So back at the start of 2014 I posted a short list of my personal goals. You can read it here, although I’m going to go through it quickly now to see how well I did with them all.
1. The first one was to be less busy. Well, we’re not off to a good start as I epically failed with this one. I have an inability to say ‘no’ when people suggest plans. I have a massive problem with FOMO (fear of missing out). It is definitely something I need to address for 2015 as I have ended up at times feeling massively stressed as I’ve taken too much on.
2. To travel more. Oh God, another fail. A lot of my year was taken up with work and career stuff. Although I promised to take time off to go away, as soon as I was offered work I took it and forgot about my holiday. I didn’t make it to wild swimming in France (Andrew is yet to forgive me for that as he planned to propose while we were there). But I did make it to Italy with my family, and we had the most amazing week in a villa in Tuscany. It was relaxing and blissful.
3. Worry less. I think I achieved this, but it’s a constant work in progress. It’s also quite a hard thing to measure, but I feel like I worry less about the things that used to really bug me (what I am doing with my life? Do people like me? I’m so bad at everything). I think since turning 30 I have more of a grip on all of these things. I am still bad at most stuff though. Especially, as I found this summer, playing tennis. Ah well.
4. Focus on my career. Yes! One I have actually achieved. At the start of the year I had a handful of clients (for those of you who don’t know, I’m a freelance journalist). With quite a lot of effort on my part, that pool has grown quite a lot and I’ve worked at some great places and on some great publications. I have also had a bit of promotion at my most regular client, which has been great as I’ve been able to develop my skills and my role. That’s something I really miss when I’m freelance – not being able to have much control over developing my role. Overall, I feel very lucky and proud of the year I’ve had career-wise. I authored three children’s books and have had six columns run in the Daily Mail, alongside other lovely day-to-day projects.
5. Be more organised. This one I think I have achieved. I have a calendar I keep up to date, I run the flat (with the help of Andrew) pretty well and my to do list gets done. I think mostly I was looking to sort out my diary a bit in 2014, which I have done. It’s been quite geekily satisfying to colour code my diary. I’m pretty rock and roll, OK?
This doesn’t really speak of my whole 2014 though. I feel very lucky to have had such a brilliant year. Of course life isn’t really about luck – I firmly believe that – but none the less I’ve felt lucky to be surrounded by such amazing people. Andrew has kept me calm and in good humour, my friends have been there for me (even when they’re miles away) to either chat about nothing or to help in a panic and my family have been so supportive and happy for me.
One of the most major things that happened last year was of course getting engaged, and a lot of the first half of 2015 will be taken up with wedding stuff. It was brilliant, and despite my frequent moaning to friends I am enjoying planning our wedding.
As well as that we were lucky enough to be invited to a number of weddings for many lovely couples. Andrew was the Best Man at one and the celebrant at another. Busy guy!
And I’ve loved blogging this year. I’ve met some wonderful people this year through blogging, and I am looking forward to meeting lots more of you next year. Especially you, Angie Silverspoon. You can’t hide from me forever (creepy much?!).
I thought I’d quickly mention some of the best books I read in 2014…
Love, Nina: Despatches from Family Life (warm, funny and really easy to read), The Interestings (I love books that are just about life and the choices people make and where they end up. This was that, but in a really entertaining way. It’s not as dull as I’ve just made it sound), The Goldfinch (I could have done without the last act, but otherwise I really enjoyed it for the same reason I did The Interestings), Helter Skelter (this was a massively interesting and impressively in-depth account of the Manson murders, written by the prosecutor on the case. It was long and a bit harrowing, but I keep thinking about it now months after I finished it).
I also read some terrible ones, which I shan’t bother to list.
So, let’s talk 2015 now. I have a feeling it’s going to be a biggie.
There are already a lot of plans afoot for the year. I’m getting married, and there’s a lot that comes with that – hens, stags (I’m not going on that, obvz!), honeymoons, dress fittings. All those larks. I’m really excited about it all, but I know I need to not worry too much about all the plans and get overwhelmed.
2015 will also be a year of activity and health. I lost over a stone at the end of 2014, and I want to keep this up. I feel healthier and happier as a result of all the exercise I’ve been doing and the good stuff I’ve been eating. This isn’t just about getting married, it’s a much-needed lifestyle change. I want to spend more time focusing on what is really important and is good for me. Less time in pubs and vegging out of the sofa watching Friends re-runs (sorry Andrew).
And lastly, a lot of our closest friends are having babies or have recently had babies, so that’s really exciting and I can’t wait to go visit lots of cute kids and cuddle them up real good.
I should also probably mention restaurants and that. The place I’m most excited about? Bleecker Street Burger are opening their first shop in Spitalfields later this month. They’ve been varified by many good sources as the best burger in London, and I know their debut restaurant is going to be excellent. I’m also excited by the fact MEATLiquor is opening in Islington. Other notable exciting launches are Biblioteka in SW1 and StreetXo in Mayfair.
As well as this I will be exploring London’s healthier restaurants, notably raw, vegetarian or vegan restaurants. If you have any recommendations, please do let me know!
I think that’s about it. I’ve droned on for quite long enough. But I wish you all very happy and healthy 2015s.