HOW TO ACHIEVE YOUR GOALS + MY OWN FOR 2017

We all know the cycle of setting goals or making resolutions in January, being full of motivation then falling off the wagon by the end of February. It happens to the best of us but I have some tips to help keep you on track with your goals throughout the year. Think how good you'll feel at the end of 2017 if you've achieved all you wanted!

Daily Journal Goals Chloe Perfume Flatlay

BE REALISTIC

Don't set yourself up to fail: create goals that you should be able to achieve within the year. So if you're a graduate, aiming to be a CEO by the end of 2017 probably isn't your best strategy. Also think about whether you truly can stick to your goal or not - doing two hours of exercise every single day would be difficult for even the fittest of people, so choose something you are capable of doing as well as willing to do, then you'll get off to a good start.

MAKE SURE YOU WON'T FORGET

Make it impossible for your goals to slip your mind. Type them up and stick them on your wall, make them your desktop wallpaper, whatever it takes so that you'll be reminded of what you want to achieve on a daily basis. You could also try to find people online who are achieving the type of things you want for yourself - follow them and keep up with what they're doing so you can be reminded of the life you want for yourself.

CHECK IN WITH YOURSELF REGULARLY

Set aside some time at the end of each month to see where you're at and plan what you need to work on in the coming month. This is so important and probably the tip I'd recommend the most, as tracking your progress helps you see if you're putting enough work into achieving your goals. If you realise you're not as far ahead as you'd like to be, this can give you a real push to work harder the next month.

CHOOSE SOMETHING YOU'RE PASSIONATE ABOUT

If you set a goal for something that you don't actually want to do, you're much more likely to fail. Set goals that you really want to achieve, that will make you happy, that you truly care about. Don't say you'll get up at 5am everyday to work out when that sounds like your idea of hell. Goals shouldn't be used to punish yourself; they should improve your life and make you a happier person. Plus, passion will drive you to succeed and you'll feel your life enriched by it.

Urban Outfitters Daily Journal

So with all that in mind, here are my personal goals for 2017:

LEARN NEW DIGITAL SKILLS

Through my unsuccessful job search I've realised that having some more digital skills would be very advantageous to me in the career I'm pursuing. Things like photography, photo and video editing, SEO, HTML etc. can all be incredibly useful to a journalist, and while I have some basic knowledge in these areas I really want to step that up and become more confident in them. There's loads of free online courses for these types of things so I'm going to start working on them and hopefully by the end of the year I'll have some new skills to show for myself.

GET SERIOUS ABOUT FREELANCING

I've been doing some freelance writing here and there for a while now, but 2017 is the year I'm going to put a lot more energy into it. I've already made a list of stories I want to pitch and publications I'm going to contact, so I'm off to a good start! By the end of the year I hope to have a long and diverse list of published work, and it'll really help with my confidence too. With that said, if you know of any freelancing opportunities, hook a girl up, yeah?

LEARN TO DRIVE (I MEAN IT THIS TIME)

Fun fact: My parents gave me the gift of driving lessons for my 19th birthday and I'm now 22 and haven't done a single lesson. I'm terrible, I know. It's one of those things that I keep saying I'll definitely start this week/month/year but somehow just never get around to actually doing. I came very close last summer and even narrowed my choice down to about three different instructors, but never made the final leap. I am quite scared of driving to be honest, and I just think I'll be terrible at it, but 2017 is going to be the year I actually start those lessons. Honestly. I swear.

BE MORE CONSCIOUS WITH MY PURCHASES

There are two elements to this goal: Firstly, I've been thinking a lot about consumerism and throwaway culture recently. Maybe it's all the minimalism videos on YouTube (and the documentary on Netflix), maybe it's the fact that I have a full wardrobe but feel like I have nothing to wear. I don't like it. It's wasteful, bad for the planet and bad for my finances. Secondly, I want to take my focus away from needing things to feel happy. I'm that person who places an ASOS order after a stressful day, or spends my Saturday going round the shops after a shitty week. And I'm starting to realise that's just wrong. People can make me happy, doing productive things can make me happy; and aren't they so much better than a Topshop skirt? So I'm going to stop buying things for the sake of it and only buy things I actually need or really, really want. It'll save me money, make me feel more peaceful and I'll also be doing my bit to save the Earth, so it's a no-brainer really.

What are your goals for 2017?

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2016 RECAP

Happy New Year everyone! I am finally back to blogging after a little break and instead of my usual monthly recap I thought I'd do one on the year as a whole to get back into the swing of things. There's far too much to talk about in one post so I picked out the biggest points that sum up what 2016 was for me.

Sentido Hotel Turkey

It was a bit of a mixed bag of a year, but there was a six week period in May/June where so many good things were squeezed in, so that time was definitely the highlight for me. I done my last ever exam at University and only two days later went off on holiday to a beautiful hotel on the beach in Turkey. It was just what I needed after the insane stress of my final year at uni and left me feeling completely refreshed.

22nd Birthday Dinner Prezzo Glasgow

My 22nd birthday was soon after I got back and I had the most lovely weekend celebrating it. I had a little hair change on the Friday and while sitting with bleach on my hair in the fab Blow salon I received an email telling me I'd achieved a 2:1 Honours degree, so that really kicked off the weekend on a high note and gave me an extra reason to celebrate.

London Big Ben Westminster

The following week I headed down to London on my first solo trip to complete an internship at Kerrang! magazine. I was an amazing experience and made me so excited for my future career, plus I got to do some exploring around a city I love. The fact that I done the whole thing alone was quite a big deal for me as I'd never travelled alone before and London is a crazy city. My navigation skills are seriously lacking and I got lost way more times than I'd like to admit, but I also stepped out of my comfort zone in so many ways. I even sat in a bar alone with a glass of wine and my book, and no one looked at me like I was weird, so I learned to not be so self-conscious about these things.

Strathclyde University Graduation 2016

And after that it was my graduation, which was a really lovely day spent with Adam and my family. I'd really fallen out of love with uni by the end, so I was very relieved to have ended that part of my life and eager to see what came next. I'm still so proud of what I achieved, especially since I'd seriously considered dropping out more than once. I stuck it out, worked my butt off and I'm so glad I did.

Tabac Bar Glasgow

Which leads me on to the great low of my 2016, the dark cloud hanging over me for the past six months: I still haven't found a graduate job. Believe me, it's not through lack of trying - for at least three months I was checking job websites every single day. I knew journalism was a hard industry to get into, but man, I really thought I'd have done it by now.

Hot Chocolate Costa

I got another internship at a Glasgow-based magazine publishing company and thoroughly enjoyed my two weeks there. They told me if they'd had a vacancy they'd have loved to hire me but unfortunately they just weren't able to take anyone on at that time. I was disappointed but have since come to really appreciate what I learned there and the positive feedback I was given. It confirmed to me that, despite how hard it is to get a job, I have chosen the right industry to pursue a career in because every morning I genuinely looked forward to going into the office and I was brimming with ideas for articles.

Botanic Gardens Glasgow

I was not at my best in the later half of 2016. I am so fed up of my part-time retail job and far too impatient to find something new. I really did feel that this was holding me back the past few months and made me into a more negative person, which is something I'll really need to work on in 2017. Life doesn't always work out the way we plan, so I had some unexpected downtime these past few months and I can use what I learned to make sure 2017 goes my way no matter what.

Christmas Day 2016

To end on a lighter note, this festive season was actually one of my favourites in a long time. I had a bit of time off work after being there constantly in the run-up to Christmas and I spent lots of time with Adam and my family. I've been relaxing some days then been out and about on others, and it's been a great pick-me-up. It's allowed me to come into the new year feeling so much more positive and ready to take on the year and get myself back at the top of my game.

I may write a post about my goals for 2017, but for now I will say that I'm very excited to see what the year brings and I already have a few things to look forward to, like going back to London at the end of this month to see A Day To Remember as well as some more exploring!

How was your 2016?

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