These ain’t resolutions
I prefer to set goals rather than resolutions. Some people might argue that they are the same, but I beg to differ. Resolutions suggest something that can be cheated and subsequently not achieved.
When I used to smoke, every year I would make the resolution to quit. Every year I failed. I only quit when I had the goal to have a baby. I could not receive IVF if I smoked, so I made it a goal to stop. I have not smoked for around 8 years.
I did not need IVF in the end. However, I learnt that with setting a goal, it could be measured and I could be held accountable for it. I have learnt to set goals that are lifestyle changes rather than ‘quick fixes’.
An example of this was a goal that I set last year concerning food. Knowing that my relationship with food was negative, I set the goal to slowly change habits and consider what I eat. This goal is an ongoing one. At present, I am navigating a bad patch; however, I feel like I am making some better choices.
What do I want the future to hold?
I want my future to be centred around developing happiness within myself and my family. I am a person that can easily slip into negative thinking, especially with the world moving at such a fast pace. I do not like living in the fast lane; I am more of a tortoise than a hare.
This does not mean I want to be a sloth. I am not the type of person that sits still for long; I always need a project to keep me busy. However, over the past fifteen years, my job as a teacher has consumed me so much that I have not paid attention to the things that matter in life.
My goals for 2019
So, what are my goals? What do I want to focus on in 2019 in the hope of making my year more enjoyable and productive? I have thought about this question for the past few weeks and have decided that the focus of this year is ‘Home’.
All of my goals link to my home life. There are some areas that I wish to develop within my job and career but ultimately, my family comes first. I want to make have a home full of laughter, fun and happiness and I want to be the happiest, most resilient version of myself.
My family is my number one priority. This might appear to be stating the obvious but sometimes, people need to be reminded that family does matter. When you work full-time it can be easy to get caught up in working late, with deadlines to meet, but why do it?
I work so that my children are fed, housed and clothed, it is simple. I am thankfully in a job that I am passionate about and most of the time I enjoy it. However, do I envision myself being a teacher for the next twenty years? Heck no. Hopefully, in the next few years, I will be able to work on the career change I have been desperately after for a while. Until then, I have vowed to not take my work home with me. By this, I do not mean in the traditional sense of carrying a stack of books home, I mean psychologically.
My family are the most important thing and I do not want to spend the time I have with them thinking or worrying about work. For my children’s sake, I need to work on separating the two as they do not deserve a grouchy mother whenever work has been bad.
I also intend on spending the time that I have been more present with my children. Often I am so drained and tired after work that I am like a zombie. At these times I will be kind to myself and ‘self-care’ but also schedule in quality time to spend with the family playing a board game or watching a movie together. I want to make the most of my children and all the time I have with them.
Mindful at home
This leads me to my next goal. Last year, I made the goal to develop more positive thinking and use mindfulness techniques to encourage a healthier mind. This was successful when used to navigate the stresses and strains of my job. However, I have had less time to be able to cultivate a mindful approach at home.
The reason for not being able to adopt a more mindful approach to my home life may be due to being so close to it. At work, I can often use the mindfulness techniques I have learnt to give my brain the time to go into ‘logical mode’. It is easy at work to rationalise other people’s behaviour and choices to not being a reflection of me but themselves.
At home, it is far harder to be responsive rather than reactive. This is because I feel like my husband, my children and my family are a direct reflection of me. When my children get annoyed or do something naughty; it is hard for me not to react. Likewise, if Mr T gets annoyed, I instantly blame myself for his annoyance.
I am so used to my inner critic telling me that everything is ‘my fault’ that when the chips are down, I am conditioned to react like a broken record. I become upset easily, I start to exaggerate the situation and become overbearing. I will try to take the approach of being present with the good and the bad and remind myself of my favourite line from the film Kung Fu Panda
Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift, that’s why it is called the present.
I must do this. I do have a regular savings account I pay into each month, however, it is not enough. I have only been saving a minimal amount each month.
Why am I saving? Simply put, for the house. I would like to make improvements to the house or save for a deposit on a new house. We have been wanting a new kitchen for years. I had previously saved enough to cover a new kitchen; however, I discovered that I was pregnant for the 2nd child. The money had to be used to cover my maternity.
Also, this Christmas has been tighter than usual finance wise. I am determined to set some money aside in order to cover next Christmas. Even if I save a small amount each month; I will be happy knowing the kid’s presents are covered.
For the past few years, I have felt stuck in a rut. My love of theatre had dwindled, I hardly ever read anything and most of my TV viewing only taught me about Drag Queens and Real Housewives.
When I started blogging, I started to do lots of research to learn the tricks of the trade. I enrolled for free courses, I watched YouTube, all to find out how I could improve my blog.
Half way through 2018, I did the same thing with mindfulness. I looked into ways I could develop my practice and looked into how to possibly train to teach it. I discovered that I could not afford to do the £4000 masters degree.
I love to learn new things and stretch my capabilities through learning. I watch programs that concern forensic science which interests me greatly. My goal this year is to keep my love for learning alive. I also want to rediscover my love for the theatre and indulge in my passion.
Not spend money frivolously
This is possibly my hardest goal of the year. Shopping is ingrained within our society and consumerism is everywhere. The desire to have lots of beautiful things means that I tend not to shop as smartly as I should.
I have never been a person to spend a fortune on designer items. I refuse to pay a fortune just for a name. Instead, I like to get as much as I can for my money. This is where the problem starts; I have no off switch.
When I find a bargain, I will often buy it even though I do not need it. I will also stockpile multiples of products I like and then get overwhelmed. When my makeup obsession was in full swing, I bought makeup every week. I ended up with too much makeup than I needed.
Having a personality that is prone to obsessive behaviour, my spending tends to be focused on whatever I am interested in at the time. In my cleaning phase, I accumulated over thirty bottles of Zoflora which will take me years to use up.
This is usually caused by boredom or when my anxiety kicks in. I hope to recognise when the temptation to spend frivolously and busy myself with other activities that nourish my soul.
Use up some of my makeup collection
I have come to the conclusion that I do not need any more makeup. I would love to be able to buy more, however, I just cannot justify it at present. I started to try and go through my collection yesterday and I gave up because I felt guilty about all the makeup I do not use.
For the majority of last year, I have been doing project pan. This involves focusing on using up products rather than buying more. So far, I have only bought replacements for items I have used and I bought one new eyeshadow palette, the Urban Decay ‘Born to Run’ palette. My goal this year is to make a dent into my lipstick collection and my highlighters.
I have come to realise it is about quality rather than quantity. I explained to my husband that I would prefer a few ‘high end’ products over tons of cheaper products in mass quantities. After I have used some of my products up, I intend to treat myself to some Charlotte Tilbury makeup, if my budget allows.
To enjoy writing again
I have always loved the written word. Being interested in books and the theatre from a young age, I have always been creative.
I started my blog because I wanted somewhere I could put my thoughts and feelings down and share it in the hope others felt the same way. Since then, I have written my own play and hundreds of blog posts. However, my interest has been declining over the past few months. I have been finding it harder and harder to come up with ideas and the general admin associated with my blog proved a chore.
I am not sure whether my decline has been due to the blog or falling out of love with writing. I intend to experiment more this year with different projects. These might appear on my blog or might just be for myself, either way, I intend to become more laid back with my approach to writing.
I hope you have enjoyed hearing about my goals for 2019. What goals have you set for this year? I would love to hear what you intend to do in 2019.
Ciao for now beauties xx