Happy New Year!
How was your holiday?
I took a total of 11 (!) days off work, and it was so good to get my creative juices flowing again by stepping away from my computer and social media. I have a running list of post ideas I want to execute on over the next couple of weeks because of my blog break, and I am excited to find myself re-inspired about creating content. If you have any ideas or types of posts you want to see more of, feel free to drop me a comment below!
Other than working on my creative juices, I spent a lot of time this break with family. We went to North Carolina on Christmas Day and spent a few days in the Tar Heel state. I was then home in Arlington for a blissful three days, and spent my time catching up with out-of-town friends, cleaning out my closet, deep cleaning my room, starting Parenthood, and finishing a couple of books. I capped off the week with another trip to North Carolina for my cousin’s bridal shower in Greensboro. It was so nice to see out-of-town family, and we all rang in the new year together with a karaoke party. I’d spent the last few NYE at large, open-bar parties, so it was kind of nice to have a low key night instead. Don’t worry, though, I still wore my sequin leggings.
Though I am a little “eh” about the concept of resolutions, I am a big fan of fresh starts and writing down my goals. As such, it should be no surprise I love using this time of year to think about the next 12 months and what I want to accomplish. Because grad school is over, I feel more energized about the new year than normal because I have more free time at my disposal. So, I wanted to share a few of my goals for 2017 with you today—and would love to hear about any you have for the next year!
PUT MY FINANCES IN ORDER /
Anyone else feel like they constantly spend money, but then have no idea where it’s all going? I’m pretty laissez faire about my finances, but I know that the more I save now, the more time my money has to grow. And I want to retire one day.
I actually got a head start of this item at the end of the year when I took the plunge and signed up for LearnVest. I then filled out an extensive survey about my finances—my spending habits, my saving habits, the accounts and credit cards I have, my investments. I have my first call with my financial planner this coming weekend, and am excited to create a budget I can actually stick to in 2017.
I definitely plan to expand on money and finances in a future post, so stay tuned!
WORK ON MY FITNESS /
Y’all, I’ll be honest—after having a great exercise routine in high school, for most of college, and when I first started working, I have let my fitness fall to the wayside over the last two years. In the name of stress relief, I’d gotten in the habit of avoiding real weight lifting and focused on lifting the wine glass from the table to my mouth. In addition to all the health benefits of working out, I find that when I do exercise regularly, I feel like my life is more put together. I am less stressed and more energized, and really want to get back to that this year.
I plan on utilizing the gym in my building more and also want to mix in some fun exercise classes, like yoga and Soul Cycle. I’m also considering the ‘Sweat with Kayla’ app, so if you have ever tried it, I’d love to hear what you think! Lastly, I think it’s time to update my workout gear from sorority date function t-shirts, so if you have any workout gear favorites, please let me know!
FIGURE OUT MY NEXT STEPS /
This goal is perhaps less concrete than the others, but I really want to spend the next year taking stock of my life and reflecting on what I want to do next.
For one, I don’t know if I want to stay in DC forever, and I know the longer you wait, the harder it is to leave. It’s no secret I dislike the weather here, and it’s not my favorite city. However, I love being near my family and have established such a great network of coworkers and friends that it would be hard to leave. If I decide to stay, I want to focus on accepting this as my place and finding happiness here, even during the cold dark days of January.
On another front, I really like blogging and the outlet I have created here. I want to better hone the type of content I create, improve the photography, and be better about sharing relevant posts on social media—even if they are older. I also want to leverage Pinterest more to grow, and need to spend a quality weekend cleaning up my boards and creating re-pinnable images. But, I want to further my creative outlet somehow—maybe through freelance of some sort or through an Etsy shop with downloadable invites/save-the-dates/event collateral.
While there are a million other things I would love to do in 2017—live more in the present, put myself out there more, travel (even) more—these are the three big areas I want to focus my time on this year. I’d love to know if you have any goals for the upcoming year, or if you have any that worked particularly well in 2016! x