Where turning a year older on my birthday doesn't bother me, New Years does for that very reason. I feel another year has passed me by. Another year of possibly missed opportunities, un-wise spending, and unrealized dreams. Another year closer to the unknown. And this worries me. Just for the day. I'll spend the day reflecting on this past year, what went wrong, what I could have done differently or not at all, and how I can make improvements. I'll set priorities and goals, write them down in my notebook, and work throughout the year to continue achieving them. And every year I get better at it.
You see, I'm a list-oriented person. I make lists. Long lists. Short lists. Lists categorized. And lists of silliness. I write it all down in my annual notebook, where I keep all my most important papers, ideas, and plans. When I travel, I take this notebook with me. Why? I have no idea.... Other than it's important to me. It has my life in it. Or how I see my life. Or how I wish my life was.
So, today, I'll reflect. Not a lot, but enough to put the past year in perspective and determine whether or not I'm heading in the right direction. To set new goals, if need be. In doing so, I'm realistic. You won't find "lose 50 pounds" because I know, in reality, that for me to lose any weight, I need to work on five pounds at a time. But I will include "eat healthier" or "cut down on portions" or "cut back on sweets." Lifestyle changes.
This year I'm including a couple new goals:
- Be more frugal. Really consider whether I need the item I'm about to purchase.
- Use cash for weekly grocery shopping. I've heard this cuts back on your spree spending.
- Look at the ingredients list of all things. If I can't pronounce the ingredients, or know what they are, continue shopping. We've noticed we shop more in the Organics section now.
- To use, reuse, or refuse. We already recycle as much as our city allows, but there's still so much waste. I'm going to try to get away from buying products that have so much packaging, or packaging that can't be recycled. And even if it can be recycled.... maybe I can find another use for it and extend the life a little longer before sending to the dump. Like mail. I keep all envelopes that come in the mail now and use them for notes or grocery lists before recycling.
- Pay myself first. This simple thing.... yet so hard to do.... This year, "pay myself first" is on the top of my list.