New Year’s Resolutions get a bad rap. They’re always some unrealistic target that gets lashed in the bin come January 5th (if you’re really focussed) when you realise that, “Eat nothing but lettuce all year” might have been a bit of a reach. So rather than making resolutions this year, set yourself New Year goals instead.
If you wanna really get into it – make them SMART. If you’ve ever worked in a sales job you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about, but just in case: S – specific, M – measurable, A – achievable, R – Realistic and T – Timely. I’ll give you an example:
1. Make David Attenborough proud (my none selfish goal)
One thing that’s really bothered me this year is that baby whale on Blue Planet and the turtles trapped in rubbish. If you didn’t see it, this is what happened: Plastic gets dumped into the sea, it dissolves and breaks down into micro plastics that look a bit like plankton, fish eat them, whales eat the fish, the plastic poisons their milk and their milk kills their babies. A mothers milk actually kills her own baby. I’ve got a tear in my eye right now. And just FYI, we also eat plastic laden fish.
I didn’t even realise it at the time but I’ve thought about it at least once every day since so I’m making it part of one of my New Year goals. In the shop, instead of just giving people a plastic bag or asking if they want one, I’ve started saying, “Do you need a plastic bag?” and it’s worked, most people actually have said no. But every time someone says yes (because obviously, sometimes you need a bag to carry 8 bath bombs, that’s totally understandable) I find myself thinking about David Attenborough telling us all off for killing turtles and whales.
We’re on our very last packet of plastic bags and once that’s gone, The Scouse Bird Shop will no longer use plastic bags in store. Paper bags are more environmentally friendly so we’ll be switching to those – however they are so much more expensive to buy in than plastic bags so I’ll invite you to either bring your own bag in or there’ll be a 5p charge for a bag. I’m also getting Scouse Bird tote bags made (we’ve had a lot of requests for that this Christmas) so that’s another option that’ll be available to buy and use too.
At home, I do recycle a lot but I’ve stepped it up a gear too by micro sorting my rubbish. I know this is only a drop in the ocean, no pun intended, but once i achieve this, I’ll move on to something else.
So my goal is specific – to eradicate plastic bags from the shop to be more green, measurable – I know it’ll be done because I can see that there’ll be no plastic bags coming from shop, achievable – I’ve already ordered the paper bags, the tote bags are in the design stage and I’m getting a sign made to warn people of the charge, realistic – yep, I’m already in the process of it and timely – it’ll be done as soon as this last pack of plastic bags runs out and the paper and tote bags arrive.
In this world where Donald Trump, the leader of the most powerful country in the world, is denying climate change and er… science, it might feel like there’s nothing we can do as individuals. But the change has to start somewhere and it might as well start with you. So if you don’t do it for the baby whales, you don’t do it for yourself, you don’t do it for your children or your grandchildren then for the love of god, DO IT FOR DAVID ATTENBOROUGH.
He’s a national treasure. Photo credit: BBC
2. Expand the shop (My career goal)
I have been pleasantly surprised at how busy the shop has been and how quickly we’ve ran out of space. When we moved in we didn’t even really have enough stock lines to fill our shelves but that changed, FAST. We got load of new cabinets and display units and still had to be ridiculously creative about how we displayed stuff – The Liverpool Umbrella hangs from a ceiling light! So one of my New Year goals is to make the business bigger.
The opportunity to take the unit next door and double my space has come up and I’m going to take it. For those of you who’ve been in the shop, the office part next door is also going to become part of the shop and I’m moving the office space into the unit next door. This means that my gorgeous make up artists in residence, Lizzy and Hannah will have their own permanent make up stations AND I’m also going to offer out a space to rent for a nail technician. There’ll also be a changing cubicle to try on clothes and a premium section of the shop for the likes of the Tarte make up and some premium candles.
In the new office I’m going to have a sound proofed room so I can start up my Youtube videos again – with the shop being so busy and customers popping in and out all the time, there’s just no way I’ve been able to film lately.
There’ll also be space for at least 2 desks to rent for some like minded girl bosses e.g. someone starting out in PR, marketing, blogging, copy writing or similar who maybe isn’t quite ready for their own office yet. I’ll be there to offer advice or help the best way I can too! So if you or anyone you know would be interested in this or the nail tech place, get in touch! It’ll be ready from February/March 2018. You can see my existing office here.
So fresh so clean – New Year New Me 2018
3. Move house (My personal goal)
For my personal goal I could put that it’s to lose weight like it has been every year since I was 12 but fuck it, I know I can do that now. It’s just the Christmas weight really. I want something more challenging. This is the last of my New Year goals.
I want to move house THIS year. I want a bigger house, closer to work, family and closer to where I’d like to send Cora to school. I absolutely love the house I’m in at the moment, we’ve put so much work into it; it used to be my nan’s and I did a lot of growing up here as did my mum. It’s only ever been owned by my family and I’ll be so sad to see it go, but we’ve outgrown it and it’s time to move on.
The issues I have here is that being self employed and having not one, but two houses (one that I rent out), is that it’s going to be difficult to get a decent mortgage without having to jump through a huge number of hoops and save one hell of a deposit – this means I must stop wasting money on stuff I don’t really need.
I have meetings with my accountant and a mortgage adviser arranged in the next few weeks so then I’ll know exactly what I need to do and whether my goal is achievable and realistic. Once I know, I’ll be able to start that hoop jumping.
So I have two lovely houses if anyone wants to buy…
Happy New Year everyone and what are your New Year goals? If you need any practical help achieving them, read this.