2013: A New Year. A New ME. New Resolutions

“Sometimes all you need is a slight shift in perspective to bring things into Focus.” – Ashley Robinson
keekoThis is a great way to summarize the “WHY” of many of the goals that I’ve set for myself this year. I’m always writing down random words, thoughts and ideas – many times in my phone’s note pad app. I was going through my phone and I came across this quote that I came up with and realized how perfect it would be as a start to this post. Funny because I was actually planning to use it for a product description for a client, but now I’ve decided to keep it for myself instead.

I think it fits well with my theme and goals for this year. It really helps to make the point that I am at in my life with evolving and becoming a better me. But I didn’t just arrive at this point. It’s taken a lot of time, reflecting, self-evaulation, mentoring and more. Now that I’ve made it through the initial phases, I’m looking forward to getting closer to the final product of the NEW ME.

1. Evolve. Last year I started a journey to being a better me inside and out. I guess I finally realized that over the years with heartache, breakup, family drama, weight gain, work stress, etc… that I’d lost myself and the ability to make ME happy. I didn’t really even know who I was or where I wanted to be. I realized that it was time for me to re-evaluate my life and really self-reflect. I saw so much of what I’d lost and decided that it was time to take it back and make myself better than ever. I started working on my fitness, improving my beauty, adjusting my work habits, developing a somewhat regular sleep schedule, eating better, drinking less red bull and a lot more. I’m looking forward to continuing that journey this year.

2. Establish Me Time. I spend much of my time working 24/7 (or 99% GRIND 1% SLEEP as I like to say) so I can pay this off and buy that, but never really stopping to enjoy the things that I do have around me and the comfort of my own home. This year I want to enjoy my life and more of the little moments. That means taking more time to be thankful for all of the things that I do have and the important people in my life that have my back and are always by my side. Little things that I bypass so often with the excuse and mindset that “I don’t have time” – like sitting on my couches, hanging out with my sisters, cooking (which I’m actually pretty good at), arts & crafts (which is creatively therapeutic for me), laying in the bed for that extra 10 minutes in the morning and anything else that I can think of.

3. Be My Own Boss. I often describe myself to people as just being a computer nerd, but I’ve realized (with a little help from the amazingly supportive man in my life) that I’m so much more. I have the ability to be happier, more successful and a lot less stressed by focusing on the work that I enjoy doing and working for myself. I’ve been doing this in my photography work, but there is so much more that I can bring into it. So I want to focus on building up my name, my brand and finding that success that is destined for me.

4. Continue to Strive for Excellence. For years I’ve been practicing this thing we call RCI (Relentless Continuous Improvement) – which applies to all areas of my life. I want to really to continue practicing this and integrating this into everything I do. I also want to spend more time really paying attention to the small details because so often they matter the most.

5. Do Less. This should actually say do less of what I don’t need to do and do more of what I need/want to do, but I think “DO LESS” is a more powerful statement. The truth is, I used to spend a lot of time trying to help others. I mean I spent way too much time trying to make others happy, worrying about what they thought of me and trying to figure out what I could do better to make them happier. But that’s no way to live my life, especially when I’m not getting that same effort in return and when my own health is in jeopardy as a result. So this year I want to do less and say “NO” more. If I don’t want to do something then I’m not going to do it and I’m not going to worry about what others think. I need to do what’s best for me and what makes me happy.

6. De-Clutter my life. I’ve actually been working on cleaning up the clutter for a while, but my goal is to finally finish that this year. This includes clutter on several levels. First the actual clutter that lives in my house: A big part of this is finally finish unpacking boxes (yes after 4+ years of living in the same house), eliminating old papers and receipts, cleaning out my closets to remove clothes that don’t fit or don’t fit in with the NEW ME – style wise, getting a new file cabinet and organizing my files. Oh and then maybe I can finally finish decorating! And then there’s the emotional clutter which includes not being so hard on myself, weeding out the unnecessary people in my life that try to keep me down and hold me back, letting go of things in my past that I can’t change and that I shouldn’t allow to affect my present or future and cutting out the jobs and projects that leave me overstressed and underpaid.

7. Take Action. I find that I have so many ideas that I’m always writing down, yet not enough time to make them happen. This year I want to make more of those ideas a reality. One of them being this website and my FreeStyle Friday group which are both coming along very well! I have a few others projects and ideas on the table that I look forward to seeing finished this year as well.

8. Go on Vacation. Last year I went on my first real vacation. We went to Vegas! In addition to being my first vacation, it was also my first time in 3 years that I took time away from my job, didn’t take my laptop and did absolutely NO work. It was such an incredible and relaxing feeling. I’m looking forward to doing that again this year and hopefully more than once!

9. Read one book a month. I love to read, I always have. As a child I can remember sitting in the closet for hours at a time just reading and competing with myself to see how many books I could read in a day, week, month. While I still love reading and all of the knowledge it brings, I find I can rarely commit regular time to doing it…and in the meantime my pile of books I want to read keeps growing and growing. I want to cut down on buying new books (other than textbooks for school) and push myself to dedicate a little bit of time each day to reading.

10. Enjoy my birthday and a few holidays. Usually I try to hide out on my birthday and holidays – away from people, family drama and traffic. While I might not be in the middle of all of my family on every occasion, I do want to do some fun things on my own. A barbecue or pool party, host a Christmas party, do something fun and exciting for my birthday, etc…