2023 Goals/Plans/Aspirations

If you haven’t already read it, I posted my goals reflections and general reflections for 2022 on Saturday. That will be the last planned Saturday post for a while, I’ve also already posted my blog plans and updates for 2023, including that I am full-time dropping down to five posts a week rather than six. But as I said in Saturday’s post 2022 felt a bit stagnant, but this year I am much more concrete with my goals. I am going to be much more data-based this year. I have spreadsheets prepped and ready to be filled in with budgets, habit trackers, spending trackers, all of it. Data doesn’t lie. Statistic can, because it’s the interpretation of the data, but the raw data tell no tales.

The cover image of this post is my vision board for the year. This year I picked some words to focus on as well: consistency, connection, and freedom. A friend of mine once shared a quote with me that said “Self-confidence is keeping promises to yourself” or something very like that. That’s where the consistency comes from, I want to be consistent in the way I do things for myself, because I am very consistent and dependable to other people, but I don’t know if I would say that about myself. Connection is a reaction to the pandemic, I want to see my friends and family more and make more friends. Freedom is mostly financially motivated.

Financial Goals:

This year financial goals is moving to the top of the post as they are my most important goals this year. A lot of them are repeat goals absolutely, but I have been allowing my financial status to hold me back from my other goals and no more. This is the end of that, I want to have the freedom to apply for whatever job I want and not be worried about how I will move there, to be able to fix my car no matter what happens, to be able to travel whenever the opportunity comes, or God forbid, to be able to get to Ireland to see my grandparents should anything happen to them. They are getting up there in age and I’m starting to be one of a few of my friends that still have grandparents, so it’s the reality of time.

I also have several weddings this year and with where I live they will all require travel, so I want to be prepared for the flights, hotels, dresses, and gifts.

  • Pay of credit card debt and pay off balance in full each month. Thanks to my spreadsheets I now know that I have about $400 in bills that go on my credit card each month. So, if most months I can keep my credit card charges to exclusively my bills and I put $1000 each month (minimum) then my balance should be going down by $600 each month, then it should be paid off by September. Obviously, there will be other charges, I know I will have hotels and flights this year for these weddings, however if I budget appropriately for these events then I should be able to pay them off as soon as I put them on the card.
  • Save up a $1000 emergency fund. I have been putting all of my work travel expense claim refunds into my emergency fund savings account and I think I am about four work trips away from this goal. And I have a minimum of five work trips upcoming in the first couple months of the year so this should be met by February.
  • Save up a $5000 moving fund. This goes into my freedom goal, this is what I think I will need to relocate for a new job. This includes first and last months rent (estimated $1500/month) and $2000 in moving expenses (UHaul, gifts for helpers, hotel if more than a day’s drive away, deposits for utilities, etc). This is the minimum I want to have to be able to relocate.
  • Save up a $7000 travel fund. I have always wanted to do a huge 30th birthday trip, however, with all these weddings I don’t think it will be able to happen this year. So I’m going to take the time to save up even more money and go next year.

In terms of the other items to budget for this year, this is what I have thought of:

  • $600/friend wedding: estimating about $150 per night for hotel room, about $200 for flights, and about $100 for a gift. This does not include the drive from Sioux Lookout to Thunder Bay to catch the flight, airport parking, nor if I want to buy a new outfit.
  • $1000 for my sister’s wedding: estimating the drive from Sioux Lookout to where she is getting married, I would like to drive and have flexibility and the ability to bring stuff down from my apartment to my parents’ (the Christmas tree I borrowed, the glass jars I’ve been collecting because we can’t recycle them in Sioux Lookout), pitch into the accommodations my family is planning to get, an outfit, and a gift.
  • $2500 for my cousin’s wedding: estimating the flight from Thunder Bay to Ireland, drive to Thunder Bay, airport parking, bus or train to Northern Ireland, outfit and hat (women wear hats to weddings in Ireland), gift. I haven’t looked into car rental in Ireland yet, nor how long I would be there, so this is a minimum.

So in total I’m looking at nearly $5000 in expenses for other people’s weddings this year. I’m happy to, but it’s a lot when you add it up.

Travel Goals:

My travel goals are much more concrete this year, thanks to all the weddings and concert tickets I have already bought.

So, firstly, I am going to be in Toronto for New Year’s, this trip is focused on seeing friends from university and grad school.

In February I am going to Minneapolis for the Maggie Rogers concert. I haven’t booked much yet, but I will share where I stay and such afterwards.

Then July is my cousin’s wedding in Ireland and I’m going to focus on seeing family, with maybe a hop over to England to see some cousins that live over there now.

Then in August is one of my friend’s weddings in Toronto, September is my sister’s wedding in a small town north of Toronto, and October over Thanksgiving weekend, I’m not exactly sure where but somewhere in Southern Ontario.

Food/exercise Goals:

This section is mostly a continuation of last year, continuing to improve my relationship with food and exercise. I think I was really successful with this last year and now I want to move a bit more forward into gentle nutrition and exercise. I would like to workout a bit more regularly throughout the year. I’m thinking I would like to workout 150/365 days of the year, it’s about 40% of the year which feels very flexible and doable.

Career Goals:

My career goals are mostly focused on the fact that I don’t like where I live. I am wondering if I would like my next job to be fully remote so that I could travel while working and spend a few months in each place, or at least get out of Canada for the winter. But I am torn between wanting to be settled in a city and wanting to be nomadic and test drive a few different places I think I may like to live.

So in short, I am planning on re-entering the job hunt. I did just start a new position at my current organization and don’t foresee myself really jumping into it until I have at least six months in that role under my belt. So this is more of a second-half of the year goal. I am also going to be using this to see if I like emergency management or if I would like to pivot back to health promotion.

Personal Development Goals:

  • Take French classes.
  • Continue my daily DuoLingo use for Spanish.
  • Work on my procrastination habit. I’m not certain exactly how to go about this, but it is something I really want to combat.

Fun/Weird Goals:

  • Maintain my 2023 Tracking Spreadsheets.
  • Learn to finish needlepoint ornaments and stand-ups, send my needlepoint that I would like to have professionally finished.
  • Stitch my stash, another needlepoint goal.
  • Not get takeout coffee unless I have reusable mug with me. I was very good at this before the pandemic but as a side-effect of the pandemic I fell out of the habit and now need to get back into it.

I feel like I’ve forgotten something in the fun/weird category, but I’m really looking forward to how tangible my goals feel this year and I feel a bit more like we have some control again over the world despite COVID-19 still doing it’s thing, and wars still happening, it just feels like it’s not so intense anymore. Or I’m just so burnt out by current events that dramatic events no longer feel that way, who knows!

Do you have any goals you want to share?


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