New Year’s Resolutions: An Update

New Year's Resolutions Updaye

It’s been 8 months since I first uploaded my New Year’s resolutions post, and I thought it was high time I gave you guys an update. To be honest, this post was supposed to be written somewhere around the end of June, beginning of July. But as you have all noticed I wasn’t really active on here during that period and so it got postponed. And delayed. And put off. Time and time again. Now that I’m back in the swing of things – as they say – I’m ready to sit down and evaluate the first half (and a bit) of 2017. Did I reach any of the goals I set myself? And if I didn’t, have I been working hard enough?

You may or may not remember, but the first and biggest goal I set myself in January was to finally graduate in June. Unfortunately, I didn’t achieve that one. The main reason for that is that I let it slide in the second semester even though I was doing really well in my first semester and actually passed all of my January exams. I don’t know why, but after that I just couldn’t motivate myself at all anymore. I was constantly procrastinating and putting assignments off until the very last minute, skipping classes all the time, no longer taking notes and not staying on top of the course materials – I was falling back into old habits. In May I was supposed to hand in my dissertation, but – you guessed it – I hadn’t really done anything for it, so it got postponed to August. This alone already guaranteed that I was not going to get my Bachelor’s degree in June, and it demotivated me even more. Miraculously, though, I did pass most of my final exams – all but one. So that’s where I am now: I handed in my dissertation on Monday (after a very stressful weekend in which I didn’t think I was going to finish it), and today I had to resit my exam. Let’s hope both went well and I can at least finally graduate in September. Fingers crossed!

Something else I really wanted to achieve was living healthier. And I do think I’m quite on top of that now. In March, I went back to my dietitian for the first time in over a year. I’d gained back all of the weight I’d lost when I first went to her back in 2014 – 22 pounds to be exact. I kinda blame my Erasmus trip for that, but actually it’s all on me. I got off track and didn’t get back on in time. But at the beginning of this year I decided that enough was enough and I was going to make a change for the better (again). I didn’t feel comfortable in my own skin anymore and it was really dragging me down, so I needed to do something about it. Since starting up my diet again 5 months ago now, I’ve already lost the 22 pounds I’d gained, and I’m maintaining my weight. I feel a lot happier, and a lot healthier. I’m definitely not as sluggish anymore as I was before. Cutting out sugary and fatty foods was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

Of course, losing weight isn’t the only aspect of living a more healthy lifestyle. I’m also all about finding a balance – I don’t want to be ‘on a diet’ for the rest of my life. If I’m craving a piece of chocolate, I want to be able to actually eat it without feeling guilty. It’s probably going to be a long process (getting rid of the guilt, I mean), but I’m confident I will get there eventually. Part of what is going to get me there is exercising more. People who know me are not going to believe me when I say this, but since the beginning of August I’ve been going for a run 3 times a week. And my main motivation for it is not losing a few more pounds (although I’d be lying if I said it’s not part of it), but strengthening my body. I hate feeling weak and embarassed about not being able to do certain things simply because I’m not fit enough. So I downloaded an app that is helping me build up my stamina gradually and it’s going pretty well, if I may say so myself. I can really see (and feel) a difference and it’s helping me to stay motivated.

Another thing I’ve incorporated into my daily routine is yoga. This was actually inspired by a conversation I had with one of my best friends at the beginning of Summer. She told me that she’d been taking yoga classes and it was really helping her tone her body. I couldn’t really believe it, because I’d never looked at yoga as exercise. I thought it was this spiritual hippie thing that’s all about connecting to ‘Mother Nature’ and not at all about the body. Looking back, I realise how ridiculous that is because everything you do in yoga involves your body – duh! It took me until the beginning of August to get my butt off the couch, but since then I’ve been watching Adriene’s videos and doing at least one yoga routine (is that what it’s called? idk I’m a newbie) a day. And I feel great!

The third thing I wanted to work on was staying in touch with friends more. It’s safe to say I failed massively on that one. So I guess this is my formal apology to any of my friends who may be reading this: I’m sorry I’ve been rubbish at talking to you. I don’t know what it is, but starting a conversation with someone or even just continuing one is something that does not come easily to me. I’ll have short periods of being social and talking to my friends (or, well, maybe one friend) and then suddenly it’ll become too much and I just close myself off. And then I come to a point where I feel embarassed because it’s been so long since I’ve talked to them and that just makes it more difficult to start up a conversation again. It’s something I really want to change, but I honestly don’t know if I’ll ever be able to. I guess I need to take a little bit of time for some serious introspection and get to the bottom of this if I ever want to see a change. I mean, I guess it has to do with the fact that I am most definitely 100% an introvert, but I really need to do something about being afraid to start talking to someone (again), even if it’s been ages. This goes to all my blogger friends, too: please don’t think I don’t like you or don’t want to talk to you, it’s just not something that comes very naturally to me.

Finally, I challenged myself to stop caring about what other people think. This is something I’m still working on, and some days are better than others. I don’t think I can 100% say that I’m now in a place where others’ opinions have no effect on me anymore, but I have gotten better at stepping out of my comfort zone. I mean, even filming videos out in the open where people can see me, or very obviously taking Instagram pictures, were things I’d have felt so uncomfortable with even just last year. And while I do still get a bit *cringe* when it needs to happen, I just get over it and do it anyway. It might not seem like much to some people reading this, but trust me, it’s a huge step for me. I’m looking forward to how much more progress I’m going to be making as I continue to slowly but surely push myself out of my comfort zone.

I may not have reached all 4 goals I set myself back in January, but I have grown and achieved other, smaller goals along the way. I think I’ve learned that setting myself vague, long-term goals like New Year’s resolutions isn’t really what motivates me. I need something more concrete, something more immediate. And that’s why I’m going to set myself smaller monthly goals that will help me work towards one big goal: living a happy, balanced life. As cheesy as that sounds, it’s something that’s become more important to me over the course of these past 8 (almost 9!) months. I’m hoping it’s something I can take with me as we get closer to 2018 until it’s become something I don’t even have to think about anymore because it comes naturally.

new year's resolutions update

5 thoughts on “New Year’s Resolutions: An Update

  1. Great post!
    It is completely okay to not reach all of your goals that you set in the new year as long as you see that growth that you’ve recognized. It’s also really cool that you got started doing yoga! When I first started getting into yoga (more than the weekly classes I took at college), Adriene’s videos were a huge help and I still use them quite often as I begin my training to become a yoga instructor.Great job on your progress and good luck with the rest of your year!
    Jess~

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for updating us. 🙂 I totally agree with Jess: it’s okay to not reach every single goal, celebrate the ones you’ve succeeded with and work on the ones you haven’t. I do a similar 5k program called “Couch to 5k”; it’s through England’s NHS and is turning me into someone who almost likes running, haha. Thank you for the yoga videos suggestion! I’ve been looking for some good ones to do at home. I think staying in touch with friends and not caring about what others think are so, so hard. I struggle with both. I don’t have any tips for dealing with either, but I can relate.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, I’m very happy to be able to say that I have changed since January 1st and am still working on improving myself every single day. 🙂 I never thought I’d ever grow to like running either, but here I am, haha. Using an app and seeing the gradual improvement does so much for my motivation. I’m glad I could help you out with my yoga videos recommendation!

      xoxo
      Freya

      Liked by 1 person

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