20 January 2018


Happy New Year! I hope you had a really great Christmas and Hogmanay! 

The time of year is upon us where people are in the whole ‘new year, new me’ phase, but not me! Nope. Honestly, 2017 was the best year for me since 2014, if not in my whole life. Which is a coincidence as 17 has been my lucky number since I was seven and has definitely proven it's luck! In the last year I have felt much happier and felt I had a reason to get out of bed in the morning. I no longer felt I was just going through life surviving. Why would I want to change now? Instead, this year I’m focused on improving.

With that being said, I have set myself some resolutions to stick at throughout the year (and no, it doesn't include ‘join a gym’…I already done so about three years ago). These aren't just my New Year resolutions, but also some are from my ’20 things to do at 20’ list I created when I turned… you guessed it, 20, but never got round to sharing them - so some of the following I hope on ticking off by August 28th.

As boring as it gets, it’s also important. I want to set up a new savings account from the one I've had since I was born and start saving much more.

Get ID!
I am 20 years of age, with a passport now out of date and a failed attempt at getting a provisional as I need a in-date passport to apply. This year, I’m ready to say goodbye to using my Young Scot Card as ID and get both a passport and provisional, and maybe even begin driving lessons (though I’m not too bother about that this year as I live in the centre of Edinburgh).

Find a new job. 
I’ll cross this bridge when I come to it, but the simple explanation is that although I love it and my contract with my current employer is flexible meaning I can choose which days to go in (even work from home if need be), it’s 25 hours a week and I only signed for 12 months meaning it’ll be coming to an end late this year. There could be a wee possibility to stay, but I’m not sure I would want to as there’s so many other experiences out there waiting - why hold off? But I guess we’ll just have to see later this year what happens.

Go to doctors about back. 
I've had problems with my back for the last 10 years and used to get sent home from school because it would flare up so badly. Though it's not very often I'm left unable to even move because of the pain, most days I experience a form of pain - most common being a sharp stinging feeling like needles getting stabbed into my back and I struggle to sit unsupported. Anyways, I've made a few appointments in the past but something I seen as more important to talk to the Doctor with always came up. I'm sick of it being a pain (literally) and want to finally get it sorted!

Get more fit. 
Okay, I may already have a gym membership but my visits have been lacking. This year I really want to get more fit, and try out a lot of the classes offered. I was even told that attending a 30 minute gym class is three times more affective than just going around the machines yourself for a hour! 

Settle things with my father. 
Not really one for the blog. But long story short, I’ve not seen my father since I was about seven. I got in brief contact with him via email when I was 14 but it was exactly that, brief. He always seen the ball in my court, but with any relationship - let it be with parents, friends, or a partner - you both need to put in effort. I gave up so much time and gave him a window into my life but I got tired of putting in so much work with nothing to show for it and I lost contact. This year I want to get back into contact (which won’t be too hard) and build somewhat of a relationship with him (that being the hard part). I’m notorious for keeping my guard up and when I last let my guard down slightly to him I felt he just threw it all in my face, so we’ll see. I'm not wanting a ‘father-daughter’ bond, God no! But I would like to know him.

See parents get divorced. 
Sounds a bit rude right? Again, not one for the blog, but so I don't sound horrible, basically my parents never got a divorce when they split up and haven't seen each other since I was about seven. I’m not sure how likely it will be to see them divorce as neither seem too bothered (well I know my mum isn't and seen as my father hasn't reached out I take it he isn't either), but again, we’ll see. 

Reunite with school friends. 
PEEPS, where you be at?! If you’re reading this, let’s meet up! Spoons, Saturday, 4PM? I haven't seen some of my high school friends since… high school - two years ago! This year I’m going to try on my part to meet up with friends from school, and even some from university that I haven't seen for a while!

Focus on photography. 
I bought Charlie Canon (my DSLR) about three years ago as I have a huge interest and love for photography. I’ve used it plenty in the years but not really what I intended it to be used for. I take my blog photos with it, film my YouTube videos on it, take it out to events and occasions, and even use it at work. Oh, and take plenty photos of Lottie with it. However, I don't really go out with my DSLR and spend the time focusing on photography. This year I really want to invest some time into photography and really learn the best way to utilise the settings and achieve the best picture.

Travel more. 
Better get my new passport seen to! This is one of my resolutions each year as I only see it as something to improve on. My goal in life is to travel the world, to explore all corners and to experience different cultures. This is something that can’t be scored off, however, when I say travel, I don't necessarily even mean out of Scotland. I love it here and I think I’ve taken my surroundings for granted therefore I would love just to explore different places in and around Scotland this year. One of my favourite places in Scotland I've visited a couple of times is Eigg. 

Spend a day without my mobile, even social media? 
I’ve noticed how much society is consumed by mobile phones and social media. You go on a bus and the majority are sitting on their phones, you walk up town and you’ll pass quite a number of people with their eyes looking down to their phones. There was even a piece on the Metro last week where a woman was getting in an elevator and was distracted by her phone, tripped, and as the doors closed, her leg got trapped and was ripped off as the elevator ascended up three floors. Not sure, if it was really down to the fact she was distracted, or more so there was clearly a fault with the elevator, but anyways. My job also evolves social media, and a lot of it. In fact, my position wouldn't exist without it. I manage the social media and in-house blog where I work and I can’t express how much I love it. With that said, because I spend 25 hours a week reading up on the news, mental health, writing for the blog, tweeting and posting on Facebook, when I finish work I don't want to look at my laptop anymore, or check my own social media as much. In some aspects it’s great, but on a bloggers perspective and as an influencer, it’s not so good. So as much as I’d like to improve my own content over social media, I want to try and spend a whole day without my iPhone and even social media (obviously not a day where I’m at work). What do you think? Think I’ll manage it?

Take up more yoga and meditation.
I’ve always enjoyed yoga when I’ve done it, and one of my mantras in life is ‘do more of what makes you happy’ so why not? I’m also keen on reading more on witchcraft and hoodoo (different from voodoo), not because I’m secretly a wiccan in training, I just find witchcraft and ghosts/spirits interesting, even though I may not necessarily believe in. I haven't made that a resolution as such because it’s something I’ll grow knowledge of over time, though I'm not sure why I've mentioned it here as it's doesn't have anything to do with yoga, but there you go.

Do something that terrifies me or grosses me out; heights/snakes?  
Urgh, every year it comes up 'Do something that challenges my fear of heights' but something always gets in the way, like having my operation. This time I've widened the options slightly to include snakes. I’m not scared as such of snakes, but I’m squeamish. I can’t look at one without gagging and if I’m watching, say Bear Grylls, and a snake comes on screen moving about the place, I can’t look. They seriously gross me out. I see them as a creature, not a reptile. I also set myself the goal of getting over my HUGE phobia of needles. I’m not even kidding you when I say I would freak out and cry even at the thought of having blood taken. Fair to say I still can’t look at people getting needles ‘put in’ on programs like Casualty, but I did have to face this fear on a pretty big scale when I had my surgery when I woke up with cannulas in my hands and wrist!

Not to mention I got a really nasty injection each day that stung terribly to prevent blood clots during my time in hospital. If I were sick (which for a week after surgery I woke up in the middle of the night throwing up) an anti sickness tablet would be no good as I’d just spew it up before it worked it's magic, so instead I had to have another awful injection in my arm for anti sickness which have been the worst injections I’ve ever had. It stung sooooo fricken bad, I’m not over exaggerating. Worst. Pain. From. A. Needle. EVER. Though I think I could handle needles… a little better now. As for heights, it's gotten worse over the years, I don't go up in attics, even standing on a ladder when painting my room was enough! So next challenge to face, heights?

‘Finish’ decorating room.
Ha, more like start. I threw out all my bedroom furniture August 2016 and got new furniture in. I removed the wallpaper, painted the walls a light grey and repainted the doors and ceiling…but I still haven't got round to putting anything back up on the walls. This year I want to get my new curtains up, purchase the last bit of ‘major’ furniture (a ladder style shelf) and get some art up on the walls! I’m going for bohemian vibes with mainly neutral colours but with splashes of colour. Lots of potted plants aligning the window sill and cactus everywhere. The style of wall decor I want to go for is something that can’t ever really be ‘finished’ as such, but something that can always be changed or added. I also want to get a wall mount for my guitar to put that up too instead of it sitting on the stand (which just looks boring).

Raise money for Jeans for Genes Day. 
I’m always up for raising a bit for charity, especially ones close to my heart. Having an inherited condition that I found out I had at 14 has really opened my eyes. I don’t ever pity myself over it or look for sympathy, I don't want that at all. Instead I want to raise as much awareness as I can. It’s so rare that it took my mum years of discomfort before she was correctly diagnosed. Now, doctors are more aware of it, but the public aren’t. I want to do a run or cycle, or something bigger than what I’ve done before for charity, for Jeans for Genes Day. (For those wondering it's usually the third Friday in September - this year it’s the 22nd).

Learn the guitar. 
I have many failed attempts under my belt at this. I got a blue-tiful guitar many yonks ago and I did attend guitar lessons for a while but it was a big class of about 15+ and it was old fashioned where we were given a foot rest (not the kind you put your feet up on after a hard days work!) and only taught plucking single strings. Despite being there for a while, I eventually left. A couple or years later I started up a different class, this time with my cousin and there was only us two and a brother and sister. These classes were a lot better but eventually my cousin left and I decided to do the same. Over the years my guitar began collecting dust and I seen the idea of going to a guitar lesson more of a chore than a hobby. I did attempt to teach myself around 2014/15 by printing off chords and just practicing them over and over. I learnt a few off by heart but again, I never pursued any further. This year, I’ve set my eyes on being able to play the guitar well by the end of 2018. I found a great course online by AndyGuitars and so far I’ve learnt more than I’ve ever done before. I’ve learnt most major chords and a few minor chords off by heart, I can change easily from chord to chord, got a couple of strumming patterns down, can play a few songs and even (finally) purchased a G7th capo…costing £28! - and I only began playing my guitar on 1st January (This post has been written on the 5th). I’m so confident I’m going to keep up the hard work and practise for at least 20 minutes a day as I honestly can say for the first time, I don’t feel I must play the guitar because I have one, but instead because I enjoy it! I think part of it is down to the fact I’m following online lessons so I can go at my own pace and pause a video if I need more practise at something particular. I’m also in the frame of mind where I’m now so passionate about it, I really want to succeed this time. It's all down to perseverance: if at first you don't succeed, try, try again.

Dye hair. 
Now moving onto the ‘cool’ resolutions. I’ve wanted pastel hair since I was 17 in high school. I wasn't allowed to because…mum said so. I did put dark purples and reds in my dark brown hair, but I wasn't allowed to bleach it until just before prom where I got it ombre’d. Once I went to uni, I thought about doing it then but decided I should wait till I leave and get a job because we live in a world where it’s still seems to be okay to judge people by tattoos, or the colour of their hair. I left uni, got a job and now... I have bright blue hair! (As of the 13th when I updated parts of this post) It's still one of my resolutions despite getting my hair bleached and dyed purple mid October, then rose gold twice, and now blue (which I LOVE), I want to add more colours to my blue hair like pinks and purples!

Get first tattoo. 
I’ve always wanted a small cross tattoo since I can remember. I loved Demi Lovato’s on the side of her hand, and wanted something similar. For me, it’s not a representation of my religion but instead, faith. I’ve fought through the lowest points of my life because not only did I get help, I knew deep down I had faith and it would be alright in the end. I now tell people to always have faith, in what you do, what you may be going through, how you feel. Always have faith. Faith has so many different meanings to me. It's trusting God has a purpose in all that’s happening in your life without knowing why. It’s trusting Him when He promises there’s something better up ahead when you can’t always see where the road leads. 

To get a cross tattoo is like having the cross necklace around my neck that I never take off, but more permanent. I don’t expect anyone to understand the whole meaning behind the tattoo, I don’t think I could even put it into words. It’s just that sense of knowing exactly what it means to you, and only you. I’m thinking of having it on the upper left side on my ring finger on my right hand. A place where I can constantly see it and despite it being on my hand, it is still pretty discrete. I also have another few tattoos in mind like a small sun on the back of my left ankle and a moon on the right, but I’ll leave my whole tattoo plans for another time. I know I’m going to be the kind of person that you can look at and maybe only see one or two small tattoos, but really I have several that will probably be small, but will be meaningful to me. Just know, between August 28th and December 31st, I’ll have at least my first tattoo done (I want to be 21 when I get it and 117% (17 being my lucky number and all) sure on the placement).

Get more piercings.
I already have simple lobe piercings (what an odd and icky word...lobe) that I got done when I was like six, but needles and pain tolerance has refrained me from getting any more, thus far! In an ideal world of no pain or fear, I would have a second set of lobe piercings (again, weird word. Lobe), my nose pierced, helix piercing on the left ear, double helix piercing on the right ear slightly lower than what’s on the left, and probably another ear piercings of some sort. This year I want to get at least one helix piercing, also aiming to get nose pierced too at a later stage and go from there. I want to just bite the bullet and go for it…this year! 

Buy a new instrument. 
Oh yahh. I’ve promised myself if I can play the guitar (really well) by the end of the year, I will treat myself to a new one and even a ukulele to match my current guitar. My understanding right now sees it as ‘if ya can play six strings, obviously ya can play four’. There is no danger I’ll think about advancing to a 12 string guitar ever! No chance. Another instrument I like is the cajon, but not sure how my mum would appreciate that or if it’s even worth while this year. I think I’ll just focus on the guitar for the time being. :) 

And my bonus one for the year....

Not only am I going to continue trying my best, I’m up for trying new things. Let that be trying new foods, new experiences, a new hair colour (most definitely) or whatever it may be, 2018 is going to be an exciting year.

And there we have it - my New Year resolutions / 20 things to do at 20 (just under 8 months till I turn 21!). I would love to know, what are some resolutions you have given yourself?

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