Happy New Year! My 2017 Resolutions…
Happy New Year everyone, and welcome to my first post of 2017!
I don’t know about you, but I am sooo happy that a new year is now upon us and I am feeling more motivated than ever to make this year the best one yet! As most of you will know, 2016 actually turned out to be my best year to date, but I am keen to top it in 2017 and am already thinking about my upcoming travels, and my ambitions for the year ahead. Last year I wrote a similar post about my 2016 resolutions, but I’ve been thinking about the new year since before Christmas and have finally settled on my goals for 2017…
I want to travel to 10 new countries
For those of you who have been following my blog for a while, you’ll know all about my ongoing 25:25 challenge. Last January I set myself the task of visiting 25 countries before I turn 25 in January 2018. As of now I am on country number 12 so am only halfway through with only a year left to complete it! It’s going to be difficult for me to visit another 13 countries before 2017 is over, but I know I have to do at least 10 of them if I have any chance of completing this task next January! In an ideal world, I’ll spend 2017 hitting Europe and will then spend my 25th birthday in Australia, stopping off at Dubai along the way, and celebrating my new achievement. Or if I can’t afford Australia I’ll hop over to Dublin, or Edinburgh, or somewhere else on my bucket list that is a little closer to home… that version of the story is much more likely, but a girl can dream, right?! I’m well aware that it will take a lot of time, and money, to complete this challenge, but I am more motivated than ever to achieve it and really hope I am nearly there by the time 2017 comes to an end! Wish me luck!!
I want to stop wasting money on scratch cards
I’m hoping this one will be fairly easy, but I am THE WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD FOR BUYING SCRATCHCARDS!! I literally can’t help myself, especially if I’m stood at the front of the queue and they’re just jumping out at me. Or if I’m paying on my card and don’t see the money leaving my account until weeks later, because it doesn’t feel the same as paying in cash, right?! I really need to stop buying scratch-cards though, like seriously, it is a really unhealthy obsession that I want to cut out of my life in 2017. I’m not a gambler, I don’t place bets, I don’t go to bingo and I rarely play the lottery (although I won £90 once woooo!), so I feel like buying scratch-cards is my way of trying to get a little bit of luck, but I NEVER win on them and I just feel they are a complete waste of time. This year, every time I get the urge to buy a scratch-card I’m going to put the couple of quid into a little money pot and try to save it up, at least that way I can save instead of spend!
I want to get a part time job
You’ll probably all know that I’m currently freelancing and working from home and, as much as I love it, I am starting to get a little lonely. I miss the company of having work friends, and colleagues, and seeing actual PEOPLE on a day to day basis, instead of just my little dog for company (she’s a babe tho, I love her). I miss the social aspect of it; I’m such a people person and I thrive off seeing a friendly smile and having a little catch up with colleagues, so working by myself has proved difficult over the past couple of months.Don’t get me wrong, I still LOVE my freelance life and am going to keep building up my business in 2017 – I love choosing my own hours, not bothering with my hair and make up and working from my bed if I feel poorly! I’m quite good at being self motivating and I won’t lie in bed all day when I know I have deadlines and a to-do list as long as my arm, but I just feel a little part time job would give me the social aspect that I miss, as well as some more money too, which is never a bad thing! As I write this, I have an interview lined up tomorrow for some part time hours in a retail store, so we will see what comes of that, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed!
I want to focus on growing my blog as much as possible
2016 was undoubtedly my best year of blogging to date; I was shortlisted for a national award, I received widespread local press coverage, I underwent a major rebrand, worked with several high profile companies, became a brand ambassador, attended my first travel blogging conferences and even went on my first ever press trip. I’m not sure how I’m going to top all of those things in 2017, but I sure as hell am going to try! Ideally, I would love to start earing some money from my blog, but I can’t be bothered with all the ads/affiliate links that sooo many other bloggers use. I work with a few PR companies and often get sent on all expenses paid days out and overnight stays to enjoy and review, which in itself is amazing, but I feel like I’m ready to take those next steps into blog professionalism and start earning a living from my little space on the World Wide Web. If you’re a blogger and are already monetising your site PLEASE send some tips my way!
I want to spend more time with my family and friends
Bit late to the party after being on holiday but so pleased to have ended 2016 and brought in the new year down in Cornwall with my beautiful, crazy family. 2016 was my best year to date; I took my biggest leap of faith by quitting my job, travelling solo to LA and launching my freelance business. I road tripped across America, ticking off 30 cities & 23 states (making 52 new friends along the way) and inter-railed around Italy with my sister, visiting three of the most famous cities in the world. My blog turned 2, it underwent a major rebrand and it was nominated for an award. I've been bridesmaid for my best friend, celebrated my cousins wedding and my sisters 21st and have been to V Fest, the theatre and the races. I've made hundreds of new memories with my amazing friends and family and am entering 2017 feeling the happiest I've ever been! Here's to an even better year with many new adventures ahead as I take on Europe during my next 12 months of travel! Happy belated new year everyone, wishing you every happiness for 2017 🌎✈️💖
I do this a lot anyway, but I think I’m going to make a conscious effort in 2017 to spend EVEN MORE time with the people who mean so much to me. In 2016 I learnt that having 5 or 6 close, special friends is better than having 10 or 12 friends who you don’t really see that often. Yes, I have a good social circle and I know an awful lot of people, but I’ve learnt who I can rely on, who I can trust and, most importantly, who I actually want to spend my time with, and who deserves my time too! I love spending time with my family, we are all so close and that will never change, but I’ve learnt who my real friends are over these past 12 months! Here’s to cutting out the time wasters in 2017 and focusing on those who I really want to be with instead.
I want to spend less time on social media
Just. A. Little. Bit. OBSESSED!! Does anyone else have a social media addiction?! I go to bed thinking about my next blog post and wake up thinking about my next instagram shot! I can barely sleep and I stay up late trying to catch up on all my blogging. Any tips on how to separate my social media life from my ACTUAL life?! #helppppp
It’s no secret that I’m a total social media obsessive. I’m on social media literally ALL THE TIME, mainly because of my job, but also because I love it and I can’t help myself. A lot of the time I’m genuinely absorbing important stuff, like keeping up to date with the news, researching new travel destinations or thinking of new post ideas for the blog. Sometimes though, I find myself just sat there staring at my phone, totally absent minded and taking in boring content that has no impact or relevance to my life whatsoever. This is what I need to stop doing in 2017 – I need to stop looking at things that I don’t care about, and things which aren’t important to me. Who cares if that couple from down the road got engaged, or if that girl from school has had a baby? If it doesn’t affect my life I am NOT interested! Of course I want to see what my friends and family are up to and I want to be involved in their online lives too, but I’m going to delete people who aren’t important, ignore things that don’t matter to me, and stop comparing my life to other peoples lives. I also think it will help me to have a little digital detox and interact with humans more instead!
I want to stop looking for love
After a bloody awful year of dating in 2016 I think I’ve decided to give up looking for love in 2017 – I never seem to get anywhere, I don’t meet anyone decent, and I ALWAYS get hurt! I’ve been on dates, started seeing people, got to the point where I think it could turn into something, and then BAM, it gets taken away and I end up back at square one. I’m so afraid to let someone in, get close to someone and open up to them because I’m so scared of getting hurt again. I know it’ll affect my confidence the longer I leave it, but I feel that, by not looking for something, I might just be lucky enough to find someone when I least expect it. I’m not totally bitter towards men, and I really do believe that there is someone out there for me, I just haven’t found him yet and I don’t want to look for him now. That’s ok, right?!
I want to focus on MYSELF
This kinda follows on from my last point, but I honestly think that, unless I start focusing on myself and looking after number one, I’m not going to find anyone who wants to be with me. I really want to look back on 2017 as the year I started to love myself, because I haven’t done a lot of that in recent years. I’m quite a confident, bubbly person on the outside, and I’ll always put a big smile on my face, but, inside, I’m this little girl who constantly compares herself to others, and overthinks just about everything. I put myself down, I take 20 attempts to get the right selfie, I breathe in when I walk past a mirror because I think I look fat, and I let my health get the better of me sometimes. It’s not something I do on purpose, I just can’t help it, I’ve been like it since I was a teenager, since I encountered some problems when I was 15.
I won’t go into the details but, ever since then, I have suffered with occasional bouts of mild depression. Sometimes I just have days where I don’t even want to get out of bed. It’s like everything around me is dark and I can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. Sometimes things trigger it, but other times it can be something so small, like a ridiculously sad advert on the telly, and I’ll start bawling my eyes out and crying like a baby. It doesn’t happen too often, and I know people deal with things that are much, much worse, but, this year, if/when I start to feel this way again, I’m going to tell myself that I’m a strong, smart and independent female who CAN and WILL achieve great things, and that might help me look at the bigger picture a bit differently! I want to focus on what I HAVE got, not what I haven’t got, and I think that will really help me to look after myself this year.
I’m hoping that, by the time 2017 comes to an end, I’ll have ticked off all of these resolutions and will be feeling super proud of myself! I like to think that they are all manageable, and achievable, and that 12 months gives me enough time to complete them all. I know that travelling to 10 new countries is a pretty big ask, so I’m not going to beat myself up too much if I don’t complete that one, but I’m feeling so determined this year and am confident I can do it!
What are your New Years Resolutions? I’d love to hear your 2017 goals!
Love Jess x
It’s kind of cheating, but you could hop from Austria to Prague and Bratislava to tick off a few quick countries?
Hi Emma! Thanks for your comment – I’m definitely planning to tick off quick countries during my time in Europe this year, I already have my itinerary planned! Inter-railing is a super easy way of seeing lots of countries all at once too! Jess X
Some fab goals and hopes for the year! I’m with you on the scratchcard one, I can’t ever seem to help myself when in a shop either, definitely end up buying them too often. Then again, I’ve not won anything in ages… Congrats on your win 🙂 x
Thank you so much! I know they are SUCH a guilty pleasure aren’t they – I am doing well so far, not a single one bought yet!! My tip is to go to the self service scanner at the supermarket and avoid the cashiers advertising them! Good luck!! Jess x