I think it is always important to look back on the year and reflect on the good and the bad to better prepare oneself for the future. Additionally, I do like to look forward and set an idea or theme for the upcoming year. If you don’t follow The Fresh Exchange, you should – that’s where I got the idea for setting a theme for the year. Megan is amazing!

First, I want to talk about 2016. This year was a little crazy for all of us for many different reasons. Specifically, for my family, it was The Year of Patience. At the beginning of 2016, we made the transition across country from California to Maryland. As a lot of you already know, my husband and I are both in the military and the military called us to the East Coast. Now for us this was exciting news! I am originally from Ohio and my husband is originally from Virginia so coming to Maryland made our lives so much happier. We love being closer to where we are from and closer to our families. In this year we have seen our families more times than we had in the four years we were in California.

This year, I also had to find a new job – twice. I am in the military but I am in the Air National Guard. That means they do not employ me full time. Therefore, at the beginning of the year I found a great set of military orders in D.C., only to be let go in October because they couldn’t afford to keep me on. I went through a brief period of unemployment before finding my current orders at the end of the year. These constant transitions have been rough on us – emotionally, mentally, and financially.

But then we ended the year on a great note! If you saw my previous post, then you’ll know that we found out we were expecting in November! We are so excited for this change!

And that brings me to this year – 2017 The Year of Change. The biggest change is obviously that we are expecting our baby boy in July! That means my body will be changing, our household will be changing, our family will be changing – nothing will ever be the same. Additionally, we have quite a few more changes in the works this year. I am back in school trying to make some progress on my degree before the baby comes; I am hoping to have it completed next year! Also, I recently started my new set of orders so we’re adjusting to that. I work long hours and this position is high-visibility so it’s taken some getting used to. On top of that, I will only be employed until the baby comes. I’m hoping to return to work after taking a couple months off, but I will have to find a new job at that time. Finally, my husband plans on separating from the military early next year so we will be starting that transition at the end of this year and that will be a difficult change for our family. With all of these new opportunities and experiences around us, I think you can understand why we are dubbing this The Year of Change.

To help us hone the patience we learned last year and continue to practice it throughout this year of change, I think it’s important to set goals. There are seven areas of your life that you should set goals in: social, work, family, spiritual, financial, intellectual, and health. Goals should also be concrete and quantifiable. That’s the difference between setting resolutions and goals. Resolutions tend to be vague like “I want to lose weight.” Goals are more concrete such as “I want to lose twenty pounds or I want to run a half-marathon by September.” Quantifying it and giving yourself a deadline are essential to actually track progress on your goals. Here are the seven areas of your life you should be setting goals in:

  • Social: Whether this is family, friends, etc. it is important to set aside time to spend with the people in your life.
  • Work: This one can be related to your job, your overall career progression, your future career goals, etc.
  • Family: Spouse. parents, siblings, children, close friends – whatever you consider family is addressed here.
  • Spiritual: This could mean many things to many people. Whether this be religion, meditation, or in my husband’s case – being out in the woods or on the water!
  • Financial: One of the most important goals in our family every year! I’ll do another, more detailed post on how we budget and run our finances later this year.
  • Intellectual: This one can mean so many things to so many people. Whatever you feel is appropriate to expand your knowledge – do that. We should all be striving to learn something new!
  • Health: Lose weight, gain weight, don’t worry about your weight. Get outdoors, train, lift heavy things. Just do something!

So there they are – the seven areas of your life you should be setting goals! Here’s to 2017 – The Year of Change!

If you’d like to hear more about my personal goals for this year, please watch my video below!