My three goals for 2016

My goals for 2016Welcome to another edition of my annual non-New Year’s resolution blog post, where I list my top three goals for the year to come: one fitness-related, one professional, and one personal.

I started publicly sharing my goals back in 2012 as a way to keep myself accountable, but also so I could look back and see where I was at the time fitness-wise, professionally and personally.

My 2012 and 2013 years were tough professionally and personally, as I was leaving one long-term relationship and moving into another, and transitioning from a tough contract job into a government position. In 2011 I completed my first triathlon and was a running machine, signing up for almost every local race I could afford. But in 2013 my focus shifted, and for some reason I made it my goal to “have abs” in 2013. I’m glad I decided to run my first ultra instead. That’s a much more bad-ass goal.

In 2014, I actually achieved all the goals I set out for myself, which I was super proud of — especially getting published (and featured!) in a print magazine and qualifying for Boston. Last year I did okay, but as I explained in this post, I was having another “transition” year, as I like to call it — where a lot more stuff was going on than what was shared on this blog.

So for this coming year — considering all things that have happened this past year — here are my three goals for 2016.

  1. Fitness goal: Qualify for the Boston Marathon at the Phoenix Marathon on February 27, 2016 with a time of 3:29:00 or faster AND ACTUALLY GET IN TO RUN BOSTON IN 2017. There. I set my SMART goal and now I’m going after it. Boston, I’m coming for you in 2017!
  2. Professional goal: Have a draft book proposal ready by December 31, 2016. Yes, I’m going to write a book and I’d like to go after a traditional publisher. It’s been a lifelong dream of mine to be an author, and I think I finally have a concept I can work with. It will fit into the self-help and health and fitness genre, building on much of what I’ve written about on my blog these past few years but mainly focusing on the theories I discuss in this post here blended with what’s discussed in this excellent post here by James Fell. I’ve yet to nail the overall concept completely, but I’m working on it. I’ve been lucky enough to make some great professional connections these past few years and have had several amazing opportunities to prove myself as a fitness writer, which have now turned into regular gigs. So I feel like I need to keep going in this direction, and to continue to use my blog as a place to ponder research and form theories (while continuing to connect with all of you, of course!).
  3. Personal goal: Pay off 50% of my total debt (which doesn’t include a mortgage as I rent) by December 31, 2016. I’m now in a position financially that I can start to tackle the behemoth that is my credit card, student loan, bank loan and car loan debt, which causes me about half of my daily stress. I have a monthly budget tracker now and plan to track everything, plus be more mindful with my purchases. The problem I have when I start to earn more is I start buying all of the things I’ve been coveting over the past 6 months, like workout gear and make up, and have no problem picking up the tab during meals out. I have a few big expenses for 2016, such as our Phoenix Marathon/Disneyland/Vegas trip ($3,500 ish), Blogfest in July ($1,000 ish) and Sunfest in August ($500 ish), so I’m going to really need to wrangle in my (online) shopping habits to achieve this goal. I might start doing monthly budget updates à la my favourite (and fellow Vancouver Islander!) budget blogger Blonde on a Budget for accountability.
  4. Bonus goal: Continue to sit quietly in meditation for a least 5 minutes per day and keep not giving a f*ck. This has worked out well for me this past year and I’d like to keep this practice going. I haven’t had a moment of peace this holiday season, so starting this week I’m hopping back on the Zen bandwagon.

So that’s it! Here’s to an awesome, messy and beautiful 2016.

I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.

Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re Doing Something.

So that’s my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody’s ever made before. Don’t freeze, don’t stop, don’t worry that it isn’t good enough, or it isn’t perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.

Whatever it is you’re scared of doing, Do it.

Make your mistakes, next year and forever.

Neil Gaiman

What are your goals for 2016? Do you usually set SMART goals? Do you have fitness, professional and personal goals for this year? How did you do last year with your goals?