Monday, 2 January 2017

Hopefully Realistic Resolutions | 2017

I've always been very good at making resolutions at the beginning of a new year, but, like many of us, I haven't always been very good at keeping them. While I've heard that telling other people about your resolutions makes you more likely to keep them, that's never worked for me. My friends and family know I'm a lazy bum, so when I tell them I'm going to do something they half expect me to not bother. I can't really blame them! 

While I could tell you that this year is different, this year I'll stick to them and really make the changes I want to see in my life...I say that every year. If I really wanted to make these changes I would have done already. The problem with that way of thinking is that it's pessimistic in the extreme. I couldn't live with myself if I gave up every time without even trying, so once again I'm doing the cliché thing and writing a list of resolutions and convincing myself that this year, I really will do it. 

This year, I'm planning to write this list down nice and large and stick up somewhere that I'll see it every morning, because half of my problems with things like this is that I simply forget that I'm not supposed to be eating chocolate, to be reading that book instead of mindlessly browsing Twitter...maybe it will make a difference, but I'll report back either way! 

Personal Resolutions
Read at least one book per month 
Not so very long ago I was reading at least a book a week; a book a day sometimes. Granted, I was extremely unemployed and very bored, but I miss it nonetheless. While the time I actually have to read is often taken up by other things that I enjoy, I want to start making time for my books again. I have a constantly increasing Amazon wishlist that needs to be added to my ever-growing pile of books (side note, I really need to buy a bookcase).
 
Keep track of spending
I am not very good with money; I never have been. The reason, I'm sorry if this sounds like bragging, is because I've always had it. Back during uni I had several thousand pounds of savings (dead people, y'know the drill) that eventually ran out during my failed attempt at postgraduate study. Now I live pay cheque to pay cheque and I'm not very good at it. My Mother calls it a "champagne lifetsyle on a lager salary" and if I'm being honest, she's right. Nobody ever tell her I said that.
 
Go outside at weekends (me-time)
I tend to become a bit of a hermit at weekends. I don't have a huge amount of friends here in Manchester, so unless I'm seeing my boyfriend or I have errands to run I'll stay inside all cosy with my best friend, the internet. One thing I miss doing from those awful six months of unemployment and heartbreak (there actually is something I miss!) is coffee shops. I miss sitting in a coffee shop for a few hours, with a good book and my laptop, writing a few blogposts and reading a little, but mostly watching the world go by. That sort of environment works for me, allowing me to completely relax and just let all the stresses of the week drift away. I'm determined to make time for me to sit and chill, preferably with a black coffee.

Blogging
Post twice a week
I thoroughly enjoyed Blogtober in 2016, and I really miss the creative buzz of writing frequently. There's no chance of my going back to daily posting any time soon, but I think twice a week is manageable providing I plan my time carefully.

Read more blog posts
I've been lacking in inspiration lately, and I recently realised why. I don't read blogs anymore, except for one or two that I keep up with pretty much religiously. I'm completely out of touch with the blogging community, and I miss sharing the love and being able to tweet and share my favourite posts and bloggers. This is definitely something I want to start doing again. My current plan is to pick a blog each morning and read it on the tram on my way to work because hell yes I'm taking advantage of the free wifi.

Health and Fitness
Run twice a week
Ah, here come the real clichés! Yes, I do want to get fitter, but I've broken it down into a few (hopefully) doable sections rather than just writing "GET FIT YOU LAZY BUM", which is what I'm thinking. I miss my running, something I used to do very regularly and brought me a great deal of joy and a sense of achievement. At one point I was able to run 5k no problem, and I really want to build back up to doing that regularly again, which brings me to my next point.

Do Parkrun at least once a month
Parkrun is a volunteer organised scheme that brings people together to run a timed 5k once a week in parks around the UK. I discovered their website a few days ago when I should have been working and decided that it would beright up my street - once I can actually manage 5k again...
 
Only eat office biscuits on Fridays
This is a big one. My office is the type where there's usually a chocolate orange, a box of Heroes and a pack of chocolate digestives floating around, and it's far too easy to snack and not even realise. My new policy is to only eat office biscuits on a Friday, and even then only if explicitly offered one. I'm also not going to accept biscuits from anyone I don't like (sorry creepy guy who personally walks up to every desk to offer you a biscuit then lingers awkwardly).

Plan meals ahead of time
This is likely to be another tricky one. I live right by an Aldi and am used to just dropping by after work and grabbing something quick and easy to eat, usually a ready meal. It's not healthy, and not the cheapest, even shopping at Aldi. As for lunches, Pret is my demon, and I will gladly give them a large portion of my pay cheque if I don't keep an eye on myself. Meal planning and preparing my lunches ahead of time is my best bet for controlling both my profligate food spending habits and my equally reckless calorie intake.

That's the lot, but I think I've set myself a serious challenge this year. As to whether or not I'll be successful, only time will tell, but surely I can keep at least one of them.
Stalk me!
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