Reaching Goals: A [Pretty Late] Mid-Year Update

I know it’s so cliche to say, and I swear its something I say almost every post, but how fast is this year going? I can’t believe that we’re already in August. On a personal level, it’s insane to think that I have now been a graduate for almost a month!

Anyway, it’s clear that time isn’t going to go any slower, despite my many pleas, so I might as well be productive and see where I’m at.

2017 was the first time I documented my New Years’ Resolutions publicly, an act that has it’s pros and cons. The pros are now that I can actually remember my resolutions (surely I’m not the only one who forgets a month down the line?) and can hopefully keep on track that way. But the cons are now that people know what I wanted to do and if I fail it could be a little embarrassing.

But what’s the point in being embarrassed when your keeping a personal blog, eh?

So now, let’s have a look at what my goals were at the start of 2017 and see how I’ve been getting on.

(You can read my original post here)

  • Travel More

In 2016 I managed to travel more that I think I ever had before and that was something I wanted to continue. I was going to render this one a total fail, but thinking about it I have been lucky enough to go on a couple of trips already this year, although to no where new.

For my birthday I spent a weekend in Whitby; I organised a night in Edinburgh with my two girlfriends and then just at the beginning of my summer, my family organised a little break to Blackpool which was wonderful as I hadn’t been there in over a decade! (Oh, I sound so old!)

I have also been travelling between my university home, my home home and my boyfriend’s house if we want to count that too, although none of these take me out of the North East!

VERDICT: This was a refreshing look back actually, I genuinely thought I’d failed big time here. I’m not sure how much more I’ll be travelling for the rest of the year, but I would like to continue to explore and hopefully seem some new places eventually.

  • Be More Spontaneous

I’m not quite sure where I was going with this one actually, but is New Years even New Years unless you vow to change something major about yourself?

I am a worrier and I like to have a plan. Not knowing what’s happening makes me feel nervous and uncomfortable, so it’s kind of odd that I’d put that kind of pressure on myself. Instead of trying to be more ‘spontaneous’ I think I’m going to flip this resolution on it’s head and learn to say yes more.

VERDICT: Well since I’ve changed the resolution to saying yes more, I’m going to judge myself on that and if I’m being totally honest I haven’t done too well here either. It will be something I will continue to aim for moving forward.

  • Blogging Focus

Oh, this one makes me sad because I was so motivated and naive back in January! I really wanted to work my socks off with this blog and create regular content, as it’s something I genuinely love, but university understandably took priority.

It took almost everything I have to get through my final year, including a lot of creative energy into my dissertation, which meant I didn’t have much left for blogging. Now I’ve finished university I’ve still been struggling to get back on track with various things, including producing content. I think I didn’t expect things to be so difficult after I’d finished and naively assumed I’d bounce back immediately.

Still, I’m making major efforts to get back on track and reorganise myself so hopefully things will improve from here.

VERDICT: This one is definitely a fail, as university was my main priority this year. Nonetheless, I am so happy I put my everything into my degree as it’s something I’ve worked towards for so long, and I came out with a grade better than I’d even dreamed! Now my life is settling back down a bit, I’m hoping I can get back on it.

  • Buy Less, Use More

I’m not sure how I’d consider this one. It’s something I have had some success with, but then I’ve also fallen off the bandwagon quite a bit! I am trying to use up all of my makeup and bath products, and could really go for ages without buying anything new, but every so often I slip up. And once I slip up, that’s it. I’m one of those people who can’t stop spending once they’ve started, which is tragic for my bank balance!

I discovered that, despite my initial interest, minimalism is definitely not for me but I do need to keep track of where my money’s going. I have recently made the decision to try to save as much money as I can once I return to work, and I really hope I succeed!

VERDICT: Despite some major fails, I have been successful at times with this one and I am trying to bring this goal back to myself!

  • Calm Down

This is a goal that I think I will have for the rest of my life! Like I’ve already said, I’m a worrier and that takes up so much of my energy on a daily basis. Yet, unfortunately I don’t see this changing anytime soon.

However, I did do quite well at university and managed to get a lot of my work done ahead of deadlines, allowing me to have a pretty stress-free last few months. This seems to be an unusual feat and I’m definitively proud of myself for this!

VERDICT: I don’t think I’ll ever be a calm person, as it’s just not in my nature, but I can manage my nerves and stress when necessary. Even when times are really tough I manage to get through it every time. My biggest success is surviving my final year at university!

  • See More Live Shows

I was very lucky in 2016 and managed to go to the theatre quite often, or at least on a more regular basis than I’d previously experienced. However, now my student days are behind me and my priorities have changed drastically since January.

I no longer have the finances to be able to go the theatre as often as I would like, although there are some shows and gigs coming up that I would love to see. I’m hoping that once I get back into work and have a regular pay check again, I can reignite my love for theatre but at the moment it’s just not a priority.

VERDICT: A lot of things can happen in eight months and that’s what this resolution has taught me. I no longer have the same goals I did have at the beginning of the year, even though this is definitely a lovely one, and there’s no point beating myself up about it.

  • Self-Loving

I am hoping that this is a goal that will just continue to grow and grow. Although I wouldn’t say there is a massive progress here, as I genuinely feel the same most of the time, there is definitely an improvement overall.

My major goal for this now is to really try to look after myself, like eating some vegetables and moving a bit more. I find this surprisingly difficult with my lifestyle at the moment, but as with the majority of these goals, I’m hoping it will improve when I get into a decent routine.

VERDICT: I will continue to have good days and bad days in terms of my relationship with myself and I need to continue to be kinder to myself and appreciate the good days.

Theodore Roosevelt. 2


Do you believe in New Years Resolutions? How are you getting on with yours?

Here’s to making the most out of the rest of the year! We’ve got this.

Speak soon,

Rachael


Materials:

Am I Reaching My Goals?booksandquills (This was my inspiration behind this post)

How To Slay The Next Six MonthsMuchelle B

 

 

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Regaining Control: How To Reach Your Goals

There’s been a lot of things going on recently in my life. From turning 21, to dealing with the last handful of university deadlines as well as the usual trying-to-keep-on-top-of-life stuff it’s safe to say that things have taken a toll a little bit.

Last week was a total write off. If you know me personally, you know this is something I say basically every week- but this time it was for real. I was poorly and generally lacked all motivation to get my shit together.

But over the past few days I’ve been reconsidering my goals and attempting to make new ones. I’m constantly working on transforming my mindset and becoming more positive, in order to be more productive. I am generally aiming to be a better and happier me.

So I thought I’d share some simple steps that I am taking to help you and I reach our goals and how to get back on track when things have slowed down:

  • Make your to-do list the night before

Literally write every single thing down that you need to get done, either for the next day or for the following week. I’m talking the obvious stuff, like assignments and work bits, but also things like chores, calling your parents, doing a face mask, making dinner and so on. Although the list may look a little intimidating at first, once you start doing the basic stuff and ticking off your progress you’re going to feel more motivated to tackle the bigger things.

Plus, by writing things down and getting them out of your head means you’re going to have more room in there, which will come in handy when dealing with said tasks!

  • Figure out why 

Why is it you want to do all of these things? Why do you feel like you’ve lost control? Take some time to either write it down or talk about the reasons why you suddenly want to change your routine, work harder, exercise or whatever it is your planning on doing.

By figuring out the ultimate motive behind your work (to feel accomplished, to feel better) you’re going to find it easier to actually do the thing. Working out what you want and more specifically why you want it, gives you something to turn to when you’re needing inspiration or motivation. It should get your excited about your progress and make you feel like you’re doing the right thing. If it doesn’t, then maybe you should reconsider your goals.

  • Start early

It’s a new week, which means a new start. So why don’t you start now? But don’t use the fact you’ve missed the beginning of the week to let the rest go to waste. You can literally make changes whenever you want, but I’d suggest starting early to give yourself a head-start.

I know that not everyone is a morning person, and that’s totally cool (you do you) so you don’t have to take this literally. Early here doesn’t have to mean early in the morning, but rather as early as possible in your own routine. Instead of wasting time procrastinating or thinking about all of the things you need to do, just force yourself to get on with it as soon as possible. It’ll make the world of difference and once you’ve started you’ll realise it’s easier to just keep going!

  • Get inspired

Without comparing yourself, look to other people to see how they’re getting on and use it to fuel your own work. I have some links in the end of this post that have helped me but try to use other people’s advice, stories and experiences to push you to make the most of yours. Look for inspirational quotes, YouTube videos on how-to or even look to your friends and see how they do it.

You’ll notice everyone has their own struggles and everyone is just trying to get on with things the best they can.

  • Break it up

Like I mentioned previously, it’s easy to get overwhelmed when you have a huge list of things to do. If you break everything up into manageable chunks, it’ll not only make the task easier to start but also easier to finish as  your progress will be clearer to see this way.

For example, if you have an essay to write instead of just writing down ‘do essay’ break it up into separate tasks. So that could be ‘get books from library’, ‘research this area on the internet’, ‘write introduction’ and so on. Once you start ticking off tasks and getting somewhere with your goal, you’re more likely to feel motivated to get it done. Or you’ll at least feel pleased with your progress which will encourage you with other tasks.

  • Do it your own way

It’s all well and good me offering you advice on how to reach your goals and complete that to-do list, but I know that what works for me mightn’t work for you. We’re all different and we all have our own way of doing things. And while I do think the advice in this post may help (or at least encourage you), you may need to tailor things to suit your circumstances.

A simple example of this is to-do lists. I have to admit, I am someone that can appreciate a to do list. But I prefer to keep my simple, handwritten and often on a post-it that can be thrown away when everything is done. Some people like to make theirs online, in bullet journals, on their phone or some people don’t like to make them at all and can keep track of everything in their head (if this is you, I totally salute you!).

What I’m trying to say is you know yourself best, and although it can sometimes feel like you’re not doing things right because your progress doesn’t look like anyone else’s, you should make something that works for you. Don’t compare yourself with anyone else and make sure you’re doing the best for you to reach your goals.


Materials:


 

If you have something to say to can tweet me, comment below or contact me.

You can follow me on bloglovin’ or Instagram if you fancy.

Speak soon,

Rachael.

 

 

My New Year’s Resolutions

Can you believe it’s 2017, man? It’s absolutely crazy but let’s try not to get too upset about how fast everything is going. Although I’m not a fan of New Years or the month of January as a whole, I’m trying to be positive and focus on the fact it’s a fresh start.

Here are some of the things I want to achieve this year. Let’s say they’re more ‘goals’ then resolutions:

  • Travel More

I travelled more in 2016 than I think I have in my entire life. And not all of it was 2 week holidays or even far away from my hometown, but I loved every experience. It made me realise how good getting away from where you live can be, even if it’s just for a day. In 2017 I want to travel more especially to places in the UK (I don’t think I could afford many abraod trips anyway!). It’s going to require some saving, but I think I’d rather spend money on some experiences rather than more and more makeup palettes. I think, ha!

  • Be More Spontaneous

This kind of goes hand-in-hand with travel more, but I think it’s going to be harder. I’m a born worrier and doing things without less than a weeks’ notice makes me very stressed. But there were a handful of stand-out moments in 2016 where I just went for it and it was the best decision I could have made. I don’t think I’ll ever be the kind of person who doens’t plan and could just jump on a plane, or whatever. But I think I need to learn that not everything needs to be planned to the minute detail.

  • Blogging Focus

I am so passionate about and generally in love with this blog. It’s my little space where I get to do what I love whenever I want and it’s been such a healthy and helpful thing for me to do. I want to keep going with this blog in 2017 and work on it even more. I finish university this year (*screams*) and things are generally going to be changing a lot for me and I’d love to share it all on this platform. I know it’s basically nothing in the grand scheme of the internet but it’s mine and I’m so happy to be creating.

  • Buy Less, Use More

I spend an awful lot of money on clothes and makeup. Those are my two main areas when spending and since going to university I’ve gotten into the terrible habit of emotional shopping. In 2017 I want to try to spend less on crap, basically. I have more than enough bits to keep me going. Besides, towards the end of 2016 I was trying to use up the makeup I had before I purchased anymore and I really enjoyed doing that. I want to try to stop buying things in bulk and maybe save up for better quality pieces when and if I need them.

  • Calm Down

As I mentioned, I’m a stresser. I get really nervous and worried and often make myself ill through stressing about nothing. Although 2017 is a terrifying and busy year for me I really want to try to work on calming myself down. I can’t seem to enjoy anything because I’m so worried about what might happen or what’s going to happen. It’s really annoying and I want to work on it. I’ll always be a worrier, it’s just who I am, but there’s no need for it to get in the way of everything I try to do.

  • See More Live Shows

I love going to concerts and the theatre so much, but unfortunately due to the cost and time I can’t go that often. However in 2017 I do want to make an active effort to go see more live concerts and live shows because the experience is always phenomenal. Regardless of what I see, whether that’s a show or a gig, I always walk away with amazing memories. It can seriously change your outlook and I think it’s healthy to experience things like this live now and again.

  • Self-Loving

This is something I promise myself every year but I really want to work on my self-love and confidence. I’m going to be 21 this year and it seems silly that I’m still insecure and not 100% my own best friend yet. I’m so passionate about self-love and I want everyone to love who they are, so why not include myself in that too?

I wish you all the absolute happiest of new years and I know 2017 is going to bring good things to us all. I am so grateful for those of you who are still reading this blog. You mean the world.

Speak soon,

Rachael

 

May Goals

It’s now the beginning of a new month so it’s time to set some new goals. I find that noting things down that I want to get done is a really effective way to ensure that it does happen and this time I’m being a bit more public about it. This way I have to make extra effort to make sure I succeed as it’s out there for anyone to see!

To Do.jpg

  • Focus Focus Focus!

This is my last month of university for this year and I have a couple of deadlines and many more exams that I really want to do my best in. Like everyone I get distracted so easily and procrastinate far too much when it comes to revision or work but because I’m now in the last few weeks I really want to push myself and work extra hard. I don’t have long left and I know if I work extra hard now I’m going to enjoy my summer even more!

  • A Little TLC

Because this is quite a stressful month I want to take extra time to look after myself to ensure I don’t crash and burn. This means anything from face masks to just taking a couple of minutes out to spend on my own.

  • Quality Time

Quite contradictory I want to take some time out for my friends too this month as I can get so caught up in what I’m doing that I often have no time for the people around me. Although spending a lot of time around people is a tiring thing for me, I don’t have long left until summer and I want to make the most of the time I’ve got with the people I currently have around me.

  • Sorting It Out

I have recently started exercising a bit more regularly and this is something I really want to continue.  I have been quite down lately and I think a massive part of this is not feeling particularly comfortable within myself and knowing that I am not looking after my body the way I should be. So I really want to keep up with exercising whenever I can, not necessarily to lose weight or anything but just to feel a bit better about myself!

  • Blogging

Last but not least I really want to keep going with this blog. You may have noticed that I’ve given it a little upgrade and I’m really enjoy messing about with photography and fonts lately. It’s just the motivation I seem to lack but I’m going to push myself this month to keep creating and keep posting!

Lets Do This

 

What goals do you have for this month?

Speak soon,

Rachael.