Contest winner Colleen Viana reflects on 2014 through her vision board
Thinking back to my everyday life in January 2014 is difficult. For one, I can barely remember what I had for breakfast two days ago, so rewinding 12 months is like trying to quote every single line from “Mean Girls” without missing a beat (unless you’re this guy). You know every scene, but piecing together all those small details is more of a challenge than figuring out how the limit does not exist (I was never asked to be in the Mathletes).
Looking at each of the things I pinned on My Single Girl Vision Board earlier this year gives me a sense of those bigger picture moments I had as a 25-year old. I made 45 goals for myself and while most of them were clearly unattainable (like this one), the ones that truly mattered actually came to fruition.
Being the kind of person who says “yes” to almost everything, I tend to fall short when it comes to executing something. (Which can actually be a good goal for myself in 2015…) So while not many of my Pinterest dreams came to life, seeing them on my board helped me put my year into perspective. Here are four of my original goals and what accomplishing them (or not) taught me.
Lesson #1: Things that sounded good at the time may not be what you really want.
1. To physically create a vision board
Let’s just say, Oprah would not be happy with the outcome of this. I admit my laziness often gets in the way of so many things; for example, DIY projects sound fun at first, but I quickly deemed going to a craft store and hauling a 2-foot vision board through the subway arduous (I wasn’t kidding when I said I was lazy).
From this I’m creating a new goal: to avoid the easier routes. Yes, getting laundry picked up and delivered clean to your door is what dreams are made of, but essentially, this adds to my laziness. In 2015, I’m going to commit to doing my own laundry more often, to ordering less take-out, and to doing one artsy thing—just so I can show my 2014 self who’s boss.
27. Seriously… read more. At least 10 books this year.
Another miss. I read two books this year, both of which took me at least 5 months to complete. One can conclude that a) I’m an extremely slow reader or b) I have no interest in reading. Both are true and from this I’ve learned that no matter how hard I try to convince myself that I love reading, I don’t. And there’s nothing wrong with that. Rather than setting myself up for failure (knowing my capacity to read is that of a toddler), I won’t make myself feel bad for not being able to keep up with Catherine’s book reviews. Instead I will try something that makes more sense for me in 2015: audiobooks. Then I can finally be able to say, “I heard it in a book I heard.”
Lesson #2: Not all things happen the way you expect them to.
12. To take a vacation
I always associate vacationing with going abroad, which is why I end up kicking myself every December when I realize I haven’t set foot outside U.S. soil in 5 years. Despite my deepest dreams of sitting poolside in Ibiza on a hot summer day, it just wasn’t meant to be this year. Rather, I did just that in Austin, Texas and had the best time. I also traveled back and forth between California and New York a whopping 6 times in 2014—all of which felt like mini vacations—so from this I learn to let go of preconceived notions and to be grateful for the unexpected outcome.
25. Go somewhere unexpected
To be honest, I have no recollection of pinning this goal. While I took a handful of amazing last-minute weekend trips outside Manhattan, I do believe that the “somewhere” I referenced lies beyond an actual place. This was one of the most valuable lessons I learned this past year as many things began to change in my life, especially with my career.
Going somewhere unexpected can mean realizing where you want to be living or where you want your mind to be spiritually. I’ll continue carrying this goal into 2015, knowing that places don’t have to be somewhere physical nor what society expects of you. In the end, it’s all about what is right for you.
Did you set goals for yourself in 2014? How did you fare?