🎉Happy New Year!🎉
At the end of 2016 I set myself 16 resolutions/goals that I wanted to achieve. Since we’re now starting 2017, I thought I would share how I got on with such a long list. I am already aware that I have achieved roughly half of these resolutions, as when I last met up with my friend Sophie we were talking about our (or rather lack of) 2017 goals and what we’d achieved in 2016. At the beginning of last year’s resolutions post I declared ‘as long as I try my hardest, then the result is still going to be okay’. 367 days later, I still agree with that.
- Be Nicer – I set this goal with myself in mind. It’s often the case that I’ll give myself a hard time and not celebrate my achievements as much as I should. In 2016 I think this did change a fair amount. Of course I still beat myself up about silly things and little mistakes. I’ve still got a lot to do in terms of building my own self confidence, but I have seen a gradual improvement. I’ve found that opening up, and admitting when I’m struggling or not feeling great has been the biggest help with this. Doing so has allowed me to realise that I am doing okay, and how I feel about things is definitely human.
- Read More – I have always been a lover of reading, but in my early teens I seemed to pick up books less and less. Now that I’m almost 20 I’ve fallen back in love with books and the past couple of years has seen my bookshelf and purchases grow in size. I hoped to read 25 books in 2016, instead I managed to read 17 books and I’m pretty happy with that. Despite what I said before, I did have a bit of a reading break at the beginning of the year and I didn’t actually finish my second book until late April. Further on the achievements list, I did start reading and following more blogs. Maybe I was 8 books short of my target, but I’d call this one a success myself. For those interested here is the list of books I read last year:
~ Daughter by Jane Shemlit (novel)
~ The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt (novel)
~ Grace & Style by Grace Helbig – thanks again for this one Alisha 🙂
~ Go With Your Gut by Robyn Youkilis (recipe & health book)
~ The Kinfolk Home by Nathan Williams (interior design & lifestyle)
~ The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins (novel)
~ The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North (novel)
~ I am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes (novel – one of my favourite reads from the year)
~ The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins (novel)
~ Practical Watercolour by Curtis Tappenden (tutorial)
~ The Martian by Andy Weir (novel)
~ May the Thoughts Be With You by Charlotte Reed – one of the nicest people! (self help/illustration)
~ Never Have a Bad Day Ever Again by Max Wilgram and Murray Partridge (self help)
~ Absolutely Beautiful Things by Anna Spiro (interior design)
~ The Reader on the 6:27 by Jean-Paul Didierlaurent (short novel) – thank you for lending me this one Kay, I loved it!
~ The Joy of iPhotography by Jack Hollingsworth (tutorial) – mum you thought you were making a joke but weren’t expecting me to enjoy it the way I did, thank you!
~ Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by JK Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne (play) – thanks Bro, you know me well & I did really love this! [I’ve unfortunately never been able to get into the HP books, but I’m so thankful my brother chose this for me for Christmas]
- Use A Diary – I failed this one by April. The diary mum got me for the year was beautiful, but as soon as I started commuting to and from Cambridge everyday it seemed an unnecessary weight to carry around. I’ve got another diary for 2017, again it’s very pretty but it’s week per page, as to a day per page. It’s a lot lighter, and hopefully that’ll mean I’ll use it more than last year’s. (Sorry mum!)
- Learn To Drive – I nailed this one! I got my licence in August and my own car in October. Eeek. Still not over it.
- Meet New People – Early into 2016 I got a new job, so through that I’ve met a lot of new people. I’ve also met a couple of people my friends’ are currently dating, and they seem lovely (my friends chose well). Walking into 2017 I’m still surrounded by great people, who support and inspire me.
- Write In Notebooks – This one was a little silly, but I had a stack of notebooks untouched. I’ve started using more of them, and people have bought me even more. So there’s still a mountain of them, but yes I am now actually using them.
- Visit Somewhere New – Well, this one was definitely a success. I visited new places in London, such as Camden Lock with Faye and Jane, and Portobello Road with my mum and brother. Speaking of my mum and brother, we all went for afternoon tea in a village called Lavenham in Suffolk (if you’re ever in the area, the Swan do incredible afternoon tea) for my birthday, which is a place I’d never even heard of before. I took a cold trip to Norwich with Rebecca. My mum and I went to Burwash Manor for the first time. In September we spent a week away with our dog in Norfolk, exploring a lot of new places and a few old ones too. I got to explore a lot of new places relatively near me this year, and I’m so excited to see more of the UK in 2017.
- Blog Those Opinions – I shared a lot of my own personal feelings this year, and my blog became a very self obsessed place. I don’t think I blogged opinions about important life-changing topics, e.g. body image. However, I did post more about my journey and my adventures with not knowing myself the way I thought I did prior to going to university. I became a lot more open and sharing about my feelings. Unusual territory for someone like me. 2016 was definitely not they year for my opinions, but rather for my emotions.
- Take Every Opportunity – In some ways I think I achieved this goal, for I took the opportunity to apply for the job I now have, I took the opportunity to learn to drive, I took the opportunity to do an online photography diploma, I took the opportunity to get my first car, I took more social opportunities up – now that I can afford to. I didn’t take every opportunity, because some just weren’t for me, but I definitely took on some. A bit like my book goal, I didn’t fully accomplish it but I’m happy with this outcome so for me it’s a success.
- Clear Out Your Wardrobe – I did this twice this year, and on the second I cleared out my whole room (and repainted my walls a nice light blue). 8 bags and a box to the charity shop later, and I felt a lot lighter. I’m trying to hone in on my style, be it wardrobe, photography or interior design. I think 2016 was a big step in the right direction.
- Develop Your Creativity – This one is another yes and no. I didn’t do as much creatively as I hoped, but I have begun working out what sort of things I want to make. I did invest in a new camera lens and I think it has made a difference to my photographs. Unfortunately, I didn’t get out and practice as much as I had hoped.
- Find Your Passions/Dreams – I didn’t figure this one out. I still have no idea what I would like to do as a long-term career. I’ve got heaps of time (hopefully) to try new things and figure it out. I’m pretty happy with the way things are going for now.
- Get On Top Of Your Health – Some improvements here. Mostly, I realised I’m not as unhealthy as I thought. Of course being the Christmas season I’ve had 50 too many biscuits, too much cheese, too much chocolate, and all those delicious things. On an overall everyday basis, I do eat a good amount of fruit and veg, as well as eating nutritious meals. I have ended the year drinking even less water each day than I was drinking at the beginning, but hey ho. There’s still room for improvement. I did manage to make myself go to the dentist, not once but twice! I even have another appointment this month. I think I did fairly well with this one.
- Remember The Importance Of Time – ‘I’m going to keep reminding myself that good things take time, hard work does pay off, and to be patient with myself.’ Yes, yes, yes. I did all those things, for the most part. I had a few blips here and there though, especially with the patient part.
- Follow More Creative/Positive People – My Instagram is full of creative and positive people, and my Twitter is slowly looking the same. Another resolution accomplished.
- And Finally, “Do More Of What Makes You Happy” – Probably the only goal I’ll always take along with me. I did actually say no to more things this year, but for all the right reasons. These things didn’t make me happy, and were a lot more hassle than they worth to me, so I put more time and energy into the things that do make me happy.
That was a blooming long list. I achieved roughly 12 out of 16, and I’d call that a pretty big accomplishment. After all, ‘no-one sticks to new year’s resolutions’ do they. I’ve spent today in my PJs, wrapped up in a blanket, watching Location, Location, Location. It was a slow day, and exactly how I wanted to start the year. Excitedly watching people buy properties, whilst restoring my energy. In 2016 I learned the importance of slowing down, and not burning myself out. 2017, I hope you’re full of brighter days, slow moments, positivity and adventure.