New year planning: goals, health and values

It is that time of year where everyone is hoping to better themselves. 2019 is officially here and it is time to set goals and plan for a great new year. In a previous post, we look at our Why and back at what we accomplished in 2018. It’s nice to look at our progression and growth before fixing new goals for the upcoming year. There might be something you wished to do in 2018 that did not get done. You can always pick the same objective from one year to the next to improve. I personally like to choose one goal per month or over 2-3 months to create a habit and give me the time to master it. Today I share with you what I use to plan a successful year, establish my goals and progression as well as set a few challenges.

Pre-planning

This video from Jordan Page at Fun Cheap or Free changed the way I see productivity, efficiency and goal setting. I highly recommend watching it even if it is a few years old now (made in 2017 from the 2014 post). I try to stay organized all year round and it is a constant struggle to keep up with all the tasks, social life and work. I am not always consistent (added to the goals this year) with my planning and I am slowly accepting that in myself. I give myself some room and extra time to relax or just less to do when productivity is just not there. One thing that helps a lot is pre-planning.

Jordan’s video is amazing for that because you pre-plan, step-by-step with her and her husband, every aspect of your upcoming year: birthdays, date nights, activities, holidays, goals, finances, vacation, etc. I put some suggested activities for every week of this year to keep our social life and weekly date nights (I organize every other week and he does the others as suggested by her). That way we see friends, have fun things to do every week and always enjoy our date nights. It’s so genius! By having a plan you forget fewer things like birthdays or to save for upcoming events while maintaining flexibility because every week you sit down to discuss and plan in greater detail the upcoming week. You know if there are events coming up or meetings or social activities planned and you plan in greater detail your full week. I share with you below what I have planned for 2019.

Goal Setting

This year, our word is “balance”. Trying for perfection is overrated and we always get disappointed in ourselves. This year, I will appreciate what I am able to accomplish, accept what I was unable to do but still work towards my goals. If things don’t get done all in one night, there is still tomorrow. There is no point getting negative because there are only 24 hours in a day. Knowing that important things are already planned creates less stress and anxiety in my life. I have a plan A with lots of plan Bs if life happens.

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Financial

We have set goals to save money for a few planned travels this year as well as a second vehicle. These goals have specific dollar values and time associated with them in order to save appropriately. This makes the math very simple and easy with constant contributions. We are saving while still paying down some debt which means that we sometimes have to get “frugally creative” which I enjoy (most of the time). Because you can have everything, just not everything at the same time.

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Personal

This week I started meditating again with beloved app Headspace. They currently have a 40% off sale if you are interested. Even if I meditated a lot in 2018, it has been a few months since my last session so I started from the beginning. I love it because you can choose 5-10-15 minutes depending on how much time you have.

Another goal of mine is to reintroduce yoga and pilates into my workout routine. I have a new goal this year, but more on that later. Yoga has been a big part of my life at university and helped me so much with joint flexibility, breathing and relaxing. For these reasons, I will make time once or twice a week for yoga. I would also love to schedule some pilates time but I might be limited to once every two weeks with my current training schedule. It is a great workout and really challenges my body. I highly recommend it.

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Health

We have made a point this year to balance healthy eating with some indulgence (for those of you who might know the 80/20 rule, it is our guideline). We try to include more fruits and veggies to our plates as well as limit our consumption of process food and meat while still eating enough protein. Meal prep is one of the things that helps me balance my time and make sure healthy snacks and alternatives are available to us. I utilize the freezers by freezing homemade meals, snacks and baked goods for when we don’t want to cook or we don’t have time to cook.

On the fitness side, I decided to start lifting weights and build stronger muscles. I am still playing with my routine but will lift weights for the next 3-4 months (make sure to follow me on IG for updates) and will change to a fat burning routine in the summer. I find it easier to go outside for walks, hikes or jogging in the summer so this fits perfectly within my plan. Another great thing is all the fresh fruits and veggies available during this season which will help with the fat burning process (let’s hope!). Don’t you worry, I still include my cardio day into my weekly routine by getting back to spin classes. If you have any recommendations, please leave them in the comments below.

untitled design (3)Blog/Social Media

I am super excited to be more present on the blog and social media this year but I decided to work smarter not harder. That means I will pre-plan and pre-schedule some of my content. That way, I can do work in bulk and schedule it in advance while you guys still get to enjoy the good stuff even more regularly. After all, I am just one person behind this blog with a full-time job. I have yet to set a posting day so make sure to subscribe to know when I post or follow me on social media.

Action Plan

Using Jordan’s planning strategy, I have set deadlines for my goals, organized my days (she uses a block system that makes a lot of sense for me – link) and weeks to be productive and make mini-milestone celebration along the way to stay motivated. Have a fixed goal in mind with a fixed deadline helps me to stay on track. I also accounted for flexibility in there so it is not to fix but well balanced.

Accountability

Making time to reward my small progress keeps me motivated but also accountable. I also try to share my goals with friends and family so they can either cheer or join me.

Inspiration

Social media gets a bad reputation sometimes but I find that if you follow the right people they inspire you to reach higher than your goals. It also gets you into a community of like-minded people with similar aspirations and you can cheer for one and another. Pinterest is also another place where I can get inspired and up my creativity.

Rewards

As mentioned previously, making time to celebrate the little victories is important to me. It makes a long-term plan into bit-sizes that I can enjoy often while keeping my main goal a priority.

Flexibility

As you probably know, more often than not life happens and plans changes. I try to allow my plans to be fluid as well as balanced (after all it is the word of 2019). It is also important to know that use my yearly planning as inspiration for things to do. What I mean is if I scheduled a social activity with friends one week and another activity with my spouse, we can combine the two or move on to another week.

In conclusion, I would like to wish you a great year 2019 and hope all your plans surprises you in the best possible way. As for me, I will work hard on my financial, personal, health and blog/social media goals this year. I hope to see you back on the blog soon. In the meantime, I wish you the best of days.

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