A new year brings with it a fresh set of expectations and goals for many. A new start and an opportunity to become something better. We try for the first few months to be better versions of ourselves; exercise more, eat healthily, try new hobbies, whatever – but it never lasts long.
The problem is, the goals we set ourselves are unattainable, vague and not inline with what we actually want from life, therefore we abandon them for our old habits and end up feeling guilty.
Back in September, I joined a project called 100 days to 2020 aimed at making the most of the rest of this year. As proof of my procrastination and lack of commitment to these things, I barely got a month in and gave up with the project.
The prompts, I found, were for extremely busy and organised people – both of those things of which I am not. I struggled to answer the prompts and set goals in the way the project required. Yet I didn’t feel bad when I gave up answering the prompts. It just showed the project wasn’t for me and I prefer reflecting and setting goals in my own way. That’s why I thought I’d write this post.
3 intentions for 2020 which will hopefully kick start some small changes in my life. 3 intentions which are entirely personal to me and fit in with my life. But most importantly, 3 intentions for 2020 which I’m excited to work on because if your goals don’t fill you with enthusiasm, why would you make the effort to do them?
Here are my 3 intentions for 2020:
Use my time more effectively
I mentioned in my previous post that I wanted to make more time in 2020. Time to do things that I love and how I needed to use my time more effectively.
Currently, a lot of my time is spent procrastinating. I fell into a black hole of scrolling through apps on my phone mindlessly, reading blog posts and wondering why my writing didn’t flow as well as theirs and just not doing all that pesky life admin on my to do list.
I spent time lounging about, watching TV or sleeping longer than I needed, not really doing anything productive. And I know not all days have to be productive but when lots of your evenings and weekends are wasted on nothing much, motivation can dip massively.
In order to use my time more effectively, I’ve thought of 4 small activities which could help me be more productive.
The first one is definitely to write more. This blog has taken a back seat in 2019 and apart from one (pretty poor) piece of creative writing, I haven’t done a lot else except a handful of diary entries. Some writing is better than nothing at all but it needs to be less sporadic.
One good thing I did do for my writing this year was to subscribe to Writer’s Magazine. Some of the features were helpful and I enjoyed reading the critique of others’ work. But I cancelled my subscription. It wasn’t my favourite magazine to read and I found myself flicking through most of it with little interest.
In order to be as good as these other bloggers I admire, I need to practise more. I love writing and its powerful ability to cure a storm of emotions brewing inside me. It gives me an outlet to release the hurt, the pain and the grief into a rush of words which when I read back, hit me hard with their sadness and ferocity of feeling.
Writing fires me up and excites me into thinking that anything is possible. It’s a feeling that can’t be bottled up but I can sure as hell try and pour it into my writing next year.
Another way in which I could use my time more effectively in 2020 is to be cleaner. I am so messy. It pains me to say it and is probably a right pain for other people in my life. Next year, I really need to take the time to keep my space clean. Instead of procrastinating, I could tidy my room (and the rest of the house) to clear my head which in turn will help with the writing process. I feel like if I didn’t live at home still, I would be better at this one.
Getting outside more is something I’d like to do more of in 2020. I’ve definitely made some improvement on this in 2019 as we’ve walked along the seafront a lot but being outside is a good way of using my time effectively.
Lastly under the umbrella of using my time more effectively is to educate myself on new topics. I’d like to learn more about politics so that when the time comes to vote, I feel slightly less clueless about each parties’ manifestos. I want to learn more about the world around me because we should always be learning.
Focus on myself and not others
Here’s an intention that seems to crop up on my blog a lot. It’s one I struggle with but one I’m finally committed to knocking on the head. I really lack confidence in my own abilities and it has held me back from shouting about achievements and pushing myself further.
I look at others (mostly online) and see everything I haven’t got, everything I wish I had. I wonder why I’m not achieving more and just living life in a somewhat boring way.
Most of the time, the rational part of my brain tells me that the above is not true and that I’m doing well. There are other times when I wish I was writing for a living, doing something I love and living in my own space but this will come eventually. In the mean time, I’ll just focus on what makes me happy and not goals that make others happy.
Chill out and take things less personally
I was thinking about whether I should include this intention last night. It’s not something I talk about often but I think it’s important to admit to yourself that you’ve become a certain way even if you don’t like it.
Sometimes I can be uptight. *Shudders* I’ve started to notice this for the past couple of years. Not around friends and family that I know well but around people I’m less familiar with. I don’t relax and I’m sure that’s something to do with being an introvert but I really need to learn to chill out.
I also need to learn to chill out and take things less personally on a day to day basis. I get so stressed over things that are beyond my control and take things to heart which shouldn’t really be a big deal.
2020 will see me relaxing more and leaving work behind for the day. I will know that I’ve tried my best and that’s all that I can do.
What are your intentions for 2020?