This is a post i’ve had on my mind for quite sometime, I want to look at the year ahead – and few words for the soul too.
I recently celebrated my 26th birthday, and things always seem to be put into perspective around birthdays or milestones. If I was to have a conversation with my younger self, I’m pretty sure she would be disappointed with what my life looks like now. When you’re younger, you always dream of how you’re life will be as you get older, and by the time I turned 26, I definitely thought that I would be married and have started a family.
You see, when you’re younger, and not necessarily THAT younger (as late as 16 or 17), being 26 seems SO old. You think that you’re going to have your life totally together, and that everything will just be so awesome. Reality check: things get complicated and that’s okay.
Sorry younger Laura, I’m not married, and I don’t have any kids either. For the most part, that’s okay. I do, however, have a great guy in my life, in fact, it’s the same guy that was around when I was 16! Kevin and I have a really nice relationship, and we bought a house. Fingers crossed that a wedding and kids are in the future, but for the time being, we just need to be where we are in life, and that’s okay.
One thing that I used to always do around birthdays was to take a look at things I wanted to work towards in the next year. So here goes:
1. enjoy life a little more.
I think for the longest time I was so concerned about saving for a house that I sometimes wouldn’t allow myself to do things that I could enjoy. From going to concerts, to having nights on the town, I want to say more “yes” and less “well…”My goal is to keep an open-mind.
2. explore my creative side.
I’m certainly not the most traditionally creative person, but I can certainly appreciate it. I tried out pottery last year, and I really enjoyed it. For now, I’m taking a break from that (i’ve got too many pots and not enough uses for them yet). I will be trying my hand at glass-blowing, who knows how that goes!
Cooking is one of those creative outlets, and one that I would say I have a good grasp on. Otherwise, let’s face it, this blog would be pretty silly. I feel so proud of myself when I craft a new recipe that actually turns out to be pretty delicious (like the tuna enchiladas)
3. live a healthy life.
It’s no secret: I LOVE food. I wouldn’t say that I eat poorly, and I know how to make healthy choices – one can always improve these though. I also recently joined a gym with my mom and sister-in-law, and there is some truth to be said about doing things with friends, it keeps you motivated and accountable. It’s not about losing weight (though I have a number in mind), I want to feel good in my skin again, and gain the confidence my younger self once exuded.
I recently joined Spark People (again). It’s a really neat and free website that allows you to track your fitness, meals, and goals towards a healthier lifestyle. Think of it as the facebook of health. You can connect with others dealing with similar stories, or find other sparkpeople in your city and really build on those connections. Between this, the gym, and the spin class that kicks my butt weekly, I’m hoping things will begin to fall into place.
4. contribute to society.
This seems really BIG, almost too vague, but we’ll leave it at that. Every once in a while I look at what I’m doing, and one theme that continues to resurface is that I feel my best when I’m doing something that benefits the greater good. Pass the grater, because I know that’s cheesy, but I want to be remembered and feel like I’m making the world around me a better place. I haven’t completely figured out how I’m going to do this yet, but I know that there are ways that I can do it.
5. invest in relationships.
I wouldn’t say I have a ton of friends, but the people in my life are really great people. I’m so incredibly thankful that I can turn to certain friends when I’m having a crappy day, or count on my family to support the decisions I make. There’s always room for improving though. It kinda goes back to my first goal – enjoy life a little more. I have a tendency to internalize and hide out behind the smile you see. Secret fact: I hate showing that I have weaknesses. It’s the reason I smile when I’m frustrated, or laugh when the spin teacher says we’re halfway through, just as my legs are saying NO WAY! It’s a good characteristic to have, but it can make it tough to let others in.
I’m the kind of person that if you’re interested in X topic, I will encourage you to the nth to pursue it, I’ll be your #1 cheerleader or sounding board. I’m slowly realizing that those around me are also great encouragers. Relationships are hard, and it can be difficult to find the time to get together, but you feel great when you do.
Wow, that was longer than I expected. Though these goals aren’t really measurable goals, I’m pretty confident that the year ahead will contribute to each of them. Next post will be a recipe again, and maybe even a little food for the soul! Until next time!