2021 Goals: Year of Personal Growth

Walking through Keukenhof Tulip Gardens

Welcome to Season 2 of 2020. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Weโ€™re a month into 2021 and Iโ€™m finally ready to talk about my 2021 goals. Ever since Inauguration Day on January 20, I feel lighter and can go to sleep at night without fearing that something is going horribly wrong with our democracy. This has given me some time to reflect and figure out how I want to spend my next 11 months and live a life with more purpose and intention.

Yes, I know we are far from perfect, but I think the words shared by Amanda Gorman during the inauguration in her poem, The Hill We Climbย helps sum up how Iโ€™m feeling right now:

For there is always light, if only weโ€™re brave enough to see it, if only weโ€™re brave enough to be it.

The idea of being light during darker times really resonate with me. It is a good reminder about the commitment that I made to myself in a previous post about how Iโ€™m learning to cope with my mental health:ย โ€œI want to choose to be light and put a little more positivity into the world.โ€ย 

My Struggles with Adult Dyslexia

Itโ€™s hard to be light and put on a happy face when I feel so lost and broken inside. One of my biggest goals in life is to present myself authentically and not put on a happy face and pretend to be positive when Iโ€™m not feeling that myself. Hence, Shelly in Real Life right? No bullshit here. I donโ€™t think that itโ€™s fair to anyone who reads this blog or comes across my accounts on social to think that everything is ok just because I post a few pretty pictures here and there.

As I continue on a path of finding myself again, I think the biggest thing that Iโ€™m working to overcome is dealing with dyslexia in my every day life. Two years ago, I discovered that I am dyslexic and it completely rocked my world. It opened my eyes to better understand why I am the way I am. As a person with dyslexia, Iโ€™m an extremely visual thinker and โ€œright-brainedโ€. I am terrible with mundane everyday tasks and have terrible perceptions of time. Iโ€™m great at executing short-term projects very quickly, and pulling together disparate ideas and inspiring others to work towards big lofty goals.

There is SO much to unpack here. I feel like a toddler in many ways, just re-learning how to function in life. I am working on practicing more self-love and compassion for myself. Not beating myself up for personal quirks: like ARGH, why am I ALWAYS late to stuff, no matter how hard I try to manage my time? Iโ€™ve been listening to the Truth about Dyslexia podcast and itโ€™s really been helping me explore some of these dyslexia quirks.

Some of these quirks were okay in my 20s, but as a 34 year old, Iโ€™m growing in my career, more life responsibilities are packing on (Iโ€™m terrified at the thought of becoming a mother).ย Itโ€™s become debilitating and a huge source of my inner turmoil and anxiety. Well, itโ€™s time to face these things head on. I feel incredibly blessed that 2020 and 2021 has given me so much down time to spend time by myself without distractions and work to be better.

My 2021 Goals: Year of Personal Growth

In a Crawl, Walk, Run framework, Iโ€™m very much in the Crawl phase of dealing with my adult dyslexia. This is why Iโ€™m calling 2021 my year of personal growth. I want to re-visit some of my old bad habits and goals that have been nagging at me over the past 10 years and address them head on โ€” with a new adult dyslexic lens on it.

P0 Goals, the main priorities

  1. Hit my fitness & weight goal

    This is my #1 goal that Iโ€™m working on. If I do nothing else this year, I am going to figure out how to live a more balanced and fit life. Now I know that weight is a touchy subject, and in the age of body positivity, itโ€™s hard to call myself โ€œoverweightโ€ without recognizing that my current weight might be someoneโ€™s goal weight. That said, Iโ€™ve dealt with my weight and body image issues all my life and I just donโ€™t feel comfortable with where I am right now. I know I can do better and I want to put more focus on that.

      • Use Noom โ€“ Iโ€™ve been using Noom since end of December and Iโ€™m going to stick with this weight loss program until I reach my weight goal. How Noom works: there are daily psychology lessons to help you think about your relationship with food, you get a goal specialist who tracks your progress weekly, you track your calories daily.
      • Complete 12k Minutes on Peloton by End of Year โ€“ last year, I made a goal of โ€œworkout every dayโ€. I think that didnโ€™t give me the flexibility that I need, so Iโ€™m setting a different goal this year. I will reach 12k minutes on Peloton by end of year. That breaks down to 1k mins a month, or 33 minutes a day. This can be anything: spin, strength, yoga, stretching or even meditation. This gives me the ability to build in rest days when I need, and work harder on days when I have the energy.


  2. Deal with my bad messiness // clutter habit

    As a dyslexic person, my physical environment really impacts my mental space. Itโ€™s because Iโ€™m so visual that anything thatโ€™s messy in the outside world is a reflection of my brain. For all my life, Iโ€™ve wanted to live like a zen magazine, but I was never able to achieve it. My bestie can attest that 50% of our time spent during high school was her sitting in my messy room, motivating me to clean it.

      • Finish remodeling spaces โ€“ Last year, I started renovations on my home office, the mud room and our main living room. So, I have to finish remodeling these spaces. Iโ€™ve embraced asking for help where I need it. Iโ€™m continuing to use the Havenly design service to help me figure out how I want the space to look.
      • Marie Kondo the house โ€“ I want every single thing that I own to have a dedicated space. I find that when I know where to put things back, then it becomes way easier for me to actually put stuff away and be neat.


  3. Define my personal style in my 30โ€™s and build a capsule wardrobe

    This is a throwback to 29 year old Shelly who wanted to build a capsule wardrobe. The decision fatigue of shopping for clothes is not fun for me. I love Rent the Runway for the variety it gives me but this year I want to build a wardrobe of a few quality pieces and outfits that I own.

      • Find a styling service โ€“ I like wearing cute clothes, but hate picking it out. Just like Iโ€™ve already started outsourcing some things in my life, I think this is one I should just outsource.


Monthly Challenge and Goals

In addition to these 2021 priorities, Iโ€™m going to do monthly challenges. I think challenges are good for my dyslexic brain. Itโ€™s a good way to keep me focused on ONE thing to do every single day for a month. It helps keep it fresh and motivates me to make incremental progress. The daily action will hopefully help build some better habits to come!

Here are some monthly challenges ideas that I have in mind. Iโ€™ve already completed my January challenge, and will be on my way to start my No Alc Month for February. The rest of the months โ€”ย  Iโ€™ll choose as I go along for some spontaneity and trick my brain into the illusion of choice:

  • 2L Water Daily (Completed in Jan)
  • No Alc Month (February Challenge)
  • Vegetarian Month
  • Daily Workout
  • Daily Yoga
  • Daily Meditation
  • 10K Steps a Day
  • Burpee, squat, swing โ€“ kettlebell ladder (build up to 10-20-30 reps)
  • Decluttering ladder (Get rid of 1 thing per day, build up to 30 things a day)
  • Clean 15 mins a day
  • Organize Photos for 10 mins a day
  • Read for 30 minutes a day

So thatโ€™s it for my 2021 goals! This format is a little bit different than my past goals, so letโ€™s see how it goes! After all, this year is a year of self discovery and growth right? Let me know in the comments below what youโ€™re working on this year and if youโ€™re interested in doing these challenges with me!

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