Happy New Year! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and New Year.
I make new years resolutions every year and if I’m really honest I never fully carry them through, or if I do, they only last a few months before I’m back in the old routine! So this Year I’ve decided to take small steps which I’m hoping will be much more achievable. I thought I would share them with you in case you’re looking for any inspiration.
For the past two years, one of my New Years resolutions has been to read more books. Something that seems so easy to do, but no, I’ve failed miserably and the only time I seem to be able to get through a book is on holiday! It always ends up being the last of my priorities, it’s something that I would never ever do in the daytime as it feels far too indulgent to sit down and curl up with a book. A magazine feels different for some reason, far less indulgent and easier to pick up/put down.
Since working from home, I really struggle with being able to switch off, I almost feel guilty if I’m not doing something either work-related or housework/cooking. So at the minute, the only time I allow myself the luxury of picking up a book is on an evening when the kids are in bed. Which is crazy really as it’s the one thing that I really try to encourage the kids to do more of, so why shouldn’t I have some time whilst they’re around to let them know that I love to read too!
So here’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to set myself a daily goal where I have to read at least 5 pages per day! Yep… just 5 pages, that way it is easily achievable, there is no excuse for not picking up my book and reading those 5 pages and then it also forces me to have some “me” time and I’ll more than likely end up reading much more than 5 pages.
Another small step that I’m taking is to listen to more audiobooks, I’ve downloaded Dolly Alderton’s audiobook, everything I know about love and I’ve been listening to it every morning whilst I’m putting my makeup on and getting ready. So just 20 mins per day but I’m already halfway through her book and really enjoying it. Next on my list of audiobooks is Lily Allen and also Mel B. I will mix these up with podcasts because I still love a good podcast and tend to listen to them when I’m walking the dog or ironing/cooking etc….
I had thought about trying to blog more this year, but actually, if I’m being honest with myself, I much prefer the other aspects of my job which are photographing, styling and getting creative with my content that I create for Instagram. So I’ve decided that instead of trying to force blogs every week or every other week, I’m going to take that pressure away and just write when I have a specific topic that I want to discuss. That way it will feel more natural too.
It’s taken me until the grand age of 39 to realise that when it comes to working out, I’m much happier doing it at home. I feel too self-conscious going to the gym or classes, maybe after the first few I would feel more relaxed but also it’s an extra hassle having to get in the car and drive somewhere and I’m less likely to actually go. It also eats into a big part of my day once I’ve then got home and had to shower etc… During the week I have from 9 am until 3.30pm whilst the kids are at school to fit everything in so my new routine of doing a 30 min workout at home every day fits in much better. I get up at 6.45 with kids, have a cup of tea and make their packed lunch. I then change into my workout gear and do a 30-minute class. I use the Tone It Up app which I love because you can do a different style workout every day. So Monday could be kickboxing, Tuesday – Yoga, Wednesday – kettlebells etc… It’s a great mix and stops me from getting bored with the same kind of workout each day. I then shower and get dressed then I’m ready to start my day by 9 am. Starting my day with a short workout also means that I drink more water throughout the day and eat much healthier. I would thoroughly recommend the Tone it Up app if you’re struggling to fit a workout into your weekly routine.
This is one of the ways that I’m going to track all of the above. I love the idea of having everything in one place. At the beginning of each year, I love to write out my goals for the year ahead, along with creating a vision board. I also try to note down a few things each day that I’m grateful for, but after a busy day, I often forget! So rather than having lots of different notebooks for these, I decided that I would do a bullet journal. That way I can keep all my diary, notes, to-do lists, goals, intentions and have trackers for daily exercise, books that I’ve read etc…all in one place! Then hopefully I will keep track of everything better and also manage my time better which is something that I’m really trying to improve this year. I often find that I have so many things that I want to get done going around in my head that I then end up stressing about what to do first or do half of one job and half of another. So here’s hoping that by bullet journaling as I go, it will help my mind to stay focused on one task at a time. I’ve only just started mine and I’m not very arty farty but I’m hoping to improve as I go! Here are some of the ones that I’ve been admiring along the way and some ideas of what you can use your Bullet journal for. I also bought a book by Ryder Carroll who was the creator of the Bullet Journal method which is brilliant to get started.
Amanda Reach Lee really is the queen of doodles.
So these are the small steps that I’m taking to a better 2019. I think they are all very manageable and will hopefully help me to organise my work-life balance much better. Have you set any New years resolutions or goals for 2019. Would love to hear your tips.