Food for Thought

New Year, New Start: my goals for 2015

It’s the first day of the year 2015! Time really flies when you’re having fun…or just really busy! I think I’ve managed to make the most of the previous year and I can definitely look back and say I did good, that I don’t have too many regrets I will look back on.

Since I started planning realistic goals that I wanted to achieve last year, I want to make sure I keep to that tradition. Some sites will tell you that some find it difficult to keep to the resolutions they made at the start of the year, but the most important thing we should remember about setting resolutions is to make them achievable; setting small goals that you can accomplish and feel happy about it enough to reach the next stage.

Source: Christianity

Now that a full 365 days have passed, I want to take the time to look back on the resolutions. I want to look back on what I did manage to achieve and where I need to try and work harder on.

  • Keep up the twice weekly Combat classes that I’ve been maintaining (with the exception of holidays where this wasn’t possible in 2013) for the past 15 months
  • – I haven’t been consistently attending twice weekly classes, I have to admit, but I am proud to say out of all the classes I’ve not been to, it’s only 2 days I’ve missed. Not only did I keep to my twice weekly Combat, I also started weekly Pump, Balance and capoeira classes too. That’s 6 hours a week I’ve been trying to keep up with since I started the additional classes during the summer. What’s more, I was also able to complete the 3-hour Combatathon and raised £947.11 for my efforts!

  • Find inspiration for my jewellery and dressmaking projects and create something I’ve never done before (that means stepping away from the trusty dresses and making something completely different!). Need some inspiration? How about these ideas from Etsy?
  • – Unfortunately, while I’ve got pieces I’ve been commissioned to make for family and friends, the jewellery making side has taken a back seat for the moment. I’ve pretty much got everything I need to make the pieces I’ve been asked to make, but with work being so busy and taking up additional classes after the last jewellery making class with Edinburgh Council finished, I’ve only really been able to polish up the etched cuffs I started making during class.

  • Start a ‘Good Things Jar’ (or what I’d like to think of, and call my own, the Positivity Jar) and keep filling it with positivity, whether it be quotes, memories or photos
  • – I have been quite good with keeping my Positivity Jar filled with quotes, memories and memorabilia for some time. I even folded some origami lilies for my jar for Chinese New Year last February! Unfortunately that has kind of taken a back seat as well in the latter half of the year as work got busier. It is almost 1/3 full of quotes and memories though of which I’m quite proud of.

  • Drink more water (which at the moment is the Volvic Touch of Fruit Strawberry kind, which I hope to move to tap water)
  • – Out of all the resolutions that I’ve made for myself, I knew my diet and sugar intake was going to be the most difficult goals to achieve. Surprisingly though, it took one week in September when I was on holiday to change this resolution from a goal to reality. I had one can of Coke left and couldn’t be bothered getting any more from the shops and from then on, I topped up empty bottles with water and have been using them since! I’ve now bought a proper filtered water bottle from a local charity shop which I intend to leave at work so I will be drinking water more often instead of craving sugar and fizzy juices.

  • Reduce my sweets/sugar intake (that includes working harder on my Coke and sweetie consumption, darn that sweet tooth!)
  • – To some extent I have been taking less sugar and sweets. In the same vein that I started drinking more water, I’ve also prevented myself from buying a stash of sweeties to keep at work. I had left it at the back of my mind, but when I colleague showed me her box of Graze treats, I started buying boxes to be delivered to work every fortnight and have been grazing on those instead. Bad habits do take some time to eliminate though and I find myself occasionally buying sweeties, so I’ll need to work on this a bit harder.

  • Eat healthier, which includes less salt, soy sauce (my secret food vice), sugar and milk (doesn’t agree with me) by means of an elimination diet
  • – I have been using less sugar and soy sauce in my food (except my baking), but I still find it easier sometimes to flavour rice dishes with soy sauce. I have been trying to cook other dishes that require spices and natural flavours from other ingredients like garlic and chilli, but I do reach for the soy sauce sometimes. I have managed to find a happy medium with the milk though! For drinks, I’ve been using Alpro soya milk and drinking hazelnut milk on its own.

  • Be more organised and sensible with my money, no more impulse spending (especially not with expensive goods!) and put aside some every month towards the Wedding pot
  • – I haven’t been doing too much shopping this year, but I’ve also been having issues with the bank I was with which prevented me from saving as much as I’d hoped to do. My work has a great savings scheme for Christmas where a portion of your salary gets put aside until your November pay where you’d get the whole sum back. I’d been using that instead of trying to save money on my own and managed to put together a decent amount, but had to use quite a bit of it for wedding bits and pieces. I’ve now switched to a different bank and opened a savings account which I hope to use more effectively, for the wedding and for the future.

  • Go through my wardrobe at least 3 times this year to ruthlessly clear out anything I haven’t used/read/worn/touched in the last year to donate to charity
  • – Unfortunately this was one that I barely managed to do. I did go through my wardrobe and cleared out 3 bags of clothes, accessories and shoes at the end of November and beginning of December, but it was only so I could tidy up my room for my brother and friend visiting. I’m not really sure if I would be able to clear out my wardrobe 3 times in the year, but I definitely think I should either stop buying more clothes if I can’t get rid of things from my wardrobe.

For the resolutions that I set for myself, I haven’t done too badly. Five out of 8 resolutions achieved isn’t bad, right? There’s always room for improvement though, so I’ve decided on goals I want to achieve for the year 2015:

  • Cotinue to fill my Positivity Jar with quotes and memorabilia
  • Continue to drink more water instead of fizzy juice
  • Further reduce my habit of buying and eating sweeties and substitute them with healthier snacks
  • Set aside a decent amount of money every month for the wedding and as savings
  • Continue to attend Combat, Pump, Balance and capoeira classes
  • Try and finish off any dressmaking projects I’ve been meaning to work on before I start working on dresses for the wedding
  • Start working on outstanding jewellery making projects again at home
  • Continue to challenge myself and raise money for charity
  • Not spend any money on new clothes or shoes unless I can throw out one piece of clothing, accessory or a pair of shoes, and
  • Work on finding the factors that are preventing me from achieving everyday happiness and eliminating these from my life

A lot of my resolutions are based on the resolutions I made in 2014 and building on them to reach my true goals: to find happiness within myself, be more responsible financially for our future and to keep doing what I love.

What resolutions have you made for the new year? Have you managed to meet most of the ones you set for yourself in 2014?


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