When I started writing out what my resolutions, I had no idea how life-changing some of these goals would be. I had a foggy idea that I wanted to spend more time with my friends and make more money – that was it.
Things started to come together when I began acting on some of my resolutions, like contesting and spending more time with my friends. I realized that I started to feel more positive, connected, and in control of my life and that I wanted all these things to continue.
The idea of building small successes on top of other small successes didn’t really click until I started to do it without knowing it.
My 2013 Resolutions
1. I will make plans to spend more time with friends: PASS
I have been fairly successful with this goal in the first three months of the year. I hosted a Swap Party which turned out to be a lot of fun! I found that organizing the party was a little stressful, actually. I kept thinking nobody would show up for the party and I would be singing “all by myself” in a room with a bunch of food piled around me.
It turned out great though! I was able to connect with one friend I hadn’t seen in five years and another friend I hadn’t seen in three years! It was great to open up that door to a closer friendship with some of these people who had been so important to me in my past.
I also helped organized and hosted two baby showers for friends in the month of March. Normally I’m not one to take a lead on organizing social events or celebrations but it was really nice to help my friends celebrate such big events in their lives.
Mystery shopping has also been great for my social life. It motivates me to leave the house and try different things in the city. I can also take my friends out for lunch and dinner as part of my shopping assignments and have a nice meal with them (and get paid for it!).
2. I want to put together a plan to increase my earning potential: PASS
I decided to take a Bachelor of Social Work program by correspondence since my Bachelors in Psychology doesn’t take me very far. This will enable me to apply for more jobs within the government and be eligible for the higher wages that Social Workers are entitled too.
I have applied to two Universities that offer the BSW program through correspondence and expect to hear back within the next two months. I will most likely start in September 2013 and be finished in April 2016.
3. I will start tracking my finances and educate myself on how to save money and pay down my debt: PASS
I have inputted the last three months of expenses into my Quicken Money Management program and have started to go through all the information to find my spending patterns.
I have also started this personal finance blog which will help me stay accountable for my decisions and goals. I have also started reading a lot more about budgeting, saving, and spending and I’ve learned a lot about what to do with my own money.
4. Be open to new opportunities/bring good things into my life: NEEDS SOME WORK
I said I wanted to start contesting for 45 minutes every. I started out great in January but that petered out in mid-February. So far I haven’t really started back up with this yet – this goal still needs some work.
One More Resolution
Overall, I’m really happy with the progress towards my resolutions but I will have to work on balancing everything with my family life. I’m now struggling to be at home without being behind a computer screen or a book; or out at a mystery shop or involved in some other project I have on the go. I want to be able to pursue my goals but not completely sacrifice my family time. So, with this in mind, I will make a late addition to the resolutions list.
5. Work on my time management skills and a better work/project/life balance: In progress
More on this and my other goals in a few months!
What about you Cents’ers? Do you have New Years’ Resolutions? If so, how do you keep them?