I’ve never really been one to set New Year’s resolutions. I find after a month or so these kinds of plans or promises usually end up last on the list of things I’m thinking about as like work, blogging, and my social life take over. In 2018 my only goal was to read and review 50 books. I stuck it out and ended up really enjoying it and feeling a lot of satisfaction as I checked books off my list over the course of the year. It sort of inspired me to give resolutions another try.
I’ve set a few small goals for 2019 – little things like perfecting my headstand in yoga, meditating every day and trying to get my skin picking habit under control – but I also want to plan out some bigger milestones for myself.
Over the past year I’ve talked numerous times about my struggles with stress, anxiety, and mood swings. Starting my full time job and running my website has drastically depleted the amount of free time I have in my life, which in turn has caused me to push aside little things like managing my email inbox and organizing the cabinet under my bathroom sink. Last month I finally hit a point where I’d become so overwhelmed by the immense clutter in every aspect of my life that I could barely function day-to-day without major distractions.
I’ve found that planning, sorting, and structure have helped to blunt my stress and make me feel more prepared, so my ultimate goal for 2019 is to de-clutter and organize my life. Obviously this is a bit of a blanket statement, as there are so many different facets of my life I’ll need to work on, but I’ve put together this basic list to guide me:
1. My digital life – Clearing up space on my computer, in my email inboxes, on my SD cards, and on my phone, and organizing my email inboxes so they have various folders like “Work”, “Blog”, “Banking”.
2. My living space – Keeping my apartment clean and getting rid of clutter and items I don’t use. This can be further broken down into the different rooms in my house, with the bathroom and living room being of particular concern.
3. My work life – Organizing my work desk, making sure I bring a lunch every day, keeping better calendars with meetings, interviews, and events.
4. My blog/website – Creating and maintaining organized spread sheets for my overall reading goal, for my advance copy reviews, and for the posts I am working on. Creating a detailed contact list with publishers, publicists, and authors who I often interact with.
5. My closet – Throwing away anything I don’t wear anymore, organizing my clothes so they take up less space and actually folding my laundry when it’s dry.
6. My health/fitness – Keeping track of my workouts and my fitness goals, planning out healthier meals, meal prepping.
7. Finances/bills – Making sure I have my receipts and bills stored in an organized way and that I’m adding important due dates to a calendar so I never have to worry I’ve missed any payments. Also being more proactive about saying and setting targets for how much I want to save before certain dates.
I’m sure as the year goes on I’ll think of other parts of my life I can organize, but for now I’m going to work on tackling these seven areas and getting them cleaned up and under control. This past weekend my boyfriend and I organized our storage closet and bathroom, and bought a few baskets and other materials to help keep things clean. It felt great to sit down in my apartment afterwards and be a little more relaxed and comfortable. I’ve also started clearing old files and photos off of my laptop, camera, and phone, and the sense of accomplishment even for a small task like that is immense. This weekend I’m going to tackle my email and my contacts list and try to get those in order.
My second goal is something I started last year but plan to really work on and continue in 2019: making a morning routine. Starting around October I finally made the decision to stop being such a non-morning person and start waking up earlier to get more done. Since one of my major stress triggers is feeling like I don’t have enough time in the day to complete all of the things I need to do, I figured I would fix the problem by literally making more time in the day. I’ve started waking up a couple of hours before I need to leave for work and giving myself at least one hour every morning to drink my coffee and read a book. This year I’d like to start working out in the mornings whenever I can to free up time after work for other activities and relaxation.
While these are all pretty small changes, I genuinely believe they’ll help me in dealing with my stress, and in turn push me to be a more positive and better person. I will keep my blog updated as I work through my 2019 goals and will hopefully have some great feedback to offer as the year progresses!