Kate’s Nine Challenges For January 2019

Okay so here we go 2019! Happy New Year and all that – now let’s get down to business, the entire internet is going to be full of January Resolutions at the moment so I am going with something a little different for me and calling them January Challenges!

The idea of these is that while they are very similar to resolutions they are things that I am going to aim to do – and when I fail at 8.30am on the 2nd January ( the moment I lose all goodwill and go to Costa on my way to work), I am not going to beat myself up about it, instead I will call myself a muppet and try again. Also, unlike vague resolutions of ‘I am going to lose a stone’, these are actual plans that hopefully I have thought through. So here goes these are mine and at the end of the month we will see how I have done;

1, I am going to go to an exercise class 1-2 times a week.
Ah the gym, everyone’s favourite new year’s resolution. I already have a gym membership – and at the most I go once a week, purely because I don’t like going to the gym and there is only one exercise class that I like that is in the evening, but due to the original instructor leaving in the summer the quality of this class has become very hit and miss recently as has my attendance. However, I have been informed that due to a new instructor taking over and the class moving to another night it could get better. So, I am aiming to attend this one once a week and hopefully add in one more other class in order to improve my general fitness.

2, Minimum 30min walk/ exercise during the day.
I work in an office and my favourite pastime is reading books, therefore the majority of my day is spent sitting down. In an attempt to improve my general fitness, and apparently it’s also good for your mental health, on the days that I am not going to the gym in the evening I am going to try and do a 30 min walk each day – either in my lunch break or at the end of the day when I get home.

3, Save £10 from each month’s pay.
I am Sh!t with money, completely Sh!t! Yes, I have other savings but these are for boring grown up things like my car and my house deposit, so this £10 a month is actually to go in my savings account and stay there until next January when I turn 30 and with the (hopefully) £120, I get to buy myself a present. Sounds simple enough and I am sure I could save more than that but the idea is actually to leave the money in my account, last year I noticed a pattern in that I would put some money in my savings account and then withdraw it the next month when I failed to budget for something accordingly or because I was going somewhere and each time my savings account would go back to zero. The actual aim of this is not about the amount but how long I can save for.

4, Take Lunch to work.
Nearly every day at the moment I have purchased breakfast and or lunch from either the work canteen, Sainsbury’s or Costa/ Starbucks. I am not going to do the math but if I say that breakfast at work is about £3 and lunch is £3.50, if I do this every day for a week that is already £32.50, and it will be much more if it’s come from elsewhere. So, I am going to attempt to put my collection of Tupperware containers to use and actually take lunch to work with me. This is one that I think will be particularly challenging as I will have to not only do my lunch the night before but also plan what I want to eat for lunch earlier in the week to make sure that I have got it from the supermarket.

5, Coffee / Hot Chocolate / Red Coke.
I currently drink a ridiculous amount of what I like to call ‘Full Fat’ Coca Cola, I used to be a total Diet Coke all the way girl but that somehow changed in 2018 to an addiction to Red Coke. As my clothes are getting a little tight and I noticed that I have started picking up a larger size in clothing stores I am cutting out all the sugary drinks which is going to include Hot Chocolate from Starbucks and Costa and most definitely my beloved Iced Caramel Latte. This one will also be very challenging as while I gave up Diet Coke last year for a month, I then picked up the Iced Caramel Latte habit so this year I am going cold turkey on all of them and will just be sticking to water and squash.

6, No Buy!
There may have been a purchase recently that was a bit of a ‘What the actual F*** do I think I doing’??? and there will be more about that in another post. If I am being totally honest then I think since Black Friday I have been on a complete ‘Fly Money, Fly!!’ trip and this needs to be reined in pronto, so with that in mind, I am implementing a ‘No Buy’ for January, I am still allowed to buy ‘essentials’ i.e. if I suddenly run out of deodorant but the main idea is no more online purchases from Space NK , Cult Beauty and Amazon. I am going to London half way though the month for my Birthday weekend and I think we all know that the temptation to make some purchases there will be too much so I have already allotted some spending money for this weekend in my bank account and hopefully allowing myself a few days off will help me though.

7, Organisation.
I am one of the most disorganised people you will ever meet – my email inbox is always full of emails that I really should delete, I always seem to have receipts from my coffee order lying around but not the one I actually need, I have magazines still in plastic wrap that I am yet to get around to read and numerous blog post ideas that actually need to be developed into full posts. With all this in mind I am going to attempt to give myself a schedule and while I think this is all going to come crashing down around me, I am still going to give it a go:
9-5 Mon – Fri is obvious as this is when I am at work, and three days a week I have to car share to get to my office, so on Monday and Friday mornings ( the days I don’t car share) I am aiming to get to work an hour earlier around 8am and spend the first hour of my day sat in the canteen or break room doing stuff that needs to get done – this can be making that call that I have been putting off, deleting emails on my phone, checking my diary and planning content and things that need to be done, or even just catching up on my reading and finally opening one of the magazines that have arrived.

8, Reading.
At last we get to the fun one! My reading challenge for 2018 was to read 75 books, the year before it was to read 100. Well this year I am going with 50 books! As I achieved both of my reading goals from previous years you might think that this is a bit of an easy challenge, but I am adding in caveats to what I can read this year, so far I have that ‘I have to read a classic’ as I have never read a Jane Austen book all the way through I definitely need to do that this year. I also have ‘ To read a biography’ so far, I am thinking the Michelle Obama one, and lastly ‘ A book I have been meaning to read for ages’, for this I am thinking the novel of ‘Rogue One’ which has been on my bookcase since the movie came out a few years back. I am still going to be reading my normal YA fiction and Chick-Lit but I think I need to focus more on quantity than quality of books this year.

9, Lipstick / Makeup.
Linking into my ‘no buy’ I am going to make a real effort to curb my makeup and beauty spending as really how much makeup does one person need??? But I am going to make a real effort to use the makeup that I do already have, in particular my many many many lipsticks! So, I am challenging myself to wear a different lipstick each day in January and I will post pics on my Instagram account so you all can see how I do.

Well there they are, my nine challenges for January and 2019 in general, let’s see how I do.

Are you setting yourself some challenges? If so, Good Luck and if not, then you continue to be your fabulous best 🙂

Happy New Year

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