Planning for the Year

January 5, 2019  • 

Everyone’s done a post like this, and I have sort of alluded to some of my plans this year. But it’s always nice to get things down on paper – or blog. I’ve been using my paper planner this week and I absolutely love it so far.

My overarching goals are to save money, be more creative, and do well in my new job. So here are some specific things I’m going to do to work toward these goals:

Make healthy vegetarian lunches

I’m not a vegetarian, but we try not to eat very much meat. For dinners, we tend to eat veggie, with the occasional fish dish. For lunches, I decided to make a concentrated effort to be veggie.

I went straight to Pinterest (where else?) for ideas, and decided to prep ingredients to mix and match each day. So on Sundays, I will be preparing a few bits (sweet potatoes, chickpeas, veggies, etc) and serving alongside some spinach and hummus.

Coffee to go

I bought a Keep Cup last year and used it on occasion. This year I want to amp up my usage, but I also want to save money by avoiding Starbucks. My commute isn’t long – only a 10-minute walk – so I’m planning on making coffee (or tea!) to go.

Use my Monzo card to help budget

I love using Monzo when I’m abroad to keep track of exactly what I am spending, but I’ve never made the transition to using it full-time. I can be a bit, erm, horrible with money. To try to stick to a budget, I am adding an “allowance” to the card each week for little bits and bobs.

Take more photos

I fell off the Instagram wagon at the end of the year and I’m desperate to get back on. I love taking photos. I mostly take them with my Google Pixel 2, but I also have a Canon DSLR and a Canon G7X which are, frankly, collecting a bit of dust. I want to take more time to play with all 3 of my cameras this year.

Post on this blog

I used to blog on a schedule, wrote sponsored posts, and all that jazz. But I fell out of love with the whole thing – the competition, the drama, etc. I decided when I started this blog that I wouldn’t do any of those things, and would just post when I felt like it. The problem is… I almost never post. So this year I’ve made the vague goal to post weekly. I say “vague” because I’m not really holding myself to it. It’s mostly a way to actually remember that this blog exists. Hopefully, it will inspire me to write and share more.

Actually complete my hand lettering workbook

I’ve had this book to improve my lettering for YEARS now and I never get around to using it. But 2019 is the year! I’m going to actually work through it. I’ve always loved lettering, but it’s one of those things where if I don’t use it, I lose it. And I’ve lost it. Bye bye jagged lines, and hello fluid script… hopefully.

Keep up with my Trello boards

Trello is a tool that I’ve loved since I used it at my first job in the UK. Every so often I create boards, and then usually abandon them in favour of paper lists. But I definitely prefer the format so I’m getting back into using them. I have one for my blog, one for my portfolio website, one for general to dos, one for things I want to do this year (day trips, restaurants to try, etc), and – most importantly – my work resources board.

I started my work board last year and it’s become pretty invaluable to me. In it, I keep lists for various resources I use daily, UX blogs that I like to read, design inspiration websites, and articles I find interesting and may wish to return to. I also use it to keep my career goals up front and centre. I’ve found in the past that it’s been easy to forget the professional development goals I make each quarter once I get caught up in the actual projects I am working on. So having a Trello linked in my browser toolbar helps me remember to have a click through the above-mentioned resources when I have a bit of spare time.

As I’m starting a new job, with a slightly different focus to my last one, this board will likely increase in importance as I work with different technology and processes.

Less mindless scrolling

I enjoy social media (especially Instagram) but I need to get better at recognising when I am scrolling to enjoy content, and when I’m just scrolling for the sake of it, out of boredom. Last month, I read the book Hooked, which is all about building habit-forming (read: addictive) products. And how humans are tricked into scrolling mindlessly, driven by the constant urge to discover something new. And that’s a great instinct to have, but let’s be real – after a certain amount of time, I’m unlikely to uncover something groundbreaking on Twitter. If anything, I’m just more susceptible to getting a headache.

So I’m going to try to be mindful of my mindless scrolling. One way I’m hoping to combat this is simply by reading more novels. I’ve set myself a goal of 12 books on Goodreads. It’s not a very ambitious goal, I know. In fact, that’s the point. It’s very attainable, which I’m hoping means I will actually accomplish it!

There are definitely other things on my list, but I’m going to stop here as this post is already extremely long and nobody is going to read it anyway. Also some of the things pertain to something happening at the 2nd quarter of the year which isn’t quite sorted out yet (that sounds mysterious but trust me, it isn’t).

Anyway I might write more in-depth posts about some of these things as the year progresses.

Thank you for reading!

I’d love if you’d leave a comment and join the conversation! Please share this post on social media, if you found it useful. You can also buy me a coffee to help fuel further writing!

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  • Julia

    I loved this post! Most goal posts at this time of the year always follow a similar format but what I loved about this was how honest you were about everything. I too probably do far too much inane scrolling on social media out of habit and have set myself a goodreads goal to try and break it. I just want to be in the present a little more, great post x