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2017 Resolutions

2017 Resolutions

It’s a new year, and even though it’s not January 1st anymore–sadly I had a migraine unrelated to any NYE festivities and didn’t get any blogging done–I figured, since I don’t really think you need a new year to set resolutions, setting them on January 2nd seems like just as good. I mean, better now that than waiting until 2018! So with that in mind, here are a few of my personal and blog goals for the upcoming year.

2017 is going to be a really busy and stressful year, but hopefully a good one. It’s the year I plan to defend my PhD, start a new job, and spend a good chunk of time doing field work in another country. So it’s going to be more important than ever to focus on my mental and physical health, as well as making sure I do things that make me happy, and use my time productively. Hopefully these goals will help with that!

Warning: this post will be very text-heavy!

1. Drink at least 2.5 L of water a day

2.5 is definitely more than I “need” to drink, but I really want to focus on making sure I am getting more than the bare minimum. I’ve gotten a lot better about drinking water, and I drink a lot of herbal tea, but I want to make a conscious effort to track my water and make sure that I’m meeting this minimum. I am planning to pick up a cute waterbottle to help, I’ve just really wanted a glass one (recommendations?) Plus, with all the exercise I’ve been doing this value should really be higher since I can drink about 700 mL just at the gym in 35 minutes of spin class, so there’s no excuse not to meet this goal!

2. Read more (52 books), write more (52 poems)

These are two things I always loved doing as a teenager and continue to do, but not at the frequency that I would like. Reading and writing are both great for my mental health and a great way to remind myself to relax and spend some time not doing work or blogging. Some years I’ve read hundreds of books and written hundreds of poems, so I think a goal of an average of one a week should be quite reasonable, and certainly more than I’ve done this year!

3. Defend my PhD and publish the results 

Pretty obvious, and based on the progress I’ve made so far I’ll be really disappointed if I don’t accomplish this, but it will be such a big deal to finally be done school I had to add it to my list. I also have a minor, personal goal within this which is to have at least 2 first-author scientific papers published, and at least 5 scientific papers total. 1 paper is already submitted, and 3 are fully drafted, so this isn’t a crazy idea, but I like having numbers in mind. It’ll also be really nice to have all these off my plate once I’m done my PhD, rather than have a lot of work still needing to be published afterwards.

4. Learn new skills

On a professional level, I really, really want to continue to improve my programming skills. I want to work on my coding in both R and also Python. I also really want to be better at documenting my work to make it reproducible, and I’ve made good progress in the past couple months but this will be really important when starting my new job in March where I will be doing a lot of working remotely. I want to learn to use, and start using, GitHub. Likely none of this will mean anything to you, but it’s here to hold me accountable!

On a personal level, I did learn quite a few new things in 2016 including how to hoola hoop! I’d really love to learn another skill (or more). Most important for me is that at the end of 2017, I’d like to be comfortable with highway driving. Even if this means I have to pay for more lessons, I paid for a few but still don’t go out on my own and my driving anxiety is a huge hindrance in my life I need to work on. It’d be great to learn a “fun” skill too, not sure what yet!

5. Travel somewhere new

I really love to travel and I definitely make it a goal to go somewhere new each year. Ideally, this is a new country, but with all the big life changes happening in 2017 that may not be possible. In 2016, I went to Arizona, Wisconsin, Illinois, Missouri and Mexico for the first time. I also visited Brier Island in Nova Scotia. In 2017, I have already planned a trip to Texas, and my friend and I should be road-tripping to Missouri from there, so that’ll mean stopping by a few new states along the way. Country-wise, I’m really not sure where I would go next and I’m pretty busy until the Fall, when I hopefully defend my PhD, so I’ll be pretty busy then too! But I’d love to go to Iceland and maybe Denmark next? I’ll see where the next year takes me.

6. Keep up regular exercise habits

I wanted to set a specific number for times I go to the gym, which was frequently 6-7 classes a week since July, but of course that’s been much lower over the last month with travel and the holidays (when the gym runs only a few classes). However, I know that I’ll be traveling quite a bit again this year so I’m not sure how reasonable a goal it is. While I’m in Nova Scotia, I want to go to at least 4 classes a week. But I got a FitBit for Christmas and every day, regardless of where I am, I want to aim for 10,000 steps (so common!) This will actually be difficult for me because a lot of my gym classes don’t give me steps (spin, weights, for example) but I think it is good for me to keep active in addition to the gym, so that’s why I’m setting it as a daily challenge. Based on the last week I’ve had my FitBit, I’m doing horribly, but hopefully I can make this a habit by the end of the year.

7. Blog less, Instagram more

My big blog goal of the year is to post less. Not less than I’ve been posting over the past couple months, which has been hardly, but less than I’ve been posting over the past few years, which was often up to 3 times a day. It’s honestly too much time and energy for a hobby that I love, but is just one of my hobbies. I want more time for exercise and more time for reading and more time not spent staring at the computer. So I’d love to focus on updating my Instagram and posting there more often and here less. Ideally, I’ll be posting about 2-3 times a week. I’d also love to post more food and life-related content, so we’ll see how that goes in 2017.

8. Rest, and be grateful

I’d really like to a) have better sleeping habits, which starts by going to bed by midnight, and b) be more grateful for the things that I do have. This past year has been incredibly stressful on a personal level and I want to take more time to acknowledge the good moments. I’m going to try, starting today, to make a note daily of one thing I’m grateful for (Petite Pear Style inspired this one). I think both of these things will be really good for improving my mental and physical health.

That’s it! Those are my goals for 2017. What are yours? If you’ve blogged about them, definitely share a link with me! Happy new year!

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