Wednesday, January 4, 2017

We all get the exact same 365 days. The only difference is what we do with them.

My first blog post here on sarahndipity was January 6, 2016, and it was all about my resolutions for 2016. It was a great way to start off my blog, and it's been so fun to write my way through the year. Now, however, it's a brand new year! New resolutions are in order.

Everyone has a different take on resolutions. Some swear by them and make them every year while others don't even like the idea. When I was younger, I always made resolutions, simply because I thought that's what you were supposed to do for the New Year. However, I never really took the time to understand what resolutions really were or why people were making them.

I've decided that I love the idea of resolutions. Some people say they don't like resolutions because we should work on bettering ourselves throughout the year. I totally agree! However, I think there's something so magical about the New Year, a time when we feel fresh and new and as though we have a chance at a fresh start. Resolutions are things we can work on throughout the year. If you think of a new resolution in June, there's no reason to start working on that right then in June! We don't have to wait until December 31 and January 1 to think of resolutions and begin them, but this is the prime time to make these changes!

Here are the resolutions I want to work on in 2017. You may notice some repeats from last year because there are things I want to continue to work on!

In 2017 I will...

do more things outside of my comfort zone.
This is a big year for me. I'll be getting an internship this summer and graduating next December. There are a lot of big things happening in my life! And to be honest, those things scare the crap out of me. But they're also super exciting, and I'm really excited about all of the big things in my future, don't get me wrong. But I want to make sure I get the most out of all of these experiences and not let them scare me too much, so I need to get better at pushing myself to do big and uncomfortable things. This year, I will do more things outside of my comfort zone and try not to let these things scare me so much.

give more compliments.
Last year I wrote about how I had realized that I’m really good at giving people compliments in my head, but I wanted to get better at giving them verbally. While I did work on this, I still think I can be better about it. And I'm not talking about complimenting someone's outfit or their hair. Those compliments are nice, but I want to give compliments that really mean something. I want to compliment someone's attitude or work or creativity. This year I will give more compliments and mean them.

write more letters, notes, and thank you notes.
This year I think I did send more letters and notes and thank you notes, but I really want to send more! I still collect thank you notes and personalized stationery (and love getting stationery as a gift, hint hint!), and I want to use them more than ever. Thank you notes, random “thinking of you” notes, “just to say hello” notes: I'll write them all! This year I will write (and send!) more letters, notes, and thank you notes.

volunteer more.
Last year one of my resolutions was to volunteer more, but I really didn't do it at all. I’ve always been super passionate about volunteering and dedicating my time to service, but as I wrote last year, I haven’t done much volunteering since starting college. I blame it on being too busy with class and other commitments. But heck, I'm getting a Fundraising and Philanthropy Communication Certificate! I definitely need to volunteer more. When it comes to volunteering, there really is no excuse for not doing it. This year I will dedicate more of my time to volunteering without making excuses.

read more.
You can never read too much! Seriously. Last year I read a pretty good amount, mostly for school. But I did my summer book club again, which always helps me to read more. I'm already reading two books this year, so I'm off to a good start. This year I'm also participating in the Goodreads 2017 Reading Challenge! I love using Goodreads to track all of my reading, so I absolutely love that they have this challenge. Basically you decide at the beginning of the year how many books you want to read throughout the year, and it keeps track for you. Some people do 100, some people do 6: it's all up to you. I've decided to start out with a goal of 12, which is one book per month. Hopefully I can read much more than that, but I wanted to start out with something a little more realistic. I can easily do this by reading before bed or between classes instead of scrolling through my phone. This year I will read more. 

blog more.
My goal when I started this blog was to post at least once a week. Toward the beginning I was really good about it, but I definitely lagged toward the end of the year. I'm hoping to get a couple of posts written and stockpiled over break, but I really want to be better about blogging this year. I always feel my most inspired and creative when I write and post on the blog, and I want to feel that way more often. This year I will try to post on the blog at least once a week. 

live in the present.
I am notorious for worrying. I'm probably one of the biggest worriers you will ever meet. I'm constantly thinking about the future and what's coming up in my life. When I share these worries with my mom, she always tells me to live in the moment and take one day at a time. What a wise woman! I love this advice. I often find myself forgetting to take life one day at a time, but when I remember those words, I instantly feel a little better. This year I want to live more in the present and try not to worry so much about the future. 

Resolutions are about bettering ourselves by finding the good in ourselves and spreading that good around our entire lives. Resolutions can be good! But if you don't necessarily succeed in a resolution, don't be hard on yourself. It just wasn't meant to be. The key is to start small and start slowly. Quitting (or starting) cold turkey is never a good idea. And if you think of new resolutions in the middle of the year, start on them! There's no rule that says you can only have resolutions at the New Year. No matter what your resolutions are (or if you even have them!), good luck and Happy New Year!

Do you make resolutions? Why or why not? What are your resolutions for 2017?

Lots of love,

Hillary DePiano, "New Year's Thieve"