With the new year only a day away, I am stressing that I haven't put my resolutions down on paper yet! Usually I have this done way in advance and think about it for quite some time and here I am doing it last minute. Each year I try to cover certain areas that I think that can always be improved upon. For me, this includes health, relationships, spirituality, professional endeavors and personal happiness. I break my resolutions into these categories and try to think about things that I can do to improve these areas of my life whether it be small gestures or huge undertakings.
Since I am behind, let me just "write it down" right here on this post. Might as well, right?
Let's start with health. This one is a toughy as I have been struggling to get on any kind of exercise routine or get some health issues looked into. It is easy to say that I have put my health on the back burner. I think this boils down to two things; number one is laziness. Pure. Complete. Laziness. I could give you a million excuses but the reality here is that I have been lazy. The second reason is that I am always putting others before myself. I am good about making sure my kids go to all their well baby appointments or see a doctor if they get even a slight sniffle but when it comes to myself, not so much. In fact, I had not been to the Optometrist in over three years and had been wearing the same contacts for a year and a half up until last week. Note that the contacts prescribed to me are only supposed to last a month! Ridiculous, I know! The only reason I went in at all was because I was making an appointment for my husband to get his eyes checked so he could get new glasses. What makes this scenario even more obnoxious is that I have health insurance that is crazy good!
The other element of health is that I need to get more physically active. I need to get on a routine of working out four or five days a week and sticking to it. I think that this will be much easier to do since I am returning to Corporate America in mid-January. There is a 24 hour gym only two miles away that I can either go to before or after work. The hard part for me about being a stay at home mom is that I do not have a set routine. We just go with the flow. Of course there were certain things we do each week like go to our playgroup on a Wednesdays, the grocery store on another day, the library on a different day, etc. etc. but other than that ....we just do as we please. Say we want to go to the bounce house....we go. Shopping...of course! Impromtu visit to Grandma...no problem. This is not to say that I do not like the luxury of doing so, but I am a very regimented person. I like to have a plan. This is why I think that when I go back to work, I will find it much easier to put exercise into my schedule. I will also incorporate healthier eating. It isn't that I don't eat healthy. The problem is that I do not eat regularly. For example, for breakfast I make Jude oatmeal on most days at his request. He almost always leaves one bite in the bowl. I eat that last bite for my breakfast. If the bite is not there, I don't eat anything. For lunch, I make him something to eat....same routine. I eat what is left of his food whether it be a quarter of a sandwich or a half of a banana. When we leave the house and are out and about, I alway get a Large Unsweetened Iced Tea with light ice from Mcdonald's. (It is my addiction). Then I come home and prepare dinner and eat a normal dinner with the family. This is obviously not healthy and far from a balanced diet. There isn't a number I want to put with this group of resolutions. There isn't a weight I want to be or a number of inches that I want to lose. I simply want to get more fit, be healthier and have a higher level of endurance. It is hard enough keeping up with one toddler, I cannot imagine what I will do when Gwenyth starts running like a crazy person in a fashion similar to her brother!
I think that in order to improve upon my health begininning in 2012, it is important that I:
1. Find a family doctor.
2. Make and keep doctors appointments.
3. Try to eat three meals and two snacks each day.
4. Exercise 4-5 times per week.
When it comes to relationships, I am so pleased with the people that I have surrounded myself with. The people I call my friends are truly my friends and the family members I keep close are unbeatable. When I think about the elements of my life I appreciate most, it most certainly includes my friends and family. Each New Year I think about how I want to strengthen these relationships further. There are times where I think that the hustle and bustle of life take over and I do not show my friends and family enough just how much I appreciate them and feel that I need to make more of an effort to do so. Some ideas I have are to
1. Call long-distance friends more regularly.
2. Send simple hello's or thinking about you's in the mail.
3. Plan more dates/visits.
4. Be the best wife/mommy I can be.
I have already began making efforts to do some of the above things I have listed. For example, I have a July trip planned to see my friend Katie with two of my friends! I cannot wait! We have decided that we would do an annual trip together. This year we are doing NYC, next year is Chicago, then the following year I think we will revisit Vegas!
When I think about how I can grow spiritually I am sometimes very overwhelmed. I am constantly amazed at how blessed I am in this wonderful life that I live. There was a point in my life where I was unhappy and didn't understand why things were not this way or that way or simply the way that I had imagined they would be. I questioned whether I would ever truly be happy. I just never felt content or at peace. Did it ever hit me like a ton of bricks. I remember it vividly. I was a Junior in college on my study abroad trip in London, England. Here I was experiencing places like France, Scotland, Ireland, Germany and other places in the world others only dream to see in their lifetime. I was becoming friends with the most amazing people I had ever met while still maintaining the great friendships that I had back at school. I was interning at a school full of refugees who had left a war stricken country and seen their families murdered and I thought I had something to be unhappy about? I walked through the city and saw others my age who were homeless and cold who may not have had a hot meal or warm shower in months possiblt and I was unhappy?
That was my wake up moment. I could not believe that I had the nerve to be unhappy! I had an overwhelming sense of guilt for ever feeling sorry for myself. From that moment, I made it a point to always tell myself that regardless of whatever my situation is, there is someone out there who is so much worse off. If anyone were to ask me what my personal best life experience has been, I would say it was my study abroad experience. During that experience I grew leaps and bounds on the inside. If I said I felt a physical transformation from this realization that took place, you might not believe me, but I did. I felt it in my attitude, my outlook and most of all my heart. My heart grew bigger and I am ever grateful for it.
During the time after I had this revelation, I had never felt closer to God than the time following this event. It lasted quite some time; years even. But now, even though I remember this experience so well, there are times when it gets away from me. There are times I forget to count my blessings on a daily basis. I am always thankful for my blessings but it's not enough. I sometimes forget to say my prayers, I fail to remember that I don't always have to have a plan or a solution and that I should put my trust in Him, and I don't always put Him first.
My plan for the coming year is to
1. Spend more time with God through prayer.
2. Count my blessings daily.
3. Accept His plan without question.
Since I am reentering the work force after over a year and a half, I need to think about the goals that I must set as a professional. I have always set my standards high and this time is no different. I am entering unchartered territory and a field that is very new to me. This is why it is more important than ever to make certain that I am successful. Not only is it important to me to be a successful professional in the corporate world again, but it is more important for me to be a professional working mother in a corporate world without losing the work and home balance. I know how fortunate I am to get the opportunity to start a career at a company of this calibur in todays economy. There are so many people scouring for jobs anywhere and I was blessed with this opportunity. Therefore, I think that some excellent goals would be to
1. Quickly learn and enhance my skills as an Underwriter.
2. Have a positive performance review.
3. Build strong relationships with colleagues.
4. Pursue continuing education in the field.
As far as my personal happiness goes, I think that overall I am in a very good place. I think about what could make me even happier and it boils down to mapping out the things that make me happiest. This includes my family and friends and also doing more of the things that I enjoy. What do I enjoy? I love traveling, DIY, blogging and party planning! Also, the one area that makes me happiest is making other people happy and doing for others. Therefore this is an easy one.
1. Plan a kick-butt party for Jude's 3rd Birthday, Gwenyth's 1st Birthday and Clint's 30th!
2. Plan a family vacation.
3. Plan a visit to my friends in Chicago for just me!
4. Thrift and refinish furniture pieces to incorporate into our home.
5. Do more sewing projects.
6. Find ways to give back.
7. Blog about all of the above!!!!!
There you have it. I am not sure if everyone puts that much thought into their resolutions, but I map it out quite extensively and put a great deal of thought into it. I am interested to hear what types of things you put on your list or if yuor method is similar at all to mine! Are they more clear cut or more vague?
Since I am a crazy list maker, I will have to get out my notebook and write all of these down in it so I access to it there as well as on my iPad and in my phone.