I feel like I say some variation of this every year, but I also think it’s worth repeating every year.

A new year is an obvious, easy new start. I get why people push for growth no matter the time of year, and I don’t disagree, but if you’re looking for a fresh start, even if it’s more symbolic, New Year’s just presents it to you. A lot of people look at resolutions as though they’re destined to be broken, but I think maybe a lot of people just have the wrong attitude and put too much into them. It’s never a bad thing to set goals.

Every year, I spell mine out, and every year, I like to look back on how I did. I certainly tackled some big ones in 2018.

  • Buy a house Done. We found our house around late February, early March, and closed Easter weekend, right on the last day of March.
  • Get a new job This is one I set every year and never accomplish, mostly through lack of trying. Thing is, job hunting is at the very bottom of my list of priorities–it’s something I want but don’t need, so things like freelance opportunities come first. And I don’t by any means think that’s a bad thing! I’d rather focus on that extra income and work on a writing career than a new job, especially when staying put has major perks, too. Not to mention buying a house and the process of actually moving took up a lot of time. So I only applied to a handful this year and heard nothing back, but we’ll see how 2019 goes.
  • Take on more freelance work I call this half-done–I rediscovered some older opportunities I’d looked into rather than finding new ones, and unfortunately, one of the sites I was writing for decided to reevaluate their needs and took a break from doing the sort of content I and other writers were creating. The hope was that it would start back up, but it’s been a couple months and it’s increasingly unlikely.
  • Publish writing Much like job hunting, this is low on the priority list, again because I prioritize work I know I’ll get paid for. But with little work to do in the final week or so of 2018, I had some time to get stuff out there, and while this does mark the second year in a row that I didn’t get any creative work out into the world, I did technically submit something–I just won’t have an answer until 2019. But I did submit!
  • Subscribe to a newspaper I didn’t do it as early in the year as I would’ve liked, but I did do it. We don’t need physical papers piling up for various reasons, but we do now have a digital subscription to our local paper. And it’s about time, really. We’ve been living in this city for a few years, and we ought to know what’s happening beyond what we catch on social media.
  • Travel somewhere Done. Sure, we mostly traveled for weddings, but still, one of those got us out of state and to the beach. And then a few weeks ago, I took a bus trip to DC with my mom and her best friend. But hey, I just wanted to go somewhere, and I did. 2017 kept us busy wedding planning and we never really went anywhere, so I was just glad we had a few days away from home.
  • Save money We did…until we didn’t. Obviously, we put down a payment for a house, and then we spent a few thousand dollars more redoing the floors. Since then, we haven’t really squirreled much more money away, but I’m optimistic heading into 2019, because…
  • Pay off a credit card, ideally two …I succeeded in this, and I succeeded in the ideal of paying off two cards. We have one small balance–and I mean less than 100 bucks–from when we bought some stuff when we got our cat, but otherwise, any store-specific cards aren’t carrying a balance. But the two biggies were at the end of the month/year. I had a balance transfer with a few hundred bucks left on the account the was set to start charging interest in January, so I paid that off with my mot recent paycheck, and we had an account for our new bedroom furniture also set to start charging interest in January, so I paid that off with Paul’s most recent paycheck, all for a grand total of around 1,500 bucks. Not a ton, but enough. Now all I have left are two cards with bigger balances that will be the focus in 2019.
  • Read 20 books, preferably more Fail. But again, I blame the time suck of house hunting and moving. I hit 13. I think I did better than 2017, at least!
  • Get back into a good, regular gym routine Again, house, but I did get back into a good routine in the last quarter of the year. I went sporadically leading up to that, but these last couple months, I have made it to the gym a couple times a week. And it’s open today, so we may hit it for the first time in 2019.
  • Get organized This another one that I kind of did but kind of didn’t. I wouldn’t say I’m more organized now than I was a year ago, especially because we still haven’t unpacked everything. But moving has forced us to go through things, so I’ve at least purged some stuff I didn’t want or need. Having more space has helped, too, so stuff that kept our apartment cluttered has room to stretch or room to be stored. We’re definitely taking advantage of the fact that almost every room has closets with built-in shelving, as well as our small attic space. We did lose some space in our bedroom, though–strangely, the apartment’s bedroom was bigger, but having the rest of the house makes that a little easier. And I’ve taken advantage of things that create more storage space, like multi-garment hangers in the closet and built-in drawers on the bed. I also jump on any other gadgets that help save space or help keep things organized.
  • Stop being fucking late I feel like most people I know would tell you I’m still late for everything, but honestly, I feel like I’m less late than I used to be. I’m certainly never late for work now that I work from home, with the exception of one morning when my alarm didn’t go off. But even then, at least oversleeping just means that I rushed to get on my computer and clock in, not that I had to rush to get ready and drive somewhere.
  • Keep up with past successful resolutions I think I’m doing pretty good.
  • Take more initiative with friends as far as making plans–hopefully, a house will happen and having the space will make this easier I was right about this. The only big thing we really had was for Memorial Day, but we did get people together for smaller things a couple of times in the fall. I certainly feel like I’ve seen more of some people this year than I have in past years, and I’ve also done some reconnecting. At this point, for the most part, if we’re not seeing people we want to as often as we want to, it’s a matter of not having the time. We’re busy, and we both like to still have downtime at home, so we try to juggle that, too.
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