Every year I write this blog post. It’s one of my favourite blog posts to write as I get to look back at the year previous and see what things I was able to tick off and then think about the goals I want to achieve in the new year.
2021 didn’t start off as hopeful as some others have since the pandemic was pretty much in full swing and I don’t think I left my house until April.
However, I don’t want to jinx myself by saying ‘2022 will be the best year ever’, but I do have a feeling that it’s going to be a pretty good year. I mean, I started the New Year standing on a balcony in the Lower East Side of Manhattan watching random people set off fireworks from the roof of the buildings which was a pretty great way to introduce 2022.
If interested, you can find my previous goals below:
Reflecting on 2021 goals
In short, my 2021 goals were as follows:
- Travel more: visit a new place in Europe, a new place in the UK and go back to America
- Start making some money from this little website
- Don’t read as much as 2020
- Make my habits stick
- Spend more money on experiences rather than material things
- Monthly challenges
Let’s start with traveling more. Weirdly enough, with a pandemic going on, I managed to do a fair bit of traveling, especially when it comes to slow travel around the UK.
We spent a month in Edinburgh, a month in Manchester, a month in Wales (Cardiff & Swansea), and another month in Manchester before moving to London. We did a road trip around Scotland and visited some places in Wales (both countries/nations/whatever-you-want-to-call-them I had never been to before 2021) and had a whale of a time exploring more of the UK – would very much recommend!
I was also able to visit Milan and Lake Como in Italy towards the end of 2021, and of course finished the year off with two weeks in New York and two days in Nashville. So I’ll say that this goal was definitely achieved.
Blog-wise, 2021 was an exciting year for me as I did start earning a little bit of dollar from this website, and we did go over the four-figure mark which was all easily spent in New York City.
The reading goal – lol. I guess you could say that I also did achieve this goal as I was only one book short of last year’s total (78) so I did, technically, read less than last year 🙂 However, this is definitely not the aim of 2022.
Habits: I’ve written about them so often that you’re probably sick of hearing about them and if I can ever recommend one self-help book that you should read, it should be Atomic Habits by James Clear. I tried to stick to the habit tracker in my journal but failed. I then created the same thing on Google Sheets since I’m on my laptop every day and the rest was history.
I’ve got spreadsheets for everything now and have tracked pretty much everything since summer last year – I would highly recommend so that you can see how many times you actually stick to doing something you set out to do each day!
There’s no doubt in my mind that I spent a lot of money in 2021. Especially on brunch, theatre tickets and books. However, I want to be kind to myself since we did spend a very long time without brunches and theatre outings (the books were my own fault) that making up for lost time is quite ok. I want to be even more mindful going into 2022 and spend a lot less money on clothes and things I don’t need, get through the 60 books on my shelves before buying any more and cut the theatre trips to once per month instead of once per week.
The monthly challenges didn’t happen and we’ll leave it at that.
Skip to the good part
If you’ve scrolled straight to this part, I don’t blame you. That’s what you’re here for, right?
You might already know that New Year’s is my favourite time of the year. I’m a list maker and nothing makes me more excited or satisfied than to start making my list of goals for 2022, then breaking that down to month by month and then into week by week lists.
I have two lists of goals. I have one list that is achievable and realistic, and I have another out-there list that’s just quite mental but I wanted to write down the things that I would love to happen this year, but will also be ok if they don’t. Apologies, but that one is for safe keeping as they’re pretty out of reach.
1. Read 100 books
Surely you knew this one was coming, no? I managed to read 77 books in 2021 and there were a few months where I slacked off and could have done better, so I’m going to aim for the moon and read 100 books this year.
I signed up to my local library in London before Christmas so that, along with the 58 books I have sitting on my shelves in my flat unread, should help me along. The only thing I need to focus on is reading shorter books.
On average the books I read are 300+ pages, and if I want to get through A Little Life and Barack Obama’s A Promised Land this year, I’m going to need a lot of small books to make up for all of that time.
As ever, if you have any suggestions at all, do send them my way. Otherwise, you can keep up with my reading habits in realtime on Instagram.
2. Stick with the blog
This goal is on my list every year and thankfully every year, I’ve stuck to it. I don’t want to say it, but I think the blogging world might finally be dying.
I hate to admit it but I don’t read anywhere near the amount of blog posts that I used to. I’ve caught the YouTube bug a little too late but I mainly only watch videos when I’m in the gym, and otherwise I’m on social media watching videos and watching Instagram Stories.
BUT, I’m going to keep at it. My blog is a five year hobby that I’ve kept at and it’s probably my longest-running hobby that I’ve stuck to. But mostly, I enjoy it too much to give it up.
I love to write, I love to overshare and I love to be able to have somewhere that I can get my opinion across without having to sit in front of a camera or say it out loud. It’s my little journal on the world wide web and I want to make a conscious effort to keep blogging in 2022 and to blog a little bit more than I have been doing.
3. Season 2 baby
In 2021 I created my own podcast and published 19 episodes. It was probably one of my greatest achievements of 2021 and I want to continue with it into 2022.
I have no concrete plans of yet, but I didn’t want to put too much pressure on myself in January with too many goals, so we’re going to ease into season 2 in a few months’ time once I’ve managed to grab a few guests to make an appearance.
But I have something new up my sleeve for the podcast this year so do stay tuned!
4. Relocation, relocation, relocation
2021 saw myself and the mr moving around the UK a month at a time, living out of suitcases for half of the year before moving to London in September.
It’s something that I won’t forget for a long time and will look back on with fond memories, so when it came to putting some firmer roots down when we moved to London, I was apprehensive to have a lease longer than six months, but that was something quite hard to find in London and so come September, our year-long lease will be up.
As of now, we have no plans whatsoever for September onwards but I would say it’s very likely that we’ll stay in London a bit longer. I’m itching to move away again and try somewhere new, but with the pandemic and work, it’s not so easy to do.
My goal for the year when it comes to where I live is to reassess how we feel in the summer and start making plans that feel right. See what shape the world is in and if we can, move to somewhere new and if not, try to get a shorter lease until we can figure out how and where to move to next.
5. Career girl
I was having a bit of a crisis last year when it came to my job/career and I guess that’s why I started 2021 in one job, moved to another and then was working in another by the time 2021 came to a close.
I learnt a lot in 2021 when it comes to work/career. I realised that I can’t be in a job where I have no drive, no motivation and just no love for the job. I then realised that I don’t want to be overworked, stressed to the hills and not valued for the work I was doing, and so I find myself in my third job since 2021 began.
I’m happy where I’m at right now and I feel like I’m going to learn a lot at this new job. It’s solidified that I want to progress working in-house rather than in an agency, but maybe that’s down to one negative experience, who knows?
What I’m starting to realise more and more is that I compare each job to my first real job and of course, nothing really does compare. I feel like I’m destined to go back in the future and that this is where my current path is leading me. But I’m going to follow the course I’m on right now and see if it takes me back or moves me forward onto something else.
My career goal this year is to learn as much as I can and soak up everything like a sponge, learning as much about the influencer marketing industry as I can and becoming as much of an expert as I can.
6. Go to Paris
That’s the only travel goal I have on my list this year. The mr promised me a trip to Paris on my birthday in 2020. That’s all I’m going to say on the matter.
7. Become ‘that girl’
Every year I have the same goal on my list about healthy eating and exercise and blah, blah, blah. Every year I look and feel the same as I started the year.
But not this year.
We’re introducing better habits this year and my spreadsheets are prepped and ready. To be ‘that girl’, I’m stopping the Diet Coke, I’m eating more vegetables, I’m drinking at least 3 litres of water a day, I’m hitting the gym as much as I can, I’m walking 10,000 steps every day, I’m cutting back on alcohol (hello Dry January!), I’m taking my vitamins and I’m creating a good skincare routine.
All of these habits become habits when I have a good routine. That means waking up at 6am, going to the gym before work, drinking 1L of water before work, going for a walk during my lunch break, drinking another 2L of water throughout the day, planning all of my meals in advance, banning Diet Coke from my flat and cutting back on the number of mochas I buy from the coffee shop downstairs.
More movement, more water, more health.
8. Invest in myself
I have no clue when it comes to the stock market, NFTs, Crypto and anything of that nature, but this year I’m going to educate myself. I’ve read so many times that I should be investing my money instead of having it sit in a bank, but the thought of starting just seems too much.
In 2022, I will invest in my first stock. Watch out, Warren Buffet.
9. Write more
In 2022, I will write a book.
I’m kidding. You think I could write a book and read 100 of them, all whilst living at the same time?
That might be a goal for future me, but the me of right now is not writing a book. I do however, want to write more than I have been doing. Not just blog posts, but for other publications and also to journal.
I’ve kept a diary/journal on and off for years but it must be at least two years since I’ve ever written anything like that. In 2022, I want to make more of an effort to write down my thoughts/feelings and also think about things that I want and to assess what’s going on in my head.
Journal prompts welcome.
10. Make more time for my friends/family
With the pandemic, being in a relationship and living in London, I don’t see my friends and family as often as I would like to, or should.
I see two of my best friends around twice a year, and now that I live in the same city as another of my best friend’s, I want to make an effort to spend more time with her.
The pandemic made me feel like more of a hermit than ever and truth be told, I much prefer sitting on the sofa on a Saturday night than going out to a nightclub. Yes, I’m old, but I wouldn’t change it at all.
But brunches, coffee, walks in the park and just spending quality time together? That I can do. I’m making it a priority to pencil in things with my friends each and every month to make sure I’m watering those plants as well as all the others.
11. Share more on social media
I feel mortified when I post things on social media, fearing what other people are thinking or mocking or laughing about what I’m putting out there.
But in 2022, I’m going to stop caring so much. I love watching other people go about their lives on social media, watching them make coffee, what they’re wearing every day, what their goals are, what they’re working on and how they’re feeling.
I’m not saying I’m going to update you on my bowel movements or anything (I’ll leave that to Olivia Neill) but I do want to make more of an effort to post more on Instagram, Twitter and TikTok. Even if it’s just to create more conversations, I love connecting with people and relating to what other people post.
What I’m trying to say is that if you post a book on your Instagram Stories, I’m going to respond to you.
And there’s more where that came from
There we have it, 11 lovely goals for 2021. I have a lot more that I haven’t included in the list but they’re a bit boring to write about.
I hope 2022 is a better year for us all and that some of us finally get to celebrate our birthdays (solidarity with those born in March) and get back to traveling, can move abroad, can see family and friends, can become the first female president, can go to space and can conquer our goals.
I have to say it, but I think 2022 may just be our best year yet.