Holidays, Life

A New Year With New Challenges

Happy New Years

I’m not a resolution kind of girl. Or at least I have never been good at either making or keeping them – the last time I made proper resolutions was way back in 2009, and the last time I kept one all year was… never. I’m pretty sure anyway.

That said, 2013 was a horrible year (for reasons that are a little too personal for the bloggy world) and I’m all for reassessing and making positive changes for the coming months. I’ve been looking forward to the start of 2014 as a chance to start fresh and regain some positivity, and I feel like to do that, I have to make some resolutions. The challenge was just coming up with resolutions that are open-ended without a finite specific goal – since that always seems to be what gets me.

After thinking long and hard, I think I’ve come up with a short list of seven. First and foremost, I want to:

Read More

I read ravenously as a little girl, but in recent years recreational reading as all but dried up. I want to make more of an effort to, at the end of the day when I’m winding down from work, choose reading instead of turning on something on Netflix that I’ll barely watch anyway. I own so many books, and over the last few years I’ve barely made a dent in them… And I just keep accumulating more. I’m honestly starting to feel like a bit of a hoarder.

Savor The Little Things

This past year has been full of hardships and trials on a very personal level. Combined with the increasing public awareness of the “plight of the adjunct” and the myriad of articles being written lately that only serve to reinforce and reiterate the bleak parts of my career… it has not been a recipe for positive attitudes. I need to make a consorted effort to stop focusing so much on the negative and to recognize the little things in life that make it lovely.

Better Food Choices

This one is pretty simple. I eat really terribly, and I’m not getting any younger. I need to start making smarter food choices and ordering take out less.

Walk More

Again, just a general health thing. Also a finance thing – I live totally within walking distance from work (or at least my 2 main jobs). I need to make more of an effort to walk as opposed to using up the gas, even if it is blustery and cold. I certainly have enough knitwear to help me brave the winter.

Work More Efficiently

I can be really bad at this, particularly when the semester starts to kick into high gear and I feel like I’m beginning to get buried under work. Because when I start to feel like that, it’s easy for me to begin to feel paralyzed, leading to a drop in how efficiently I use what little time I have… it becomes a self-perpetuating cycle that just ends in over-exhaustion, and I’ve really got to get a handle on it.

Spending Diet

Finances are going to be really tight this year. Thanks to the generosity and understanding of my apartment-mate, I have the opportunity to go to Disney for a week with the boyfriend, the apartment-mate, and another one of our close friends. I’ve never been to Disney World, so this is pretty huge. That said, even though I’m paying my apartment-mate back over a few weeks, that’s the majority of my extraneous spending money for the year down the tubes within the first month. So I’m going to have to be extra careful about spending this year, and this Spending Diet from And Then We Saved seems like the best solution.

Sleep

Bottom line is I’m really bad at this. And I’m getting too old to still be really bad at this – I can feel it taking a toll on my energy and general health.

I’m drawing the line at seven for now, but we’ll see how I do. I figure that these are just general enough for me to be able to stick to them… at least most of the time. But I suppose we’ll see.

Hope you all had a happy and healthy New Year, and here’s to a (hopefully) fabulous 2014.

TSEliot Quote Final

– Maggie

Graphics Credits –
Photos: my own, taken over the course of 2013; textures from: http://shizoo.frozen-media.de/textures.php; fonts: moon flower and 3 of my own fonts; Book in “Read More” graphic: A Voyage Long and Strange: Rediscovering the New World by Tony Horwitz

4 thoughts on “A New Year With New Challenges”

  1. I love your simple list and really ought to steal a few of them for myself. I definitely want to read more (I got a Kindle Fire from my in-laws for Christmas even!) And need to take better care of myself too.

    1. The whole “taking better care of ourselves” thing seems to get harder and harder the older we get, doesn’t it? Also, congrats on the Kindle Fire! Those things are pretty awesome – one of my friends has one and I’m pretty impressed with it. With all the apps it seems like a really great alternative to the oh-so-expensive iPad with all the benefits of a Kindle added in.

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