8 Ways to Prepare for the New Year

Looking back on the year as a new one comes up is a huge blessing. It’s a good time to reflect, remember, and regroup (I promise I didn’t try too hard to alliterate those three words.) If I’m being honest, I am bad, bad, b-a-d at setting goals. Every year, a few days into the new year, I think to myself “dang it, I should have written down things I want to accomplish this year” and lament over the fact that dreaming and setting goals just doesn’t come naturally for me.

Brandon is a dreamer. A visionary. And his ideas are always impressive. I’m just sitting over here like “ummmm, I want to be able to drink 8 glasses of water a day” and he’s all like “let’s supply clean water for the whole world!” Overachiever. But seriously though, I think it’s easy for me to let Brandon’s goals and dreams be enough to satisfy me. And honestly, they usually are.

But this year I’m writing down my own goals. Like I said, I’m not a dreamer. Sure I have dreams and wishes and all sorts of things like that, but I don’t take the time to focus on them. And that’s number one on my list of goals for 2018. Be better at setting goals. How’s that for appropriate?

I’m not going to list everything I aspire to be in 2018. In the age of putting your entire life on the world-wide-interwebs, I’ll keep a few things to myself. I took a good old fashioned piece of paper and pen and wrote down my deepest desires for this year. While drinking more water should definitely be on that list, the majority of my goals are business and faith related. But I’m sharing 8 of my goals, changes, ideas, and, wait for it… resolutions for this new year.

Purge. Purge. Purge

I have discovered one definite thing about myself as an adult. I am a minimalist. I love to buy stuff, but more than that I love simplicity. I am constantly throwing things away, cleaning out my closet, and donating junk that we don’t use. If this doesn’t come naturally for you, let that be the first thing you do. Less is more. Trust me on this one. Your brain works better if your desk isn’t covered in papers and useless junk, and all other areas of your life need that minimalism, too.  

Make time for you

Oh man, this is one slapped me in the face in 2017. I am a huge believer in being selfish. I’m sure you’ve heard this a million times before, but if you give and give and give for everyone else but don’t do things to take care of yourself, what you’re giving is nowhere close to your best. For me that has looked like yoga a few times a week, and treating myself to a massage on occasion. It doesn’t have to be fancy. Soak in the bathtub or take a few extra minutes to drink your coffee. Treat yo self! Bible-journaling is the newest part of my me time, and a big goal for me in the coming year.

Make healthier choices

I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t encourage you to find something to improve your health. Take breaks from being inside to go outside for just 30 minutes of vitamin D, or go for a walk in the evening. If you’re feeling really adventurous, cut out sugar and eat more vegetables. That one is pretty simple, too. Take care of yourself.

Reply to emails

Ok, ok. Maybe I’m putting this one on here for extra accountability. Emails are not my thing. There, I admitted it. Who am I kidding? I’ve known this for as long as I’ve been in business. There’s no fancy description for this one. Just do it. Find a system that makes this easier, or hire someone to do it for you if emails are a big part of your work. If email communication isn’t a big part of your work, just purge your inbox. Easy enough.

Work 10x harder at your job

This does not mean that you should be a workaholic. In fact, I believe in just the opposite. What I do think is that it’s good for your sanity, your clients, and everything in between to find ways to be just as, if not more, productive in a shorter amount of time. Be a good steward of your time (that doesn’t include Facebook-scrolling breaks, Rach) and do your work even better.

Use less social media

This one is simple, but maybe the hardest one of all. Sure we can make excuses and say that social media is great for keeping in touch and blah blah blah, but does that really constitute mindlessly scrolling 10+ times per day? This is a hard one for me, but I plan to take pictures (not from Instagram!) and post later. I want to be more present, and not feel the sickening urge to keep up with every single thing going on in everyone else’s lives. Most importantly, resist the urge to catch up on your feed while lying in bed before you go to sleep. That’s a sure-fire way to ruin your sleep. Google it. 😉

Lessen your toxic load

If there’s one thing that I’ve gotten pretty stinkin’ close to perfecting for myself and Brandon, it’s this one. I’ll spare you the fear-mongering statistics of the toxic chemicals we’re exposed to every day. But I do challenge you to look into the correlation between our overall health and the sneaky ways toxic substances creep into our lives. Find a non-toxic cleaner for your countertops. Swap the plastic containers that house your leftovers for glass instead. Research the dozens and dozens of hormone-disrupting ingredients in your cosmetics.

Find your priorities

Be intentional about everything you do. Say no. A lot. Say yes, too. (Ha, Dr. Seuss over here!) Do things that make you happy, and don’t do things that take away from that. My priorities are Jesus, Brandon, and myself above everything else. My work is also important, but not more important than time with my family. Which commitments or relationships are causing you more harm than good? Prioritize your time and make it so that you can give 100% of yourself to fewer things rather than just a little bit to lots of things. 


How do you gear up for the new year? Share your favorite goals and thoughts on getting the most out of a fresh start!

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