LIFE | Goals, Motivations or Whatever You Want to Call 'Em! #NaBloPoMo

Traditionally, National Blog Posting Month is in November, but I missed it so a couple of us in the CBB decided that January might be a good month to try it since it is a month of reflection for most and a time to re-evaluate and reset the clock on goals and motivations. I have never been one for making New Year's resolutions because it's always so disappointing when you don't achieve them by "time X". When it comes to setting goals and planning, it has actually been my day job that has made me more organized as in addition to making the numbers as a team and personally, I also set goals to improve client relations and learn from my mistakes even if it means having a cry or have someone tell me I need to do better. Thankfully, after 13 years of luxury retail and dealing with both awful and wonderful situations, I've gotten to the point where I feel confident enough to at least FEEL like I know what I'm doing! *cue the nature photos that don't really relate to anything I've really said*

Use an Accomplishment/Memory Jar

This is something I started doing in 2016 and it was a way of forcing myself to identify things in my life that I could be proud of because the last couple of years before that I just felt like at the end of the year, I couldn't pinpoint what I had achieved and tended to focus on negative things (being the eternal pessimist that I am). All I use is a mason jar and whenever something cool happens, I write it on a scrap of paper with the date and throw it in the jar and by the end of the year, you have memories to look through that you may have forgotten about. It also feels good to see the jar fill up with things that are meaningful with things like "Saw the Backstreet Boys in concert" (because that was a childhood dream come true), "Worked with brand 'X' for the first time" or "Heard that a client said they liked my service". You'd be amazed at what you have actually achieved over the year!

Focus More on Local Brands and Brands Who Have Been Supportive 

This is really the only blog-related big goal I have for this year as there is no point in trying to beat algorithms or try to be the lifestyle blogger I am not. Sure, I have a pretty face and I could become more fashion so that brands will want to work with me more, but my day job takes up so much of my time that I would honestly rather focus on what pays my bills and let's me live pretty comfortably. PR and brands have been weird for me the last two years so this year I am shifting a bit to Vancouver or Canadian-based brands to feature that maybe aren't so mainstream. I also want to streamline the PR I receive to brands who have been there since the beginning and haven't let the green-eyed Instagram monster influence their decisions about me. True, it's just business, but I'd rather make things less stressful for me and feature more reciprocal relationships on Cosmetic Proof.

Read More

I think this is a pretty common goal and I used to be a voracious reader until 2012 when blogging started to pick up and I found that most of my reading was done online. In the last 5 years, I have found it hard to finish books even if I have found them interesting as I'm not great at reading on the bus (motion sickness) and I am too tired mentally to read on my lunch break at work. I definitely blame social media for my lack of reading and even though I keep setting a Goodreads goal for myself, I haven't met it in 10 years. I'm going to try again this year and see how it goes so feel free to add me as a friend and hold me accountable!

Learn to Cook Alone More Often

So, I am afraid of undercooking meat. That's really where my fear of cooking comes in so despite watching my mother cook for our family, I was never shown how to cook properly save for peeling potatoes (I am a potato MASTER because of this) so if I am on my own, I tend to do a lot of vegetarian meals. Casey is usually the one who does most of the cooking because his mom made him go to cooking classes in high school before going off to university so that he wouldn't live in his dorm off mac and cheese and ramen noodles (good call), but ever since we started our subscription to Chef's Plate, I have been joining in on the cooking as the meals are pretty straightforward and we've even learned a few new meals that we make on repeat! We don't get CP every week as it works out to about $60 for 6 meals which can be a bit pricey, but the service has taught me that cooking isn't scary. Casey was away for almost three weeks in November and he was concerned that I would starve without meat, but I cooked EVERY SINGLE MEAL until he came home! I never ate out ONCE and made both meat and vegetarian and had so many meals prepped for both lunch and dinner that I had to eat things in order of expiry and then freeze some! I even had an Alton Brown style Shepard's Pie with lamb prepared for him when he came home and it was crazy how being the "provisional domestic wife" felt so empowering and even better when your husband who is the better cook goes back for seconds!

Max Out My TFSA and RRSP Contributions

I will admit that I was inspired by Aja Dang and her financial journey to pay off her student loans this year. I am VERY lucky to never have had to take out a student loan for my undergrad and post-secondary degrees. My parents paid for my first degree as they didn't want me to work and wanted me to focus on my studies like a good Asian student. I did end up working in my second year part-time just for pocket money because I HATE asking ANYONE for money even my parents. When I decided to go back to school for computer science, my dad said I was on my own which I was fine with so I worked 40 hours a week and took on a full course load of 25-30 credits for 5 years and paid for the entire muthafuckin' degree myself. I would never do it again as it was incredibly stressful, but I'm glad I did. The other bonus was that I was still able to live at home although things were getting REAL tense as I wanted to be out of there so badly that I looked at apartments numerous times before ultimately convincing myself that with Vancouver's housing situation, I should tough it out for as long as possible and save while I could. With my dad as a financial planner, you would think that my TFSA and RRSPs would be maxed out by now, but with becoming a freelancer for Tata Harper and Coty in 2015, I wasn't making enough to save and ya'll know I like to shop. I also work in a luxury industry so I buy pretty things there too, but while I am not in debt and can save about 1/4 to 1/3 of my paycheck every month, I'm not consistent about it and have developed a visual financial tracker to see my progress. I am hoping to max out my TFSA by the end of this year and my RRSP contributions by the end of fiscal 2021.

Give positive feedback when possible 

I started doing this in November as I know how good it feels to have a client take the time out to tell me I did a great job. In management, I hear more complaints than praise because people tend to want to tell people they did a BAD job because the motivation seems stronger when going towards negativity. It really shouldn't be that way, but c'est la vie. With every encounter, whether it'd be at the bank, the bus or any service of some kind, I have taken the time to email, tweet or go in person to say how happy I was with the service of said individual(s). My first one was for an A&W in the mall and the guy helping us was so efficient that I almost wanted to hire him for my team! I emailed A&W the next day and got a response back that probably gave the universe as a whole some extra points and I want to keep this going past the holiday season and keep spreading the love!

There are a ton of other things I want to do this year with most being work-related so somewhat confidential except for my bosses. I hope to share more of the "lifestyle" side of things on Instagram and maybe here? We all have such a wide range of interests and I do love discovering things about others so perhaps that will be something new here to talk about! I wish everyone the best in 2020 and may it bring you much success! 

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