Nine by nineteen

frost flowers

Evaluating 2018

Looking back, there isn’t much that I’ve accomplished last year. There are those big life events like buying a house and finally travelling to Japan but those are rather things that just happened and not goals that I’ve worked towards.

I’m guessing that’s why I felt the sudden need to set some tangible goals for this year. I rather like the idea of setting myself a number of small and accomplishable goals instead of a couple of big and ambitious goals that are hard to attain.

I’ve settled for nine tangible goals that I would like to achieve by the end of 2019. So that makes nine by nineteen.

Nine by nineteen

1. Afternoon tea instead of coffee

I have decided to switch my afternoon coffee at work with an afternoon tea. Our kitchen cupboard is overloaded with all types of tea because I have a bad habit of wanting to try all the teas. I figured, if I replace my afternoon coffee with tea, I’d be downsizing my caffeine intake while using up my overflowing tea collection.

I’ve been sticking to this habit quite well and have finished at least one of my three (!) boxes of matcha green tea. The second box is already halfway too.

2. Analyse my wardrobe

A couple of years ago I started looking into sustainable clothing and capsule wardrobes. Over those years, I’ve gotten rid of quite some unloved and unworn items. I’ve also bought a number of items from ethical fashion brands. Yet, I still have too many days where I ‘have nothing to wear’ or where I’m simply not happy with what I’m wearing.

Inspired by blogger Gold Zipper, I want to take a more analytical approach to my wardrobe. In her wardrobe science project, she uses her experience as a data analyst to better understand her wardrobe. I’m not a number cruncher by any means, but I do believe this is an exciting new way to look at my wardrobe, with factual evidence.

I also want to finish reading A Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees. This book is a staple among fashion bloggers who want to streamline their wardrobe. I started reading it last year but for some reason I just didn’t finish it. From what I remember, there are quite some useful tips and flowcharts to finding what works for your wardrobe.

3. Keep capturing

coffee and book

Last year I didn’t set goals but chose a word of the year. My word for 2018 was “Capture”. It was meant to remind myself to capture good memories and save them. “Capture” really was a great word of the year, I would say that it succeeded in its purpose. It gave both my bullet journal and photography a boost and I want to keep that positive vibe up in 2019.

4. Make at least one video for the blog

I’m interested in making videos and I keep telling myself that I should give it a try, yet I never do. The whole process feels very daunting to me, even though it’s not that big a step up from photography. I think the trick is to start with a low threshold, simple idea and not to expect too much from myself. Making a short video to accompany one of my blog posts should be achievable.

I’m also considering making a ‘one second a day’ video on our next trip out of the country. For The Easily Distracted did a year recap this way, which sounds like too much of a commitment to me, but it did get my thinking that I could try it for a shorter period.

5. Learn to sew

When I culled my wardrobe, there were quite some clothes that need mending or that would fit me better with some adjustments. Unfortunately, my hand sewing skills go no further than sewing on loose buttons and I also don’t have a sewing machine yet.

If I’m honest, I don’t think I can achieve this goal by the end of the year. I’d rather wait until our house renovation is mostly over as I’d rather wait until I can pick one of the renewed spaces as my designated sewing corner. But I can at least set my intentions on achieving this goal. I can start by having a look at sewing classes in my area and researching sewing machines as I hear they can be quite pricey.

6. Less smartphone, more books and movies

My smartphone consumption time has gone through the roof lately and I’m starting to notice the effects on my mental health. Spending my evenings like a couch potato glued to my phone, is starting to make me feel useless and that my life is pointless. I need to get out of this rut of eat-sleep-scroll-repeat.

If I look at last year, I have hardly read any books. I shamefully lost my Goodreads book challenge, I wanted to read eighteen but I managed to read an abysmal six books. For someone who would spend weekends at the library as a child, this is a lifestyle change that I’m not proud of. Definitely something to work on.

I also want to get my money’s worth out of my Netflix subscription, something that also has lost out in favour of the smartphone, so I’m adding a list of movies and series to watch next to my reading list.

7. Wake up early

Getting up early has always been a struggle for me, though I did manage to do so the last couple of years. But the last few months of 2018 I really struggled to get up on time and I’ve even overslept a couple of times. I need to get back on track before I slip back into bad habits.

In hindsight, I think the reason for me not getting out of bed in time, is the death of my cat. We had a little morning ritual where I woke up half an hour early so he could sit on my lap while I enjoyed my coffee. It was a small, yet important quality time moment that I would look forward to every morning.

Since I’m not planning on replacing my dear old Kitty, I’ll need to find something else to make me want to wake up in the morning.

mornings with kitty

8. Make plastic free choices

This has been something that is slowly starting to grow into a habit for me. For some reason, I decided to bring my own cup to work, so I could cut out the amount of disposable cups I was using every day. And I’ve been collecting alternatives to plastic such as stainless steel straws, beeswax wraps, etc.

I want to continue those efforts and potentially keep this in mind for our renovations. I’m sure there are ways to encourage a low waste or plastic free lifestyle in the materials we use te renovate our house.

9. Minimize clutter

With the house renovation in mind, this would be the perfect time to declutter and get rid of what we don’t need. We’re planning to keep living in our house during the renovation, this means that we will need to move our furniture and other belongings around on multiple occasions. So what better moment to truly look at what we should and should not keep?