2013 Resolutions: Reflections

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While I’m still trying to hash out what my goals for 2014 are going to be (or if I’m even going to have any), and dig myself out of this snow, I thought I would take today to go back and reflect on my goals from 2013, and how I did with each one.

My plans for 2013…and how they turned out

1. Find a way to make writing/editing a career, instead of a hobby.

“I plan to take the extra time I have over the next few months to look at working in a different industry, be it writing, editing, blogging, or something along those lines…I want to make new friends, develop new abilities, and find ways to make writing a part of my professional life, and not just my personal one.”

This resolution ended up being almost a complete failure. I didn’t end up getting out of teaching, and I’m still living in Ohio. In fact, after reading last year’s New Year’s post, I realized I opened this year doing the same exact thing I did last year – staying home and watching It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. After I read that, I wanted to smack my head against a wall – it’s as if I literally…literally…got nowhere this year.

However, that’s not entirely true, and I shouldn’t be so hard on myself. I did start to forge some new relationships with other bloggers, and have learned a lot about the blogging world last year. I’m better at taking and editing photos, writing meaningful content, and getting a tiny bit better at the technical stuff. I also opened myself up to Twitter and Facebook, and learned just how difficult it is for a 30 year old to juggle social media. I don’t know how you 20-somethings do it. I’m so old and slow…but I’m getting better.

This is still a goal I want for myself this year – and it will continue to be a goal of mine until it’s done.

2. Be more selfish.

“This is going to be the year that I put my foot down and say ‘no’ a lot more to everyone else, and say ‘yes’ to myself, I think…Also, I plan to spend more time reading books for fun. It’s the only time I truly get to myself, without the temptation to sacrifice anything for others.”

I did manage to accomplish this resolution over the past year…but it came at a price.

Last year, I made a concerted effort not to be taken advantage of at work, which made things less stressful. Unfortunately, it also meant that I got a bit of a reputation for being too hard-headed and only concerned with money. Turns out saying no to more unpaid overtime when I’m already doing too much work without pay makes me seem like a scrooge. I still put my foot down, and have to say it helped…even if my coworkers didn’t always see it that way.

I also made a huge stride to spend more time doing things I love, and doing less of the things I didn’t, in my personal life. This also turned out to be a constant struggle. It still is. My family has taken baby steps to involve themselves in my life, but they still get upset that I don’t call as often or make the 3-hour trip every time they want me to visit. I want to be a part of their lives, but they have made it clear that I am expected to do all the heavy lifting…and driving. So we’re still working on that.

My marriage has suffered as a result, too. My husband is of the mindset that when he’s home, I have to spend 100% of the time involved in what he wants to do – which is usually sitting on the couch watching television. While I do love spending time with him, I’m starting to realize that his idea of “spending time” with me lately is him spending time with football/television shows/video games, while I sit there trying to feign interest. Whenever I invited him along to do things I was interested in, he wouldn’t go. He still has yet to go on one hike with me after almost two years of inviting him. It didn’t stop me from making the effort to do things I wanted to do – but it made it a lot harder.

I’m glad that I stuck to my guns with this resolution, though. Last year I started to feel more like myself than I have in years, and learned to stick up for myself more often. I read a lot more for fun than I ever used to, and realized how much I miss it. Hopefully the people in my life will learn that it’s not healthy for them to dominate my entire life, and to let me have some time and passions of my own. If not, 2014 is going to be a very difficult year.

3. Continue to build myself into a healthier person.

“This year, I plan to continue my exercising routine by making regular trips to the gym when the weather is bad, and get outside for regular bike rides and hikes when the weather permits…My diet in 2013 is about learning to let go of foods that are no longer helping me maintain a healthy lifestyle. I would like to find ways to eat less meat (or cut it out entirely), less sugar, and work in more whole foods.”

This resolution went amazingly the first half of the year. I was getting outside a ton, eating better, and trying to live a healthier lifestyle.ย Then came the summer of poison ivy, which sidelined me for almost a month. Then came moving…twice…which, while it made for a good workout, was still pretty stressful. After that, I got outside less and less. Part of it is where we live – we’re so far away from any bike trails, and safe hiking trails. I have found a few new places to explore, and hope that I can get out more in 2014 to explore the area I live in.

My diet was also something I wanted to “tweak” this past year, and I did much better than I hoped I would. I spent a lot of time this year cooking just for myself due to my late work schedule, so I experimented with a lot of new recipes. I cut out meat from my diet during much of April, and almost all of November…and cut out a good chunk of it from the rest of the year. I still hate salads, but I fell in love with smoothies. I even found that I like almond milk – so regular milk is still, after almost 2 years, out of the picture.

Overall, I would have to consider this resolution a success. I did what I set out to do, and while I still weigh the same as I always have, I feel better – and that was more important to me last year than anything else.

Now I’m off to brainstorm what my new goals are going to be for 2014. I have a few ideas, but I’m not sure I want to nail them down just yet. I guess my goal for January would be to do that. ๐Ÿ™‚

What are your 2014 resolutions? Or are you not doing them this year?

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