the wonderful world of veena.

02 January 2015

looking ahead at 2015.

I liked going back and looking through my list of things I wanted to do in 2014, so I have decided to make it an annual tradition on here.

So here are the things I would like to accomplish in 2015:

I want to establish a regular fitness routine. My exercise and dieting has been all over the place this year. I trained for and ran a half marathon and then promptly took a month off from running. I got back into a routine and then took off for a 5-week road trip, effectively putting that on hold. I finally recovered for a few months in the fall when the weather became really nice outside, and then I had to start preparing to move halfway around the world. So needless to say, it's been an up-and-down year on this front. Once I begin my job in January and get a feel for what my schedule will be like, I want to see where I can start fitting this into my routine. I always feel better and more energetic when I am exercising regularly, and it something I want to make a priority again.

I want to send one handwritten note per week. The regularity of this will depend on where I am living / working in proximity to post offices in India, but I want to get into the habit of sending handwritten notes again. I love the ritual of sitting down to write a note to someone and sending it out into the world. Plus I still have a ton of postcards from various travels over the last few years, and I want to share them with friends around the world. My compromise might be to write one each week and then send them out on a monthly basis.

I want to visit somewhere new in India. I am always on the hunt to discover new places, so this year will be no different in that regard. As much as I would love to have exploring a new country on this list, finances and work schedules might not allow for that, so I'll keep it local. Since I am back in India indefinitely, I want to take advantage of that and see something new in this vast country. I have been lucky enough to see a good part of India already, but there are still so many new places to see. I've got a dream list - Ladakh, Amritsar, Darjeeling, Manali, Sikkim, etc - but who knows, the first new place I see might be one I've never even heard of.

I want to do more for others. I don't just mean volunteering, although finding a steady volunteer role is something I would like to do. In this case I mean I want to help out more. Say yes when friends ask for a favour. Perform random acts of kindness for strangers. Be more intentional about helping others, whether it be a one-off or a long-term situation.

I want to explore Bangalore and be active in the city. I'm thinking of finding / starting some kind of club, whether it be for seeking out new restaurants, visiting new parks, or touring new museums. Whatever it looks like, I want to see more of Bangalore. While I think I know the city fairly well, in truth there are a lot of areas I've never seen and quite a few sights I've never visited. Being that I am back long-term - and hopefully living in a central location - I want to take advantage of everything my Garden City / Pub City has to offer [while on a budget, of course].

I want to save money. This is going to be a big one for me. Having worked since I was 13, I saved a pretty good amount of money, but life in Bombay and then being unemployed for a year-and-a-half depleted those resources. I used to pride myself on being thrifty and on my ability to save, and I want to get back there again. It's going to be difficult at first, because being back in India is going to make me want to immediately return to all of my favourite restaurants, but I'm going to try my best to take it slow and put myself on a budget. That savings account needs to become a little healthy again, so I need to curb my spending [which really means I need to stop buying books].

I want to find a work-life balance. I've not had a full-time job in 3.5 years, so this might take some easing in to. I had a great school-work-life balance in Little Rock, and I never felt like I missed out on anything because of the way I structured my schedule. I did not have that balance when I lived in Bombay, partly because my schedule was crazy and partly because I wanted to live it up for the short time I was there. Now I am determined to find that balance again. I want to enjoy being back in Bangalore and taking advantage of all the city has to offer, but I also want to buckle down and be a success in my new position. It's going to take some work to find that happy medium, and I am looking forward to the challenge.

I want to read 15 books for fun. Now that I have a job and will be reading a good number of books and articles for work, my personal reading time will be cut down. Knowing that, I want to go into this year making reading for pleasure a priority and want to read 15 books of my choosing over the course of the year. That's about one-and-a-quarter books a month, which sounds doable when you break it down like that. I don't have a specific list in mind, but I know I am beginning the year with Nobody is Ever Missing [written by my friend from Baylor, Catherine Lacey!].

I want to learn a new skill. Ideally this will be coding and will be underway shortly, but in general I think it is always good to keep learning and trying new things, so I want to learn something new this year. It could be a language, it could be [finally] learning how to use my cameral, it could be a new adventure sport. It could be anything, really, so long as it is new.

And finally, I want to buy that record player. I have the job, and I will soon have my first paycheck. All I need next is a house to live in, and then I'm going out and buying that sucker.

I know these are pretty broad and generic, but they give you a sense of what I am looking for out of 2015. I have high hopes for this year, and accomplishing these goals will go a long way to making that dream a reality.

And more than that, I wish this to be a good year for everyone. There were a lot of crappy things that happened in the world last year, and I wish for new beginnings and great things for all of you.

Now let's go and make that happen.

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