Every year I look forward to sitting down and writing this post but this year certainly feels different as I write it amidst a continued growing pandemic. I typically start a short list on my Notes app in the Fall as ideas for the forthcoming year come to me and then I sit down the first week of January and really think through everything I’d like to accomplish with the clean slate that is a new year. But following the tumultuous year that was 2020, this list looks different than it usually does.
Aside from what I’ve outlined below, this year I really want to focus on doing things with INTENTION. If I had to choose one word of how I hope to define my 2021 – that’s it. 2020 had us enduring so much stress, so much news, so much information that was overwhelming. It spun me off course and allowed for a myriad of distractions. While I had a lot of work accomplishments last year, I don’t think I was as intentional or purposeful with my time as I could have been. In writing this I am hopeful it’ll ground me as we look towards the coming months of this year and allow me to remain focused on spending my time and leading my life with intention. I’m also hopeful it allow me to give myself more grace when times are tough or lonely and remind me that God has a plan and it’s unfolding as it should. As hard as that may be to deal with at times…
I have less goals and priorities for this year than usual but I feel good about those I’m working to focus on. I gave so much of myself last year that I burnt out in a big way by the close of 2020. Sometimes less really is more and given the continued uncertainty in our world – I think it is important this year to recognize that much continues to remain out of our control.
Goals & Priorities for 2021
Figure out a way to incorporate healthier eating habits.
My eating habits turned to comfort time and time again in 2020. By Q4 I started drinking a bit of green juice every day so at least I had some nutritional value going into my system but overall I feel a sense of burnout with the type of cooking I’m used to doing. This year I want to make small but impactful choices when it comes to eating healthier. I’d like to drink less, focus on my water intake again, incorporate more vegetables into my every day and continue taking impactful supplements and vitamins.
Read 50 books.
Last year I read 40 books (these were my favorites) and it felt great. The time off my phone and computer and in front of a book felt so valued as we closed out the year. This year to ensure I stay keeping reading a priority, I’ve set a goal of reading 50 books in 2021. I’ve also finally started using the Kindle I bought at the end of last year and I absolutely love it. It’s so lightweight which makes it a breeze to hold and it’s waterproof so I can use it in the bath. I still love turning the pages of traditional books but having this Kindle will make it much easier to take my reading wherever I go.
Make key site design updates.
Somewhat annoyingly, bloggers often feel they need to do big site redesigns every few years. My last one was in 2017 and I remain pretty happy with how it looks and functions but there are some improvements I’ve identified that I am working on budgeting out to see what I want to prioritize. I made a lot of small but impactful changes last year that I think led to a better user experience. I’m hopeful to also work on an exclusive piece of content for newsletter subscribers this year and also find ways to better engage this community through the new Facebook group and other ways. I’ve already started on a few site design updates that are minor this month as well which has felt like a nice refresh to start the year.
Continue practicing French.
Last year I finally got into daily French practice and achieved 250 straight days of working on my foreign language skills via the Duolingo app. It gave me more confidence and has become a favorite habit I practice every day.
Get back to meditation.
I always seem to fall off the meditation wagon when I need it most. Aka: When I am stressed and overwhelmed. I am reconsidering trying Headspace this year and want to make meditation a daily habit this year and not something I just do when I am trying to fall asleep.
Challenge myself in the kitchen.
Cooking practically every meal for myself for a year burnt me out in the kitchen. And then I moved to a smaller kitchen and it felt like more of a burden. So with the start of a new year I am hopeful to reignite my love for cooking and challenge myself in the kitchen. I’d like to learn a few classic French dishes and how to make them really well and continue to put my cookbooks to use while also sharing my meals on Stories as I did all of last year.
Pursue learning opportunities.
Last year I did a lot of teaching myself things. I finally had the time to do so. This year I’d like to continue to be a student of my career. I’ve begun a Pinterest course and a Google analytics course and I signed up for Masterclass and have been really enjoying learning all sorts of things on the platform.
I used to journal daily when I was in middle school and high school and often in college. Last year I found myself wanting to pick back up the habit so I’ve bought a journal and plan to start soon. I’m looking forward to writing when I feel called to do so – not just for five blog posts a week.
Writing this down feels vulnerable and hard. But I want it to be reflected in my priorities for 2021. I’ll leave it at that.
Continue to focus on investment pieces.
When it comes to my own shopping habits, investment pieces have been a priority for the past five years and it’s built me a wardrobe of quality pieces I love reaching for time and time again. I of course also pepper in some fast fashion or less affordable options from time to time but overall I want to continue building my wardrobe in thoughtful and timeless ways. Here’s my 2021 wish list.
Further explore New York City.
The pandemic brought more uninterrupted time in New York City than I had experienced in my nearly 10 years in the city. It opened my eyes to how much there is still to explore and reminded me how joyful it can be to be a tourist in your own city. I have never explored Queens. I have only been to Greenpoint twice. There are parks I’ve never visited and neighborhoods never explored. I’d love to tick off a few unknown-to-me spots this year if I can do so safely.
Continue making videos.
2020 was the year I got over my fear of video and set out to create lots of video content on IGTV. I hope to continue making videos and sharing with my community in this real, raw way. I’d like to further my skills in video editing as well. I taught myself some last year but there’s much more to learn.
Finish decorating my apartment.
My apartment design has stalled following the order of my custom made furniture. I’m hopeful the pieces will at long last arrive end of the month and then I can proceed in finishing decorating and finally shoot + share the space with you all.
Limit time on Instagram on select days.
Over the holidays I set my app time limit for Instagram to one minute and it freed up an average of two hours every day. Instagram is a necessary part of my work day to day but this year I’d like to re-prioritize my time and do less scrolling and more reading / being present with my own life vs. looking on others’ lives.
Go to Paris for a month.
I saved this goal for last as it may not well be safe or feasible this year. But if it does become possible, I want to achieve living in Paris for a month this year. I have a calling deep in my soul to do this and it keeps getting pushed back. But I’m praying it works out and I can spend time exploring my favorite city, building out recommendations for Paris, Perfected, visiting with my French friends and just surrounding myself with a change of scenery in which to feel inspired and reflect.
. . .
Do you have a goal or word for 2021? I’d love to hear them <3