New Year’s Resolution: Dream Big, Set Goals, Take Action!

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A goal is the object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result.

A resolution is a firm decision to do or not to do something.

While having a list of resolutions for the New Year is popular among people, it is not the same as making a list of goals. Why? Because goals are tangible; they are the things you want to accomplish in life because it is your passion and excites you. According to the New York Times, bestselling author and blogger, Ruth Soukup, when setting your goals it is essential toThink Big,and identify the things that are most important, such as a big dream you have been too scared to do. Because the dreams you fear most to achieve, are the ones to aim– the hard part is taking action and being consistent.

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I took Ruth’s advice, sat down for one hour and listed my big dreams. I imagined how my life would be like in ten years. I thought about my passion; it has always been writing. That explains the reason I wrote many stories as a kid; why I loved my creative writing class in middle school; the reason I majored in English Literature in college. What has held me back is having fear and being insecure. Over the past year, I’ve developed a frame of thought; fear is for people who are afraid to fail. With that in mind, there is nothing that is going to stop me from publishing many novels and becoming a New York Times bestselling author.

Now that I have a clear vision of my dream, I have set tangible goals that I will gradually achieve in 2019. The goals I set for myself are broken down so that I can accomplish them, not overwhelm myself and give up. I am taking necessary steps no matter how long it takes because success takes a lot of time, a lot of effort and consistency.

A new year is about to begin; you can break down your big dreams into realistic goals you can achieve this upcoming year. Below are a few suggestions for creating your list of goals and sticking to it.

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Take Ruth Soukup’s advice — ‘Think BIG.’

There is nothing wrong with dreaming big and doing all you can to make them come true. Dreams are what motivates people to succeed and become a better version of themselves. I recommend reading Ruth’s blog, “The Magic of Thinking Big.”

Write Your Big Dreams and Goals on Paper.

Handwriting your dreams and goals makes it real and personal. It also helps you remember what you are aiming so you can break down your big goals into Small and Smart Goals.

Make Small and Smart Monthly Goals.

I learned the hard way that to accomplish big goals; you have to break it down into realistic and measurable goals that are small and smart to prevent from burning out. For example:

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*Realistic goal: 300 – 500 words a day; Measurable goal: completing three to four chapters a month.

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Living Well Planner by Ruth Soukup

I haven’t tried the planner but will be beginning January 1st. I searched many planners and found the Living Well Planner the best one by far and know that it will do more than help organize my upcoming busy year of blogging/writing and juggling a full-time job. Four reasons I choose Living Well Planner:

  1. It is an All-in-one resource.
  2. Designed to help you take back your time, and to allow you to focus on your long-term goals while still navigating the daily, weekly, and monthly responsibilities.
  3. Helps establish a monthly cash flow budget so that you can tell where your money is going.
  4. Section for planning meals and shopping list, right on the same page as the weekly schedule so that you can see your whole week at a glance.

Reward Yourself

Anytime you fulfill one of your small and smart goals, reward yourself. Think about something you really want to do or buy and do it when you accomplish a goal. For example, after writing in my Five Minute Journal for three months, I bought myself pearl earrings from my favorite antique-vintage shop, Pippin.

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Failure is OKAY!

Failure is part of life; however, don’t give up. Understand that setbacks are purposely manifested to learn from them and grow in wisdom.

If necessary, Change Your Goals Throughout The Year.

Do not feel ashamed for deciding to change your goals (dreams) in the middle of the year. I sure did many times. It is normal. The important thing is that you are making the necessary adjustments to make your dreams come true.

Take Your Time – Be Patient.

Not only have patience with reaching your goals, be patient with yourself. It takes a long time to achieve success. No one has ever succeeded overnight. It takes years of mistakes, practice, and self-evolving.

Practice Gratitude

By practicing gratitude daily, you become more aware of what your goals are and appreciate all of the efforts you’ve put into making your dreams come true. Two gratitude journals I highly recommend:

The Five Minute Journal: A Happier You in 5 Minutes a Day – great for gratitude and accountability.

Start Today Journal by Rachel Hollis- best for motivation and setting goals.

Love yourself.

Loving yourself is an essential guideline because it is not possible to build confidence if you do not love yourself. Love yourself by doing things that positively benefits you and makes you better.

CONCLUSION

One of my favorite things to say is, life is how you make it; it begins with you.  Success comes from your efforts; not from luck. The secret is, Dreaming Big, Setting Goals, Taking Action, and never giving up.

FAQ

What goals are you setting for 2019? 

Since my goal is to be a New York Times bestselling author, My top three goals for 2019 are:

  1. Write a novel.
  2. Teach myself how to grow my blog’s SEO on Google.
  3. Learn and gradually build a social media Platform.

5 Ways to Motivate and Inspire You to Make a Change in Your Career!

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One of the hardest adult decisions I’ve made was deciding to leave a career I’d thought I was meant to do. In 2016, I enrolled in the gruesome New York City Teaching Fellows. It’s a program that brings career changers and recent graduate students into NYC classrooms to teach critical-need subject areas, including English, special education, and math.

I decided to join the NYCTF in 2016 because I’d thought I was meant to be a teacher–it was my favorite game to play as a child. After six weeks, of what seemed like hell, I passed and completed the program and got a job at a school in the South Bronx to teach sixth grade Engish. But after six months, I resigned from my position as a teacher and fellow.

I quit because I was unhappy and knew from the first week I’d begun the fellowship, but couldn’t admit it, partly because I’d left a great job at the Metropolitan Museum of Art to become a teacher. I thought that if I gave it a chance, I’d eventually like it. Over time, I developed insomnia, hardly ate, and had constant anxiety.

Deciding to quit was hard, but it was the best decisions I made. For the first time, I made a decision that felt right. Imagine if I’d kept a career that made me miserable for the rest of my life because of fear of quitting and starting over?

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Fear is a big factor for the reason why many remain in a job that is terrible. But, there is nothing scarier than staying in a profession that makes you unhappy. Yes, having a secure job is essential, but doing something that matters to you and passionate about is a fantastic aspiration and experience.

Below are five ways to motivate and inspire you to make a change in your career and life.

1. Make a list of things you like and dislike about your current job.

Making a list can give you a definitive perspective. If your con list surpasses the pro, it means that you may have to make necessary changes to your career.

2. Take a moment and ask yourself:

What would make me happy? What do I imagine myself doing? What motives me? What are my passions?

3. Follow your instincts.

Instinct allows you to get the first warning signs when anything is off in your body so that you can address it. If you have a gut feeling about your body — that something is toxic, weak or ‘off’ — listen to it. Chances are, you know the answer to what would make you happy.

4. Do not let fear hold you back.

Living in fear is dangerous. If you live in fear, you are not living at all because it is not allowing you to experience life. It is making you a pessimist because you are hiding from the world and overthinking the worst. Ask yourself, are you going to let fear make you cynical and define who you are? NO!

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5. Change is necessary!

Part of being human and growing up is accepting the changes around you, within you, and generally, in life.

CONCLUSION
Deciding to change your career is difficult. But if you know you are unhappy and unwell, do yourself a favor, take care of yourself and do what is best for you. Cliche, do not allow fear hold you back because sadly life is too short and you only live once. Don’t waste it! Life is full of possibilities.

FAQ:

What made you resign your position as a teacher and fellowship?

There are many reasons; the top three reasons though was first to take care of myself because I was living an unhealthy lifestyle. Second, many schools do not have funds for school supplies, and teachers spend their own money. I wound up spending between $300 – $500 a month. Lastly, I was unhappy, and to be a good teacher, you have to like it; it is impossible to teach well if you are pretending to. You are working with children, and they sense everything. 

How long did it take you to get another job?

It took six weeks. I first started a part-time job at a tutoring company because I needed the money while looking for something else. Then after a month working as a tutor, I interviewed for the Administrative position at the Rubin Museum of Art and got the job.

How did you support yourself? Did you have money saved? 

When I decided to quit, I needed time to determine if it was the right decision. So, I took a leave of absence, which still paid me. And yes, I had money saved which helped pay my rent. But, once I definitively decided, I had already accepted my position at the Rubin. 

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4 Reasons and Ways to Practice Gratitude

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Now that we’ve reached the Holiday Season, the first being Thanksgiving, it is the perfect time to begin to practice gratitude. Gratitude is defined as the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return the kindness. It is correlated with optimism, which in turn makes us happy.

I began to practice gratitude recently. I am not sure why or how all a sudden I had the urge to practice gratitude, but it has been the most effective tool I’ve used so far to embrace who I am.

I urge that you begin to practice gratitude today! It is effortless and does not take much time or energy; however, it takes practice. I guarantee that once you do, you will see improvements in yourself– understand and appreciate life in a different way that you’ve never before.

Below I share four Reason and four ways to practice gratitude. I also include ten things I am grateful for and a simple 21 Days Challenge that I’ve tried when I first started to practice gratitude that takes less than 2 minutes each day to complete.

4 Ways to Reasons to Gratitude

1. Strengthens your awareness

The greatest gift you can give yourself is becoming consciously aware of the beauty and abundance in life. By practicing gratitude, you become aware of the present moment of what is happening right NOW. We learn the necessary acknowledgment that each moment of life is enough, no matter what experience, whether is pleasant or unpleasant.

2. Reduces the habit of complaining

“All happy people are grateful. Ungrateful people cannot be happy. We tend to think that being unhappy leads people to complain, but it is truer to say that complaining leads to people becoming unhappy.” – Dennis Prage

People who complain often, don’t know that they are and have no control. Researchers found that our brains and bodies respond more to negativity than positivity, which is why people are prone to complain. Think about how often you complain in a day and what causes the adverse reaction or feeling. Gratitude is the antidote of negativity and complaining. By practicing gratitude, you are automatically able to reduce the habit of complaining by noticing every time you whine and asking yourself, why am I complaining? Is it worth my energy? What are the things at this moment (right now) that I am grateful?

3. Improves your health:

4. Makes you a happier person

Gratitude leads to a more sustainable form of happiness because it is not based on immediate gratification; its a frame of mind. It is an attitude and a way of living that makes you conscious of the simple things. It can even lead you to appreciate all living things nature that makes the earth a livable environment for us humans to live.

4 Ways to Practicing Gratitude

Please note that the list below is in order in the way I started to work on becoming grateful.


1. Writing in a journal daily about the things you are thankful for.

Writing in a journal about the things you are grateful is easy. The hard part is remembering to do it every day and being consistent. After searching for many journals online, the best one I’ve found is The Five Minute Journal. By merely writing three things you are thankful for every day, you will gradually see how much in life there is to appreciate.

 2. Read books about Personal Development


Reading books about personal development can help you form a better understanding of its benefits, providing you with inspirational examples and suggestions of ways you can become grateful. I recommend the following books:

3. Meditation and Mindfulness

It has been found that meditation can reliably increase feelings of gratitude. Practicing meditation every day helps promote a positive mood, hope, and resilience. As we experience positive emotions, our awareness broadens, and our creativity and problem-solving capacities blossom, and we become more effective in whatever we choose to do in life.

4. Expressing and Sharing Gratitude

The ability to consistently experience gratitude is both a cultivated skill and a gift – one that must be shown and shared with others over and over again to realize its full power. You can express and share gratitude by:

  • Being an active listener
  • Being thoughtful to others
  • Being a support system
  • Volunteering your time
  • Saying Thank You

CONCLUSION

Gratitude is a significant component of experiencing happiness. It is a selfless act that is worth practicing because it helps you find meaning in life– your life’s purpose. After reading this blog, start today, start now, and I promise that you will begin to appreciate the simplicity of life and evolve to a happier and healthier person.

10 THINGS I AM GRATEFUL FOR:

  1. Who I am.
  2. My awesome-strong mother.
  3. My amazing and loving husband.
  4. My job working at the Rubin Museum of Art.
  5. My website and blog.
  6. My best friend, Amy.
  7. My demanding boss whose personality I love.
  8. Paying off my debt.
  9. Living in Astoria, NY.
  10. Living life!

21 Days Challenge

Have trouble listing what you are grateful for? Below I share 21 Days Challenge to start you off!

Day 1 – What sound am I grateful for today?

Day 2 – What color am I grateful for?

Day 3 – What smell am I grateful for?

Day 4 – What texture am I grateful for?

Day 5 – What season am I grateful for?

Day 6 – What in nature am I grateful for?

Day 7 – What emotion am I grateful for?

Day 8 – Who in my life am I grateful for?

Day 9 – What song am I grateful for?

Day 10 – What about my body am I grateful for?

Day 11 – What abilities am I grateful for?

Day 12 – What about my surroundings am I grateful for?

Day 13 – What relationship am I grateful for?

Day 14 – What material possession am I grateful for?

Day 15 – What moment this week am I grateful for?

Day 16 – What about today am I grateful for?

Day 17 – What tradition am I most grateful for?

Day 18 – What hobby am I most grateful for?

Day 19 – What about me am I most grateful for?

Day 20 – What about life am I most grateful for?

Day 21 – What challenge am I grateful for?

Other Related Blogs:

10 Ways To Find Your Purpose

How to Gradually Build Self-Confidence

New Year’s Resolution: Dream Big, Set Goals, Take Action!

10 Reasons Reading Everyday is Important

10 Ways To Find Your Purpose

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1. Live in the present.

Living in the present is difficult, especially for those who are adamant about being in control about all aspects of their lives — living in the present means to live in the moment and concentrating on what is going on at this moment.

2. Reading self-help and spiritual books.

Reading self-help and spiritual books have been a tremendous aid in figuring out your purpose. So many authors have gone through similar experiences. It is refreshing to read about it because it gives you a piece of mind– you are not alone– you are not the only one on this planet going through problems. See the bottom of the page for a recommended list of self-help and spiritual books and podcasts.

Read:10 Reasons Reading Everyday is Important

3. Knowledge is POWER!

The more you educate yourself, the more your general awareness becomes clearer. Reading is a powerful tool because it exercises, challenges, and stimulates your mind and imagination.

4. Meditation

Meditation may be difficult to master at first, but after you put it into practice every day, you become better, and eventually, it will become part of your daily routine.

5. Stay away from negative people.

I am going to share one of the best advice my mom said to me many times growing up: stay away from negative people. They are miserable people that like to make others miserable like them. From what I have experienced in my twenty-seven years of life– my mother is right. I’ve even lost friends because of how pessimistic they view life. I couldn’t bear listening to constant negativity, so I distanced myself. If you have to do the same, do it!

6. No more excuses, be consistent.

When you find excuses not to do something, chances are, you will never come around and follow-through. The key is to be consistency and push yourself. You will notice that after, you will feel good about yourself because you accomplished something. So next time you decide not to do something force yourself and see how good you will feel.

7. Stop comparing yourself.

If comparing yourself know is a problem for you, try to detach yourself from the source, even if it’s ending a relationship or deleting your Instagram for a while. Because at the end of the day, nothing matters, but yourself. Become your biggest fan!

8. Stop trying to impress others.

Of course, you have to impress others at some point, for example, an employer on an interview. But, to always worry about what others think, negates you from living the life you are meant to live. It makes you do things that are not genuine, not you. The only person you need to impress is yourself.

9. Practice Gratitude

Life is not easy, and you should know that by now; however, be grateful– you are alive! You are given the opportunity to live in this universe– take advantage of it. Be thankful for the little things you have. When you practice gratitude, it makes wholesome and leads to feeling peaceful, content, and in the moment.


The Five Minute Journal: A Happier You in 5 Minutes a Day

Read: 4 Reasons and Ways to Practice Gratitude

10. CONCLUSION: Love yourself, no matter what!

Loving yourself is most important in finding your purpose. You are unique and know there is a reason why you are here– hone who you are and flourish.

SUGGESTED SELF-HELP/SPIRITUAL BOOKS:

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change


The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life



Girl, Wash Your Face: Stop Believing the Lies About Who You Are so You Can Become Who You Were Meant to Be



You Are a Badass®: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life

PODCASTS TO LISTEN TO: 

  1. Melissa Ambrosini 

  2. PURSUIT WITH PURPOSE PODCAST by Melyssa Griffin

  3. Do It Scared by Ruth Soukup

  4. RISE Together Rachel & David Hollis

 

4 Ways to Cope with your Spouse’s Annoying Habits

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I love being married– waking up next to my husband every morning, coming home and expecting him to arrive a little after I do from work–sharing, and doing things together–our daily routine. Marriage is a commitment and a journey two people agree to join in together for the rest of their lives. While it is wonderful, marriage is also hard. What makes it hard? Having to understand and cope with your spouse’s habits for the rest of your life!

When my husband and I first moved in together, we never argued. In the early stages of our relationship, the positive feelings outweighed the negative, and I turned a blind eye to my husband’s faults. But over time I noticed his annoying habits which drove me crazy and caused us to regularly argue. After an awful disagreement last spring, I figured out the cause to our arguments– our different habits.

Habits are rituals and behaviors that we do every day that allows us to carry out essential activities. We all have habits, and it is what makes us who we are. And when married for a long time, it is inevitable to sometimes become annoyed with your spouse’s habits–it is normal. I share below some guidelines my husband, and I’ve tried in the past year that helped understand and cope with each other’s habits.

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1. Communicate, Understand, & Compromise  

Voicing your opinion respectfully is the best way to communicate. If my husband and I hadn’t, we wouldn’t have figured out the reason for our arguments. It took several disagreements before actually sitting down and having a constructive conversation. But, immediately after, we had a clearer understanding of what was annoying us and worked through it to avoid future arguments. Discovering that we have different habits, we were able to compromise and work together to change the habits that can be changed and learn to accept those habits that can’t.

2. Make a list

Next time your spouse annoys you or have a disagreement, make a list of all the things you love about them. And every time you become annoyed, read the list and think about the positive aspects of your spouse instead of the negative.

3. Seek advice from someone you are close to and trust. 

I suggest that you seek advice from someone you are close to, trust, and have your best interest. Stay away from those who are negative because their opinion will be subjective and not helpful in making your relationship better. My mom is who I speak to for advice. She had me realize that many of the arguments my husband and I had been nonsense and all would’ve been avoided if we’d sat down and talked.

4. Spend time apart– ‘me’ time

Spending time apart does not mean a marriage break. It means that it is okay to have time for yourself and do things without your spouse. I recommend that you find hobbies and/or do activities that exclude your spouse and have ‘me’ time.

Conclusion

Habits are difficult to understand. But, if you love your spouse and can’t imagine living without them, there is nothing else to do but to try to work it out. The best way to start is by respectfully communicating being honest because it leads to understand and compromise with your spouse.