Goals and Resolutions

Happy 2014, lovelies!  I hope you all had a nice, not-too-hung-over start to the new year.  We kicked off 2014 by sleeping in, indulging in a gluten-free French toast breakfast, then seeing a matinee movie (The Wolf of Wall Street - if you’ve seen it, what did you think?  I haven’t decided if I liked it or not…).

Whilst waiting for the movie to start, I decided to catch up on my blog reading and noticed a lot of resolution/goals posts floating around.  I’ve never been one for resolutions, really.  I occasionally “resolve” to do something around January 1st and then totally forget about it by the time my birthday comes along two weeks later.  Goals, for some reason, feel different.  Having “goals” feels like you’re constantly working towards something instead of just pledging to immediately change a part of yourself.  I also think setting attainable-but-ambitious goals is the key to actually accomplishing them.  Something that pushes and challenges you but doesn’t automatically set you up for failure.  So, here's what I'll be working on in 2014:

1. I will NOT renew my gym membership.  Let's be honest here, people.  That baby hasn't been put to use in a solid year (except for one Zumba class with Michelle a few months ago ...).  So I'm NOT wasting money on renewing it since I know full well it won't get used.  Instead, I'm coming up with ways to workout at home or outside in nature.  I've never really liked the gym anyway.  It smells funky and there are too many mirrors everywhere.  Trust me, I do not need a 360-view of myself sweating it out at the gym.  Plus, I feel most energized when out in nature so why wouldn't I want to spend more time with the trees and the breeze?  This year, I will squeeze in my fitness time with hikes through the headlands, walks to explore new neighborhoods (sounds easy but have you seen our hills here?), and maybe even a run or two through Golden Gate Park if I'm feeling ballsy.  And I’ll throw in a few at-home Brazil Butt Lift work outs just to keep things spicy, too.  But going to the gym?  Nope.  Not this gal.  Not in 2014.

2. I will NOT give up any particular food group.  In the past, I've given up sugar (for, like, a day ...), carbs, coffee, dairy, and soda.  And you know what I've learned?  Giving up an entire food group is just a set up for major failures in life because no matter what the food group is, I will eventually eat it and I will eventually feel guilty for it.  And, frankly, I'm so over the guilt thing, I'm just not even going to open that door.  It's just food, after all.  Food.  Something we literally need to survive.  So why feel guilty for finding enjoyment in such a simple thing in life?  In 2014, all food groups are fair game (except for gluten, of course, because my body obviously thinks it's poison).  The key for 2014, though, is moderation.  One or two gluten-free Nutella M&M cookies are okay, but ten are definitely not.

3. I will NOT compare myself to others, personally or professionally.  This one will probably be the most challenging on the list and yet, in many ways, it’s the most important.  When your daily work is so immediately visible for critique and comment, it’s tempting to fall into the trap of comparison.  But really, what good does that do?  We all - every one of us who shares anything publicly, whether on a blog or Twitter, or through Facebook and photographs - curate our work for the public and display that which we feel represents us best.  The work that represents me cannot possibly be compared objectively to anyone else because I’m the only me out there.  And the life I’ve created for myself cannot be compared to theirs, either, because we all have our own paths to follow.  So why drum up unnecessary stress and anxiety over what so-and-so is doing, shooting, writing, baking, decorating, etc. when, to truly measure growth and success, the only person I can realistically compare myself to is me?  Where was I last year at this time?  Where am I now?  Is there noticeable change and progress?  If not, how can I make some?  That’s not to say I won’t still be following and admiring all the many others.   I love photography in general and I love reading other blogs and feeling like I’m getting to know so many more people than would otherwise be possible.  And who doesn’t love seeing pretty little things and yummy little foods all over Pinterest?  I’ll just be doing viewing with a little less judgment towards myself and a lot more appreciation for what I can still learn & improve on.

What about you - do you have any goals for 2014?  I’d love to hear about them!


Linking up with Treasure Tromp.




  1. I have 22 goals who are online now :) your goals looks amazing! i wish you the best!

  2. Love this list! I've been so inspired reading others' goals and resolutions for the year, even if I don't actively make resolutions either. I like to think about my life, what makes me happy and what doesn't, then tweak things as much as I can. I'm absolutely with you on not "banning" any food group -- it just makes you crave it more. I don't want to feel guilty about anything I'm eating, so I make the best choices I can and move on.

    And not comparing, well . . . I think we can all relate to that! I'm actually looking to expand my photography this year, but know I could never compare to many of the greats I see floating around on the web all day (including you, you lovely thing!). Working online for eight hours a day means it's pretty hard for me to unplug and not fall into the comparison trap, especially when visiting all the blogs I love so much, but we are all on personal paths. It's an ongoing process! :)

  3. Instead of doing yearly goals, I do monthly goals and I am doing "My One Word." My word for 2014 is perseverance. http://southernbelle23.blogspot.com/2013/12/my-one-word-for-2014-perseverance.html

    I totally can relate to #3. That is something that I need to work on as well!

  4. Would love to know your thoughts on Wolf...

  5. I am totally with you on all three of these, particularly the last one. This is the first year that I don't think "exercise more" or "eat healthier" is making the list because a) I think I do a decent job at both and b) way to be vague about it. And you know what, it feels good to let those two go

  6. #2 is so fucking sane. i hate when people give up a certain food, preach it SO YOU KNOW (because then it's not happening, apparently!), and it seems so infeasible. if it's for health, great, but in all honesty, putting half a raw sugar packet into my coffee each morning ain't going to kill me. and if it does, then great. i guess i'll live until 85 instead of 86. bummer. everything in moderation, for sure.

  7. You are so smart! Great resolutions - very real and practical.

  8. love these all, Stephanie. I especially love how you formatted your goals :)

  9. Putting them online makes it feel so much more "real" don't you think? :)

  10. I do really like the monthly goals idea. I've started doing that for the business since those are much more concrete (x number of bookings, x amount of income earned, etc.). I think it'll really help me stay on track with the business this year. Best of luck to you with yours!

  11. I'm so with you. If I didn't have actual health reasons for not eating gluten, I wouldn't give that up either. I feel like once you start viewing food as "the enemy" it's all downhill from there.

  12. I'm really conflicted. It was very entertaining and, as expected, the acting, directing, cinematography, etc was all fantastic. But it felt a little too much like Goodfellas to me. It was a little predictable and stale - like I've seen that story before except in the mob context rather than the Wall Street context - and I'm not even close to a prude but after a while all the sex-and-drugs scenes just got old. I felt like some of those scenes were included more for shock value than for actual storytelling purposes. Plus, none of the characters were very sympathetic or relatable so I just didn't care what happened to them. I really wanted to like it, and in a way I feel like I *should* like it, but I just don't think I did. I'd love to hear your thoughts on it, though! Maybe you'll change my mind... :)

  13. I think the comparison trap is going to be the most difficult one from me. My entire business is based on a) being online a lot and b) putting my work out on display for everyone to see. It's really hard not to compare in that situation! But I do really believe it's the key to finding satisfaction in my own work and measuring my own growth in a way that's more tangible. It doesn't matter so much what so-and-so is doing now, it matters what I'm doing now *compared to* what I was doing this time last year, you know? It's tough, but I do think it's the most important of my non-goals.

    Looking forward to seeing more of your photography work! Photography is something that is so subjective and such a constant work in progress, even the "greats" don't compare to the greats, if you know what I mean. :)

  14. I appreciate that ;) I won't see it... Not much a fan of movies with nudity. But I've heard so many different reviews that I'm so glad you shared yours ;)
    / / Annelise Rowe

  15. Yes it feels like i have to do them, last year i had them just on paper, so i could cheat with it! :)


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