Happy New Year!

I have always been a big fan of the New Year because it is a time to reflect on the past year and brainstorm for the new year. I know a lot of people complain that you shouldn’t only use the New Year to better yourself and set goals for yourself and that you should be doing that throughout the year. While I do agree that you should strive to better yourself throughout the year, I also think it is more than okay to set goals and resolutions for the New Year. I also think you should set attainable resolutions and mini goals in order to reach your bigger goals.

What I learned from 2018: 

  • Stop saying yes to everything and everyone

I think this was the biggest and hardest lesson of 2018. While it might seem really small and not of importance, this lesson really impacted both my mental and physical health this past year. As most of you know, I started my masters in public health at the University of Arizona, continued working full time, continued blogging, and started planning a wedding. Crazy, I know. While taking all of this on, I still had a hard time saying no when I was asked to go places and do things with friends and family. I was at a place in life where I was saying yes to EVERYTHING and EVERYONE, had a full calendar seven days a week for months at a time and eventually burned myself out and started having panic attacks because I was unable to manage my already full schedule. Once I started strategically planning my weeks out and started saying no to events and outings I didn’t absolutely need to attend, it significantly improved my overall health and now I feel like I’m back to where I need to be.

  • Take risks and take chances

This is another major lesson I learned in 2018. I’m usually one of those people who just plays it safe and doesn’t take too many risks or chances. This year I decided to get uncomfortable and did a few things that scared me. In October of 2017, I began talking to an advisor about grad school and started praying about it. Before I even graduated from undergrad, I knew I wanted to go to grad school and made it a goal of mine. I was really scared and nervous to apply because I didn’t know if my GRE scores would be good enough or if I would get into the program, but I decided to just go for it. I then thought about how difficult it would be to balance working full time, going to grad school, and blogging, but again, I just trusted God’s plan and went for it. I got into the program and then started school in May! I’m not going to lie, it’s been really difficult at times, but I’ve stuck it out thus far and it’s been really rewarding. I’m eight months into the program and can’t wait to continue learning and work towards another goal of mine, getting my MPH.

  • Be present

This was another tough lesson I had to learn throughout 2018. With how much I am balancing on a day to day basis, I am constantly on my computer or phone. 90% of my day job is on the computer, I go to school online, and blog online, which means I spend allllll of my time connected to a device. This made it really difficult to be present with friends and family and I would regret going places and just being glued to my phone 24/7. I then realized I needed to set aside time in the morning and at night to be on my computer and phone (unless we didn’t have plans for the day) so that I could be present with my loved ones. I now plan my posts for the following week on the weekends so that I am not overwhelmed during the week trying to plan posts, do homework, and go to work. Being present is SO important, especially when you’re with your loved ones because you will never get that time back and every minute is so precious. Make a conscious decision to be present and put down your devices.

Highlights of 2018:

  • Rang in the new year in Vail, CO
  • Sandy Toes and Salty Hair turned one
  • I attended my first Mayo Clinic Infectious Disease Conference
  • Spent the weekend in LA and went to California Adventure
  • We got our puppy, Ella
  • Spent Easter in Anthem, AZ with my family
  • Went to Country Thunder for the first time
  • Went on a cruise with Charlie and my family to St. Maarten, Puerto Rico, and Haiti for my mom’s 55th birthday
  • Started my MPH at the University of Arizona
  • Went to Tucson, AZ with Charlie’s family to watch some U of A baseball games
  • Went to LA again for the weekend to visit Charlie’s family and brought Ella for the first time
  • Went to Dana Point with my dad for a quick weekend trip
  • Went to Lake Powell for Charlie’s 26th birthday and the fourth of July
  • Spent the weekend in Scottsdale for a weekend getaway
  • CHARLIE PROPOSED in Flagstaff, AZ
  • Went to LA for a weekend getaway to visit Charlie’s family and attend our friend’s wedding in Pasadena, CA
  • Spent my 24th birthday in Scottsdale with my best friend and Charlie
  • Had our engagement party with our closest friends and family at our wedding venue
  • Moved to our townhome
  • Went to Carlsbad, CA to visit my best friend before she moved to Italy
  • I said yes to the dress
  • Went to Orlando, FL for a work conference and Charlie and I went to Disney World
  • Spent Thanksgiving in Sedona, AZ with my family
  • Went to Disneyland and spent Christmas in LA with Charlie’s family
  • Partnered with amazing brands and companies throughout the year

I accomplished and did so much during 2018 and can’t wait to see what 2019 brings! I have a feeling 2019 is going to the best year yet and I have some big goals for the New Year. Here are a few of my goals:

I know these goals might not sound attainable, but I’m confident that I will be able to complete my goals for 2019. I made it a goal to completely cut out soda for 2018 and I stuck to my goal throughout the year. I am hopeful that I can at least complete three of my five goals for 2019 and hope I can complete all five of my goals! I hope you all use this first week of 2019 to reflect on 2018 and set goals for the new year.




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