Let’s wrap this puppy up! So 2017 is done and I’m starting 2018 with a reflection post. This will be a wall of text, so be warned 😉
When I first started thinking about what to write in this post, back in November, I was very negative and sure this was the year for everyone else – my big brother got a kid, my husband finished his master’s degree, my parents returned from the States and got a house, my little brother finished his education and got a job – and me? I was at that time still unemployed with no hope of getting a job in the near future and was getting kind of depressed about it. But then, in the end of November, I got a job for a year. Sure, the job is 4 hours away from where I live, but I have rented a room to stay in pretty close to the office, so that’s pretty great. I started the job on December 4th, worked for 2 weeks, and now I’m on my Christmas vacation, where I have 3 weeks off since I have a lot of unspent vacation time. In December my husband also got a job, which he starts in February. So life seems to be turning out okay.
But anyway, let’s get into my the main points/lessons of 2017.
Bullet Journaling is awesome
I discovered bullet journaling through a video that Lilli Pebbles did. I had heard about the concept before, but it didn’t sound like something that would help me – but then I watched that video, and found that it is so incredibly adaptable to your needs, that you can basically use it for whatever you want. So I got a cheap notebook (that ended up not having enough pages, so I spent most of the year with two notebooks as a bullet journal), and started doing my journaling. I used the bullet journal to plan out my days and weeks, so I could get more done and try not to procrastinate too much. Bullet journaling is basically a combination of two of my favorite hobbies – office supplies and planning! So I’m super happy to have discovered this, and can’t wait to get even more use out of it in 2018. I’ve gotten some proper materials (thanks to my husband gifting me them for Christmas/birthday), so now I have a nordic blue Leuchtturm bullet journal and 5 coloured pens to do calligraphy with, as well as a couple of regular, black pigment liners.
Working out is still amazing
In 2017 I continued working out pretty consistently, and I feel great! All year I followed the start bodyweight program and got a lot of progress in it, and I’m so happy about that. If someone had told teenage me how relatively easy it is to get strong and have muscles, I would have started back then! Though I found that motivation isn’t enough to keep working out – discipline is the real key. Once I had a routine, it didn’t feel like a chore to work out, it was just that time of the week – another great thing I realized.
Being unemployed is great, and terrible
So for the most of 2017, I was unemployed, only getting unemployment cheques. I did have 6 months of basically unpaid internship, which was a demand from my unemployment center, but it gave me some experience to put on my resumé. I loved spending my time however I wanted at home – I did blogging, and a bit of creative writing, watched Netflix and generally had a good time, but to earn my unemployment cheque I had to send 1.5 job applications each week. And that got really stressful and depressing towards the end of the year. I constantly had this cloud over my head saying I should be writing an application or finding more job posting to apply to, or just network or find new was to get a job since I can’t get unemployment payments forever. So my mind was really stressed and depressed and that sometimes made me spend my time trying to distract it from my problems (so Netflix, or games, or other non-productive things). But overall, I’m thankful that I had the opportunity to spend some time at home, figuring out what I wanted in life and how I could get there. Now, I’m more motivated than ever before to improve my creative writing and possibly expand my blogging “business” (it’s not a business yet, but hopefully I could get there at some point), so I can do what I love.
Reflecting on last year’s goals
Last year I had a few goals for 2017.
First, I wanted to write more, both for the blog and creatively. I feel like I got some of the way there. I started doing some writing here and there, but nothing compared to what I could have, if I had pushed myself. I have no completed short stories, and I didn’t publish a blog post a week, but I’m still pretty proud of myself for starting and trying to improve.
The second goal I had was to get more structured with my time at home. The bullet journal helped a lot with this, but I still had a lot of days where I had nothing to show at the end of it – no writing, cleaning, organizing, got done those days, and I feel so guilty each day I don’t manage to get anything done. In my new bullet journal I have a few methods to try and keep me more productive, so hopefully, that’ll help.
Now, in the end of December, I did a lot of research into Bullet journaling and planning in general, and I found this post on how to plan for your best year ever. I went through all the steps and wrote it down in my old bullet journal. The post links to a goal setting plan template that I used to write down my goals for 2018. There are templates for the year, month and week. It has 8 categories to set goals for, and they are: health, relationships, money, career, personal and spiritual development, recreation and fun, environment and organization, and service and giving back. Now I didn’t set goals in all the categories, but here are the (pretty ambitious) goals I have for 2018:
Health: Work out 5 times each week. The job I got has a really cheap and pretty awesome gym, so I’m gonna start going there after work and do some strength and cardio training.
Money: Save up at least 5k DKK each month. Now that both the husband and I have jobs, it’s gonna be easy to pay off our bank loan, so this goal is mostly to remind myself to put money into the savings account.
Career: Now, I have two goals here, one for creative writing and one for blogging, since I really want to make these my career. For creative writing, I want to write and publish 6 short stories by the end of the year. For blogging, I want to do at least 2 blog post each month.
Personal and spiritual development: Read 1 book each month, to broaden my horizon and help improve my writing. Watch a course video each week, to keep learning and have a better understanding of programming and other subjects that are so foreign to me at the moment.
Environment and organization: I have a deep clean schedule I want to stick to, and I want to throw out things I don’t need anymore. This is a pretty “soft” goal, but it’s difficult to make it really specific.
Service and giving back: I want to support more creators on Patreon or Twitch since I now have the means to do so.
Wow, that was a whole lot of thoughts. I’m really excited to try and accomplish my goals and see what 2018 brings. I feel pretty confident in my life at the moment – our finances are in the green again, I’m stronger than I have ever been, and my mental health has improved greatly because of those two things. Please share your goals, if you have any, I would love to see what direction you want to see yourself go 🙂