It’s here! We’re a week+ into the new year and I’ll be honest: it’s been a really great week for me thus far. I’m finding that special rhythm and motivation that comes with a fresh start, and I really loved my first week of the year. Hoping to keep it all going strong this week, too! I’m keeping up with the theme of creating monthly goals for myself (can’t believe I’ve been doing this since 2018…) and I’m SO excited to share these 12 monthly goals for 2023. The theme of my year? Wellness.
My word of the year changes drastically from year to year based on what I’m feeling and needing. When I was in the years of pregnancy and breastfeeding, my words were super gentle: grace, alive, presence. Now that my babies are turning into toddlers and my body is done with pregnancy, I’m thinking a lot about what I want to feel like moving forward. Last year my word was ENERGY. This year I chose WELLNESS, which is a cousin to last year’s word but has a subtle shift to it.
To me, WELLNESS means rest.
It means calm.
It means chasing the things that make me feel happy, not just look happy.
Pursuing the hard things that take me down that road that leaves me to the feelings I mentioned above. So, some things feel a bit uncomfortable at first, but they lead to wellness. For instance: a really hard workout allows my body to grow stronger muscles and live without pain when I lift my toddlers. Or a good cardio HIIT class helps me sleep well at night and makes my heart stay strong for this whole lifetime. Or the awkwardness of pursuing new friendships (or the discipline of carving out time to nurture the ones that I have) deepens those friendships, and friendship is the epitome of wellness to me.
So this year I made 12 little monthly goals for 2023 that help me on my path to wellness. As I grow in my 30s, I find that my goal become gentler and gentler, yet they have a more profound effect on my life. I love how that works. 🙂
Some of these goals are for physical wellness and some are for emotional wellness. If any of them resonate with you, feel free to steal them and try them on in your own life!
12 Monthly Wellness Goals For 2023
January // Use my red light face mask every day.
Eeeks! My red light face mask is my newest toy, and I’m making it my goal to use it every day in January. So far so good! It’s all shiny and fresh right now and I’m really excited about it, so I’m making it a goal to use it at least 10 minutes daily (sometimes 20 minutes!) so I get in the habit of using it regularly. I hope to keep this up all year, although it probably won’t be daily… 3-4 times per week would be awesome.
Red light therapy is new to me, but as I focus on my skincare this year, I’m excited to bring this device into my life. If you’ve never heard of it, you’re exactly where I was just a couple months ago! It’s super new to me, but once I heard about it, saw some before/after pics, and listened to some first-hand RAVE reviews, I knew I wanted to give it a try.
It basically uses far infrared heat to ignite cellular renewal and collagen renewal for glowing skin, promotes healing (great for redness or acne scars), and diminishes fine lines. It’s also a mood-boosting tool, and I can wholeheartedly agree with that!
I use it in the morning while I do a meditation. I lay down, put the mask on, listen to a 20 minute mediation, and get my vibe SUPER high first thing in the morning. I love this thing, and I’m excited to see the longterm results. For January, I’m committing to using it every day. Easiest goal ever, because it makes me feel so good!
February // Phone goes “to bed” at 8:00.
Anyone else struggle with late night scrolling? I find that even when I’m watching a show with Nate, I feel naked if I don’t have my phone in my hand! Aggghhh! The addiction is real (my brain tells me all sorts of things like “what if I need to google one of the actors on the show and do a deep dive into their instagram account??”) and I’m not great about cutting my screen time in the morning.
BUT…I know that I sleep better when I’m not looking at my phone in the evening. I also know that I’m accomplishing absolutely nothing when I scroll in the evening, and the “entertainment” (typically mindlessness on instagram) isn’t all that fulfilling. I mean, when I get off my phone to go to sleep I’m not typically like “well THAT was the most fun thing I could have done with my time!” Nope. I typically just feel a bit wired and listless, and maybe dissatisfied.
So in February I’m going to practice the wellness habit of putting my phone to bed at 8:00. We had some custom nightstands built for our bedroom, and they have a little slot with space for a watch/phone charger and a few books (to keep the top of the nightstand tidy.) So I’ll just slide my phone in there at 8:00 pm and keep it away from me for the night.
March // 12 hour intermittent fasting. I’ve done this off and on and it makes me feel SO good! It’s basically just not eating from 7 pm – 7 am (or more realistically, for me, 8 pm – 8 am.)
It’s not a huge fast, but it follows my circadian rhythm.
Fasting with your circadian rhythm is linked to higher energy, better sleep, lower blood pressure, lower bad cholesterol, and higher good cholesterol. For me, I enjoy it because I find that when I don’t eat late at night (after 8 pm), I sleep SO well!
Like, I wake up the next morning and I can tell a super noticeable difference in how rested I feel. And friends, waking up in the morning feeling bright and excited for the day and eager to jump out of bed is a feeling that is totally worth working for. It’s one of the best things, especially when you compare it to waking up and feeling like a truck hit you (which is how I feel when I wake up in the morning after having a bunch of sugar/alcohol the night before.)
My March goal is to work on the habit of not eating after 8 pm.
April // Eat 2 veggies a day.
Ha! Here’s the thing:
I wrote this out and it looks pathetic. Pathetic! I mean, TWO veggies a day is the goal?
But when I’m actually going through my life and noticing how many veggies I eat, there are totally multiple days that go by without any veggies in my life. And I love veggies!
But I just have to make a point to buy them, steam them, order them for lunch at a restaurant, add them to dinner, make smoothies for breakfast, etc. It’s not hard, but it takes my attention.
So in April I’m going to put attention on bringing two veggies each day into my life.
May // Declutter 1 closet.
I’m keeping it simple in May, but my monthly goal is to choose just one closet to declutter. It will probably be either Dayton’s, Milo’s, or the under-the-stairs closet, because those are the ones that tend to collect lots of stuff.
June // Try out a new smoothie recipe.
One of my favorite things about monthly goals is that I can go with the ebb and flow with the year. After a few years of doing monthly goals, I’ve found that in the summer months I just want to take it easy. I don’t want super strenuous or challenging goals, so I’m going to back off in June – Aug and enjoy some easy goals!
In June I want to make a new smoothie recipe at home. I get stuck in a rut, and unless I have a few Daily Harvest smoothies on hand in my freezer, I pretty much make the same recipe every time. So in June I’ll try a new recipe, which will involve getting some new ingredients in my freezer and pantry.
Not sure about you, but I loooove having one recipe that’s easy, delicious, and I can make over and over for breakfast. The problem is that my current recipe has been my staple for like….3 or 4 years? Haha! Too long. In June I’ll try something different.
July // Be where your feet are.
Love this quote. I heard it on the Chris Harder podcast, and it will be my mantra/goal for July. Again, I’ve found that I’m just not about the big goals in the summer months, and July feels a bit slow and lazy to me. (100+ temps here in Austin don’t help!)
In July, my goal is to be where my feet are. This means presence, living right here in the now, and not a lot of striving or looking forward.
August // Live with no goals.
The goal is to not have a goal, and that’s an actual goal to me. (All of the enneagram 3s are nodding in agreement right now.) My goal for August is to live life without a goal.
I will not have a wellness goal. I will not have a fitness goal. I’m simply going to be living off the fumes of my previous goals and enjoying exactly who I am as a person. August = easy, mindful living.
September // Throw a fall party.
In the theme of wellness, I wanted to bring something social into the mix! I looooove seasonal party! I love attending them, and I’m learning to love hosting them! But most importantly, planning something special to do with my friends creates the moments and memories that make life worth living. And I’ve found that it doesn’t have to be anything extravagant – usually just a group of girlfriends and a bottle of wine on the back patio. The two things that matter are 1) people and 2) conversation. All of the other things, like a party theme, homemade food, pinterest-worthy cocktails, etc, aren’t necessary. But if it feels like fun, I like adding it in!
Fall in Texas is kind of a bummer because it doesn’t hit until like the first week of December. Not kidding. So we have to create our own fall here by visiting local Austin pumpkin patches and burning cinnamon candles and drinking spiced chai. I think it will be fun to celebrate the season by hosting some sort of autumn-themed party. Stay tuned for exactly what it is!
October // Get out into nature.
Ahhhh October. Bless you. This is typically when we start getting our first few cool-ish mornings in Texas, and I absolutely love this month. In October, my monthly wellness goal is to get out into nature by going on a few hikes!
November // Evening baths.
This is one of those wellness goals that I always enjoy yet I rarely do. Here’s the situation: it’s 7:30 pm, and I’ve just put the kids to bed and I am BEAT. Like 100% of my energy for the day was gone before I started the boys’ bedtime routine, and after it’s over? There’s no way I feel like filling yet another tub with warm water, plus lighting a candle, finding my kindle, pouring in bath salts. It just sounds like too much work.
(I know, I know…it’s not actually that much work. But if you’ve ever done a nightly bedtime routine with littles for 500 nights in a row you know how exhausted you feel every night when it’s done!)
But…I actually do love an evening soak. I love how relaxed and calm it makes me feel, and how luxurious it is when I add a delicious bath salt or a beautiful lavender candle. And in November, the days are shorter and the evenings are dark, so it’s the perfect time to get back into the routine of an occasional evening bath.
December // Cook (easy) meals at home.
Not sure about your holiday season, but I tend to eat out a LOT! End of year = parties, dates, family dinners out, and an all-around feeling of NOT wanting to cook at home.
But with all of the goodies that come with the holiday season, I also want to bring in some home cooked meals, too. By the end of the year I’m kind of tired and I rely on pre-made HEB or Trader Joes meals far too often, and so my December wellness goal is to cook at home. But EASY meals!
And that’s it! Those are my 12 little wellness goals for 2023. They’re pretty small and manageable, so I feel nothing but excitement when I look at the year ahead.
By the way, if you love the idea of monthly goals and you want more ideas, feel free to look back at my 12 MONTHLY GOALS from the past. You’ll notice that they start off a bit more intense (2018 Kelsey was still super into things like working out every day and trying to go a full month without sugar) and they gradually get gentler (the current version of myself lives a much more intuition-led approach to health and fitness.)
And as always, if this resonates with you and makes you feel excited for setting some monthly goals, share this blog post with a friend!
Cheers to a fantastic year ahead!