Looking back on 2021, all things considered, I did really well prioritizing myself, my goals, and creating a life full of habits and routines that fill me up. I’m so proud of myself for working hard to make 2021 a really successful year and am energized to continue my new habits and create even more. Here are some of my 2022 intentions!
1. Read 25 Books
Last year I read 22 books and I have so many books I’d love to read this year already! I loved how I prioritized reading last year by aiming to read just 5 minutes a day: on the bus, while dinner was cooking, any time I had a few spare minutes. This way, I read more books than I ever have in a year and really enjoyed them all! Here are my top books of the year.
2. 60 Seconds of Meditation Each Day
I began working on this habit last year, doing a mindfulness course on my phone during walks between classes and I found it really impactful for anxiety. It’s something I did 1-3 times a week last year but this year I’d really like it to be more like 5-6 days a week, even if it’s only 10 deep breaths.
3. Journal 5 Days a Week
I got a 5 minute journal for Christmas last year and have been writing in it nearly every day this month. It’s so powerful to begin the day with goals, affirmations, and gratitude. I also love using journal prompts to write and collect my thoughts this way.
4. Improve My Strength and Flexibility
I’ve always been a big at-home pilates and yoga person. However, these aren’t really making me feel as strong as I would like to feel. This year, I want to put more focus on strengthening my muscles and gaining some flexibility that 2.5 years of yoga hasn’t really given me. Taking the time to stretch and gear my workouts more toward strength is rally important to me this year.
5. Create a Weekly Reset Routine
I used to do a weekly cleanup every Friday afternoon and I loved how it was a set hour to get all my major cleaning tasks done so they never piled up, I never had too much to do before I had guests over, and I never felt like I was constantly cleaning. I’d love my weekly reset to include a general cleanup of my apartment, laundry if it needs to be done, plant maintenance, and a rough meal plan for the week.
6. Avoid My Phone First Thing in the Morning
This is one of my biggest time-wasters. I pick up my phone in the morning and the next thing I know it’s 30 minutes later and I’m still in bed. I’ve put time limits on my phone Monday-Friday so that all of my non-essential apps like social media are locked until 9:00, which is a time I’m always definitely out of bed.
7. 5 Minutes of Duolingo a Day
This summer I’m studying abroad in Denmark so I’ve been working hard to go through Duolingo’s course in Danish every day (already have a 25 day streak!). I don’t expect to be fluent or even conversational by May but I just hope to have some idea of common words and phrases I’ll need since it is so different from English.
8. Show Up As My Ideal Self
What this means for me may change throughout the year. Working on my confidence, being more open, and getting better at the balance between time with friends and family and alone time are all especially important to me right now.
As far as 2021 goes, I think I did pretty well at creating new habits and working on building a life I love. One of my goals was to read 20 books (success!) and this was one of the best parts of my summer and autumn. I spent a ton of time reading with friends or reading to recharge when my social battery was empty.
I also wanted to become more adventurous with cooking by cooking something new every week and get really good at a signature dish that I could make if I was ever asked to make a meal last minute. I made so many amazing new dishes that I really enjoy making regularly now! My signature dish became Foods of Jane’s Roasted Red Pepper Pasta Sauce which takes about 15-20 minutes and tastes amazing with minimal ingredients.
I wanted to get a good hair routine which I feel like I don’t really have yet. I cut my hair to my shoulders and ended up immediately wanting my waist-length hair back so I’m patiently waiting for it to grow and get back to the long beachy waves I took for granted.
My fitness routine was on the rocks in late 2020 and has mostly recovered since then. I joined a workout group that I do group fitness with and this year, I’m starting a twice weekly pilates class! I’m starting to enjoy my workouts a lot more lately and it’s so refreshing!
Like I said, I think I did really well with creating a life I’m really happy with last year but my 2021 goals that I created in January don’t really reflect the habits that I ended up focusing on and the intentions I had later in the year. In the second half of 2021, I felt exhausted (as I still sometimes do) by the pull of a million obligations, people, and tasks to check off. I wanted to create more time for myself to just exist and enjoy my surroundings. I did this by walking miles and miles every week out in nature, listening to podcasts and meditating, journaling a lot and opening up more to my friends and family about any struggles I was facing. I’m looking to create more joy and reduce stress through all my intentions for 2022, and this first month has put me off to a good start.
What are your 2022 intentions? Are you a new year new me person?