August 1 was my 31st birthday, and like every birthday, it got me thinking. Thinking about how long I've been here, what I've done, and what I want to do. I typically do this because, in my mind, my birthday is my actual New Year's Day.
So instead of setting goals and resolutions on January 1, I thought my birthday would be a good time to really look at where I am and where I want to be. There is a lot I've accomplished, but of course, there's always more to do. The older I get, the more I become aware of my impermanence, which I like because it drives me to make the most out of this life I have.
Anyways, last year I wrote about the most important lessons I've learned in my first 30 years of being alive, but this year I wanted to do something different. So I've decided to share 31 things I'm going to do in my 31st year!
Keep reading to see what I have on this year's to-do list.
1. Rebrand and expand my blog
I have some ideas for my website, including focusing more on my blog content and making it more focused on travel, culture, food, and art. Instead of it mainly being a photography portfolio, I want my photos and words to go hand in hand, so I can tell more of a journalistic story.
2. Launch my t-shirt business For years, I have wanted to start a t-shirt business, and recently I've gotten clear about what kind of shirts I want to make. With that being said, I think it's about time that I really develop this business and start designing some tees!
3. Take 1 trip per month
Since I want to make my blog more focused on art, culture, and travel I definitely need to travel more! Whether it's a short weekend excursion somewhere close by or a week off in unknown lands, I just want to explore and share my experiences.
4. Read 1 book per week I love to read, but I've never met my everlasting goal of finishing 1 book per week. I start off strong, but I've never held myself accountable enough to complete the goal. This time, I want to do things differently and actually do it.
5. Try out yoga
This is one of those things I've been "meaning to get around to" 😂. I've dabbled in yoga and enjoyed it when I have, but instead of doing it once or twice a year, I'd like to add it to my daily routine.
6. Spend more time in nature This is something I do pretty often, but I know I could do more of it, which shouldn't be hard. It calms me and gives me creative inspiration. After all, there's no such thing as too much nature, right?
7. Learn a new language (Spanish to be specific 😁)
There was once a time when my husband and I were taking private Spanish lessons, and that's basically where the story ends. But I want to pick up where I left off, so why not start now?
8. Join (or start) a book club To put it simply, I love to read (hence goal #5) and I've always wanted to be a part of a book club. I think it would be a great way to meet people and also exercise my analytical muscles.
9. Exercise more frequently
Although I consider myself a pretty active person, I'm definitely not working out 5 times a week like I used to. Instead of looking back on those days nostalgically, I thought it would make more sense to just go back to that.
10. Spend more time on me Okay, okay, I admit it. I'm a people pleaser. In some ways it's good, but in a lot of ways, it's bad. One way is that I dedicate too much of my time to other people. Sometimes I'll even drop what I'm doing to help someone out, but I know this is only preventing me from doing what I need to do.
11. Take a painting class
One thing you probably aren't aware of is that I love to paint and draw, but those hobbies haven't gotten much attention from me lately. I think taking a painting class would reignite my passion, and of course, teach me a thing or two.
12. Actually do something with my Patreon account! Patreon is an awesome website for creators of all kinds, which is why I signed up last year. So why exactly haven't I been using it?! Well, the buck stops here, and I'm ready to build up my content and get some patrons!
13. Create a YouTube Channel
I've been dreaming of starting a YouTube channel dedicated to my projects, art, culture, and travel for a while now, but I haven't taken a step in that direction yet. It's probably due to nerves and the anxiety of wondering whether anyone will watch, but that shouldn't matter. I want to do it, so I should do it for that reason alone.
14. Work with more models Last year I set out to switch my focus from objects, nature, and architecture to people. I had a few photoshoots (woohoo!) and now I'm ready to expand into working with models for fashion and beauty-focused shoots.
15. Start my movie review blog
Technically, this header should say start over my movie review blog because I wrote 2 blog posts and never kept up with it. But I love movies, and I especially love dissecting and discussing them, which is why I started it in the first place. I think it's time for me to pick it back up again.
16. Travel to at least 2 new countries Which ones? I don't know. I think Canada is definitely one because I've been wanting to go to Vancouver, but as far as country numero dos? I'm thinking of a tropical paradise, but we'll see which way the wind blows...
17. Post more regularly to Medium Medium is an online community for writers to blog and connect with other writers. I've been fairly active on there, but I know I can do more, and I want to. Not only is it great for exposure, but you could even earn some dinero!
18. Participate in at least 1 art show
If you keep up with me, then you know earlier this year I was going to be a part of a local RAW Artists show. Unfortunately, COVID-19 has postponed that entire venture indefinitely, but I'm not going to let that stop me. I still want to participate in an art show as part of my goal to be more ingrained in the art community.
19. Stress Less In general, I'd say I'm pretty laid-back, but that doesn't mean I don't get caught up in the stresses of everyday life. Even though this is normal, it's not healthy. Life is too short to waste energy stressing about things. That's why this year, I'm going to focus on being more present and in control of my thoughts.
20. Make more meaningful connections
The internet is a remarkable place. It connects people all over the globe and makes it easy to find likeminded people. On the flip side, so many online connections are fake and just for the sake of having a following. I still see potential, though, which is why I'm making it a goal to make more meaningful and authentic connections.
21. Manage my time better Time management is the scourge of my existence. As a go-with-the-flow kind of person, this is one area I consistently struggle with, but I know that I can't always have that attitude, especially with this long list of shit I want to accomplish! 😆
22. Take a cooking class
I already love to cook and experiment in the kitchen, but I want to advance my knowledge. A cooking class won't just help me when it comes to my own food, it will help me be a better food writer, which is the ultimate goal.
23. Learn film photography Photography is one of the primary ways I express myself creatively (obviously),\ but I want to do more outside of Photoshop and Lightroom. I feel like learning film photography will make my connection with photography even stronger, and further my understanding of the medium.
24. Create my own course
I love helping others, especially when it comes to motivating people to unleash their creativity and live boldly. That's why I want to release a course that centers around these topics.
25. Start my sustainable fashion blog Here's a fun fact about me: I'm a die-hard thrifter. I love perusing through thrift stores, garage sales, and finding vintage gold on eBay. I've always wanted to write more about my style and love of second-hand fashion, so that's what I'm going to do.
26. Start earning my MFA in writing
I might be a professional writer, but that doesn't mean there isn't more I could learn. Actually, I think there is a lot I can learn still since I am basically self-taught. My dream is to break into writing for magazines or more esteemed websites like Travel + Leisure, and I feel that this would be a good career move.
27. Spend more time with my friends and family I love working for myself, but I can also admit to being somewhat of a workaholic. And it's simply because I enjoy working, but sometimes that comes at the expense of my personal relationships. This year, I intend on dedicating more time to the ones who matter the most, my friends and family.
28. Work with a life coach As someone who likes motivating others and consuming motivational content, I've been dying to find the right life coach for me (luckily, I think I have). It would be interesting to find out what advice they have for time management and staying motivated.
29. Get a tattoo
Because why the hell not? But really it's because I've wanted one for a reaaaaally long time, but I've obviously never gotten one. Either I couldn't decide what I wanted, I was scared of the pain, or I listened to people like my mom who said she would hate to see me with one. But I'm 31 now, and I figure life is too short. Besides, it'll be a small one.
30. Learn Guitar
Years ago, I had an acoustic guitar and a friend who was teaching me, but I got rid of that guitar (it was given to me by an ex) and never picked it up again. That hasn't stopped me from dreaming of strumming a guitar every time I hear a folksy song, though. So I've decided to get out of dreamland and actually learn it.
31. Relax more I know that this looooong list of things I intend on accomplishing makes it seem like I will constantly be on the go, but I still want to spend more time relaxing. One thing I've realized in life is that you don't have to be in a rush to get things done.
It's time to get started!
I'm sharing all this with you because what better way to hold myself accountable? Now my goals are out there for the whole world to see, and I hate to be someone who's all talk and no action, so I plan on keeping you updated with my progress.
On that same note, if you have any goals you're sick of putting off or similar ones, leave me a comment. I'd love to find out what you have in the works!