Ashley's New Year's Resolutions

If I could sum 2013 up into a few words, it would be the year of life lessons. I learned to always trust my gut. I learned to forgive, and I learned to love without expecting anything in return. Most importantly, I learned although the mountains are great, many of life’s lessons are in the valley. For me, these are some of biggest lessons I’ve learned in my 20s – it’s hard that they all came at 29! This year was also hard because I lost my grandmother in November, just a few weeks after her 96th birthday. Although I know death is inevitable, especially at her age, I wasn’t prepared to deal with the grief I felt. Even now, merely writing about her passing brings tears to my eyes. I’ve been blessed that I’ve never lost anyone this close this close to me until now, so even understanding what grief is and learning how to cope was a lesson. [caption id="attachment_65354" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Me, my mom, and my grandmother celebrating my 24th birthday. Me, my mom, and my grandmother celebrating my 24th birthday. We really missed my grandmother over the holidays.[/caption] With all of the challenges of 2013, and all that I’m looking forward to in 2014, (Mainly my wedding. Chris and I finally set a date – May 25th!!!!) I decided to create a few resolutions this year. [caption id="attachment_65353" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Ashley & Chris One of the shots from our engagement photo shoot. The wedding countdown is on![/caption] Here they are: 1. Make myself more of a priority – Over the past four years, I’ve put so many things before myself – grad school, work, family, friends, and even stress. When I got sick this past spring, I hit rock bottom in realizing that I really wasn’t taking care of myself. There were so many things that I wasn’t doing. I wasn’t eating right. I wasn’t praying. I wasn’t resting. I was merely existing like some sort of machine, trying to keep up with every task, deadline, and detail. It seems like things were getting so out of wack in my life, and I wasn’t taking the time to realize it. This year will be different. I’m committing more time to being healthier on the inside and out. I’m meditating again, setting some boundaries in my personal and professional life, and breaking some habits that just weren’t fruitful or productive - like stress eating and stress in general! 2. Get Creative – In my former life I produced, directed, and edited documentaries and corporate video projects. I was creative daily. It feels like I’ve lost a bit of my creative mojo in the past couple of years. Remodeling our bathroom gave me a small taste of the creative life, and I’m hooked on finding more projects that provide me with a creative outlet. I’ll even be writing more, which I’m sure will make Toni happy. 3. Lose Weight – I’m honest with myself, and I realize that I have pounds to lose. The battle for me in definitely in the kitchen since I’m consistently active. So far (week 1) I’ve committed to prepping my meals on Sunday so there are always healthy options for me to grab when I get home. I also have a friend who is going to prep with me on the weekends so we can hold each other accountable. I REALLY need this, so help me stay accountable ladies! 4. Channel my inner body builder – I truly enjoy lifting weights, and I try to lift 2-3 days week. However, I’m looking to step my strength game up and bit, and I have a goal to shed a lot of fat so you can actually see my muscles. A few weeks ago, I downloaded a new lifting plan that I’m really excited about!!! One of my fitness goals is to be able to do 10 unassisted pull ups by the end of the year. I had a chance to lift with my brother last month, and he was surprised that I couldn’t do any. I’m always secretly been jealous of athletic ability, and I tell him that my parent’s gave him all of the muscle genes. So anyways, I’ve taken this as a challenge! Please help keep me accountable ladies! [caption id="attachment_65355" align="aligncenter" width="300"]My older brother, Michael. Literally he has looked like this since we were in elementary school. (insert side eye) My older brother, Michael. Literally he has looked like this since we were in elementary school. (insert side eye)[/caption] 5. Let go of the past – I have a memory like an elephant. Aside from numbers, there is very little that I forget. I think it’s easier said than done to not dwell on past mistakes, heartbreaks, and hurts. The hardest thing for me is to not beat myself up about past mistakes. This is a really bad habit I need to break. I remember the one time in college that I got a “C” I was literally upset about it for over a year. That’s extreme, so I’ve got to stop beating my self up about things. Best of luck to everyone who made a New Year’s Resolutions. May they be the start you need for 2014, and keep you motivated throughout!  



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