Friday, 11 January 2019

My 2019 Goals - Manage my finances, travel + more


1. Reflect

I'm not really one for waking up on the 1st of January and deciding I'm going to do Couch to 5k or make drastic life changes and giving up my job to go backpacking.

I think past year reviews are really valuable and more actionable than half-blindly looking forward with unrealistic resolutions. This year I want to commemorate the good moments and learn from mistakes. I plan on jotting a few notes down in my diary each week outlining people or activities that triggered happiness or anger. I'm hoping this will give me a big list of things to focus on in 2020.  

I'll be able to reflect on the good and book things with friends and prepay for activities that I know will bring me joy and have things to look forward to. Step two is to then do the same with the negative events from 2019 and where possible, exclude them from my life or take steps to improve the things that don't make happy. 

I used to be a keen scrapbooker (in the days before I wasted hours on Netflix and YouTube) and find it a great way to relax and focus on all the wonderful places I've been with family and friends. I've got a couple of empty scrapbooks that I plan on filling this year so I can look back on special moments for years to come. 


2. Make more time for friends

My job can be stressful and mean dealing with difficult situations and people, being challenged constantly and I'm always switched on. Hooked on checking my emails and worrying about things I can't change.  By the time I get home from work I'm too drained to do much other than hang out with my husband and dog and listen to music.  

Modern working life does lead to me feeling lonely and isolated, I see friends much less frequently now I'm in my 30s and I do sometimes like I've lost a sense of who I am. My friends now have commitments too - family, shift work or live far away but I wan't 2019 to be the year that I'm there for all of my friends. I want to make more time for small gestures like taking a cake in for a colleagues birthday, preparing a meal for family and spending weekends visiting friends or committing to a long phone conversation or Skype catch up with friends who are spread out all over the UK and the world.  

I've got my first proper catch up with the girls on Friday and I can't wait! We can plan our annual weekend away over a glass of wine. 


3. Manage my finances

Martyn and I moved into our first home nearly three years ago but the house still isn't really finished. All the rooms have been painted and I revamped the kitchen by adding new doors and handles but there are still hardly any photos or artwork on the walls and I would like to replace some of the previous owners fixtures and fittings. Getting married and buying a house wiped out all of my savings so all major works on our home need to be planned in advance. 

Converting the attic room is the big item on my to-do list along with painting the front of my house which requires scaffolding (super expensive). I can only really afford a lick of emulsion inside and a pot plant at the moment so this will take planning, saving and careful management of money coming in.

I plan on taking a few simple steps to save money. I've committed to spending more time researching better offers and interest rates. I paid for a holiday I booked on a credit card but I could have got a better deal by using a payday loan for the deposit then paying the rest of the balance off each month from my wages.

I'm usually lazy and let my insurance renew each year but this laziness and loyalty to one company real doesn't pay. I'm sure there will be a couple of hundred pounds worth of savings to be found by switching insurance and energy providers. I rarely use cash back sites or review my outgoings. I know that keeping a money diary or creating a simple budget will really help me to get to grips with my finances and approach my 30s in a less frivolous way.




4. Make my way through my huge to-read list


You really wouldn't guess that I was a former library assistant because I barely read a handful of books last year. 2018 was the year I discovered K-pop and vloggers and lost hours of my life online. It is a fun way to spend my time but my dusty piles of books are just sat there making me feel guilty. 

I plan on taking books to work with me to read on my lunch break and packing lots when Martyn and I head away in the caravan. Time away from electronic devices can only be a good thing and might help me stop checking my work emails and fretting over trivial things. 

5. Travel



I've travelled to some stunning places since meeting my husband. We hired a camper van and drove through the Scottish highlands for our honeymoon, bought a caravan for adventures all over the UK and have visited our favourite destination Austria a handful of times. This year we have trips to Orlando, Cornwall and Switzerland planned but I also want to enjoy destinations closer to home and explore my home city more taking my dog Coco for long walks. 


I hope 2019 brings you everything you hope for. I'll be muting 'Brexit' on twitter, bopping along to K-pop (My love for BTS and BLACKPINK is strong) and trying to live a simple and happy life!

Gemma
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10 comments:

  1. These all sound like really sensible and doable goals for 2019 and yes to saving some money and travelling more

    Laura x

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  2. A great list - hope you achieve them all. Your travel list of Orlando, Cornwall and Switzerland sounds exciting. We are planning on more travel too but still need to book something.

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  3. What wonderful goals for 2019, I am sure you will achieve them all. I definitely want to manage my finances better and get through my pile of books to read.

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  4. I love writing a goals list. I really want to travel more in 2019

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  5. Reading more is a great goal! Keep it up

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  6. I love thinking about my goals for the year! Mine definitely includes seeing my friends more, I'm totally useless at it as I just always seem so busy

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  7. Great goals - I think I share the making time for friends, and more time for myself is a very important goal for me in 2019

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  8. I have lots of these goals too - I'm trying to read more too and I definitely want to get on top of my finances.

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  9. I have a lot of the same goals - travel is high on the list for 2019 as is reading a lot more x

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  10. Actual life goals for 2019! I could have written this myself, haha!

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