2018: challenges & resolutions

Happy New Year, friends~! The new year has well and truly started so we can say again that this is going to be “our year” — whatever that may mean! Let’s talk resolutions! Challenges! Thoughts for 2018 to get me (and maybe you?) on the right track for this new year of grand adventures, exciting opportunities and probably a fair share of bad days here and there. Life, eh?

Of course when I say resolutions, I mean none of the “lose 30 pounds in 3 weeks” bullshit, which, to be fair, wouldn’t hurt. But no. I mean the things that actually may possibly make my day-to-day life little more pleasurable. Challenge #01: I’m not a hedonist by heart, but I would like to try to become a little more hedonistic. I’d like to be adapting to new habits that are FUN and make you feel WHOLESOME. Hereby let’s use those two words as my keywords this year. Shoot for the moon, right? In 2017 I’ve been living my life according to way too rigid guidelines — which I put on myself, not going to lie. So it’s time to just focus on the happy, the truthful, the cute and not feel too guilty about it all.

I haven’t completely thought all of this through, but I got to start somewhere. And the start of a new year doesn’t last forever, so let’s get going… here’s my draft of challenges & resolutions for 2018.

#01: Be more mindful of the pleasurable Ok. Let me explain. In my mind ‘pleasure’, ‘taking time for/care of yourself’ and ‘choosing your own happiness’ somehow ended up feeling equal to ‘hedonism’, ‘egoism’ and ‘laziness’. Annnd that’s not right, is it? So #01 isn’t #01 for no reason. In 2018 I will become more aware, mindful and actively engaging in things that make me happy. Starting with the smallest things, like allowing yourself little luxuries such as a foot-bath after a tiresome day, saying no when you really don’t feel like it or taking time to cook my favourite dinner while drinking a glass of wine on a day when everything feels wrong.

#02: Read 20 books Kind of a no-brainer, last year I set myself the target of 12 books. I’d read 1 each month, and somehow I already reached this goal in summer (yeah, I totes smashed it). So I’m upping my game a bit here, easy does it.

#03: Get out of my comfort zone without compromising my integrity I want to become more open and honest. I’ve said it before, I am a scared human afraid to get hurt, rejected or just simply not accepted for being unapologetically myself. I refrain myself from fully being me, showing myself, committing to something or someone. But I don’t want to hold back in life any more, not just out of fear of not meeting expectations. So I need this resolution. But I might need to set this with a bit of a challenge, any ideas?

#04: Drinks & Drinking – responsibly Yes, specifically say drinks not food. I feel confident enough in the cooking-department right now. But I want to become even more fluent in the language of alcohol. Especially wine and cocktails. Now don’t go all judgemental on me. I’m not an alcoholic. And I know ‘they all say that’. But expanding your knowledge is never a bad thing? Why am I defending myself?

2017 was the year of really getting to explore my love for Gin & Tonic. Which was truly lovely, my favourite so far (that bars in Holland do well as well) is Hendrick’s. But for 2018 I’ve decided to tackle more. Like, I want to know what I actually think of vermouth, or Martini, and I’d like to find out if there is any scotch/bourbon that I can honestly enjoy. And yes, I want to be able to make a proper cocktail. Just, really moderately and responsibly. Obviously.

#05: Going on a hot air balloon ride Yes. This one is on my list of things I want to do before I’m 26. I’d really like to do this around spring/summer time when all the fields of flowers are in full bloom here in the Netherlands.

#06: Watch 24 not-seen-before films Believe me, I’m no film-critic. I will therefore not dare to review anything. But I do enjoy watching films immensely. Even more so that k-drama or Netflix-series. Therefore my resolution is to find (and watch) 12 films that I haven’t seen before and rank them on how memorable I think they are. Ranking the film by memorability instead of “good quality” covers me a bit, don’t you think? So the resolution is to watch 24 new (have-not-seen-before) films in 2018. Yes that’s right: 2 new films a month. And secondly: rank 12 of them as “most memorable”. Sounds doable, right?

#07: Journaling & Blogging I want to journal and log things more. Write down feelings, thoughts and instead of keeping it in my head do something with it. I found out about the ‘Happiness Planner’. It cost me an arm and a leg (I mean, almost 60$ for a planner is a bit much and I still am not sure if I can convince myself it was worth the money). But it’s beautiful and I love the idea behind it so much that I do think I’ll stick with it. I’ll do an update on that soon in the new year. — Apart from that, I want to keep blogging. And I want to keep an open mind about it. I am by no means a commercial blogger, which gives me so much freedom. But it is so scary opening up, never knowing who is reading. While at the same time it’s nice to connect with like-minded people. This last resolution is to be committed to blogging in 2018, however much it’s a bit daunting at times. I want to be able to look back on an exciting, interesting and well-documented 2018 in around 360 days from now.

And that’s all. I hope 2018 will be filled with loads of random good things like blue skies, road trips, dinner parties with friends, cosy socks, walks on the beach and drinks that make your insides feel warm and fuzzy, yeah? Let’s do it!

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  • This is a great list of resolutions! Achievable things that will make you happier as you do them, rather than “I won’t do this” or “I will do this huge thing within this time frame.” I’m not really into resolutions and am not in the habit of setting them for myself, but most of yours sound like exploring/make more time for keeping up with your hobbies, and after all, beyond work hobbies are a huge part of our lives. It’s how we make friends and share common interests with people, so your hobbies are definitely worthwhile things to want to put more time into, not to mention the joy you get out of them too. :)

    littlehenrylee.net

    • Agreed! I think that if you set this semi-unachievable-big-thing for yourself you’re kind of bound to fail and head for disappointment with yourself. Also, I think everyday you can choose to do life differently, so why hold yourself hostage at the start of the year?

      Also, I think I finally realised how important everything-apart-from-work actually is. And I think I’d like to prioritise a lot of those things more than I’ve done in the past. It makes it more fun, as somehow this all does have to do with self-improvement and expanding my knowledge…in some way or other — which in the end will make me a better/different person.

  • Nat

    Happy new year!

    $60 for a planner?! That seems absurdly expensive however I hope that it is useful and that you will stick with it throughout the year. A hot air balloon over fields of flowers sounds like an absolute dream

    nat // dignifiable

    • Right? I’m not sure what I was thinking. But I’ve been using it so far, and …so good!? I’ll blog about it soon maybe :)

  • Happy New Year! I hope you have a wonderful year <3

  • Fun and wholesome – I love it! These are great goals for this year. Looking forward to seeing what you make of them :)

    • Thank you very much! I’m already busy at work making 2018 twice the year that 2017 was. In a completely positive, and happy way.

  • Love these goals! You should definitely document your gin knowledge on here – I know I like it and that I love sloe gin with elderflower tonic, but that’s about it! I’m looking forward to 2018 and like you, I want to start sharing more thoughts and random things on the blog too!

  • Happy new year, Louise! These some great resolutions :) Sounds like you’ll have a lot of fun ticking them off, especially that hot air balloon one! A balloon ride over flower fields sounds like a dream come true

  • Happy New Year! I love reading these posts! Glad I stumbled upon your little place x

  • Happy New Year! These are really goals for the year! I agree especially with the first one – it’s so important to pamper and just take care of yourself. Good luck with your goals :)

  • Happy Near Year! It’s great that you’re challenging yourself to some neat goals this year, especially with things that will make you happy! I hate it whenever I agree to do something where I’m miserable the whole way through. Go you for trying to drink more responsibly! This is a big area I’m trying to tackle this year as well! I’ve spent $75 for a planner one year so I totally get you, aha. Still – hope you’ll make the most out of that planner and see some positive results :)!

    exquisitely.me