12 04 2014.

thursday thoughts: resolutions & goal setting


We’re here – we’ve arrived at the last month in 2014. I’ll be doing a reflections post soon, but before I do, I wanted to touch on something that I personally love to do. I know many people have mixed feelings about this – but I’m going to talk about it regardless: setting New Year’s resolutions and goals.

A lot of people see resolutions as false promises, opportunities to disappoint yourself or just short-term distractions from your lifelong goals. I, however, love setting goals.

Last New Year’s Eve, Darren and I got together to discuss what our goals were for 2014. This blog actually came about as a resolution of mine – I had been wanting a creative outlet for all of my hobbies (originally to share recipes) so I created this! My goal to lose weight was once a resolution that eventually became a lifestyle choice. I’m really really good at meeting goals that I set for myself. But here’s the thing. I’m not some magical human being who is capable of doing anything and everything. I’m just good at setting realistic, tangible goals. Here are my tips for setting resolutions and goals that you can and will accomplish.

  • As I stated before, set tangible goals. When setting goals, you need to be specific. Avoid setting goals like “get to the gym more often” or “eat healthier” – as true or desired as those goals may be, they aren’t specific enough to actually yield results. It’s easy to fall off the bandwagon when your goals allow for loopholes. Well, I went to the gym 4 times all last year. I’ve gone 5 times this year so far, so I’m good! Be more specific. “Get to the gym 3 times a week” or “have a green smoothie every morning for breakfast and go meatless during the weekdays.” Those are tangible goals that you can meet. If at all possible, try to give yourself a deadline as well. I will do this by then. That way you can “chip away” at something over time, rather than let it sit or forget about it!
  • Set goals that you fully intend to accomplish. I can’t tell you how many times I hear goals that sound great at the start, but aren’t goals that anyone intends to keep. What do I mean by that? Don’t set goals just because they look good on paper or for the sake of having a goal. You have to want it.
  • Don’t set too many goals. Are you a list-maker? I’m a list-maker. The longer the list, the better. Having lots of goals can be a good thing, but when setting big goals for the year, it can be stressful to look at a long list and not know where to begin. Set just a few valuable goals. If you complete them, set a few more! Just don’t overwhelm yourself trying to tackle too many things at once. Goal-setting should be exciting, not stressful!
  • Tell others about your goals. If you verbalize it, you’re more likely to stick with it. Others can keep you accountable for these goals – and no one likes to fail! It’s so satisfying when a friend checks in on you and you can tell them about your progress.
  • Make sure that your goal is realistic. Let’s be honest. Chances are, you’re not going to be able to achieve your goals right away. Most goals will take a lot of time and effort to meet. Instead of putting a large goal on the list (ie. move to Boston), break it up into smaller goals that will assist you in achieving the big one (ie. apply for jobs in Boston, organize belongings for yard sale, etc).

Basically, you have to assume that you’re going to figure a way out of these goals. If you really want to be successful, think of your goal sheet as a contract. Make it as specific as possible – don’t allow yourself to find loopholes or make excuses.

Because I’m a big believer in goals, I figured I’d start to set some of my own as well.

My Goals for 2015

  1. Run the 2015 Sugarloaf Marathon
    Probably my biggest goal of 2015. I’m ready for this. Yes, I’m committing to training. No, I will not make excuses. Sugarloaf 2015 – here I come!
  2. Do a multi-day hike
    I wish I could be more specific with this one at this point, but ideally I’d be doing this over the summer. I’d love do a multi-day hike on Old Speck or a Presidential Traverse. That being said, I have done a few multi-days before – one being on Mt. Katahdin. I’d like to experience it again as an adult. I think I’m likely to appreciate it more and I’ll also be able to accomplish more; get more miles in.
  3. Publish my cookbook
    This has been a goal in the back of my head for a few years now. Every December, I’m reminded that I really wanted to have a cookbook of all of my recipes to gift to family members and friends. While I do have a particular theme in mind, I’m hoping that this future (2015) book can be my segue into an even more future goal of owning my own bakery. More on this later because it’s worth a whole post, not just a paragraph.
  4. Revamp my website
    This website. Not my professional portfolio website. While I love this space to pieces, I think it’s time to give it a little bit more sparkle and presence. The minimalism was intentional at first, as I wanted all of the attention on my photos and writing with few distractions. I’m starting to think that the blog is taking off in a slightly different (natural) direction than I had expected and it needs a face to reflect that!


  1. Peggy Flynn

    You are amazing. Glad I got to work with you.

  2. You are an amazing young woman Kelsey Raymond. This Aunt is so very proud of you for all of your accomplishments – and I so enjoy reading your blog – you are an inspiration. I wish I had your determination and organizing skills. I am so scattered – everything always seems to come together but it is never without ALOT of stress. KUDOS to you for meeting your 2014 goals and for setting a new set to work towards in 2015, They look quite remarkable but I am sure you will meet everyone of them – and then most likely – if I know you – you will add a few more to contemplate. You go girl! I love you!

    • Kelsey @ Spice & Dice

      I hope you know that I’m proud of you as well – and every time I get to visit your spa is a treat. You’ve done so much to it; I’m amazed. You’ve transformed that house into the most cozy, welcoming and beautiful place. Love you Mona!

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