On Starting Off the New Year Right

2016 was a very tough year for me. I had to deal with lots of personal and professional changes, including the merger of my College with Clarkson University, two hospitalizations for a life-threatening bout of peritonitis, and the sudden passing of my estranged mother. All of this has thrown my physical, mental and financial wellbeing into a complete tailspin.

All of this has thrown my physical, mental and financial wellbeing into a complete tailspin. I’m working more and more hours but still falling further and further behind. I’m unable to make progress on my own writing and research projects, spending most of my time doing administrative tasks.  I’m neglecting my husband, my family, my friends,  and my cat. I’m sleeping less and skipping the gym. I’m facing over $200,000 in medical bills, of which I am responsible for $5,000 under my current insurance plan. I have an additional $5,000 in funeral and legal costs following my mother’s death. Finally, I have a $4,500 bathroom remodel that is about to start, a $25,000 kitchen remodel that needs to get done, and additional and expensive upkeep to do on my 1835 Colonial-era townhome.

No wonder that I’m always tired, hungry, grumpy and anxious.

I need change! I need to regain my balance and focus on what is important: my family and friends, my physical health and mental stability, and my long-term financial goals. This is the year that I plan to do this — the nasty sinus infection that I woke up with not withstanding.

This blog is my chronicle of my successes, failures, progress, and setbacks. Here’s to a happier and healthier 2017.

Although I don’t normally do the resolution thing, I’ve decided to break publicly my no-resolution rule. In the coming year, I pledge to:

  1. Show (not tell) my husband that I love him every single day.
  2. Take a full hour-long lunch break at work, during which I will step away from the computer and read for pleasure, chat socially with colleagues, meditate, or go for a walk.
  3. Call my sister, my father and one random friend every week.
  4. Post something daily to social media that makes me smile, happy, grateful, thankful, or some other positive emotion under the hashtag #MyOwnHappinessProject.
  5. Make headway on my long-delayed book project.
  6. Earn and save and additional $20K this year, which will be used to jumpstart our ‘Retirement/Vacation Home in Barcelona’ fund.