2017 Bookish and Personal New Year's Goals
I said on my BookTube channel that I didn't have any resolutions or goals for 2017, but I've changed my mind in, oh, a day? I'm just a sucker for resolutions, you guys.
I wasn't always this way, but I'm finally coming around to the truth that I am a goal-oriented person. My downfall, however, is always my all-or-nothing goals. I tell myself I'm going all in or there's no point to it all, which is just silly. Thankfully, I don't feel that way about readathons or monthly TBRs, and reading in general.
Reading has always been something I enjoy when I'm relaxed, and so I can't actually control it. I'm 100 percent a mood reader, so even though I strive to complete monthly TBRs, I don't fret when it doesn't happen. And more importantly, I don't quit reading altogether (exercise experiences, anyone?).
So yes, these are more of goals than resolutions. Goals are more about achieving attainable milestones, whereas resolutions are more about instilling lifelong changes. When it comes to resolutions, I'm as vague as they come: be mindful, encourage creativity, move and breathe, read and write more, more yoga, eat healthy, etc.
Sometimes the smaller resolutions are nice. I once knew someone whose resolution was simple: to only drink coffee with two hands, meaning she couldn't be chugging coffee at her desk with an ever looking to-do list, and she couldn't multitask while she enjoyed her morning cup. She had to have both hands on the mug and be present. I loved it. Sadly, I wasn't able to commit to this simple resolution, and I won't be able to this year either (for reasons I'll explain in a bit...).
Read at least 50 books in 2017. This may not seem like a lot for most avid readers, but I'm a pretty slow reader. I'm also hoping to exceed 50 books, but I wanted to set the bar a little bit lower for my first Goodreads challenge. I hope tracking a Goodreads goal is more intentional and less of a burden, but we'll see how it goes!
Meet up with BookTube friends! A few of my BookTube friends and I are planning a trip to Chicago this year, and I can't wait to meet them. I'd love to meet up with several BookTubers/book lovers because this community has been so special to me. I was planning to go to BEA this year, and honestly, I still might, but it's definitely up in the air for now. Either way, I want to meet some Internet friends!
Host a readathon. I think it would be so fun to host a readathon with some other bookish friends. I've talked to a few other BookTubers about it, but we haven't decided when it will be or what the goals/theme would be. Running the Twitter sprints for the summer BookTubeAThon was such a blast, and I'd love to do something like that again.
Post a book review, in blog or video form, at least once a month. This may not seem like a lofty goal to most readers, but I am notoriously bad at consistently posting separate book reviews. I love to do it, but it just takes extra time. This year, I'd love to aim to review every book I read, but I know that isn't really realistic. Hopefully I can include as many book reviews as possible! I love the idea of blogging my book reviews, too, because I'm definitely able to get more of my critical thoughts down through writing rather than filming. But either way, I'm going to make this a goal!
Take at least four courses through the University of Chicago toward fulfilling my Editing certificate. This is something I've wanted to do professional for a long time, and I'm finally taking the plunge! My first class is in March, and I'm hoping to knock out the four core classes, if not the first three.
It's going to be challenging to participate in these four- to six-week courses on top of freelance work, a social life, hobbies, etc., but I know I'm going to learn so much, and I'm ready to advance my knowledge and skills in the publishing world. I've taken many other editing courses in the past, but I've always been most excited about this particular certificate.
Give up coffee. Yep. You read that right. I know. But listen, take a deep breath, people. This is a decision I didn't want to make, and it took me a loooong time to admit to myself that this was something I should try. I love coffee more than the average human, that's for sure. My husband roasts coffee, and we're total snobs about it. I have a regular coffee maker, chemex, french press, and aero press coffee machine. I. LOVE. COFFEE.
I also don't love anxiety. I've heard that being caffeine free can do wonders for people with anxiety, and there are many other perks, too. Apparently, being caffeine free helps you sleep better, have more energy (Lord knows not in the beginning), generally feel calm throughout the day, and it doesn't hurt the wallet, either. I already don't drink sodas or energy drinks, so coffee is the main way I consume caffeine, and I'm going to try and ease myself off of it.
This may be in the middle of the year that I try this or at the end. I'm not sure, but I want to try it. I know I may not stick with it, and that's okay. I just want to see what all the hype is about and hopefully do something to help my anxiety.
Inspire more breath and movement. Okay, you caught me: I Know this is a resolution and not a goal. But going along with the whole anxiety issue, I've learned that yoga is absolutely essential to my life—not just a nice thing to make me feel better. If I go a week without yoga, I can feel it. I don't take time to breathe, be mindful, stretch, and ultimately, relax my muscles. It's so, so important to my mental health. I would say it's much more important to my mental than physical health, but the physical benefits don't hurt either.
The past few months, I've gotten out of the habit of consistently practicing yoga because of illnesses, travel, and general complacency. Not this year! I'm going to be stronger physically and less anxious mentally. I'm going to push myself to remember to BREATHE correctly, whether that's in a yoga class or sitting at my desk. I want to learn to not only recognize fear, anxiety, and stress, but disrupt it. Change the way I respond to it. A lot of people tell me they like to use a word or phrase to motivate them in the new year instead of resolutions. For me, that word is breath. 2017 is the year I breathe.
No phone in the bed at night. Here's my tendency to be an all-or-nothing person. I've already broken this one this year, but I'm trying to remember it's about progress. I want to be off my phone less in general. I already don't have Facebook, which is incredible, but I love the Internet so much. I'm constantly on Twitter, Instagram, and (duh) YouTube. It's such a fun part of my everyday life. But, being on my phone so much, especially right before bed, is so distracting.
I want to be able to read more without picking up my phone every five seconds; I want to walk my dog, have late-night conversations with the hubs, prepare for the day ahead, and so much more. I already don't watch a ton of television—well, okay, I binge every now and then—but I want to cut down on screen time. Having my phone in another room at night will also help me when my alarm goes off to get out of bed and stop snoozing.
Side note: why is snoozing the best feeling ever? So those are my goals. I'd love to know some of yours—bookish or personal! Cheers to another year of life, love, and reading!