Define: resolution /ˌrezəˈlo͞oSHən/:
So, due to my hatred and fear, I prefer to make New Year's Goals. Goals allow for revision and change. It's not a "firm decision." How do I know something drastic won't happen in the next year that will prevent my "firm decision" from happening?
I lead into SMARTER goals in my last post. I'm sure dozens of leadership academies teach SMARTER goals, but I have Alpha Phi Omega to thank for my knowledge of SMARTER goals. While I don't always use the method, it certainly helps me accomplish my goals Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger to quote a song that I enjoy listening to.
As a reminder, SMARTER stands for:
This year I want to use the SMART part for my New Year's goals and do the -ER part at the end of the year/goal.
Goals for 2012
1. Be 15 pounds lighter by April 1st, 2012.
It is measurable - the scale will tell me whether I am accomplishing this.
It's achievable - I know that I need to eat smarter and exercise more.
It's realistic and timely - April 1st is 90 days away. Or 12.85 weeks. At 1-2 pounds lost a week, this should be easy to accomplish. I have been reading lots of recipes that I want to try that involve more vegetables I haven't had before. I am going to give up caring (mostly) what Britton likes to eat. If he doesn't want to eat whatever I cooked that night, tough. Find your own food.
I want to do at least 15 minutes of "working out" every day. I have Wii Fit and I have the Biggest Loser for Kinect/xbox. I also have a membership at Planet Fitness and I pay the SRC fee on campus. I need to quit making excuses, and get off the computer and just do something. Even if I just spend 15 minutes doing as many sit-ups or crunches as I can, it's better than nothing.
2. Pay off my credit card by December 31st, 2012
I know that I spend too much of my money on aimless things. And it stresses me out to the max. So, to help my wallet (and my waistline - since much of my meaningless spending comes from buying bagels and coffee out), I want to cut back on things I do not need. This is going to be an extreme challenge for me, because sometimes a stop through the drive-thru is a lifesaver on my stress level in every way except my wallet. Originally, I titled this goal Save $1,000 by 12/1/12, but I think right this second, paying of my credit card and improving my credit may be a little more helpful. Britton and I are talking about buying a home in the next few years. If I pay off my credit card completely first, then I'll be able to use what I was making payments with for my savings account or to my student loans which I will have to start paying at the end of the year.
I currently owe about $3,400. While in school, I can afford to make $400/month in payments (but realistically, it's about $250, because our cell phone bill is applied directly to my credit card). 5x250=1250. That brings me down to $2,150. I know my car insurance is coming up during the school year, so I'll be closer to $2,500. When school ends, if I stay at the library (assuming I can't find a better paying job right away), I can probably afford to make $600 payments (including the cell phone bill, so really only $450). $450*3 months = $1350, which brings my total down to $820! Then, assuming I can find a job which pays as much as I'm making now, I should be able to continue the $600 payments and get my card paid off by December. Of course, this goal is limited by any health or car or family emergencies. Let's hope 2012 doesn't bring any. This goal is also limited by costs related to the wedding. If I can pay off my credit card and continue the payments of $450 to my student loans, it will be SO helpful. But, this means I'll have to limit my outings and grocery shopping and hobbies. I think I can do it. Friends, let it be known that I cannot spend bajillions of dollars this semester. If you need a ride, I may have to ask for a little bit of gas money.
Specific - pay the $3400 off from my credit card.
Measurable - my balance should read $0 by the end of the year
Achievable - with minimal spending on groceries and eating out, I can do it
Realistic - I've been making $400 payments for most of 2011, but I think I've been spending too erroneously to make a dent in my balance.
Timely - A year gives me enough time to not stress too much about it.
I have some other smaller goals that are not coming to me right now, but if I remember them, I'll post them in the future.