A Rambly Post About A New Year

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Well hello there! It’s been a while since I’ve written on my blog, but I’ve had so many “new year” thoughts running around in my head the last few days that I thought I’d sit down and funnel them all into a new post. This tends to happen at the beginning of every January – I’m suddenly inspired by the twelve months ahead and am determined to tackle all of the changes I’ve been wanting to make in my life. So while I sit here in a cafe sipping green tea, let’s chat about an old year, a new year and life goals, shall we?

2015 brought more change to my life than I ever could have expected, in both significantly good and bad ways. Early in the year I lost my mom to cancer, and I can’t even begin to put into words the countless ways in which that impacted me. However, with my mom’s passing I learned that life is short. After seeing it firsthand I realized that I needed to stop saying “tomorrow” to the things I want in life, and start saying “today.” I spent the rest of 2015 saying “yes” to all the things life had to offer, including new friends, spontaneous travel, and falling in love.

As I look out at the year ahead, here is my biggest goal: identify and remove the obstacles in my life that are preventing me from living my ultimate existence. We all have these road blocks that keep us from reaching our true happiness – some we are already conscious of, others we are yet to realize. In the past, I’ve let these obstacles feel like mountains, too tall and too daunting to climb over. However, there is a quote I remind myself of every time I feel like an obstacle is too big for me to conquer: Don’t let the fear of the time it will take to accomplish something stand in the way of your doing it. The time will pass anyway; we might just as well put that passing time to the best possible use. So what if it will take another 6 years to get that degree? Or 2 years of saving to go on that trip of a lifetime? Or an entire year of proper diet and exercise to reach your fitness goal? What is your dream life? Why aren’t you living that life?

I may not know exactly what I want my life to be, but I do know my priorities: health, relationships, education, and travel. I think emphasizing these aspects of my life will be the most rewarding. Keeping that in mind, here are some of my resolutions for 2016:

  • Travel to one new location internationally and domestically. I’ve always been pretty good about seizing opportunities to travel abroad, but for having lived in the US most of my life, I’ve only seen a small fraction of this country. I would like to have an ongoing goal each year to visit somewhere new outside of my country, as well as somewhere new here at home. I did spend New Year and the first week of 2016 in Scotland, but I’m choosing to count it as my new international destination for last year instead of this year, so somewhere new in 2016 still awaits!
  • Take more time to nurture my “smaller” relationships. By smaller, I don’t mean less important, I just mean the people I don’t see all. the. time. I can be bad about keeping in touch with friends I only see occasionally, and I want to make a bigger effort to communicate more often. I also want to become a card-sending person. I’ve never sent out a round of holiday cards, but the joy I experienced in receiving them this last season made me realize it’s a tradition I want to join. You know that person who never misses sending a card for an occasion? Yeah, I want to be her.
  • Spend less money on purchases that do not go toward the priorities listed above. These include, but are not limited to: mochas, Etsy stickers, calling an Uber when I’m too lazy to walk, and Lululemon gear (I’m sadly admitting that dropping $ on another Swiftly Tee doesn’t qualify as a ‘health’ expense).
  • Expand my video and blog content to reflect more of my interests. In my years as an online creator, my primary focus has been beauty. While I love beauty and it is a huge hobby of mine, it is only one of many interests that I have, and I would like my overall content to be rebalanced to include a larger portion of other life areas, such as home, food, fitness, and life ideas (like this post!).
  • Break up with sugar. I love it. It’s so bad for me. Thus, I want to make a big effort to stop consuming so much added sugar (it’s in everything these days) and instead try to mostly consume sugar from natural sources, such as fruits and veggies, and uh, chocolate is a natural source of sugar, right? #thestruggle
  • Take a class. Yeah, I haven’t narrowed it down much more than that. But being a few years out of college, it’s been a while since I’ve taken a course to acquire some new knowledge. This could be for foreign language, cooking, or an exercise, but I miss the feeling of showing up to a regular lesson and learning something.
  • Find new ways to help my community. Aside from volunteering at my local humane society in high school and a few other organizations in college, I don’t have an extensive history of donating my time and effort to the community around me. But as the years pass, I’m becoming more conscious of the imprint I’m leaving on this world, and I want to contribute more. I’m not sure where to start so if you know of any great ways to get involved in your community, please let me know in a comment below!

So there you have it, all my “new year, new you” thoughts. What are your goals for 2016?

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  • Katie Abshier

    Love this! I’m so sorry to hear about your mom :( I hope you have an amazing, 2016 and accomplish all of your goals <3

  • Sarah

    Allison,

    First off, I just want to say I’m so sorry about your mom. I lost my dad at age 25, and it is an experience no one can really understand until they go through it themselves. Big hugs to you.

    Secondly, I just love your channel and this post. I find your content to be relatable and inspiring, and always look forward to your videos.

    I absolutely love that helping out in your community is one of your goals. I’ve had this on my mind lately, from the other side. I recently became bedridden with chronic illness (which is what led to discovering YouTube), and having been in a position of needing help, here are some of my thoughts–

    Get to know your neighbors, especially if they are elderly or sick, or even just kind of reclusive or you suspect have trouble getting out or socializing (but be safe obviously). Illness and disability can have a way of making you feel useless and unlovable, and it is easy to become lost in the margins. When I became ill, I had recently moved to a knew city and only knew a couple of my neighbors, and felt so lonely and isolated in a neighborhood packed with people. I longed for someone to have knocked on my door and said “hey, I’m going to the grocery store, do you need me to pick up anything for you?” Or even just to drop by and say hi or see if I needed help with anything.

    Of course, there are all kinds of services and ways to have things delivered now, especially in larger cities. But it can be a lonely existence when the only person you see in a week is the Amazon prime delivery guy. I think somewhere along the way, we lost the art of being neighborly (and I mean this about myself first and foremost!)

    I realize this is a tricky area because we are in a culture where we don’t like to bother each other, especially unannounced. But sometimes being “bothered” is a much needed gift. Probably something that just needs to be felt out gently.

    I desperately wish I had done this more when I was healthy, and will definitely make an effort to do this if I ever regain my health. In this world where we are increasingly becoming more physically isolated by social media I think it is so important to use our privilege and health to be a voice and help to those in need. And also a friend to people who aren’t very lovable, because they likely have the least amount of friends. It’s so easy to forget when you’re healthy.

    Anyway, an inspiring post and I hope you have a wonderful year ahead 😊

  • http://eachlovelything.wordpress.com Andrea T

    This is beautiful. I’m so very sorry about your mother. I know she’ll be beside you forever, guiding you through all the “yes” that you’ll say and adventures you’ll have.

    I love all your content. While I like makeup, I love to be able to relate to someone. House decor, fitness inspiration and life ideas, whether on blog posts or youtube are what draws me in. So I’m super excited at a few more of these coming from you!

    I started going to a local church and it was the perfect way to be helpful in the community. Even if you aren’t ready to join a community, there’s plenty of volunteering opportunities as well!

    I blogged about my “word of the year”. While it isn’t a goal, it’s a reminder to take chances, and go towards my dream. :)

  • Allyssa Sepulveda

    Allison,

    I too lost my mother this past year to cancer. I know from being a subscriber of yours for many years that you were extremely close to your mother, as I was to mine. Losing your mom is never easy, but when you see the toll that cancer takes on a person, it really is difficult.

    I too have learned that life is too short. We must live in the moment. I love your goals for the new year and especially admire your ambition to travel. I might steal that one from you :-)

    Please know you are not alone as you continue to grieve.

    Hugs,
    Allyssa

  • rchiariello

    I’m so sorry to hear about your mom. I remember you mentioning a few times that she was sick, but I didn’t realize she had passed.

  • Britt and the Brit

    Hi Allison,

    We are so sorry to hear about your mom. We, too, remembered the news she was sick and did not know of her passing. All of our love to you and your family.

  • http://www.love-krista.com Krista

    What a genuine, thoughtful post Allison. I truly hope you can achieve all of your goals and plans for 2016 and beyond, and I want to thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts and inspire others to work towards their goals as well. Here’s to an amazing year ahead!

    x Krista
    love-krista.com

  • http://www.emilyabernathy.com Emily Abernathy

    Love this post, Allison! These are such great goals. It is so inspiring to see you be able to embrace life to the fullest even after going through such a trying time. You have definitely inspired me. Keep doing what you are doing. You’ve always been a favorite blogger/Youtuber of mine!

  • http://sunshineandglow.blogspot.com/ Inma

    Allison, I lost my dad to cancer two years ago and last year one of my closest friends, so I was nodding emphatically when I heard you say it’s taught you to realise life was short and it made you say yes to more things. Those experiences taught me how precious our health is and it’s become a guiding force in my life. I’m very excited for your new rebalanced content. I’ve watched your videos since you were at college and I’ve always seen you as a very genuine person. I can’t wait to see what you have in store for us this year. And yay for falling in love. All the best for 2016!

    Inma x
    sunshineandglow.blogspot.com

  • http://www.elre.co.za Elre Hugo

    Yeah! You are back. Again, I am sorry for your loss. You are a strong person and I admire you. Thanks for the cool post. I have a fee goals. You can chech them out here:http://www.elre.co.za/2016/01/no-to-resolutions-yes-to-goals-2016-ed.html I can not wait to see what you have planned! Happy New Year! X

  • http://www.thechicette.com Brittany

    I can’t wait to see what the year has in store for you and the new content you have planned. I’ve been watching your videos/reading your blogs for the the past couple of years. I’ve loved seeing how your content has changed and evolved as you have.

    Brittany | thechicette.com

  • Alex

    This is such an inspirational post. I love all of these goals and I can’t wait to follow your journey!

    x Alex

    whitewallsandwanderlust.wordpress.com

  • jenna

    glad to see a new blog post from you allison! I love your quote about time passing by, its easy to worry and put things on hold. I’ve missed the lifestyle and vlog videos you used to do so i’m looking forward to the new content :)

  • http://www.beingleanna.com/ Leanna @ Being Leanna

    Yay! So happy to see a blog post from you again. Those are some fantastic goals. I think it’s really important to visit places internationally as well as domestically. I’ve been to France but i’ve never been to the west coast. Crazy!

  • http://www.divaandthedivine.com Brianna @ Diva and the Divine

    These are excellent resolutions, Allison. My blog and channel originally started as beauty only, but I realized there was so much more that I wanted to talk about (health and fitness, primarily). I look forward to seeing your content expansion this year.
    http://www.divaandthedivine.com

  • PrettyMuchArt

    You’re a great writer, Alison! I agree with you on all of these. In fact, I took a writing class this morning. I’m sorry about you mom, but living your life to the fullest and being the happiest you can be is exactly what she’d want for you. Here’s to 2016!

  • Carine

    I love your videos and your blog, I have been watching since the very beginning and I am excited for what they new year holds for you. May I suggest the Alberta rockies as an international destination for 2016? I remember you mentioned you like hiking, and there is no shortage of places to explore up here. Plus, with the Canadian dollar being ridiculously low, you’re saving about 30%!

  • http://www.magsfactorbeauty.com Maggie K

    Hi Allison, I’ve just come across your blog and I’m loving the content!! This post is great and your goals are really thought through especially nurturing the ‘smaller’ relationships, which I am guilty of neglecting too, and taking up something new, a class. I think it’s so important not to get stuck in a rut and stop coming up with excuses. I am really sorry to hear about your mum, I’m sure she would be very proud of you xxxx

  • http://www.meowlifestyle.com Jenna Meow

    Thanks for sharing such honest and positive goals. I love the direction you are going with your blog and content!

  • http://www.makeupandbeautymayhem.com/ Nashia Anthony

    Happy New Year and hope you achieve everything you want

    Nashia | MakeupandBeautyMayhem

  • Heather Hart

    I love this idea to expand your channel. I like reviewing things on my channel but everyone has a life besides makeup. Also my mom is from Scotland and I love it there so glad you got to visit. I volunteer for a dog rescue groups and foster dogs in my home and it’s a big part of my life I never talk about on youtube

  • Mary

    I’ve followed you on YouTube for years and your blog too. Love them both! You’re awesome and such a breath of fresh air! Keep up the great work!