My New Year’s Resolutions for 2016 – Fitness, Mental Health & Travel

Photo credit: Ivanna Salgado

Photo credit: Ivanna Salgado

I’m not really one for resolutions. I used to love them as a teenager, but my long-standing journalling only seems to prove that I have a habit of not following through on my resolutions (not biting my nails has been number 1 on the list for the last 15 years to no avail). I usually get too caught up on broader goals, such as travelling and academic exams, to keep up with my vague resolutions ( “get fit and healthy” being the classic!).

That being said, coming home after years of travelling can leave anyone in something of an emotional slump, and I don’t want 2016 to seem small and ordinary in comparison to the excitement of years 2013, 14 and 15.

Instead of just looking at the big picture, I want to use this time I have of relative peace and stability to work on some of my smaller and more personal goals:

  1. Start learning French – I have wanted to do this since university, and my desire to learn has only increased since travelling. It’s ironic because I couldn’t stand the subject at school and dropped it in a heartbeat after GCSE.
  2. Plan a trip to France – I can’t necessarily commit to going to France this year because so much depends on work and my financial situation. However, I can definitely start plotting and planning!
  3. Post at least once a week on my blog and social media – I usually get too worried about my work not being good enough, look at too many long-term monetised blogs, and end up not posting anything. However, as I have demonstrated many a time to myself, posting something is usually better than nothing. In fact, some of my most popular posts have been those which I have whipped up in a couple of hours.
  4. Try not to judge myself and others – I am incredibly harsh on myself which means, by extension, that I am unwittingly critical of others. However, as the saying goes, you never know what’s going on behind closed doors; it’s important not to make assumptions about people’s lives or the troubles that they face. Equally, it’s vital to be kind to yourself and treat yourself the way that you would a friend – I am way to hard on myself so being kinder to myself is where I am going to start.
  5. Stretch out at least twice a week – I get the most awful pain in my knees and hips when I’m stressed; I tense up in my sleep, lock my knees out, and wake up feeling like I’ve been put through a wringer. Stretching out for just fifteen minutes alleviates most of my aches and pains.
  6. Continue to work out + focus more on nutrition and developing a diet/lifestyle that is sustainable – counting calories and macros are effective, and if I was a fitness model, I would probably stick to that way of life because hitting my body goals would be my livelihood. However, the reality is that I’m an average twenty-something year old woman who will most likely be working in an office, and who doesn’t have much of a desire to count calories for the rest of her life. I’ve also spent the last few months out of action due to an injury (apparently going to the gym so soon after food poisoning was not the best plan). I will be bringing a new series, 2016: Getting Back on Track, to this blog which will follow my journey, as I am sure that there are many others out there with similar goals, and I figure that we could all do with some mutual motivation!
  7. Take up yoga and meditation – I say this every year, so we’re just going to have to see how this resolution holds out. But I really do think that I would benefit from both of these practices – I hold far too much stress and tension in my body, and my head normally races at 100 miles per hour all day every day. Slowing down and taking the time to breathe would definitely improve my life no-end.
  8. Continue with my gratitude lists and journalling – I have kept a journal since I was 10 years old, and I always like to remind myself each year to keep it up. And whilst I don’t believe that gratitude lists are a stand-alone cure for depression, I do find them useful for steering my mind in a more positive direction.
  9. Read a wider selection of books – I love re-reading my old favourites, delving in just a little further and pulling out new meanings and themes. But this does mean that I have a tendency to stay very much within my comfort zone and I fail to explore new horizons. I’m going to start writing a list of possible books to read this year in my Filofax and start working my way through it.
  10. Stop biting my nails.

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What are your resolutions for 2016? Do you find it useful to have resolutions or do you prefer to stick to bigger, over-arching goals?

All the best for the new year and keep coming back for new posts!

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