Lifestyle. Mental Health. Adventure

Friday, 4 January 2019

2019 Goals

Hey there you guys!

Happy belated New Year and welcome to the newly refreshed Siobhan Emma!

I don't know if you guessed, but 2018 was a bit of a no go for me blogging wise.  I didn't know what direction I wanted to go in with my writing, and that had me questioning if writing was really the direction I wanted to go in at all.  I attempted a handful of times throughout the year, but none of the posts I typed up felt right, so they all fell redundant on here and I gave up a little in the end.

The very long hiatus from blogging did help me.  It helped me see what platforms I love and which ones I was using just because I felt like I had to in order to keep up with the cool kids (See ya Twitter!), and it gave me the head space I needed to see where my interests and passions truly lie, so that I can focus on those areas and not things that, again, felt like I had to write about in order to keep up with the blog crowds.

I've been crazy ill over the Christmas break.  I came down with the nastiest cold I've had in forever the day before Christmas Eve, and am still fighting it off now.  This left me with a lot of free time to make plans for the year ahead, and I realised, whilst making those plans that I want to make time to incorporate blogging back in to my life.

In fact, there are a few changes I would like to make throughout 2019, but I'm taking a slightly different approach to how I create my goals and plans this year.  First of all, I refuse to call my goals resolutions because, as John Green said in a Vlog Brothers video, a resolution is just a wish.  A wish that, in my case barely makes it past January with me.  I can honestly say I have never succeeded at a single resolution I have ever set for myself.

Second of all, I'm not going to be too specific with my goals.  I say too, because I know for a goal to be successful there needs to be some specifics based around them, but my specifics in the past have been along the lines of "I MUST GAIN 495733385638 FOLLOWERS ON INSTAGRAM IN THREE MONTHS OR I FAIL AT LIFE!!!"

When I set goals in this manner, I find the pressure just too much, and as a result I procrastinate to the point that I will do anything but work on that goal because I know I can't reach something so unrealistic.

So, what are my 2019 goals?

There are three areas of my life I plan on focusing on throughout this year...

My Finances

My finances is an area of my life that I have always felt a little ashamed of.  To say I've not been great in handling my finances as an adult is an understatement, and I know that if I want to have a comfortable retirement later in life I'm going to have to start fixing this area of my life now.

Since losing my Mum I seem to have unknowingly gotten myself in to the habit of making myself feel temporarily better by buying a lot of material possessions.  I say temporarily, because the feeling never, ever lasts.  It started to become apparent to me at the end of last year, and I realised I was spending well above my means each month.

Over the past few months I've been reading a lot of books based around finances, and have been educating myself on the subject more and more.  It's actually much more interesting than I originally thought it would be!  Who knew?!

This area of my life isn't going to be a quick fix, so there are a few areas I plan on focusing on this year.  I plan on paying at least half of my credit card debt down, building our mortgage savings account, and building my own personal savings account.

I spent a lot of time last year decluttering all of the useless stuff I have bought over the years, and plan on selling them on eBay to make some money back.  I also discovered the world of Matched Betting, which, although complicated at first, is a sure fire way to profit on bets risk free, is completely legal to do and best of all, is tax free money.  All the extra money I make each month is going towards debt and savings.

I'm so serious about my finances that I even cut up my credit cards so that the temptation to spend on them has been completely eliminated.  I had such major anxiety over doing this when I first gave them the snip, but it's been absolutely fine, and if anything the inability to lean on my credit cards has actually saved me from spending unnecessarily on a number of occasions since.

By the end of 2019, although I still won't be in a completely comfortable position, I plan on being in a far better position financially than I am now.

My Health

2018 saw me be the most frequently ill that I have been in a long, long time.  I came down with so many illnesses, yet powered my way through work with them.

In hindsight, the fact that I did this probably resulted in me being ill as often as I was.  The stress I was putting my body under sometimes to drag myself in to work, and the mental strain that was putting me under no doubt did absolutely nothing for my immune system.

This year I have made a promise to myself that my health will come first and foremost.

I'm hoping that allowing my body the rest it needs will mean it heals properly, my immune system builds back up to full strength and I might actually make it through the year with minimal illnesses, meaning I don't need time off of work anyway!

Under the health umbrella comes my mental health as well.  Working on my mental health is an ongoing journey for me.  Despite feeling physically ill recently, mentally I've felt pretty good.  It still could be better, but I would say it's been the best it has been in a long time, and I would like to continue building on this in 2019.

There are definitely things I can be doing to help my health both physically and mentally.  Firstly, my diet needs a massive overhaul.  My diet in the second half of 2018 has to be the worst it has ever been.  I'm not setting myself a goal for a number to reach on the scales, because I don't want this to be about numbers.  Instead I want to eat a healthier diet and to track how that makes me feel, both physically and mentally.

There's no doubt in my mind that putting the wrong things in your body results in a poor physical and mental state.  In recent months when I have binged on too much sugar I have woken up the next day with what can only be described as some of the worst headaches I've ever experienced.  I was literally suffering from a sugar hangover!  Mentally, I would feel down, and instead of being productive I would procrastinate hours of my life away scrolling on social media.  I want to see if how changing what I'm putting in to my body has a more positive affect on my body and mind.

I also plan on being more active in 2019.  I've finally accepted the fact that I'm not a gym bunny.  I don't enjoy going at all, and it's a waste of money that could go towards more important things at the moment.

However, I do enjoy walking and being outdoors in nature.  We have an amazing valley a five minute drive away from us that is a 5k walk all the way around.  When I first lost my Mum, my Dad took me there once a week so I could get outdoors, get some exercise and talk to him with no other distractions.  This helped my mental state so much.  I felt a little more at peace when I got home, and of course the physical exercise was great for me too.  This is something I would like to incorporate in to my life more again in the coming year.

My Blog

Eventually working for myself one day has always been a dream of mine, but so far I've only allowed it to stay as just that.  A dream.

Last year I finally was taken on permanently in my current job, and I'll be honest when I say that I became a little complacent in a professional sense.  I became too comfortable, earning my regular income in a secure job that I actually don't mind getting up and going to work for each day.

However, as much as I like my current work place, it's not my dream job.  My dream is to do exactly this; write.  Be my own boss and work under my own set of rules.

So 2019 is going to be a year full of hard work and graft.  I've started a fresh with this blog because I wasn't happy with the content I was creating, but that also means that I need to build myself back up from the very bottom, but this time I'm willing to put in the work.  This time I'm going to write about the things that are important to me.

At the moment this blog is pretty much invisible as I start from the very beginning, but by the end of the year I hope to have gained some momentum.  With the help of my social media channels, I plan on building a readership that will allow me to turn this blog in to a part time business, which eventually will become a full time one as I work on it more and more.

WOW!  This ended up being a much longer post than I intended it to be, so if you made it this far, well done!  Give yourself a pat on the back!

Here is to a happy, healthy 2019.  Let's work hard, grab every opportunity that comes our way, and make this a year to remember!

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