Walking the streets of London in February 2017
Have you started writing your resolutions? Almost 10 years ago, I started a tradition of being more thoughtful about my New Year’s. The holidays was the one time of the year I allowed myself to really think about my resolutions, such as dreams, passion projects, new habits, kicking off bad habits, daily plans, life plans, etc. It was my two-hour “me” time when I would really dive deep into my thoughts and ask myself the things I wanted to make my life meaningful and change to make me a better, healthier and happier person.
The best part of the process was to look back to previous resolutions and to see how far I’ve come. Sometimes, I came far and ticked off a few things and other times I’m reminded of the areas I needed to work on. Even if I hadn’t achieved everything (and there were a lot!), I would be reminded of the goals I could put in effect the approaching year. The process of resolution-writing honored my previous year with thoughtful reflection, while it also opened up my new year to an exciting ideation of possibilities, eventually summarized into a few resolutions.
Year 2017 for me was an immense year of change, especially in my career and personal life. Last April, I joined ASEAN 2017 as their official host and spokesperson. It was an incredible and sometimes challenging experience. This was on top of the work I was already doing at Cluster, my other partyware business Party Pals and the occasional modeling work. My year was a juggling act, largely spent in Ubers zipping around the city to meetings and events and on my phone with hundreds of daily messages and emails.
At the ASEAN International Media Center, August 2017
Moderating press briefings for ASEAN
(highlight: Canadian Prime Minister's Justin Trudeau'sappearance at our briefing!)
Even more immense and life-changing this year, I got engaged to the man of my dreams in 2017! (*gasp) My year was filled with precious memories of our adventures together that made 2017 one to remember in many years to come: eating our way through London (those oysters and uni in Borough Market), snowboarding Japan, dog sleighing and chasing the Northern Lights in Norway, diving with sharks in Palau and spending time with family in New York, San Diego and Manila. I learned this year that, if money was a precious commodity in your younger years, time was an even greater one in your later years. With everything I want to do to make my time fruitful and still have time for my personal life, my goal is to become a better time manager in 2018.
Going out of my comfort zone in the slopes and learning new skills
Snowboarding in Niseko, January 2017
Diving with sharks in Palau has to be one of the most exhilarating experiences in my life!
My thought bubble: holy cow, holy cow, holy cow
Diving through a cave.
(This was major for me as I'm have an intense fear of confined spaces)
On a high after seeing unbelievable schools of fish, manta rays
and the occasional turtle (my favorite!) in Palau.
Now back to resolutions. What does my New Year’s resolution process typically look like? I would categorize them with a few main categories that expressed what was important to me: MIND, BODY and SOUL, followed by sub-categories like FRIENDSHIPS, FINANCES, FUN-TASY PROJECTS aka special projects.
Below are a few preliminary resolutions I have for 2018 (without sub-categories I have yet to fill). Some are quite personal, but I’m sharing with you with the hope you’ll come up with a few of your own too!
MIND – to enrich the mind
- Learn a language, i.e. Chinese or (re-learn) French
- Make time to read the newspaper daily
- Travel more, i.e. Japan, New York, Silk Route Train Express, South Africa
- Dive more (Apo Reef, Tubataha??) and seek conservation projects
- Get in touch with old friends.
BODY – to keep healthy
- Drink less coffee (2 cups per day versus the typical 4 cups per day, more green tea)
- Improve my snowboarding skills
- Hike more
- Sleep before midnight, wake-up by 8AM daily
- Take multivitamins and probiotic pills
SOUL – to keep oneself inspired
- Take more photos
- Create photo albums
- Watch more cultural shows, i.e. Broadway plays, ballets, classical musical performances – especially when traveling
- Visit more museums
- Take breaks from Instagram and enjoy the present.
Happy New Years, all! Cheers!