Hi guys! After an exceptionally busy end of 2018 for me with work, wedding planning and the Holidays, I’m back and excited to be starting the year with a fresh mind and perspective! There’s nothing like a little actual space to put you back in the headspace that you need to hit the ground running.
There has been a LOT going on around in our household and I’ve done a bit of reflecting back on this past year and thinking about what that means for this next one. I’m not one for resolutions, but I am definitely of the mindset that now is a better time than any to change what you want to change.
For me this year that means more balance. I’m not usually one to sit around and dwell on things that I want to changeâ€“I like to come up with a plan and start better habits as soon as I can.
There are 5 things that I decided to do in order to start off this year on the right footâ€“whether these resonate with you or not, they’re worth trying!
1. Feed my brain
I spent the end of last year trying to mentally tune out once I was finally home for the day, but it’s time to hit reset on those habits. I deleted a few apps that I found myself wastingÂ so much time on and asking you all for some good Podcast recs yesterday because I’m starting a new routine where I either read or listen to something at least 30 minutes a day (especially to and from work). Some of the ones you recommended and that I’m loving are:
Up First, NPR News Now and WSJ Minute Briefingâ€“After trying a bunch of different news podcasts I’ve landed on these three. I listen to these every morning when I get ready and it’s the best way to start off the day since I get to work and usually never have time to look at the news until I’m leaving the office.
Slow Burnâ€“There are only two seasons so far and I’ve only finished Season 2, but I’m loving anything educational that unpacks something that I’m less familiar with. Season 1 is on the RFK tapes and Season 2 is about Bill Clinton’s impeachment and so far, both have been really interesting.
American Scandalâ€“This is another interesting one if you like learning more behind the scenes of true stories. Season 1 is all about BALCO and the steroid scandal that we all know much about, but very little about its beginnings. It’s super interesting as well!
You all weighed in and here’s what you suggested: Conan O’Brien Needs A Friend, Female Criminals, The Cut on Tuesdays, My Favorite Murder, and Crime Junkie!
My Christmas present from MG was a pair of Beats headphones (that I’m obsessed with and have worn everyday) and I’ve been wearing them even when I cook to finish podcasts that I start in the morning.
I’m also downloading more iBooks for when I’m on the subway and don’t have a physical book with me. I found it so hard to find time to read as much last year when I was crazy busy, but it’s important to keep feeding your brain!
2. Organize and clean out your phone
There’s a reason why so many people re-organize their homes, kitchens, pantries, closets and more this time of year. The same concept should apply to something that you useÂ every single day… your phone. I spend more time with my phone than anything else that I own, and believe it or not you’re in control of whether or not that’s a positive or negative thing. I removed a ton of Apps that are a waste of time and downloaded a few new ones that are going to help me make more of my days, instead of the opposite. I categorize everything in folders so that my phone doesn’t seem as cluttered and deleted anything I barely used last year.
Some of my favorite apps are:
Evernoteâ€“for remembering important things over the years and any note taking you want to sync to your computer
Pocket Guardâ€“you can sync all of your accounts and keep a closer eye on all of your transactions and budgets
Nike Run Clubâ€“I use this whenever I travel to log any running or bike rides that we go on. I’ve found that I hate running so much, but if I can see how far I go and track my progress (and have downloadable runs for indoor and outdoor) it makes it so much less painful.
3. Make cooking and eating healthily a priority
Our biggest challenge last year was having time to grocery shop. We have crazy schedules during the week and often even crazier schedules on the weekend. We’ve also shied away from the idea of grocery delivery, but I think this is the year we figure out how to make it work for us. We’re trying out Amazon Fresh and I’ll keep you posted on how it goes!
Last year I discovered how much I love cooking and for me it’s therapeutic and a stress reliever. I’m trying out more new recipes and will keep sharing them on my stories!
4. Spend less
There’s no time like the beginning of the year to cut back on spending, especially after the holidays. I find myself feeling more focused on the things in life that don’t cost money and am trying to focus less on things.Â The only things I’m spending money for the first few months of the year on are either (1) experiences and spending time with friends or (2) wedding/honeymoon items. I don’t need anymore god forsaken sweaters.. is it spring yet? :)
5. Focus on personal connections
This is one that I started working on last year and hope to continue in this next year. The things I didn’t talk about here last year were how many times I prioritized spending time with my fiance, called a friend for a long overdue chat, or caught up with my family on Facetime instead of sitting down to write after a full day at work. It’s taking 3 extra minutes to ask a stranger how they’re doing and if they’re having a nice day, giving your friend their full attention when they’re telling you about their weekend, and going out of the way to put a smile on someone’s face. This one can be the toughest, especially when there’s distance or stress factoring in, or just plain being tired. But, it’s the most worthwhile and will help you end 2019 feeling fulfilled and whole.
Happy New Year and I can’t wait to share more of our life with you this year!