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My Goals for 2019

One of my favorite things of the beginning of the year is to reflect on the past year and set goals for the upcoming year.

(Did you read my post on how I did on my 2018 goals yet? If not, read it here.)

I actually start contemplating goals for the new year in November, but I start by looking back over the past 10+ months and asking myself what worked, what didn’t work, what I learned, and areas I want to grow in. I also choose a word for the year to make my focus in the new year.

It usually takes me at least 4-6 weeks of reflection to come up with my new list of goals for the new year and it’s something I carefully and prayerfully contemplate in light of my word for the year.

This year, my word for 2019 actually came to me in October. And it completely surprised me! In fact, it seemed so different than what I expected that I sat on it for 4 weeks hoping another word would surface.

But it didn’t. Instead, the word became more and more clear that it was the right word for me.

I usually tell you my word for the year first before I share my goals, but this year, I decided to share my goals first and then will share my Word for the Year on January 3, 2019. (But you’re free to guess my word if you have any ideas after reading my post!)

A Big Perspective Shift

I wrote this on Instagram this morning and wanted to share it here, too:

I’ve changed a lot this past year. I didn’t realize just how profound the change was until I sat down to review my goals for 2018 and how I did on them.

And I realized that I fell short and didn’t complete a lot of the goals — and I was totally okay with that!!

It’s not because I’ve grown lazy (though I have gotten into a rut in some areas and I want to work on that in 2019!), but it’s because I’ve really started to see life through different eyes.

The business didn’t grow this year (income-wise), and I am totally okay with that. Why? Because I realize that it makes enough — enough to pay our bills, to put money in savings, to give to causes we believe in, and to pay my team. I don’t need to hustle hard to take it to the next level because I’m honestly really happy and fulfilled with where it is.

In addition, it affords me the flexibility to be available to my kids and Jesse. If I were to try to work a bunch of extra hours to grow it more, it would mean I’d give up sleep and time with my family. Those are two things I’m just not willing to sacrifice.

After realizing how content I feel with where things are at, I sat down with Jesse and we ran numbers to see if we could actually downsize some areas in our life and in the business so that we could make even less and it would still be okay. (And we did — and this gives me even more freedom and less financial burden!)

If you know me personally (or you’ve followed me online for awhile), you probably know what a big shift this is for me! I was such a driver and Type A personality. And it came out in a big way in the business.

But I really woke up to reality this year and realized that Kathrynne is going to be 14 soon and I have less than 5 years left (probably) with her under our roof. And in 10 years, we’ll likely be empty nesters!

These are the golden years of mothering and I don’t want to miss them because I’m so knee deep in growing a successful business.

My Goals for 2019

Personal Goals

1. Read 40 books I already own (I’ll be sharing my list of books in a post this coming week. Also, I’ve finally caved and I think I’m going to use GoodReads to track my reading this year!)

2. Slowly read through the New Testament using the She Reads Truth Bible reading plans at the beginning of each chapter.

3. Listen to 2 audiobooks per month. (I use the Libby app to get these for free.)

4. Complete all of the Organize in 5 Diary tasks to get our home more organized and set up better organizational systems. (Psst! Did you get yours? It’s just $9 right now.)

5. Stay offline for 4 hours per day, 5 days per week. (I share more about why I chose this goal here.)

6. Leave my phone in the basement every night. (I talk more about what inspired me to make this goal here.)

7. Go to bed before 10:30 p.m. 5 days per week. (I’m using this little spreadsheet I made to track most of my personal goals)

Marriage Goal

8. Go on an overnight trip with Jesse without the kids.

Motherhood Goal

9. One-on-one time with each child at least 3 times per week. (I am planning to dedicate 40 minutes per child after dinner each evening at least three nights per week to hang out and spend time with each child individually.)

Family Goal

10. Take the kids to at least two continents and 4 states we haven’t traveled to. (We’re hoping to travel to Europe in the summer and South America at some other point during the year. I have travel alerts set up to track the best prices for flights and am hoping to find a great deal to snag in the next 4-6 months!)

Financial Goals

11. Pay cash to redo our room and renovate our bathroom (we have to pull out the shower and put in a new one because it was installed incorrectly and is leaking and ruining the floor/wall and we want to do a few renovations while we’re at it + we want to finally decorate our room — we left it really bare when we moved in and decided to wait to prioritize it in the budget).

12. Pay cash to paint the main floor of our home.

13. Fully fund our Emergency Fund (This is a carry-over from 2018 and we are hoping to have this done in the next few months).

Business Goals

14. Redo/set up a much more intentional customer acquisition experience for all three of our email newsletters.

15. Finish launching the rest of our beginner Your Blogging University courses. (If you want to start a blog, be sure to check out my other site, Your Blogging Mentor.)

16. Launch a Blog Coaching/Accountability Group membership. (I’ll be opening this up to a very limited number of people in January of 2019. Stay tuned!)

I will be giving you updates on my progress on my goals — especially the books I’m reading, the organizational projects I’m doing, our travels, how I’m doing at sticking with a consistent bedtime and staying offline, and much more throughout the coming year!

What are YOUR goals for 2019? I’d love to hear! Let us know in the comments!

Psst! In the next week, I’ll be sharing The Best Books I Read in 2018, My Word of the Year for 2019, and The Books I Plan to Read in 2019.

Need more goal-setting inspiration? See the goals I set for 2018 here.

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113 Comments

  • Tonya says:

    Where do I find the travel alerts you mentioned? Would love to get notified of good travel deals!

  • Karin Griffith says:

    My main goal is to stay debt free in 2019 and stick to my budget. I’m on a $75 a week grocery budget and an $80 a month necessity budget.

  • Christy Slaughter says:

    Glad you joined Good reads. I use it to keep track of my reading and do the challenge each year. I really have enjoyed your reading recommendations this year.

  • Carol says:

    I always love reading your list of goals and word of the year! My word of the year is “decrease.” That word will encompass a lot – simplifying my schedule, decluttering, losing excess weight, sticking to a budget, and focusing on what truly matters. I love the Bob Goff quote! My older son will be leaving for college in the fall (pending adequate financial aid), and our younger son heads to college in 2020, so I’m really trying to be more intentional about spending time with my boys. I feel like there’s so much to teach them about “adulting” before they leave home.

    Professionally, I hope to write and publish my fourth book as well as establish my platform as an author. I’m also working for new employers in my day job (as a CPA) and I’m praying the transition goes well as this is a big change after 21 years with the same boss!

    I’m going to follow you on Goodreads. I plan to be more active over there myself. I’ll be interested to see what books you’re reading. (I love audio, too).

    Happy New Year, Crystal!

    • I love your word of the year! Thank you so much for sharing!

    • Guest says:

      I love everything about your post and just wanted to say so. 🙂 What a fabulous word of the year. Mine hasn’t come to me yet but decrease is an amazing one. Wishing you and your family a rewarding and positive transition time. <3

    • Melanie says:

      I enjoyed reading your post and specifically your word for the year and how you plan to apply it to your life. I have some similar goals for the year and will definitely use your word as a reminder as I pursue my own goals.

  • Amy M. says:

    These are great goals! I have several similar goals but I’m still refining mine. I’m kind of amazed by #9. That seems so ambitious to fit in, but it actually inspires me to aim for more. (I have two kids, twin boys turning 10 next week.)

    • I am planning to have the evenings we are home look like this: 6:00-6:40 — Dinner and devotions and clean up, 6:40-7:20 — Time with Silas, 7:20-8:00 — Time with Kaitlynn, 8:00-8:40 — Time with Kathrynne, 8:40-9:30 — My time to get ready for bed and read and wind down for the night. We tested this out the last two nights and it went really well! I’ll keep you all posted!

      • Amy M. says:

        Thanks for sharing! That’s great.

      • Susan says:

        What kind of activities do your kids do after school? Two of my kids aren’t even home from activities until after 8pm most days of the week!

        • Currently, Kathrynne is the only one doing a regular activity (basketball). She has practices 3-5 times per week (right after school) and a game 1-2 nights per week. The girls also have church on Wednesdays and Jesse and I have Trivia Night with friends on Tuesdays. And we often have something else going on one other night. We’ve worked hard to keep things simpler because we’ve found that if we don’t have at least 3 quiet family evenings as a family per week, we just notice that it causes stress for everyone and we all feel on edge and out of sorts.

  • Mireille says:

    Bought some great tickets to Spain about a month ago, we are going at the end of may! Thankfully we have friends in France where we will head after a few days in Barcelona so lodging is taken care of. Looking forward to seeing where you go! One of my goals for rhe next 6 months is to put aside some spending money for meals and such when we are not at our friends. Spent some time yesterday writing fown my goals/habits for the year and will be using a lil habit tracker journal i found on Amazon for less than 8 dollars to keep me accountable!

  • Denise says:

    I love Goodreads! It is great for just tracking books read or you can get more into it with reviews and lists and stuff. I love that I choose how to use it. I’m putting my top ten reads of 2018 as my link! https://gallopinto2.blogspot.com/2018/12/best-of-2018.html

    I’m planning return trip to Bolivia this summer.

    But my biggest goals are health related. Eating better and exercising more.

  • Kristen says:

    My guess as to what your 2019 word is: Freedom! As I think about all the changes you’ve made in many areas of life, and all the ways you’ve grown and changed, to me the word “freedom” really sums it up. You seem so free these days — free to be yourself, free to run your business the way that works well for you and your family, free to do what’s best for your kids education-wise, free to pursue deep friendships, etc. I’ve loved seeing your journey, and I can’t wait to keep reading about all the things in 2019 that you learn and all the ways you grow! It inspires me to keep learning and growing too!

  • Summer says:

    I am always so inspired by your yearly goals post Crystal! I have some similar goals for myself this coming year. But, my main two are to really focus to launch my coaching business (I’m a life coach for overwhelmed moms), and to pursue deeper relationships with my kids (6, 3, 19 months, and our fourth coming in July).
    Thanks so much for the continual inspiration!?

  • Anna Rose says:

    I would love to paint your house! My husband and I are professional painters. But we live in VA. So might I suggest making sure you get the best paint possible. That’s my best tip.

    I recommend Emerald Flat Interior by Sherwin Williams (also bathroom/humidity friendly). Easy to apply, velvet finish, easy clean-up and you can do touch-ups yourself for scuffs and general upkeep (blends well). Sherwin Williams sells it 40% off in the spring sale, if you get it yourself (your painter will mark up the paint cost).

    Anyway, love your blog! I could go on and on about painting. Also, some SW stores have color consultants who come to your home and help select colors. I’m just very excited to see that in your goals. Your home features nice trimwork and furniture looks modern so can’t wait to see which colors you pick!

    • Thanks so much for these paint tips! We’ve never done much in the way of painting so this is all pretty new to us! We’re thinking something light grey to kind of modernize the look… but I welcome suggestions.

      • Serenity says:

        I started working on my goals for 2019 yesterday and I might go back and rework them after reading this. Thank you for the encouragement:).
        Also, I’m excited to see your paint transformation. My sweet sister in law has logged a LOT of hours painting with me and she always says that paint is magical:). My favorite color to use is Revere Pewter. It transforms a boring room into a sanctuary ?. Enjoy the process!

      • Rosanna says:

        We have been re-painting most of the main areas of our house this past month. (I know it’s crazy over Christmas) Anyway, we chose a light gray for the whole area except for one accent wall in our Living Room that is a much darker gray. It does really modernize the space and brighten it up, as we came from a mustardy color and a wheat color before.

      • Anna Rose says:

        Crystal, you wear such nice blues with jewel tones. These blues pair nicely as accents to light greys- for powder room or dining. When choosing paint colors, I ask ladies their favorite nail polish or color of clothes they love. This makes the best starting point for accent colors that pop.

        Ben Moore colors I like (google to see rooms painted in these colors): coventry gray, glass slipper, slate blue (bluish gray). The most popular SW color we’ve painted, Passive, looks just like the popular BM color Stonington. Sometimes going within the color family in a swatch is best.

        Also, when painting new wall color, use primer tinted to the new color. SW MultiPurpose primer tinted to exact match will save you from buying too much expensive paint. New construction homes gulp paint and one small room easily inhales 2.5 gallons of SW Emerald paint. But with 1 gallon of tinted primer, we’ve used only .5 gallon of Emerald paint.

        Check ceiling color, as antique or beigy ceiling will not look good with greys. A modern look works best with bright white ceiling (Promar Ceiling Paint), semi-gloss trim (Super Paint) in cool whites like SW Alabaster (or stock white is ok), light gray walls (Emerald Paint Flat) and dark wood floors and white accents like SW Snowbound.

        Ask the store to shake paint cans twice, especially for dark colors. And if paying contractors, make sure you have a copy of the contract and ask for leftover or touch-up paint.

        This is a lot but I hope it helps. Our goal with every paint job is to help the homeowner fall in love with their home all over again. Choose contractors who have passion for your home!

    • Amy M says:

      Painting is one of my goals for this year, too, so I really appreciate the tips! When we finally bought our first home 5 years ago, my husband ended up needing heart surgeries and we had 4y/o twins so painting just didn’t happen and we’d havent gotten around to it since. I’ve never painted before so it seems daunting, but pro tips help. 🙂

    • Linda says:

      I second the suggestion to work with a Colorsnaps consultant from Sherwin Williams. Two years ago when we had a whole house to paint and felt very overwhelmed with all the color decisions, we decided to spend the money to have someone help us. The lady who came was super nice and in one appointment (maybe 1.5 hours?) we figured out almost all our paint colors. My husband and I have very different tastes in colors but she helped us choose shades we both liked. Two years later, we are still both very happy with the colors we chose. 🙂

  • Go to the gym two days a week. Take off most weekends. Start saving to buy a car. Make my coworking office break even. Maintain good customer service in our business while bringing on more clients. Stop giving a crap about my stomach size.

  • Carrie Bennett says:

    Interestingly I just read that quote from Bob Goff last night and highlighted it. I read Maria’s book last year and decided to get his for myself as a Christmas gift. I am still working on my ideas and goals for this year. But I found 3 words I’m wanting to work on – Change (my choices, not making excuses for things that could change if I would just be more disciplined), Action (Love does), and Considerate (with people in general but especially with my husband and boys). Thanks for you posts – I love them, especially ones like these, your mostly pictures posts and your recaps on your weeks.

  • Charity Crawford says:

    I think your new word sounds like it will be “Cherish”!?

  • Chrissie says:

    I think your new word is adventure! I am setting goals so Lord willing that can be my word in 2020. There are no goals for the podcast, will that still be something you do? May 2019 bring you much happiness!

    • Great guess, but that’s not it! 🙂 And YES! The podcast will definitely still be happening. I love podcasting! I just don’t have big plans or goals for it other than to keep on doing what I’m doing with it. And we’re (hopefully) going to be launching a second podcast for Your Blogging Mentor, but it’s not on my goals list since the membership site and courses are higher priority for me this year. But I’m hoping that it will happen, too!

  • Patti Smith says:

    I think your word will be “Content” or “Enough”…you seem like you have grown so much and you are happy with where you are in your life (even if not every goal is completed) and happy with yourself. You are enough! Working on that concept myself:). Thanks for sharing your growth and journey.

  • Brenda says:

    Hi Crystal. I have really enjoyed reading your blog over the years. You are such a kind and considerate person. It is lovely to watch you reach out and extend help and inspiration to so many women. You should be so proud of yourself. These past few years you have grown and matured and worked so hard in so many aspects of your life. I think your word for this year should be SAVOR. Enjoy all the beauty, happiness, and peace around you that you have created for yourself and your family. Thanks for all that you do and I look forward to continuing to be inspired by your wonderful blog.

  • Cheryl says:

    Content may be your word? I understand being available to your kids and this stage of motherhood. My oldest daughter is a junior in high school and quickly approaching her senior year. Just being available to her, my son, and husband has helped tremendously! I work three days a week instead of 5 and it is “enough” My son is a freshman and just being here to guide them is great! These years go by quickly! My word is content, by the way…

  • Amy T says:

    I ink your word of the year will be Contentment… learning to be content with what you have accomplished and have.

  • Kristen says:

    I’ve found the free email list from Scott’s Cheap Flights to be great for some amazing flight deals that I would have missed with my regular alerts! Keep in mind also that once you get anywhere in Europe you can usually get a flight on a minor carrier very inexpensively to fly within Europe. Sometimes it’s worth it to take a very cheap flight into a city that’s not your final destination, explore for a day, and they grab a super cheap fare to your desired city.

  • Jan says:

    You are very wise to realize how fleeting your time with your children is! I have a junior in college and a HS senior and have been a stay-at-home mom all this time, even with them attending school, so my family could be my focus. I am deeply blessed to see the young adults they have become, and I pray that same experience for you!

  • Love your goals. You are right, teen years go fast –seem to go faster than the little years.

    Here is my list of goals for 2019

    For My Marriage

    Continue having one date day or date weekend with my husband each month.

    For My Mind

    Read 26 Books

    Take 55 Skillshare Classes

    For My Soul

    Meditate On A Different Bible Verse Each Week

    For My Heart

    30 Minutes or more six days a week of cardio–regardless of weather conditions.

    Every 90 days increase my running loop.

    For My Muscles

    Regularly attend the morning yoga class at the gym.

    On mornings with no yoga class, get up and do a strength routine at home.

    Hold a plank for as long as possible before turning on the TV each night

    For My Nourishment

    Continue keeping my weight from creeping up further

    Continue daily glass of water each morning habit and one after my morning green tea and one after my morning coffee

    200 calories or lower of sweets per day five days a week

    For My Home

    Complete the 90/52 Decluttering challenge with my blog readers.

    For My Career

    Increase the traffic to The Parents Flew The Nest (got a target I want to hit)

    Chart 20 hours of work each week 52 weeks a year

    Hit my income target each month

    WORD FOR 2019: LOVE

  • Shelby says:

    I think your new word for 2019 is Love!

  • Dee says:

    I just absolutely love seeing how the Lord has brought you to this place. I began following you three years ago and I could relate to your “overwhelm” so much. It’s been fun to ride along with you as you’ve been so intentional not to miss these years with your kids and become so liberated. I’ve been inspired and have learned so much from you! Thank you for sharing your journey!

  • Margaret says:

    I would guess intentionality. Choosing to be wise with the time you do work and the time you don’t. And all the other decisions in between.

  • Terri Kruschke says:

    I read through the Bible in 2016 and 2017 with a group of friends…we set up an email accountability group. In 2018 we decided to read through the New Testament only. It was wonderful to go more slowly through the reading.
    For 2019 we have stopped the email group but I am reading through the entire Bible chronologically. A fascinating change-up to just reading it straight through!

    Other than that I have set my goals for 2019…I always appreciate the inspiration from Crystal’s goal-setting posts and it always helps me try to remember to set SMART goals and not just vague ideas about things I might like to do like “lose weight” or “exercise more often” LOL.
    Happy New Year everyone!

  • Laura Best says:

    I think your word is Family.

  • Jane says:

    I bought one of your programs a couple months ago and was so excited to start. Then I got really sick with pneumonia and totally lost all the information. I’m not sure where to start, but a friend posted your blog on Facebook today and I realized it’s practically 2019 and I have done nothing to plan or set goals. This encourages me to just sit down and try to envision how I want my life to look. Thank you, Crystal. I have no guess of what your word is. Last year my word was encourage. I lived it well. I hope I choose as wisely this year.

  • Holly says:

    Thanks for sharing your goals! You inspire me! I have chosen my word and am now working on setting my goals and planning how I will implement my word throughout the different areas of my life. This year my word is:

    ADVANCE
    ad·vance
    /ədˈvans/
    verb
    1. move forward, typically in a purposeful way.
    “the troops advanced on the capital”
    synonyms: move forward, proceed, press on, push on, push forward, make progress, make headway, gain ground, approach, come closer, draw nearer, near
    “the battalion advanced rapidly”

  • Laura says:

    Love your goals, thanks for sharing! Question about the individual time with each kid: do you mean 120 mins total per night (since you have 3 kids) or spending 40 mins with one of the kids 3 days a week (so each kid gets one night)? I ask because this is something I am working on as a busy working wife/mom of 3 (number 4 due in 3 weeks!) and am really wanting to be intentional about giving my kids enough attention as individuals.

    • I am planning to have the evenings we are home look like this: 6:00-6:40 — Dinner and devotions and clean up, 6:40-7:20 — Time with Silas, 7:20-8:00 — Time with Kaitlynn, 8:00-8:40 — Time with Kathrynne, 8:40-9:30 — My time to get ready for bed and read and wind down for the night. We tested this out the last two nights and it went really well! I’ll keep you all posted!

      • Laura says:

        Thank you for sharing this, it helps to see examples of how to structure that time:) Glad it’s working well for you guys!:)

  • Janis Raines says:

    Have you checked to see if your homeowner’s insurance would pay for the bathroom work? We had a similar leak, and insurance covered replacing our floor.

    • Thank you for the suggestion! Jesse doesn’t think so because it’s been installed for 10 years and it’s something that has deteriorated slowly over time. But we’ll definitely look into that!

  • Heather Wood says:

    I haven’t looked at anyone elses guesses yet, but I’m gonna guess Present or Family based in this list.

  • Amy says:

    OK, I just finished my list of goals for 2019. I am starting my dream job (half-time, salaried, along with continuing 2 other very part-time jobs) on Jan 7 so there will be big changes this year and a whole new season of life that I am very excited about.

    This year, I hope to:
    • Bring in at least [X amount] in income for our family.
    • Revise/update our monthly budget based on new salary. (Include saving at least $5,000 in 2019 and increasing our giving to missionaries.)
    • Schedule trip to visit my best friend who moved to Scotland!
    • Get weight back down to goal range and maintain.
    • Finish the boys’ baby books and scrap book.
    • Do my last few KonMari projects.
    • Paint at least one room in the house.
    • Set a new 5K PR (below 29:20).
    • Read at least 40 books.
    • Be involved in a small group each semester.
    • Take a personal retreat (two half-days or one full day).

    Each day, I would like to:
    • Follow my morning routine (from MOYM).
    • Follow my evening routine (from MOYE).
    • Stay below 85 gm of carbs; eat at least 85 gm protein. (I eat low carb/high fat/adequate protein, which has been great for me!)
    • Spend at least 10 minutes 1:1 with each child.
    • Have at least 1 hr unplugged/screen-free time.

    Each week, I would like to:
    • Do strength training at least 3x for at least 5 minutes.
    • Exercise at least 20 minutes at least 3x/wk.
    • Have an in-home or otherwise date with my husband.
    • Go to bed by 10:30 at least 4 nights a week.
    • Play the guitar at least once.
    • Update budget SmartSheet (track spending) at least once.
    • Take a full Sabbath one day a week.

    Each month, I would like to:
    • Have at least one “outside-the-box” date with my husband.
    • Have at least a mini-date with one child (ideally DH and I would each take one and alternate month to month).
    • Have at least two get-togethers with friends.
    • Stick to the budget for the month.

  • Florence says:

    Eat good food.

    Read good books.

    Go to interesting places.

    Make nice quilts.

    Do good deeds

    Nap.

    Love family.

  • Gina Elder says:

    My guess–and this may seem weird–is “invest” or possibly “dedication.” It seems to me you’re dedicating this year to investing your resources in those things that are most important to you. That’s not to say you don’t already do this…but you seem to be more intentional this time. More careful about conscientious about every trade-off, so to speak. Love your list!

    Happy New Year, Crystal!

  • Jane says:

    I don’t usually guess stuff, but if I had guessed yesterday I would have said your word is “intentional”. Since I still think that today, I’m intentionally guessing intentional.

  • Josten says:

    #16 is my dream come true! I just told my husband I wish you had a group for this a few weeks ago. How can we stay up to date on the details?!

  • Tina says:

    Thinking about new year’s goals:
    In 2018 I was diagnosed with a deadly disease. My priorities in life changed dramatically. Things I thought were so important no longer mattered. My goals this year – to love my family & friends, to try to do a couple bucket list things, & go thru things to get rid of it. Each day is a gift. That’s something all of us can remember. What’s really important?

  • Rebecca says:

    I have been using the app “strides” to track habits I am trying to change or modify. It is really helpful and super easy and I thought it might be helpful for your going to bed by 10;30 goal ?

    • Except it’s an app! 😉 That’s why I made a printed out checklist I’m using instead so that I don’t need a computer or phone to track my habits since one of them is to be offline at night. 😉

  • Jennifer says:

    Hi, Crystal- I wanted to thank you for this post, which inspired me to sit down and make my own lists of what did and did not work for me in 2018. Thinking of the things that worked made me grateful and happy. Writing down what did not work had a surprise effect: I felt an enormous burden lift off my shoulders. Putting these items down on paper, acknowledging that they were dragging me down, and making a commitment to change some things was hugely helpful. My number one thing that did not work in 2018? Facebook.

    While I enjoy keeping in touch with friends, there is a hidden downside to FB for me. I found myself scrolling through endless posts about bad news: scandals, missing and/or seriously ill children, natural disasters, terrible misfortunes, etc. I realized that this was making me quite unhappy and anxious, and it has to go. I have drastically cut back my time on FB the past few days. I use the shortcuts to go directly to pages I am interested in vs. reading the news feed. This is saving me time and heartache. So thank you- I might not have pinpointed this “not working for me” item without your post nudging me into it. I am looking forward now to a much happier New Year!

    • Oh YAY! I am so grateful to hear this! Thank you for taking the time to share — it blessed me to hear this!

    • Jane says:

      I seriously curtailed my social media time three years ago. I never had any negative stuff to scroll through. I Know others have talked about that too. I’m not sure how my feed is set up, but I only see stuff from friends and I don’t have negative friends. I cut back on social media because that used to be my job. When I resign from that job I decided to limit my time on social media period. The only thing that’s bad is that groups I’m a member of such as our church and my walking group etc use Facebook to communicate. I often miss important things because I am not on social media very often.

      I need to think of what went well and what didn’t. I don’t even Know how to recall enough of what went on in my life to do an assessment. But seeing your testimonial here, I think it would be a good exercise.

      • Jennifer says:

        Thank you for your comment, Jane. I am not on Instagram or Twitter, so that is one good thing. I do have friends, though, that post on political topics (which I try to ignore) or post prayer requests or go-fund-me pleas for suffering families with lots of details. Also,one friend continually posts Amber alerts and stories about human trafficking. I am scratching my head as to how to keep in touch with these friends and enjoy their family life posts without also having to read about so many tragedies. I am very sad about al the suffering in the world, but I don’t think we are meant to be constantly bombarded with bad news. I have adopted a simple prayer: “Jesus, please tend to your flock” to cover all these needs and requests. But I just can’t read them all the time anymore.

  • Joe's Mommy says:

    I love your thoughts and insight on deciding not to focus too much on growing the business. I had a similar conversation with my hubby yesterday as we were talking about our goals. Just like you, we make enough and the freedom we have to really have ownership of our time is priceless. Our business goals is to target making the same and focus on being smart with what we have.

  • April says:

    Your goals are so inspiring, especially the one-on-one time with the kids. I have 3 and I really struggle in that area. I’m going to guess that your word is “Devotion”. I love this word, it can be an action (like devoting time to family or other important things), it can also be a thing (like doing a daily devotion with God). It really could be a word to guide someone throughout the year.

  • Carol says:

    I’m in such a rut recently and feeling like I’m failing on all fronts. I’m very much the type of person that if I can’t do it perfectly and completely from the start, I don’t want to do it at all. Or I do it without joy and positivity. Grace is something I can’t seem to grant myself and it’s making me miserable. So, for this year I think I’m going to actually pick a word….progress. Hopefully I can learn to just celebrate moving forward even if it is a tiny amount in an awkward way.

    At first I thought your word might be “less” as in work and financial strain, but I think it’s probably “present” or something similar. That would be the goal of the “less” afterall. I’ll be watching tomorrow to see!

  • Sarah says:

    I always enjoy your goal lists every year! I have been following you for years and have seen such a lovely change in you this last year. I feel like I have really gotten to “know” you, that you’ve really come into your own. You’ve gotten more real if that makes any sense lol

    Anyways, my guess is that your word of the year is purpose or purposeful. It seems as if your goals are doing this very intentionally and only for things that truly matter. So you are doing them with a very defined purpose. 🙂

    I thought my word of the year would be grow (my faith, my health, my family relationships, my business, etc.) but the more I really think of my goals over the past week, the word that comes to mind is commit. I want to commit to these goals 100% and see them through!

  • Miia says:

    Great goals! At first I thought your word could be “downshifting”, but then I figured it could also be “focus” or “priority”, since it seems you want to focus on things that matter and not be distracted by less important things…

  • Ellen says:

    I’d love to hear how you set up alerts for travel deals. Do you typically plan your trips yourself or use a travel agent? Would love some tips from your many journeys!

  • Amanda Stokeld says:

    Crystal, love this inspirational article! Has me so excited to set my own goals for 2019. Love your photo, can I ask where you found that adorable polka dot shirt? I love it!

    • Yes! It was actually my friend’s shirt! 😉 She let me borrow it because I needed one more shirt for the podcast photo shoot (where these photos came from). It was from Cabi, I believe.

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