I love New Year’s resolutions! I know a lot of people think they’re a waste of time, and for a lot of people, they might be. But for me, I’ve been nothing but happy with taking the time to define my year. Many of my resolutions stay the same every year because it’s almost as if I’m defining my life standards, in addition to setting the bar higher. For me, it works best to do both.

I also choose a word or phrase to define the year and then organize my resolutions for the year by category. For the year 2015, my word was “adventure.” I chose that word because I was pregnant with my son. I was experiencing pregnancy, having a baby, becoming a Mom, and then actually caring for a newborn. And let me tell you, what an adventure it was! For 2016, I chose the word “fearless.” I wanted to spend less time thinking about what everyone else was thinking and instead just living and loving my own life.

Read on to see what I am focusing on in 2017!

My “Word” of the Year

I always choose a word of the year, but this year, a phrase is what kept coming to me. That phrase is “lead with love.” That’s what I’m going to focus my entire year on. I plan to focus on that in my work, personal, and passion project lives. For me, leading with love means caring for people above all else, loving yourself and showing others how they can care for themselves too, and taking the initiative to do great things.

This year, I’m letting the phrase “lead with love” tie into one of my overall New Year’s resolutions – to lessen the suffering of others. I make this a goal every year,  whether it’s donating to someone who needs the money or volunteering my time to a worthwhile project. I think that leading with love is going to help me lessen the suffering of others in 2017.

Health Resolutions

I am going to do my morning exercises every day, something I incorporated this year with regularity. I definitely want this to be a key part of my 2017. It centers me, reduces my anxiety, and lets me excel in all aspects of my life. I do a personally created blend of yoga, squats, weights, Pilates, Betsy Wetzig exercises (a class I took in college), plus planking. I am going to incorporate Tabata exercises 3 times a week. I am hoping Tabata exercises will get me the cardio I desperately need.

I also want to walk an hour a day, outside my commute and around the office walking. Walking has always helped me think, plus getting outside provides me balance, especially in the middle of the day. My hope is this walking can be incorporated in my walking my sweet dog Bronte and taking a brisk walk during my lunch.

Several of my health resolutions revolve around food. For the past 2 years, I have made our pizza instead of ordering it, and I would like to continue that practice. I’ve tried to make our bread and rolls as well, but haven’t gotten in a good routine for that and want to get better in 2017. I also want to pack my lunch every day for work and drink my coffee at home or bring it with me. This helps me both health wise, but also financially. Ordering food and coffee out gets pricey!

I also want to make my own sweets instead of buying sweets either out from a bakery or eating processed foods. I have a huge sweet tooth, which is obviously not great for my health. I am going to work this year to incorporate healthy sweet recipes from my friend and super health coach Shelly Robinson. Gosh, I love this woman, and her recipes are scrumptious. I want to rock her fudge out all year long.

Financial Resolutions

Every year I create a budget, and every year, it becomes more of a guideline. Not. This. Year. I am making my budget, and I am following it. Obviously since that’s failed so horribly, I am going to be reading Tapping into Wealth by Margaret Lynch to help get me in the correct money mindset. I will also be saving money according to my budget. This is my money year! Totally.

Personal Habits

I have a horrible habit. It’s really terrible, and I can barely type the words.

Breathe, I can do this…

I’m late. All the time.

It’s genetic, I swear. My father is late for everything. Everything! People tell my family a different time so we’ll show up at whatever the event is on time.

But no more, for me, anyway! This is the year of Cristin being on time for everything!

Spiritual Resolutions

As a part of my morning routine, I have done a micro meditation and a visualization exercise, and both really work for me. I want to continue to incorporate them into 2017 and to grow them to be even more useful for me.

Education Resolutions

Every year, I pledge to read 52 books, and I always do, but not in 2016. It’s the first year I have not hit my goal. However, in 2016, I won in other ways, including: writing daily, listening to podcasts, and experiencing new music, something that’s really important to me. I also always try to watch 12 movies a year, and never, ever do, and this year I watched 3 times as many! So even though I didn’t hit my book goal, I did pretty darn good on my resolutions. I’m keeping all of these for 2017, but I’m also going to try and watch theatrical recordings (since I can’t really get out to plays anymore), read 25 plays, and watch 3 dance production recordings (again, no outside time for Mama).

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There you have my New Year’s resolutions for 2017! What are yours? Let me know in the comments.