Welcome 2015! (goals for the new year and why it's going to be a great year!)

It's time for my 2015 post.  Yes, yes, yes... there are thousands of these posts and mine will not be unique.  I took the last few weeks off from blogging (besides the posts that I was contracted to have posted on specific dates) to really think about where I want this blog to go in 2015.  I have a lot of ideas and am definitely motivated to get my ideas into place but it's going to take a lot of focus, organization and planning on my end.

I am really excited about what is in store for 2015.  I love when January 1st rolls around.  It's not so much about resolutions but about it being the baseline for a new set of goals, to review the last year's achievements.  I have a few goals set for each quarter, for the year end and five year goals.

Personal Goals 

One of the things we all seem to want to achieve is bettering ourselves.  More patient, a better parent, a better friend, lose weight, get in shape, save money,  etc.

I will say all of the above are ongoing goals for me, not just for 2015.  I struggle with all of these areas and as they are ongoing goals, I am not going to list them as personal goals for the purpose of 2015 goals as they are "constant goals".

Declutter.  I have struggled with clutter for the last few years.  It's terrible.  Most of it ties into depression.  I become depressed, I buy, I don't organize and then I don't have energy to clear it.  It's a brutal cycle.  I became a bit of a hoarder when I hit my 30s and I am fed up.   It has effected me emotionally and socially.  I don't want visitors.  When the weekends come, I don't do anything because I know I need to deal with my apartment but then I'm so overwhelmed - I just watch tv or go online.  I'm fed up.  I needed to hit this point to motivate me to do something about it.  I purchased Ruth Soukup's book, 31 Days to a Clutter Free Life (aff link) and I am really excited.  I will post a review about it later!

It's going to take baby steps and I already have it planned out on how I am going to tackle this issue:
  • By room.
  • By "clutter" (i.e., clothes, toys, books, etc.)
  • Organize: boxes ready for trash, giveaway and put away.
  • Tackle each area every Friday.
  • This is just a start but... I will post about this more frequently.

Slow down on spending. This is really embarrassing but I am going to be 100% transparent here.  I have 14 credit cards.  FOURTEEN.  ALL maxed out.  ONLY paying the minimum per month.  Take 14 times $30.  Yeah... I have been struggling.  Actually, let me backtrack and say I HAD 14 MAXED out credit cards.  TEN are paid off.  ZERO balances on 10 cards.  UNACCEPTABLE.  This all ties back into my first goal- depression + overspending.  It was out of control BUT I hit that "fed up" point and I am glad.  I still have four to pay off but that is doable (as seen by paying off ten cards in one year).  I followed the Dave Ramsey method and it's paid off but it's also because of blogging that I could afford to pay off cards as fast I have.  If it wasn't for the income I've made here, there would have been NO Christmas presents for anybody in my family and there wouldn't have been any kind of a Christmas dinner.  It opened my eyes like you would not believe.  I've been reading the Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey (aff link) and it's eye opening and I HIGHLY recommend it!

How do I plan to to deal with this as a frivolous spender? Here's my baby steps:

1. Unsubscribed to ALL store emails.  I don't want to hear about the sale with the 40% off coupon because I will buy whether I need it or not!
2.  Removed my saved cards from my online profiles on stores.
3.  More eating at home.
4.  No more buying books or movies.  I will allow myself to get new books ONLY when I trade in a box of books I have read at the used book store.
5.  Meal planning.
6.  Go to more FREE events in the city.  
7.  I have a kitchen FULL of groceries.  I am going to slow down on grocery shopping and will go hand in hand with meal planning.

I think that's enough for my personal goals for now as I will work on these for the first quarter.

Blog Goals.

More foodie posts. I love doing recipes and food photography! These are my FAVORITE posts and I need to be more consistent with them! Let me know if there is anything you'd like to see! I have some GREAT posts coming up and I am REALLY excited for them to go live!

Focus more on quality.  I now have more time with only working four days a week and am going to work more on the quality of my posts.

Double my readership and engage more.  Notice I didn't say double my traffic? Traffic means NOTHING if I don't have readers that I am not engaging with and they aren't engaging with me, right? I've been HORRIBLE about it and I miss the networking and friendships.  I'm really excited about this goal!

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Grow my social networking.

Narrow my focus.  I feel like my blog has been a bit ... all over the place.  I am going to focus on recipes, decluttering, finances and business. 

Grow my earnings (I have to buy my own insurance this year and momma's gotta pay the bills) without selling out.  I am reading How to Blog For Profit Without Selling Your Soul (aff link) and 
Blogging on the Side's book. (aff link).  These are BOTH amazing and are overflowing with information.  I am also working on more on freelance writing gigs and Etsy.  I have ZERO desire to quit my job but I would like to be able to get completely out of debt and buy a home.

What are YOUR goals for the new year?

If you wrote a post, please link it in the comments! I'd love to read it and share it! 

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