So, I’ll be completely honest and tell you that the last two years have really kicked me in the fanny.  Between the financial and emotional strain, I’m tired.  And I’m burned out.

This year, therefore, will be the year of taking care of me.  Let’s face it, if we as moms don’t take care of ourselves, we will have trouble taking care of those important to us–our husbands and kids.  I’ve put myself on auto-pilot for two years, and now it’s time to make myself a priority.

Each year I make a big, ambitious goals list, and for the last two years, I haven’t accomplished them because, well, LIFE.  This year, I’m going to start with a few goals, and add on to the list if I’m achieving the few and if my life is going more smoothly.

Here’s what I want to focus on:

Make Time to Relax

I mainly plan to do this in two significant ways:

Read a book a week.  I was able to do this part of the time last year by instituting a “quiet time” during the day when the girls would listen to audio books, Bookworm would read in his room, and I’d read in the living room.  I plan to reinstate that come January.

Write.  I used to love to write.  I had to write in my journal every night; it was a compulsion.  As I got busier and had more kids, that desire fell by the wayside.  I plan to write in my journal at least twice a week.  I think getting back in this habit is very important for my well-being.

Care for Myself

There are two main ways I plan to do this:

Exercise.  Every year I say I should exercise, and every year I don’t.  However, I am now squarely in middle age, and the time has come where exercise isn’t just something to do to look good; it can improve the quality of my life as I age.  The time to start is now.  Because exercising is not something that comes easily for me and because I resent it (just being honest here! :)), I’ll make my initial goal to exercise two times a week.  As it becomes more routine, I’ll add additional time.

Manage my sugar cravings.  This year, my sugar cravings went out of control, and I gained a significant amount of weight.  I am able to lose weight easily when I give up sugar and follow a Paleo diet, so I know the formula to losing weight for me.  However, I am not at the point yet where I want to banish treats forever.  I want to find a way to enjoy them in moderation.  Any suggestions?  Hopefully, as I learn to eat sweets in moderation, I’ll start to drop the weight again.

Create a Manageable Schedule for Myself

Yikes.  This is the tough one.  Right now, our child with autism goes to therapy four times a week and also has in home OT and speech.  That is a minimum of six therapy appointments a week.  The kids are also getting busier, so there are more and more extracurricular activities they are involved in.  My plan for 2018 is to find a way to balance outside activities and therapy with my need and desire to be home.  I want to have at least two to three days a week where we stay home for the bulk of the day.  That’s the only way I can recharge and also get done the things I need to do.  I can’t just keep running, running, running.  Unfortunately, to do this means that I’ll have to learn to say no, even to good opportunities, and there are many.

Re-establish My Prayer Routine

Before my foot surgery in March, I had a solid prayer routine.  I lost that when I was recovering from surgery, and I never quite got in the groove again.  This year I plan to reestablish my morning and night prayer routine.  I’d love to also make some time to pray during the day, but initially I’ll just work on the morning and night routine.

These are my initial goals for 2018.  Have you made goals for 2018?  I’d love it if you’d share in the comments!