I know everyone else has already posted their updates and new goals and challenges for the coming year, but over the last few years I’ve come to realise that there is so much going on in January and so many ideas floating around that it is impossible for me to set meaningful goals on the first day of the year. Instead I like to wait a few weeks, and then spend some me time thinking about what I achieved in the last twelve months and deciding on some useful but not impossible goals for the next.
It is now that time, and this weekend I have been able to look back and really think about how I’ve grown and what I’ve learnt. I’ve mostly done that soaking in the bath, lounging in my pyjamas and mooching around my house. It’s been wonderful actually, just what I needed to sort me out after a mopey few days last week. It’s very important to look back on occasion, both physically (or I wouldn’t have seen the most amazing pink sunset of my life at the end of the Lyke Wake Walk) and in time.
So, as I have done for the last few years, I’ll take each of the goals and challenges I set for 2015 in turn:
I will experience new things
This was my biggest and main aim for the whole of 2015, and I can safely say I got it done. My bucket list has seen some great ticks this year, I have been able to take full advantage of a number of experience vouchers I was given, and have had some other amazing “firsts” such as visiting the Alps and going on a coach trip in Turkey.
Here’s some posts that hopefully demonstrate I’ve made the most of this particular goal this year, some of which I included in my recent experiences post but you know, I couldn’t resist pointing you towards again:
- Afternoon Tea at Bettys of Harrogate
- Track Cycling at Lee Valley
- Stand Up Paddleboarding at Centre Parcs
- View from the Shard
- Thames RIB Experience
- Hot Air Ballooning in Cappadocia
- TopDeck Tour of Turkey
- Obergurgl in Summer and Winter
- We Rode to Italy and Back
There was one thing within this goal that I did fail at, and that was my wish to do my first microadventure by sleeping at the top of a hill under the stars for a night. I just wasn’t able to make it happen. Let’s face it, trying more new things will one hundred percent be on my new list for 2016 so I shall try and make it happen sometime in the next 12 months.
Sitting in the same spot six months apart. Obergurl: Summer and Winter.
I will walk and walk and walk and walk
Hooray for walking! I love it. It’s the best thing – one of the best ways to see the countryside, get some fresh air, burn off a few calories, spend time with friends and family, and build up an appetite for a great meal at home or out. And I reckon I totally nailed this one thanks in no small part to agreeing to do the Lyke Wake Walk.
- Stephen Langton Trail
- The Water Railway from Lincoln to Boston
- Nature’s Spaces in Lincoln
- Exploring Local Trails
- The Lyke Wake Walk
Apart from the Lyke Wake Walk itself I didn’t go far for any of my big walks this year – they were all either from or too my own front door and meant I spent a lot of time on twitter going on (and on and on) about the importance of spending time exploring your own local area. I guarantee there is loads to see within 20 minutes’ walk of your house, whether that be sprawling urban metropolis, deserted rural countryside, or something in between. It’s well worth the effort of lacing up some “stout shoes”, grabbing your coat, and heading outside for an hour or two. Do it this weekend!
Walking the Lyke Wake Walk. Thanks Allysse for the pic.
I will stop playing games on my iPad
This goal specifically referred to those simulation type games that over the last couple of years had taken over my life somewhat. I was constantly worried about coins and levels and whether Ned Flanders had finished his power walk (The Simpsons: Tapped Out is a genius game but SO addictive) or my little tribe had corn to harvest. Hours and hours of time wasted every week (every day) on pointless jabbing, affecting my productivity and even sleep. So as I wrote my goals and challenges post last year I went ahead and deleted the handful of games that were causing me this problem and I’ve not looked back. Recently I did think about reinstalling one of them, but I have resisted. Instead of tap tap tapping I now vlog or blog or cook something or rest or just do nothing. It’s great.
I will meet people who inspire me, and learn from them
I have always been a bit afraid of networking. As an introvert I find meeting new people, especially at events designed for this purpose, incredibly difficult. While I am more than happy to stand up in front of a crowd and talk, I have no idea what to say when standing around with a plate of finger food and a cup of tea, and even less idea when I’m sat eating dinner with a group of people I don’t know. But I know this means I’m missing out meeting people I know can help and inspire me in so many ways, so I wanted to make a concerted effort. And I did. Back in the Spring I met Jo from Always Think You Can, who contacted me after setting a very similar goal herself. We met in Coventry for an afternoon, grabbing a bite to eat before wandering around the cultural sights of the old city. It was great. I would definitely like to do more of this in 2016.
The staircase to nowhere, Coventry Cathedral.
I will eat better
Well, the old healthy eating goal hey? We all make this one. Every year. I’ve been okay at it over the last twelve months I think. Not amazing, not brilliant, but not terrible either. I’ve been cooking lots of different things at home, have learnt a lot about leftovers and freezing, and have definitely made a conscious effort to buy fresh and eat fresh. I’m making different decisions when food shopping and even when out for dinner (although will never say no to pudding!), and am definitely friends with the lady who runs my local farm shop. As for those sugary drinks, I’m drinking fewer of those and more water/squash, but I’ve not cut them out completely.
I gave a juice detox thing a go in the name of this blog and discovered many interesting things as a result of the research I did around that, and have started to drink home made smoothies in place of bought ones when I have the time (and fruit!). I have also started to experiment more with sweet treats in my own kitchen, which must be loads better than eating shop bought cake all the time. There is still a lot of work to do on my diet to be honest, and I admit I ended 2015 being incredibly lazy at mealtimes, but I made some progress and will most likely roll this one over in some way.
Strawberry and banana smoothie.
I will decide what I want to be when I grow up
This one had a “maybe” caveat at the end. And for good reason. The fact is I still don’t know. I just can’t let go of the fact I always wanted to be a Blue Peter presenter and have never been able to make that happen. I know at 35 I am way too old for that now so I really need to come up with a new plan. Again, maybe. I’ve given this a lot of thought, especially recently, and will explain more when I write my new list of goals and challenges in a week or two.
So there we have it, a pretty successful year with some goals achieved and some challenges overcome. I know not everyone likes setting goals (or dare I say “resolutions”), but now that I’ve learnt that this particular way of setting them a few weeks into the year and setting themes rather than one sentence wishes, it works for me.