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New Year’s Resolutions Revisited, 2015

elvis-leaningI’ve been doing this for years… making resolutions at the beginning of the year and reviewing them at the end. So here it goes… The official review of my 2015 resolutions.

1. Create Experiences. Have Adventures. Make Memories.

I really want to say SUCCESS! But it feels a little bit more like a fail to me. I spent 2015 pregnant and working my ass off. Jimmy was in that crazy stage where taking him out was just an adventure in itself. Heck, just yesterday Lisa and I attempted to take the boys to the Aquarium. As we approached the Aquarium, Jimmy let loose a torrent of vomit. We spent the next 15 minutes in the parking lot of a CVS (in beautiful downtown Camden) scraping throw up from every crevice. This is probably the fourth time the vomit volcano has erupted in the car.

With that said, we did do some fun things. We went to Johnson’s Corner Farm a bunch of times. We went down the shore a couple times.

The best memory we had was Jed’s birth. I stopped trying to be a Wonder Woman and I opted for an epidural. Unlike Jimmy’s birth which was truly a nightmare, Jed’s was absolutely lovely. The only expletive that escaped my lips was when the nurse weighed him and announced, “10 pounds even!”

2. Stretch and Move

This one had a few successes. Through the spring and summer months, Eddie and I walked Jimmy around the neighborhood in his little push around plastic car. Then once Jed arrived, I walked the two of them around the neighborhood a couple times in our double stroller. It didn’t last long because mornings became painful to me because of the sleepless nights. Jimmy’s naptime stretched into the time we’d walk.

I should be able to find time to just get on the floor and stretch… but I didn’t.

FAIL

3. Drink only on weekends.
FAIL. I really need to find another way to unwind.

4. Read books, Ditch Facebook
Partial Success. I still spend more time than I would prefer on Facebook but I did read a bunch of books– more books than I read in the past 10 years combined. This is a resolution that I need to keep focussed on. I didn’t magically become a great reader but I do feel like I made progress.

5. Think like Walter Bond
Partial Success. I don’t think achieving a winner’s mindset is something that you set out to do and easily achieve in a one stop type of way. I believe I made some good progress but I am not where I need to be.

So?

2015 was another great year. I lived the life I always wanted. Business owner, wife, mother. Even though my resolutions aren’t all resounding successes, I am happy. I hope 2016 is just a wonderful!

New Year’s Resolutions 2015

It’s wonderful to be in a good place. For years I struggled and for years I lived a life that wasn’t anything close to what I wanted to be living. Finally, I am where I always wanted to be. And it’s scary because there’s this lurking feeling that everything could just go away. As wonderful as life is, it feels tethered to me by a very thin thread.

And now I cast my thoughts ahead to the new year before me. What do I want to be? What do I want to do? What do I want to accomplish?

It was 2 years ago, I went through my past resolutions and found to my utter amazement that for the last decade all my resolutions were pretty much the same. I wonder if it was that realization that helped me take control and steer my life onto course? Perhaps. Maybe I was just ready for it.

The last few weeks I’ve been thinking about resolutions for 2015. This is what I came up with:

1. Create Experiences. Have Adventures. Make Memories.
I look back to when I was a little girl and it was the crazy adventures that stick out and make me smile. My father was always taking us on wild goose chases. We didn’t just go out for pizza, we dedicated ourselves to finding the best pizza. It wasn’t just a vacation to Nashville, we went searching for Dolly Parton. And that Christmas I asked for snow? My dad got us in the car and we drove north until we hit snow. I want to create those crazy experiences for Jimmy, Emily and Meghan. I want to be able to forget work, forget business, and have fun as a family. I want to create memories. And it’s not about traveling to exotic locations. We don’t have to go far. We just need to get out and do something different.

2. Stretch and Move
I’m 40. I can’t believe it either. My body doesn’t feel superhuman anymore. I am constantly tired. And I recently purchased the Note 4 and it comes with a pedometer built in… and apparently according to this pedometer, I might as well be an invalid. I simply don’t move enough.

I can’t go to the gym. There’s simply not enough time in the day. The one thing I can do is stretch and take walks. In the morning, get on the floor and stretch out. At noon, go for a quick walk. After dinner, take a walk. It’s possible. I can do it.

3. Drink only on weekends.
I was never a drinker. I could go weeks without having an alcoholic beverage. It didn’t call me. But then my dad died and I found myself alone and I sought solace in episodes of La Femme Nikita and bottles of 3 Buck Chuck. I wasn’t a drunk and I rarely got drunk but I drank for comfort and relaxation and I realize now it wasn’t healthy. Even after life got better for me, I continued to drink a glass of red wine at night. But it wasn’t just a glass. It was a couple glasses. I married an Irishmen and together we finish a bottle of wine a night. I am tired of it. It’s added calories I don’t need. It gets me tired before I really should be tired. It makes me feel swollen. I am done with it. I am not saying I will never drink again but I would like to have days pass by where I don’t drink a thing. I also don’t want our girls to think that drinking is normal and something that all adults do.

I have decided to cut back on my drinking. No more wine or beer during the week and only in moderation on the weekends.

4. Read books, Ditch Facebook
I made this resolution last year but didn’t keep it. Perhaps this year I will do better. I want to read books. I want to stop endlessly scrolling down the newsfeed on Facebook, getting nothing in return for my time and energy. I want to read books about successful people, awesome business concepts, new ways of thinking about the world, personal development, etc… I want to know that at the end of the day, I am a little smarter than I was the day before.

Jeden Tag ein bisschen besser

5. Think like Walter Bond
I feel like I have one more resolution inside of me. It’s somewhat nebulous. Two years ago I saw Walter Bond speak. It was a moving experience.

Here are just a few of his soundbites I recorded:

  • All ‘buts’ stink
  • Get bigger stronger faster. Commit to change. And believe! Change your clients’ perspective.
  • To be successful… Carve out a niche! And own it! What is your niche? Do you own it?
  • Research people! Find inside connections. Make people feel important.
  • Always look like success! Always look like money! People place value on you.
  • Do you brighten up a room when you enter. .. or when you leave?
  • Do people like you? LIKEABILITY is the biggest secret! It’s not your content, it’s your smile
  • Stop selling products, start selling hopes and dreams!
  • Want to make more money? Change your friends. Your salary is the average of your 5 closest friends
  • Making money is easy!
  • To be successful in business, turn off the news!

Ever since I heard him speak, his words ring in my ears and I am trying to commit the concepts into my daily life. It’s not nearly as easy as one would suspect. But I am trying and I suppose that’s what this resolution is about– to stop trying and just do it already.

2015

And that it’s for 2015…. 5 resolutions for change. I can do it.

New Year’s Resolutions 2014

Presley And DateNot sure if it’s possible to top year 2013. In one year, I met my soul mate, got married, and gave birth to a baby boy. I also published the second edition of my book and watched my business grow and expand.

Believe me, it’s not all ice cream and sunshine. I am still struggling to sell my condo and Eddie and I are living in less than ideal conditions… but we are happy and I know that soon enough we will find someone who wants my place and from that equity we will buy a beautiful home for us to live.

Looking ahead to 2014, there are things I want to work on and improve.

Here are my resolutions for 2014.

2014 New Year’s Resolutions

1. Stop investing so much time into Facebook. Instead, read more books.

I have quite a library of books on Kindle that I haven’t read. Instead of reading books, I scroll through my Facebook newsfeed, wasting time. No more! I want to read books and actually have a intellectual return on my time investment.

2. Get this new house livable OR find a new house to buy

Ed was in the process of buying this house during the first few weeks of us dating. The house was a perfect size for him and his daughters. But that was okay… we were just dating and I had my own place to live. But then I became pregnant and suddenly it’s not just him and his daughters but now me and Jimmy too. It’s cramped and the appliances are old. In some ways I love the Midcentury Modernness of the house. I queue up Frank Sinatra on the stereo and not only am I listening to the 50’s and 60’s but I’m living in it too. In other ways, I just want a kitchen and bathroom that works and a closet of my own.

And so my resolution is to SELL MY CONDO AND THEN either find a way to make this house comfortable but if that is not possible, we need to find a new house that is comfortable. That means I need to hire an architect and see what it would take to renovate this place while keeping my eye on the real estate listings.

3. In terms of work, I want to spend as much time with Jimmy as possible.

I want to do more writing, videos, and speaking engagements and less day to day management of the business and less low paying consulting work. I also want more positive publicity… like appearing on the Today Show or CBS News Sunday Morning. Lastly, I want to keep growing this business. I want to add value, educate, and inspire!

4. Get back to my old size.

Pregnancy wasn’t too kind to my body. I need to lose 30 pounds. I want to get back to my old size and shape so I can wear my old clothes and feel good about myself.

And so that’s it. As long as I keep these goals front and center, it should be pretty easy to accomplish them… right?

New Year’s Resolutions 2013

Today's the day to forgive whomever we haven't forgiven, and ask forgiveness of whomever we know we should ask it of. It's the only way to truly start over...Each year I make a number of resolutions and then at the end of the year I see how I did. Normally I don’t do so well. Last year, I kicked ass. In anticipation of the new year, I’ve spent the last few weeks thinking about new resolutions… this is what I came up with for 2013…

New Year’s Resolutions for 2013

1. Meet men and date
I am not going to lie. I’ve been lonely. I’d like to find a mate. In order to find a mate, I need to get out and intersect with more people. And so, there’s a few things I’d like to do to increase my chances of colliding with a kind, decent, normal man:

  • Although I don’t need to go to networking events for my business like I once did… I am going to get back into going. Mingling with business owners is a good thing.
  • I am going to spend more time alone at Starbucks. Perhaps on Friday afternoons, I’ll take my new Lenovo Twist and write as I sip a Latte.
  • I recognize that the chance of me finding a nice man on eHarmony is not great but it’s better than not being on it. I am going to stay on at least one dating site and take a wait and see approach. If someone awesome reaches out… that’s great.
  • I am also going to go to the gym regularly
  • I will continue to clear space in my home so there’s room for a man.
  • I will forgive Pookie Bear/Rob and move past the hurt feelings. I admit that I have spent an awful lot of time reliving the “too little, too late” proposal and his abandonment and lies right after my dad died. How can I move on to the next chapter of my life when I keep re-reading the old one? Marianne Williamson recently posted on Facebook, “Think of one person who you are tempted for any reason to withhold love from, and pray for their happiness. In that moment your pain will stop.” She also posted, “Today’s the day to forgive whomever we haven’t forgiven… It’s the only way to truly start over.” The answer is clear. I know what I need to do.
  • Lastly, I need to work on being a woman that men want to date. I realize that I am quite protective on that first date… protective and hesitant and I think that turns men off. I need to open up, loosen up, smile, laugh, ask questions, and seem genuinely interested in him.

2. Exercise and eat healthy
Go to the gym at least twice a week. Get out of the house and take walks. Swing that kettle bell. Eat good, healthy food. Perhaps even trade some of that red wine for green tea.

3. Travel
Every freaking year I list travel as a resolution. I’d like to get to the point where it’s just a natural part of who I am and not something that I have to force myself to accomplish. Regardless, I’d like to visit Sedona, Winnipeg, Portland, Seattle, Vancouver, Greece, Italy, and other places.

4. Make House Comfortable
I have made HUGE strides in making my house livable and comfortable. For years I did nothing to my home. I pretty much let if fall down around me. My thought was that Pookie Bear and I would get married and move to a different place so why bother keeping this one up? Plus, I am not one of those decorator types. It seems silly spending time picking out pillows and lamps when we’re just plummeting through space on a huge rock. With that said, I do recognize that my mood is much more pleasant when I am in a nicely decorated, clean space. And so with that in mind, I plan on keeping Alba coming in every other week to clean. I will also get the seams and cracks in the living room fixed and the walls painted. I will make my bedroom an area for relaxation and calm. It’s time to make it into an adult bedroom. Also, I’d really like to work on my kitchen: new floors, fix cabinets, improve lighting, new counter, etc…

5. Keep my business forging ahead
My business is what provides me with independence and the ability to live on my own terms. I have a number of goals for this upcoming year. I want to organize my own seminars. I want to do a monthly Google Hangout, interview/training series. I want to have a real email marketing strategy. I want to produce at least one new vlog a week. I must take my pdf eBooks and convert them to Kindle and start selling them on Amazon. I will amplify my reach… more twitter followers, more LinkedIn connections, better presence on G+, blah blah I also need to create more products. I want more PAID speaking engagements. Ultimately, 2o13 is the year where I will cement myself as an expert in my field and I will help as many people as I can and truly make a difference in their lives.

There’s a lot of resolutions within resolutions here. I feel good though. These are all items that I’ve been moving toward and I have put quite a bit of work into them already. One of the reasons why I did so good on last year’s resolutions is because I kept revisiting them. I printed them up on a piece of paper and I kept it right by my desk. It’s easier to accomplish things when you are often reminded of what you need to accomplish. And so I will print these resolutions out and keep them by my desk.

Considering all the crap that occurred in 2010, 2011 was an awesome year. Prior to my dad dying, I would every now and then think of what it would be like to lose my mom or dad or both of them. The thought of life without them struck fear in my heart. I truly thought I wouldn’t be able to live without them. With my dad gone, I realize now that you have no choice but to go on. It’s not the same without him. I miss him so much but each day gets a little easier. And so I will keep on keepin’ on. What else can you do?

Do you have any resolutions?

A New Year is Coming

Elvis celebratesSpent Christmas in Chicago. We ate lots of food. We drank tons of wine and martinis. We watched a bunch of movies. And then we went home. It was pretty awesome.

Right now I am snowed in. I keep thinking of shoveling myself out and going to the grocery store. Or doing work. Or working on the 2nd edition of my book. Except instead I pour another glass of wine, peruse gray paint samples, watch more Elvis, and wonder what would make me happy.

It’s a good thing I don’t have any peppermint ice cream in the house because it would be consumed quickly.

I’ve been thinking of my New Year’s Resolutions… last year’s and the ones for this new year coming up.

A Review of My Resolutions for 2012: How I Did


1. Go ‘Poo Free
SUCCESS! I spent 3 months using baking soda and vinegar as my “shampoo.” My hair got gross and it never got better. It was right around the three month point, my mother and sister organized an intervention. They ganged up on me and told me that my hair was disgusting and I needed to go back to shampooing. And so I did. I am stating this resolution was a success because I gave it a good go, it just wasn’t for me.

2. Write More, Create More, Productize Knowledge
SUCCESS! I hired 3 people to help me with my business. This gave me the ability to work ON the business rather than IN the business. Suddenly I had time to blog and create. In fact, I created a bunch of products that I am selling on my other Website.

3. Join Toastmasters OR find other ways to improve public speaking
SEMI SUCCESS! I didn’t join Toastmasters but I was admitted into the National Speaker’s Association. I speak an awful lot and I video record myself and watch the recording critically. Each time I go in front of an audience I try to improve. I feel like I am getting better… I realize I need to do more but I feel good about what I’ve accomplished.

4. Stop eating shit sandwiches
SUCCESS! I may come across as a bitch but I am definitely not allowing anyone to feed me shit sandwiches.

5. Keep house clean & simplify possessions
SUCCESS! I realized that I am absolutely incapable of keeping my house clean and so rather than forcing the issue, I hired Alba, a very nice woman, to clean my house every two weeks. My house is now clean and I am a lot more happy.

In terms of simplifying possessions, I cleaned out my closets of clothes that I was clinging to because of memories and cheapness. I am still simplifying but I have come a long way since last January. Check this out!

Simplification

Yep! All 5 bags were donated to the Salvation Army! In addition to getting rid of clothes, I’ve been purging things that remind me of Pookie Bear. It took me a very long time to realize that items in my house were reminding me of him and thus causing me pain. It’s getting easier to exorcize him from my thoughts as I remove him from my daily life… even if it’s just silly objects.

6. Travel More
SUCCESS! I traveled to Europe and toured Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Austria. I also spent time in Baltimore and Chicago.

7. Live more, work less: Get better understanding of finances.
SUCCESS! Hiring people has been such a blessing for me. I have time to breathe and do things other than work. I also hired a bookkeeper and he’s been such an enormous help. I still need to do more but again, it’s a huge improvement over where I was last year.

8. Become an early riser
FAILURE with some spots of SUCCESS! Yeah, this comes and goes. Sometimes I awake at 6. Other times I awake at 7. And there are times I will get up at 8. I did come to a realization about why I am prone to sleeping past 6. My father always woke up at 6am. I thought it was because he was disciplined but the more I think about it, the more I think he awoke early because it was his alone time. My entire day is my alone time. I don’t need to get up early for quiet solitude… I have that all the time. Still, I want to be more productive so I will continue to strive to wake up at 6 and maybe eventually I’ll start doing it. Perhaps if I bring someone into my life, I will want to wake up at 6am so I have some alone time.

9. Amplify my business message online
Some SUCCESS! My LinkedIn Group is almost at 2,000 members. I have almost 10,000 LinkedIn connections. Hooray! My Twitter followers are over 1,000 but I wanted to get it over 5,000. I use G+ but I don’t seem to be making much headway with it. On the other hand, my email list is almost at 3,000 which is freaking awesome in my book. I am getting there.

10. I want to better understand how I want the story of my life to turn out
SUCCESS: I know that I want to create. I want to help people. I want the freedom to live on my own terms. I want to love and be loved.

So all in all, I’d say my 2012 Resolutions were a resounding success.

I look back to where I was last year… I was devastated and lost. In twelve months, I have regrouped and got back on track. I feel good about next year. Now I need to come up with new resolutions. That’ll come soon.

Remembrance of 2009 and my 2010 Resolutions

Each year I review past resolutions to see how I did and post new resolutions for the upcoming year. Last year I reviewed my 2008 resolutions but didn’t post much in terms of resolutions for 2009. Although I did find this:

And what about my Zeitgeist for 2008? I dunno. I rallied behind Dr Paul and I tried to keep Rosemont from going co-ed. I worried about the bailouts and I cursed Obama and McCain. I think rather than worrying about the past I am just going to work on making 2009 a better year.

That was as close to a resolution that I could find. How did I do? Did I make 2009 a better year? All I can say is that 2009 was a totally different year for me than any other. I was displaced and drifting when it began. With lackluster determination I found a job that was horrific.

I found myself displaced again in July. Instead of looking for another job I decided to start my own business. I’ve been told that I am happier and calmer than ever. I feel better. But I am not stress free. I want this business of mine to succeed. I want to be independent. At one time I wanted independence from my family. I wanted to support myself. Now it’s independence from THE MAN, I crave. And I will achieve it.

In between displacement, employment hell, displacement, and trying to start a business, I traveled a bit. I saw Boston and Myrtle Beach, I chartered a sailboat in Rockhall, MD, rafted the Lehigh River and hiked Bushkill Falls. I went to a couple concerts: The Red Elvises, David Cassidy, Fake BeeGees, The Philly Funk Authority, The Neanderthals and The Rivers Rockabilly Trio.

I got some work done on my home: new garage door, new shower, two new windows, new door locks, new dining room buffet, new master plumbing valve, and I finally splurged on an EXPEDIT bookcase to hold my vinyl records. I made some pretty awesome purchases: 42 inch flat screen television, vunow pod, a HTC Hero android phone and a kickass new computer! I joined LA Fitness and started working out regularly. And I became quite the Zoomba queen! Supernaturally, I saw Jesus in my eye.

In March my Websites got hacked and although I was able to clean it up, my traffic numbers have yet to recover. I fired a gun for the first time in my life. I monetized Donnaville and made less than 75.00 for doing so. I spent a day with the 2004 Libertarian Presidential Candidate, Michael Badnarik and I shook Ron Paul’s hand at the Campaign for Liberty Regional Meeting. I spent an incredible couple days with my cousins Sharon, Sarah, Ben and Rob in New York City and had the time of my life! We rode a speedboat on the Hudson, broke into the Plaza and had a carriage ride!

I saw my sister attain her dream of being a teacher and having her own classroom and helping kids with learning disabilities. I’ve also seen her make some huge strides just in the last week that make me want to weep in happiness. My old Geocities site was euthanized but in happier news I moved Donnaville to Thesis. I rode the El Toro roller coaster at Six Flags Great Adventure with my father on my 35th birthday, (and what a blast that day was!).

I went Swing Dancing and got asked to dance by a man who not only looked like but danced like Johnny Castle! I got photographic credit AND special thanks on a music CD that I believe will attain some level of success or at least notoriety in the near future. And most importantly, I took my first steps towards being my own boss and having my own business.

I guess 2009 wasn’t such a bad year after all.

My best entry of 2009? This one.

Donna’s Resolutions for 2010


Independent Business Success
2009 saw me start my own business. 2010 will be the year that I become totally independent. My business will be enough to support me. I will make enough money from it to live comfortably and save for the future. I will work with people and businesses I like. I will work on projects that I believe in. I will be comfortable with my decisions. I will love what I do.

Stay Calm, Have Fun, Enjoy Life
No need to get worked up over silly things. Stay calm and enjoy your life. Get out. Push away from the computer. Have fun! Spend time with friends and family. Pet Bo.

Travel More
I will explore. I will go places I haven’t been. I will see different places and meet new people.

eBook
I will write an eBook. I have a subject in mind, just gotta sit down and do it.

Course on Graphic Design/Website Design
I will take a class or two and really solidify my knowledge on these subjects.

Artistic Endeavors
I will draw, sketch and paint more. I will sing. I will write. I will go to concerts. I will express myself creatively.

Invest
Keep aware of my money and invest wisely.

Exercise, Be Fit, Feel Good
Last year I began exercising and it did me a world of good. I will continue to exercise and eat right.

Law of Attraction
I’ve decided to really use the Law of Attraction. I will wallow in positivity. I will attract my dreams. I will vibrate at a high, healthy frequency.


Thanks for sticking with me on this entry. It was extremely self-indulgent, sue me. How did YOU do in 2009? I know it was a hard year for many of you but I hope looking back you can find a lot of positive.

Okay 2010! WHADDAYA GOT? I am ready for you! C’mon, let’s get to it!

Whaddya got, 2010?