Forget resolutions. Setting personal goals is a great way to stay accountable to yourself in the New Year. Here are my 7 goals for 2017.
I didn’t choose a word for 2016 — at least not one I can remember. I didn’t really make any resolutions either. And my usual list of goals for the year was absent too. Last year was the year I decided to wing it. To see where life took me. To put one foot in front of the other without making a checklist first.
As someone who thrives on planning, goal setting and checking things off the good ol’ to-do list, it’s probably not surprising how off-kilter I felt at times.
In the end, 2016 for me can be summed up in one word: rudderless.
It was an interesting experiment, but not one I’d repeat. So this year, I am starting the year off right with goals to help me live well and achieve more. What are they?
7 Goals for 2017
- 52 Books in 52 Weeks: At some point last year, I realized I was reading less than ever. Most of the books I finished were for work. There was very little reading for fun or pleasure — and I missed it. Honestly, I think my mind is better and stronger (and my writing too) when I read often. So in 2017, I am going for it. This is the year I will read 52 books … and I am going to write about all of them.
- Cook Outside My Comfort Zone: When it comes to the kitchen, it’s time to push my boundaries. I want to try (cooking) new cuisines. Bake things I haven’t dared tackle before. And overall, I want to just cook more — and write about it more. From homemade croissants to Korean food to more cheap, healthy meals, I’m excited for all the tasty adventure to come.
- End 2017 Weighing Less Than I Did When It Began: Many folks have ups and downs in their weight, myself included. But in 2017, I want to reverse the upward trend that felt out of control last year. Eating healthier, exercising more and enjoying treats in moderation is on the docket.
- Write More: I am happiest when I write often about all the things that matter to me, interest me or otherwise catch my eye. So in 2017, I want to write more for more outlets and about more things. Essays, short stories, perhaps even another book.
- Blog Like the Old Days: After 11+ years of blogging, I’ve seen the landscape and tenor of blogs change dramatically. Over the years, I’ve shifted with it — adding photos, dabbling in video, including printable recipes, etc. A lot of these shifts have been great. But one I haven’t loved: blogs feel so much less personal than before. This year, I want to return to blogging’s roots with a more personal take in my writing. I hope you’ll enjoy it.
- Save, Save, Save: Enough cannot be said about the importance of saving money — and that’s something I want to do a lot of in 2017.
- Buy a House: I can’t believe I am putting this in writing, because it’s the item on this list that scares me the most — and that I most want. Rental living has been fun. Not having to take care of yard work or snow cleanup is blissfully wonderful. But it’s not without challenges — we share walls on two sides, have to share a parking lot and can’t really control the space we live in that much. After two years of looking for a bigger rental for my kids and I — and a lot of soul searching — it’s time to buy. I want to put down roots, own a home and make it our own.
As for a word for 2017, its “Thrive.” Thrive represents my desire to grow, flourish and be prosperous. It reinforces my heart’s desire for my children — that they also continue to develop, bloom and succeed. Like a mantra, this will be the word I come back to throughout the year.
What about you? What’s on your goal list for 2017? Do you have a word for the year?
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. She is the author of several cookbooks including The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook and One-Pot Pasta, both from Rockridge Press. A single mother to two kids in middle school, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.