gallery wall: I have boxes and boxes of picture frames in my basement, and I have always wanted to have a gallery wall in my house, so this year, I am hoping to get one put up in the hallway outside of our bedrooms. I like this spot because it’s somewhat personal, but also right outside of our playroom, so it still gets plenty of foot traffic and isn’t too tucked away.
11. Have a yard sale: This should be the easiest of my goals for this year. My mom, sister and I have been pretty good about having annual yard sales, and a corner of my basement is getting pretty filled up, so I am definitely looking forward to clearing out some stuff this year. It’s still going on the list though, to ensure that it gets done and doesn’t get put off, because I am pretty good at doing that too.
12. 5 new blog posts: Blogging turned out to be a lot harder for me that I expected, and A LOT more time-consuming. It is something that means a lot to me though and I don’t want to let it go, so my goal for this year is to get a measly 5 new blog posts up in 2018, which would be four more than last year. One down, 4 to go, woohoo!
13. Organize basement: Ugh. We live in a long ranch house, and our basement runs the length of the entire house, so it’s large, and it can collect A LOT of stuff before it starts becoming a problem. It’s become a problem. Luckily we’ve already gotten started, and did I mention I’m planning a yard sale?
14. Journal (at least) once per month: This is SO hard for me. I have tried to journal my entire life and I have never been able to keep up with it. Since having kids the mom guilt has set in hard over this as well, please don’t even ask me about baby books. This year, I am trying to make it easier on myself by just trying once a month to jot down a little something about what a day in the life looks like for us right now in 2018. Progress so far 0/12…I already missed January…AND FEBRUARY!
15. Learn to crochet: CHECK! I have already gotten started on this goal! I didn’t want to get stuck in a rut like I did with knitting, where I learned one stitch and never expanded, so I have been practicing lots of different stitches and techniques and just finished my first infinity scarf!!! I love it, and I am really enjoying the craft of crocheting. I can’t wait to try something new! My eventual goal is to build up to amigurumi, which is the style of crochet used to making some of most adorable little stuffed animals you have ever seen!
16. Focus on Instagram: I am not blogging a ton these days, so I love that I can share things on Instagram on a much smaller scale, with much less work and time involved, and much more often. I also recognize the importance of having a strong Instagram following for promoting blog posts (when they randomly occur) or for any type of promotion in building a brand or a creative small business…which I don’t have, but it is something of a bucket list item for me, so it will be helpful to already have an IG following established if I ever take that leap someday. Not following along yet? You can do that here!
17. 10 new adventures with the kids: There is so much to do in our area and we have a tendency to go to our same favorite places over and over, so I am hoping this goal will get us to venture out a bit with the kids. Progress so far 2/10.
18. Make a photo book: This kind of goes along with journaling and my inability to document things. Luckily I do take a gajillion pictures, but I have not made a single photo album for myself since having kids, not one!!! So this year my goal is to make a photo book of SOMETHING. Maybe it will be of our 10 new adventures, maybe it will be of our massive family vacation last year to the Outer Banks in NC, or maybe it will be a 2017 family photo album. The ‘Sorta Awesome‘ podcast recently had an episode (#120) on photo overwhelm and they mentioned just “starting where you are.” You don’t have to go back to the year your baby was born (although that is my goal). Just start where you are and then work backwards, if you so choose, so we’ll see. That approach definitely seems a little less overwhelming. This is a big one for me and it will mean SO much if I actually get it done.
So that’s it, my 18 for 2018. Easy-peasy, right? I feel like I am off to a good start, even though I am already 2 months in, but getting my goals down in writing is a huge step in the right direction and there are so many goals on this list that I am really excited to get accomplished.
Is anybody else doing 18 for 2018 this year? I’d love to hear your goals, or if you are a blogger, add your link in the comments!
Cheers to 2018!!!