I’m not usually one to make resolutions because frankly, I stick to them for about three weeks and then give up. I have a feeling that many people, myself included, pick resolutions that are too drastic a change. This year, I’ve chosen some resolutions that I know are well within my reach. Doing so meant modifying some of my original goals. The list I’ve come up with includes resolutions I know can attain while making a positive impact in my life and on the lives of others.
- Stop counting countries. The first time I went to Spain, I had my mind set on making the most of three-day weekends and seeing as much of Europe as possible. I visited seven different countries in six months, and I’m glad I went on those trips, but I wish I had seen more of Spain. Now that I’m here for a year, I’m enjoying pacing myself and spending my weekends in different parts of the country. Madrid is quickly becoming one of my favourite cities in the world. I could spend weeks travelling Andalucía alone. The north of Spain is still undiscovered territory for me and I can’t wait to immerse myself in it. I have a few international trips planned, but honestly, becoming an expert on Spain has been the most fulfilling part of my travels this time around. It’s also a lot easier on my wallet!
- Document my experiences as they happen. The though of keeping a travel journal never occurs to me until I start writing a blog post and realize I’ve lost the words to describe my experience. I’ll have flashes of inspiration during my travels when I think, “Oh, that would be perfect for the blog!” only to forget what I meant to say when I actually sit down to write. Luckily, my best friend gifted me a lovely journal which I use to jot down post ideas. I’ll be taking it with me on my travels this year to refresh my memory after a trip.
- Cook vegan meals. My original goal was to eat vegan six days a week. Then I brought it down to five. After thinking it through for quite some time, I realized that I was still asking too much of myself. Eating is a social act in every culture. In a country where asking for a vegetarian meal is received with a “Is fish okay?”, my social life would take a hit if I were strictly vegan. I know there are places that serve vegan tapas in Granada, but I’d be eating the same dish at the same four or five places every week. I’d also have to convince my friends to stick to the same restaurants. The options are still very limited here. And yes, I could eat before going out, but knowing myself, I don’t think that is a lifestyle choice that I would be able to implement consistently. One thing I have complete control over is my own cooking. I can eat vegan at home without issue and vegetarian elsewhere. Considering about 80% of my meals are eaten at home, I will still be making a positive impact on animal welfare and the environment.
- Read 26 books. It seems like everyone and their dog is doing the book-a-week challenge this year! I’m not quite so ambitious, so I’ll stick to one book every two weeks. It will be a challenge, but I love reading and haven’t done enough of it lately. I think this goal will be good motivation to check off some titles on my “To Read” list.
- Complete my blog’s rebranding. That’s right, folks! Ivana Abroad is getting a facelift in 2017. New name, new theme, new niche – everything is changing! I’m just waiting to finalize the logo. Stay tuned for a fresh new blog!
- Post once a week. Ideally, I should be posting 2-3 times a week, but unfortunately, I’m just not that consistent. It’s the biggest issue I have with my writing and one I’m trying to change. I spend far too much time thinking about how I can make my blog better when the answer is simply to put out new content. Good content and consistency attracts readers.
I know we’re already two weeks into 2017 and I’m just getting this post out, but I like the idea of having my resolutions published as a way of staying on track throughout the year. Better late than never, right? Tell me: do you have any resolutions for 2017? Do we have any in common?