30 Something, Happy New Year…now what?

In the interests of full disclosure, I’ve got a confession to make. I’m a bit of a freak. In many ways. I know my library card number off by heart, I can plan an entire Saturday around a visit to the library. I get a little too excited when presented with a wall of cushions at a department store. I once conducted an experiment as a child to discover that cats, in fact, do NOT always land on their feet (sorry, Misty).

Anyway, anyway, I’m also considered to be a bit of a nutcase because for years and years I have looked forward to turning 30. That’s right. No kidding. I couldn’t wait.

When you work in an industry like mine and you deal with executives all day, being a 20-something woman (who is regularly mistaken for being significantly younger than I am – thank you, Oil of Olay!) can be quite a hurdle in terms of people taking you seriously. I’m sure there are many other ways to psycho-analyse my infatuation with 30, but let’s just leave it at that for now. Nutcase.

So, with my 30th birthday and the end of 2013 quickly approaching, I thought it was about time to create myself an excellent New Year’s resolution. Not just any resolution though. It had to be something different, something other than my usual ‘lose weight, lose weight, be happy, lose weight’. On reflection, I thought, it’s also time to make myself a promise. A birthday wish. Stop giving myself a hard time about my weight. Stop it, Maggie! Stop. (Still working on it).

I ran through my list of options and soon realized, you know what? I don’t want just another New Year’s resolution. As romantic as it is to start the new year with a fresh new promise of bigger and better things – it’s simply too hard to narrow it down to one all-encompassing resolution which is supposed to make 2014 the #bestyearever #amaze #soinspired #enoughhashtags

What I decided to do instead was to make a list of all of the things that I want to achieve. Big. Small. Short term. Long term. Achievable. Pipe dreams. Selfish. Philanthropic. All of the things that matter to me. A bucket list of sorts. Not to worry if they don’t all happen in the next 365 days, but at least get these things started. Dream it – think it – say it – write it – do it!

And with that, here’s my list;

1 – Travel with my husband. In over 7 years together, we’ve never travelled together. I’ve done several amazing overseas trips, but nothing with Joel. With some space finally opening up in his hectic calendar next year, this is the time to do it. Let’s make it happen and make those amazing memories together (collective ‘awwwww’ <3)

2 – Make time for meditation classes. I went to a total of one meditation class this year, and was asked by my instructor why it had been 2 years since my last visit. “I’ve been so busy” I said. To which he retorted, chuckling “it’s those who say that, who need it the most!”. I’m no hippy, and I’m widely regarded as a skeptic in many ways, however I don’t see meditation as something spiritual. I simply find it a fantastic way to organize the ever overflowing drawers in my mind and give myself more focus.

3 – Be fit. Not to be confused with ‘lose weight’. When I returned from a trip in South America earlier this year, my jetlag came in handy for beginning a morning jogging routine. I was feeling great, had so much more energy and was feeling good about myself. Then I was sidelined by a car accident (sitting in my parked car, minding my own business and was struck by an elderly driver with dementia). Bruising and cracked ribs meant no jogging for at least a few weeks. Motivation quickly waned. Time to get back into it, with the realization that it makes me feel good – regardless of weight loss. I am beginning to finally realize that feeling good and being active is the first step. Weight loss should be a happy side effect, not a constant pressure.

4 – Begin volunteering. Joel and I started as ‘Kid’s Friends Mentors’ this year. We were matched with a fabulous little friend who we spend time with in order to give him some special attention (and give his poor struggling mum a break). This is so rewarding for us (even though we’ve just begun) as it makes a real difference to someone’s life, and we form a lasting relationship that we will, I’m sure, forever treasure. There’s also something else I have been wanting to do for a while. I recently signed up to volunteer for the Cancer Council Queensland for two roles. The first is as a Hospital Support Volunteer, where I spend time with patients receiving cancer treatment, providing companionship and basically just someone to talk to. Secondly, I’ll be volunteering as a C-Vivor Group Leader, where I will lead a weekly activity group of cancer survivors where we walk, talk and get some sunshine. I can’t wait to start in the new year and this is possibly my most exciting goal on my list.

5 – Save to buy a house, and pay off the credit card. Ooh, I hear you say, exciting! I know, it’s the most mundane of resolutions. But important.

6 – Further my studies. I have started, deferred, started again, deferred and started again more times than I can count. I enjoy studying, but life always seems to get in the way. This year I want to start again – and finish. But you know what? No pressure. If it’s just not for me, I’m not interested in guilting myself into doing anything this year. I am enrolling in a Diploma of Counselling and hope to one day (fingers, toes, eyes crossed) open my own practice.

7 – Lucky number 7. Here’s the big one. Pipe dream? Perhaps. But I’m going to give it a shot. I want to start a charity organization. Over the years I’ve read so many inspirational accounts of ordinary, every day folk finding a cause they’re passionate about and starting up their own charity. One of my favourites is TOMS, or Shoes for Tomorrow. You can read about it at http://www.toms.com/our-movement/l

So that’s it, my list. A list of plans. A list of dreams. I know 2014 will be a great year, but not because I make one cheesy resolution at midnight after a few too many champagnes. But because I will make it a great year. The first year of my 30’s!! Surrounded by loved ones, workin’ for the man, paying the bills, spending time with friends that mean the world to me and most importantly – giving something back. So what’s your plan for New Year’s? A resolution? Or a plan for a great year. Happy new year!

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