A lot in my life has changed in the past year, especially in the past six months. I’ve ended up in the emergency room, gone through months of physical therapy, pursued a new career, adopted a kitten, joined a startup non-profit, and ended a relationship with someone that for the longest time I thought was The One. Phew.
While challenging, this pause has allowed me to do a lot of reflecting. I finally feel that fire burning inside me again, and wanted to capture it with a list of goals for the final months of being twenty three. Some of these are one-offs, while others are more long-term goals.
Hand out a business card
I’ve made the first step towards that today by ordering some! It’s kind of terrifying. I’m headed to TBEX in Killarney, where I’ll be meeting with lots of other bloggers and industry professionals. It’s hard not to feel like a fraud when you’re young and starting out, so I’m using this as my small way of battling that feeling.
Read a book a week
I noticed that a lot of my reading over the past couple years has shifted from books to articles. I think there’s tremendous value to all of the short-form works, but I’d really like to get back to reading actual books. I’ve got a couple on my shelf already (The News by De Botton is next!), but if you have any recommendations do share!
Take a MOOC
I really miss being a student. It’s funny, because when I was actually a student all I wanted to do was be out in the world actually making an impact. Now that I don’t feel that pressure, I think I’d be able to enjoy learning for learning’s sake again.
Save for a down payment
I don’t know that I want to live Detroit full-time for the rest of my life, but over the past year I’ve realised that I always want to have a foot in the door. Buying a home here (and my first home, nonetheless!) is a daunting but exciting proposition. I’ve been spending more time in different neighbourhoods, and think Lafayette Park is calling my name.
Run my best 5K
I love running in 5Ks. They have a much more welcoming atmosphere than longer distance runs, and I enjoy pushing myself faster each time.
Catch up with friends
Despite the wonders of social media, I’ve managed to lose (meaningful) touch with some of my closest friends. I’m going to start making an effort to pick up the phone, pencil in facetimes, and put my postage stamps to good use.
Pick up a new sport
I’ve had a couple of introductory squash lessons, but I want to start learning to play more seriously. I’m a huge fan of racquet sports and love the culture around it. Plus, it’s a great way to stay active in the gloom of winter. If I’m really ambitious, maybe I’ll pick up cross country skiing too!
Take my vitamins
This is such a mundane part of life, but so essential. I usually stick to prenatal and b comlex formulas, occasionally mixing it up with something extra. For a while I was pretty good at taking my vitamins regularly, and it’s something that I want to get better at over the next couple months.
Roadtrip with a friend
Is there anything better than the adventure of an open road with a good friend next to you? Nothing that I’ve found compares. Hopefully I’ll be able to tick this one off with a Scottish Highland road trip in the coming weeks – stay tuned!
My lofty goal is to drink 3 litres per day. To get there, I’m investing in a pretty new bottle that I’ll enjoy carrying around and lots of tea.
Buy my Dream Camera
Isn’t the Leica M-P 240 just so dreamy? I think I’m finally going to take the plunge this year to buy it, as well as the accessories and lessons needed to make the most of it. I still love my Sony RX 100iii for its compact versatility and will definitley keep it for traveling and hikes, but I’m really excited about stepping up my photography game!
Get a bookkeeper
This is probably my biggest step towards becoming an adult, and I kind of can’t believe I’m even typing this out! With freelance gigs, blogging, and non-profit work I really need it though.
Send off more postcards
I love the idea of hand-written notes, but I just don’t get around to it as much as I’d like. So this year, I’m going to start surprising my friends with little out-of-the-blue postcards.
Memorise a poem
There’s a certain beauty to memorising a poem you love. I used to have tons memorised, and would practice as a way to alleviate boredom when in traffic or standing in line. It’s geeky, I know, but I’d rather recite poems than scroll mindlessly on my phone.
Dress up in Black Tie
One of the things I most loved about going to Edinburgh was the ability to dress up in black tie all. the. time. Every other weekend there was some ball or another to go to, and even my debating society mandated black tie for their weekly meetings. I know of at least one excuse I’ll be pulling out a gown, but I’m definitely on the lookout for more.
Pierce my ears
Can you believe I don’t have my ears pierced? My parents were kind of hippies when it came to this, and by the time I was old enough to want earrings I had also developed a fear of needles. Most people never notice (I even had a boyfriend buy me earrings not realising!) but I think it’s about time I go for it!
See the Northern Lights
I’ve seen the milky way, but never the Northern Lights. I’m totally mesmerised by videos and photos I’ve seen, and really want to experience this in person.
Take a cooking class
The last cooking class I took was at Zingerman’s as a birthday gift from my parents. I loved the experience, and really don’t know why I haven’t returned back again. This time around, I’m keeping my eyes peeled for Sister Pie too!
Travel somewhere new
I realised that this past year I’ve been going back to the same places I’ve loved before. There’s a certain comfort and nostalgia in that, but it’s also given me the sense that my life is on repeat. I’m going to work more actively at breaking that habit to see the world with fresh eyes again.
Journal every day
I used to journal all the time. It was a great tool for mental clarity and working through my emotions. I feel a little bit lost without it, and want to start the habit back up again.
I can’t believe I’ve lived in snowy climates my entire life and have yet to do this. This winter, I’m going to make sure to book a trip!
Is there anything more emblematic of youthful abandon than this? I haven’t gone skinny dipping since Helsinki in 2014, which I think is a direct reflection of my growing self-consciousness and reservedness. While I’m all for maturity, I also need to remind myself that I’m still young. For me skinny dipping strikes perfect balance of rebellion and freedom, without being too crazy.
Visit every arts venue in Detroit
There is more and more happening in Detroit each day, and I want to see it all. I tend to stick to my regular spots, but want to make an effort to experience everything this incredible city has to offer.
Kiss someone I think is out of my league
I left this for last, because to me it’s the most intimidating. Like most people, I constantly battle with feelings of not being good enough – but I really don’t want to let life slip by because I’m too scared. Be it the brilliant astrophysicist, the singer with a voice like honey, or the Wilhemena model – I’m going to just go for it.