My aspirational goals for 2022 can be summed up neatly by saying I simply want to do more and consume more. I want more of everything.
Why is ‘Goals’ considered to be such a dirty word whenever a new year swings in? For every aspiration-setting post I read, there are ten articles behind it denouncing the ‘new year new me’ rhetoric. Personally, I’ve always seen the first few months of a year as a motivational clean slate. It’s a great excuse to try something new, be a bit better in general, and rewire my brain for the year ahead.
I try not to make hyper-specific year-long goals in the first month of the year. It’s too easy to overpromise and underdeliver. I also find that the early onset pressure to do well at something usually equates to discarding practice. Hence this post coming to you on the first day of February 2022.
Bearing this in mind, for this years goals we’re going large concepts with interpretive details. There’s no fuss and no frills – just some ideas and some things which I really want to hone in on during the peculiar course 2022 is sure to make.
The Year of Doing Stuff I Like
This year I want to spend more time doing the things I like. On the flip side, I also want to spend less time doing the things I don’t particularly enjoy or that don’t make me feel very good. Sounds straightforward, right?
In 2022, my main goal is to consciously find the time to do anything and everything that catches my fancy. That means easy things, such as heading to spin class on the regular and learning how to properly run on a treadmill. It also means doing the hard things, like weaning myself away from social media when I’m bored, setting serious work/life boundaries, and saying ‘no’ to plans that just don’t sit right.
In 2022, I want to use my time to enrich my life. I want those daily sunrise walks that I know make me feel good. I want to make time for the bi-weekly cinema trips. I want to indulge in that Netflix series I’ve been saving for a ‘special moment’. Every time I breathe should be a special moment. I want to do all the stuff I like, all of the time. And really, why shouldn’t I?
Interestingly, I’ve also found that there is a positive correlation between having the motivation to try new things and not drinking alcohol. I find my brain is much better without alcohol and the inevitable weekly weekend hangover of doom. By omitting alcohol, it doesn’t mean I can’t sample cool cocktail clubs with my friends. It does mean though that I’m more likely to go to bed at a respectful time on Saturday night and do that Sunday morning sunrise walk I was talking about. Sounds like a win in my book.
So, what have we decided? Morning coffee dates and days filled with joy are definitely in. Long evenings spent drunk in dingy basement bars are probably out. In 2022, I am determined to do all the things I like, all the time.
So, if you’re up for it, I’ll see you for parkrun on Saturday morning, followed by oat lattes and flaky pastries at the local bakery. After, we’ll swim, head to the cinema for that new guilty-pleasure chick-flick, and round off the date by lunchtime with a sourdough pizza. Sounds alright, right?
Read 100 books
2022 will be the third consecutive year that I attempt to read 100 books. In 2020, I passed with flying colours by reading 108. I scrapped 100 by the skin of my teeth in 2021. In 2022 we’re going again. 100 books is the aim of the game.
Don’t be fooled, I know that 100 books is a hell of a challenge. After everything I do (working, writing, studying, social life, closing my Apple Watch rings, time with my boyfriend, regularly washing my clothes) I’m not left with much time to dedicate to reading. So, how do I read so much when I have so much going on?
I’ve read over 200 books in two years by multitasking and building my daily routines to accommodate my need to read. If I’m out walking, on a 5K run, or am doing chores – I will have an audiobook playing in my earphones. In the mornings where I don’t have a swim or a run planned, you’ll find me up at the crack of dawn reading a book on my phone or via my Kindle. When the evening swings in, you’ll often find me tucked up in bed making notes and flicking through the pages of a physical novel. Reading is a habit I try to hone and fit into everyday of my life.
Another way I read so much is that I’m very okay with the idea of DNF’ing a book. DNF stands for did not finish. Life is too short and there are too many books to read for you to be slogging through shit. My advice? If you don’t love it after 50 pages, discard it and start up with another. You’ll find your ‘read’ pile goes from 20 to 30 very quickly when you have your nose in something you love.
With so much get-up-and-go energy going on this year, it will be so nice to consciously spend time with my favourite hobby. Every free moment of 2022 will be spent reading. What will you be doing?
Train for and successfully complete a triathlon
Last year I signed up for a half-marathon on a whim. This year we’ve already kicked it up a notch by signing up for a triathlon. For those that don’t know, a triathlon is an organised sporting event which combines open water swimming and cycling with a running race. It sounds like 2 hours of bloody hard work. I’m beginning to think I may be quite mad.
While I haven’t actually ridden a bike since I was 15/16 and open water swimming isn’t exactly my main domain, I am really excited to train for a summer triathlon. I can imagine this crazy challenge is going to be so rewarding and be a serious testament to my fitness levels. Maybe it will be the start of a life-long passion project. Or, maybe I will throw up and never do it again.
The summer triathlon I have signed up for takes place in Leeds, UK this forthcoming June. Although I am yet to start training (or acquire a bike) I am hoping to create lots of content surrounding my triathlon training in 2022. Think wetsuit guides (like this one), how to ride a bike on busy city roads, and a step-by-step guide of to I actually trained and completed a triathlon. Let’s not walk before I can run though. I have a long road ahead of me.
It’ll be better if we suffer together. So, if you fancy taking on the mammoth triathlon challenge too, click here to sign up. We can cry while simultaneously cheering each other on.
The idea of consuming everything is both daunting and near impossible. I don’t mean I literally want to be become a media sponge. What I do want though is to consume a vast amount of information via a variety of different mediums.
Right now I’m thinking; investing more time in podcasts – funny ones, fashion ones, random niche ones. Subscribing to more magazines. Discovering new Youtubers to watch. Finding Instagram and TikTok influencers who really inspire me and my work. Reading more comic books. Branching out from my usual three book genres (myth, chick-lit, and murder mystery). Trying new wellness fads. Making time to watch television and go to the cinema. Understanding fashion trends, and much more.
My life and likes aren’t one dimensional. I like so much, from fashion to music to Marvel to cooking. I want what I consume to reflect my eclectic taste. So I am going to dedicate this year to engulfing all the information I possibly can without causing myself a sensory overload.
If there is anything that you particularly like or want to like, then learn more about it! Consume more of it! What is it inspired by? What has it inspired? Let’s really go to town on our interests this year and truly become obsessed.
This time last year, I didn’t even know the likes of Emma Chamberlain and Brittany Bathgate (who both bring me so much joy and respite via Youtube) existed. I learnt so much in 2021. What will 2022 bring me in the way of likes, dislikes, and obsessions? I’m hoping for everything and more.
So, what am I doing this year? In 2022 I’m reading books at any given opportunity. In 2022 I’m doing all the things I want to. In 2022 I’m discovering new loves and investing my time in worthwhile avenues. I’m growing in 2022 and I am accomplishing things that I can only currently dream of. I’m working hard in 2022 on my dreams, on my mind, and on my body. My soul wants more and I am going to give it more.
What are you going to do to benefit yourself in 2022? What are your aspirations?