2015: The Year of More

2014 was the year or wandering aimlessly. Not literally or course. As a parent with a mortgage and a full time job, that’s hard to do. But I had no direction or focus, and with few accomplishments, most days just seemed overwhelming.

I needed a guide to show me how to turn things around.

At the end of each year Chris Guillebeau does an annual review of his work and life – what went well and what didn’t and then reviews and revises his short and long term goals. I’ve been following Chris’ blog for about 4 years now and admire how introspective and bravely honest he is about everything.

He’s accomplished so much and I respect that. But it makes me look like a slug. Maybe this review thing has some merit and I should give it a try.

My Mini Review of 2014
A year of feeling stuck.
Too hectic.
Too uninspiring.
Too sleepless.
And except for a couple of trips, too stationary.

I didn’t accomplish much other than the usual day-to-day. (I don’t think most people list ‘finished ten loads of laundry today’ on their résumé.)

2015 needs something more.

But I’m not into setting goals and I’m not a great long-term planner. I tend to go with the flow and up until now, it’s worked for me.

2014 was a wasted year and I don’t need another one of those. I need to at least have some guidelines on what I want to do differently. On what would make my life easier so I have time to do the things that do inspire and interest me. I decided I needed a lot more of a bunch of things.

More Organization & Planning
I can organize and plan, I just choose not to. I’d rather be doing other, more exciting tasks. Or on an I’m-just-too-tired-to-do-anything-day, sit and watch TV.

My organizational weakness really shows when it comes to cooking, one of my least favourite, albeit most important, chores. So planning and shopping for at least the first 4 meals of the week will reduce my stress levels and give me more free time. So easy to say but much harder to do.

More Self-Control
I am what I eat, from my head down to my feet. I think I eat a fairly healthy diet but I know I do eat too much sometimes. Or I have a habit of eating certain foods, even if I’m not craving them, like chocolate (or chips or ice cream…).

More Reading
So many great stories, so little time. And more come out every year. So I better get started.

More Writing
It’s something that I like doing but until I get in the daily habit of doing it, I find it hard for the words to flow, at least coherently.

With this post I’m already doubling the number I did last year and with just under nine months still to go! I may even triple the number of posts at the rate I’m going.

More Learning
To keep the mind fresh and my dream of visiting France regularly, I need to greatly improve my French. It’s amazing what you remember from high school but I want to be able to have a conversation with a native speaker, something I failed at miserably on my only trip to Paris a few years ago.

Allons-nous apprendre!

More Focus
As a parent it’s very easy to get pulled, prodded and pushed in many directions that it gets hard to focus . That’s how I felt last year. Hard to focus at home and work. Maybe it’s bite-size, info-crazy world too. I know it doesn’t help. I think I’m going to try meditation for this one.

More Money
I’m not expecting a promotion, a raise or to win the lottery (though that would be nice) but there’s always ways to save more of what you do have. It’s time to be more mindful of what we spend our money on.

More Exercise
It’s the yearly mantra of those making New Year’s resolutions, Get More Exercise. I am not a gym person, I prefer to play sports, to interact with others and thrive on the friendly competition. But that is all the more difficult now that my knee and wrist are injured. Though I better heal quick. I’ve signed up for the Spartan Race in June to motivate me to do more.

Right now I’m really missing my favourite path to stress relief and better sleep.

More Sleep
It’s the foundation for achieving all the items above. It’s also a contributing factor to why 2014 was so blah. I didn’t get enough of it. So many of us are sleep-deprived, let’s all try a little harder to get a few more zzzzzs (Seriously, if we don’t, we’re all going to crash and burn – just ask Arianna Huffington).

I started writing this post over a month ago so obviously I have some work to do on a number of these points, but maybe the public accountability will encourage me to remain committed. Change won’t happen without it.  And habits, the bad ones, will have to be shown the emergency exit.

I still have a good nine and a bit months to pull this off so join me at the end of the year to see what happened.

In the meantime, how are you going to improve your life this year? Any tips and tricks for helping me? Please leave a comment below.

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