This picture I took just before dawn this morning really brought home to me the new beginnings that a fresh new year can bring, if we only make it happen. 2016 was a tough year for so many people, and for me, it was a year where I really felt like I started the year behind, and just never caught up. This year will be different, and I am putting a number of plans in place to achieve my goals.
Goal 1: Organization
2016 really demonstrated to me that if your organizational systems are not in place, then everything else has no choice but to fall down around you as well. So, 2017 is the year that I find/create systems that will not only work for me, but be sustainable as well.
Lack of organization this past year meant that I was always in catch up mode, which meant the house was a disaster more often than not, the kids homework routine was less than ideal, and I constantly felt like I was putting out spot fires.
Using my planner consistently - I have had an Erin Condren Life Planner for the past two years, and while for the first year I used it the way a planner should be used, for some reason this past year I didn't work it well. Sure, I used it for jotting down doctors' appointments, etc, but I wasn't using my planner to plan. This year, I am committing to a weekly planning session on a Sunday evening, to review the upcoming week, add in more specific to-do's and goals, and look at where potential trouble spots are and plan solutions before the trouble occurs. I also forgot how much I love decorating my planner spreads, so I'm building in time during my planning sessions to be able to do this.
Stay on top of housekeeping - I think the best thing to do when thinking about the state of my house over the past year is to never think of it again! Instead, I purchased The Clean Mama Planner, which works on the philosophy of "everyday a little something". With lists of monthly tasks, together with her weekly routine, I am confident that this system will finally keep my home spic and span.
Meal planning - healthy eating fell by the wayside last year for no other reason than lack of planning. Life was busy, and without a plan in place, I'm not surprised that takeout and canteen lunches became the norm. On my Sunday evening planning session I will review our weekly calendar and then plan dinners according to what is going on each day (it's no point planning a dinner that needs hands on time if we're not back from soccer until 7.30), with the main grocery shop to happen on Mondays and Thursdays. I have also re-signed up to Momables Lunch planner program. I was a member in 2015, and it was a fantastic way to a) have someone else do a plan for me(!) and b) get the kids eating a variety of foods, not just the same old sandwiches everyday.
Goal 2: Health
Health for me and the family was something that I completely dropped the ball on last year. As I mentioned above, we relied all too much on take out, the kids bought lunch almost every day, and my exercise program disappeared completely. This really reflected on our waistlines and our general state of well being, and improving in this area is my primary goal for 2017.
These are my key strategies to help me achieve my health goals this year.
I have signed up for Crystal Paine's program 15 Days To A Healthier You (Sign up ends soon, as the program starts on the 9th), and can't wait to start. I have used Crystal's other programs Makeover Your Mornings and Make Over Your Evenings (and found them so helpful I plan to revisit then again to give me a further kickstart), so when I saw her latest one, signing up was a no brainer! With the tagline "stop surviving and start thriving" I think this is just what I need to give myself a head start towards living a stronger, healthier and more joyful life this year.
Schedule in exercise I like - OK, this is the tough one, since TBH, I just don't really like exercise, but once it's done I enjoy how I feel. I sat down and had a really good think about what has worked for me in the past, and decided that I need the structure and support of a class, so I narrowed down what I enjoyed and then matched that up with what was available at convenient times. My plan is for 5 sessions a week, a mixture of Spin, Aqua Aerobics, Pilates and Body Balance, a fusion of yoga, Pilates, and barre. The key for me is to schedule it in, and see each class as an important appointment, not to be moved/cancelled unless absolutely necessary.
Drink only water - ages ago I ditched the diet soda, but somehow the habit crept back in, and I was regularly drinking one or two a day. I'll be honest, I have never been a fan of plain water, so to make sure I am drinking at least two litres every day, I making up a big batch of "detox" water in a drinks dispenser that now has a permanent spot on my kitchen bench. I am changing the flavours each day (above was strawberry, basil and lime; today I had lemon, lime and ginger), and as a bonus, my son who has never been a big water drinker is now chugging along with me, even putting in requests for future flavour combos!
30 Day Super Elixir Challenge - In the past, I have used WelleCo's Super Elixir on and off, but was never consistent about it. This super greens powder is full of nourishing ingredients, and I'm looking forward to seeing how I feel after a month of taking it every day. If you click on this link and enter your email, you will receive $10 off your first purchase of $50 or more.
Vegetables at every meal - my final health goal is to consume some vegetable at every meal. The key here is breakfast. I do pretty well at having veg at lunch and dinner, but if I can add them in at breakfast and snack time as well, then I will significantly up my veg intake. I'm thinking kale and spinach in a smoothie, or mushrooms with eggs on toast. Again, meal planning will be key so I can have things prepped and ready to go the night before so no excuses!
So there you have my two major goals and how the strategies for how I plan to achieve them over 2017. I would love to hear what goals you are planning to achieve this year!
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