Rather than make New Year's Resolutions, for the past few years I've adopted the practice of choosing one word for the New Year. For 2016, my word is going to be horizon - I feel like it kept presenting myself to me, so I accepted it! I'm not sure what's on the horizon for me - the future is a blank slate for me to fill with my hopes and dreams for the future. Will I buy a house, write a novel, get a pet, travel the world, or make a new friend this year? I'm making positive changes in my life and habits and hoping that positivity will come back to me. Here are a few favorites making those changes a little easier to adopt.
1. Creative women building each other up - I've kicked off the year with two memoirs by funny women in creative fields (who are not too much older than me), Everyone's Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day (read my review from yesterday here) and Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling. Both share a common theme: boss ladies shouldn't be competing with one another, we should be building each other up - Felicia addresses #Gamergate and Mindy tackles topics from "Who Wore it Best?" magazine columns to Instagram friendships. Two of my favorite essays in Mindy's book are "(Minor) Fame Has Changed Me" and "Things to Bring to My Dinner Party." My favorite passage in Mindy's book comes from the essay "Some Thoughts on Weddings" (she kind of hates them due to the sense that the bride is leaving her behind):
With my friends, the sad truth is that our best "best friend" days are behind us. In college, we used to be able to meet each other in the common area of our off-campus housing, excited about our evening ahead, which consisted of someone making an enormous tureen of pasta and drinking wine from a box while we took turns regaling each other with details of our terrible love lives. Playful arguments would become fits of uncontrollable laughter, and like magic, that experience would get crystallized into a private joke, and the private joke would get boiled down to a simple phrase, which would become a souvenir of the entire experience. For years to come, the phrase alone could uncork hours of renewed laughter. And as everyone knows, the best kind of laughter is laughter born of a shared memory.
2. A routine that helps me glow - When I finally got my long-awaited Clarisonic Mia2, it came with a bottle of Fresh Soy Face Cleanser which I've been using religiously. Not only has my cystic acne improved, but I think my face looks glowy and my skin looks plumper in the mornings when I wake up. In addition to the obvious soy proteins, this cleanser is full of healthy ingredients like cucumber extract and borage seed oil.
3. Fashionable accountability - I've wanted a fitness tracker for a while now, and Mr. Q got me the Jawbone Up2 for Christmas. I liked the Up2 a little better than some other trackers because it includes a smart alarm feature than I can set to wake me up during the lightest part of my sleep cycle! So far, I'm using the Up2 to track my sleep, daily step count and workout lengths, and food (the Up app has a barcode reader feature or the option to type in what I've eaten and search through a database). I also have an idle alert set so that the wristband vibrates when I am still for a set length of time - currently, I've got it set for 45 minutes. I like that the app gives suggestions to help me reach my goals - for example, on Saturday night, we went out to eat, and when I opened the app to log my meal there was a suggestion from Smart Coach to take a 17 minute walk in order to maintain my average step count for the week - a short stroll was easily accomplished by doing some window shopping after dinner, but probably wouldn't have happened without the gentle nudge. I've lost two pounds since Christmas and I think the Up2 has definitely helped!
4. A cozy glow for cold winter nights - Mr. Q's aunt got us the Bath and Body Works Winter 3-wick candle for Christmas and it's my new favorite smell! The main notes are pine, mandarin orange, and "winter woods," and it's perfect for creating a cozy atmosphere in the evenings when we get home from work.
5. An inspiring calendar - If I have to look at something for 12 months, it had better be cute! I chose the Illustrated Bible Verses calendar from Workman Publishing, which I found at Barnes & Noble. If you still need a calendar to get your 2016 organized, Style Me Pretty has a roundup, and Lauren's featuring the best planners for boss babes at Style Elixir.