Best New Year's Resolutions

2017 New Year’s Resolutions and 2016 Review

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Raising Your Pets, Dogs and Cats Naturally

2017 New Year’s Resolutions

Reviewing Life Goals

What does that mean for me for 2017? Like with anything, it's about trying, and getting back up to try again when I’m not successful. We aren't perfect. Just because I didn't reach my 2016 goals doesn't mean I can't try them again for 2017.
Best New Year’s Resolutions

How did you do with your New Year’s resolutions in 2016?

Sticking to New Year's resolutions can be hard. I mean, if you think about, it it's a goal you find challenging. If it were easy for you, you’d already be doing it, and you wouldn’t have it on a list of things you want to change.Click To Tweet

Personally, I know my challenges and try to work on them regularly. But, like so many others, I did set forth with three goals for 2016.

  1. Work on my 3-year plan
  2. Weight-loss and healthy eating
  3. Stay organized and on track

Number one on my list, working on my 3-year plan, was always at the forefront of my day. I’m in my forties, so it is important for me to stay focused on my career and future goals. This 3-year plan encompasses a lot of things in my life, some professional and some personal. This year for my career, I wanted to branch out with more pet freelance work and speaking at pet expos, write another pet book, and work on my personal pet blog.

What I didn’t know was that during this process I would end up totally re-branding my company and the focus of my brand-Raising Your Pets Naturally with Tonya Wilhelm. This rebranding was just what I needed. However, with this, I also ended up taking my main website and 3 blogs and merging them to a new website and host. This was—and still is—a HUGE project. I’m still going over 10 years of online pet articles and reformatting, fixing links, and updating images. Then, there is the issue about SEO and getting my new website listed and linked up across the internet. That’s doing well again, but I still have improvements to make.

#1 is doing well, but like with everything I do, I don’t feel like I am where I wanted to be. Maybe my goal is too high.

Next on my list is the notorious weight-loss and healthy eating. I joined a local gym in January and hit the gym almost daily. Things were on track and I was losing some weight. Eating healthy was going okay, but not fantastic. I’m always so busy and I’m single, which makes cooking a healthy meal quite challenging. At one point I told myself, before buying something to eat, I would ask myself “would I feed it to Dexter?” Basically, that meant it needed to be fresh, not from a box or filled with junk.

My #2 goal of losing weight and healthy eating went by the wayside when number #1 kicked in with the rebranding. That felt so central to my life that I didn’t even want to spend the 60-90 minutes away from other parts of my life, like work. I mean, I ALWAYS make my time for my pets and family, so something had to give, right? Since this goal is more personal and is about me, it always gets lost and deprioritized.

Real food for the human in the house. 🙂

A photo posted by Raising Your Pets Naturally (@raisingyourpetsnaturally) on

My final New Year’s resolution was to stay organized and on track. Not being organized has always been funny to me, because I’m a girl who loves drawers, bins, organizational tools, etc. Everything does have a place, but the problem for me has been to get those things back to their place when I’m finished. Maybe it ties in with the second part, staying on track. For me, I have like five projects I’m working on all on my desk, on the table next to me, over there and here. Don’t get me wrong, though—I never miss a deadline, and usually finish early.

This year, I bought a new computer desk, new office chair, a few wall calendars, and a new blogging calendar. I’m even looking at one of those 32-37” professional computer monitors so that I can have two regular-sized windows open at the same time! Keeping my thoughts and tasks in place comes and goes.

This year, I bought a new computer desk, new office chair, a few wall calendars, and a new blogging calendar. I'm even looking at one of those 32-37” professional computer monitors so that I can have two regular-sized windows open at the same time! Keeping my thoughts and tasks in place comes and goes.
Current workstation

The staying on track part for me is to stick with a daily task plan. But that’s always challenging in my line of work. My main source of income is seeing dog training and cat behavior clients in person or via phone/Skype. So I never know what time of day I will end up booking a session, and what time of day will be free for other work. Or an article idea pops into my head and I feel like I need to write it NOW. My goal, is to just keep my ongoing “to write” list going and when my writing day arrives, go down the list. Or if my website optimization day is here, work on that. At least that’s the goal. 😉

What does that mean for me for 2017? Like with anything, it’s about trying, and getting back up to try again when I’m not successful. We aren’t perfect. Just because I didn’t reach my 2016 goals doesn’t mean I can’t try them again for 2017.

My goal this year is to continue on my path. The first thing I will do is to pull out my trusty calendar, and work on scheduling my daily tasks and goals so I can stick to the plan easier. When something actually makes my planner, I am more likely to follow through.

I plan on writing another book this year, this one about kids and dogs, geared toward kids. I am also thinking about writing a cookbook for busy people who are not cooks! That’s me. My theory is if I make healthy eating part of my career (or my now 2-year plan), I will look at it as a necessity to eat better and cook for myself, instead of something to put off to the side.

It was brought to my attention in a blogger group that we must take time for ourselves. I sort of was looking at this part as #2, but if #2 still has a business angle, am I really putting work aside to JUST BE? Even when I’m in bed trying to unwind from the day, I am looking at my phone on how to improve x. So, I think I will add a #4 to my resolution list, to disconnect from anything work related. This may actually be my hardest challenge for the year!

At least those are my 2017 goals for now.


What about you? Do you struggle with New Year’s resolutions? 

Tell me in the comments.

Are you looking for even more ways to stay up to date with Raising Your Pets Naturally? Sign up for the newsletter for more tips and promotions. Don’t forget to be social and Like, Follow and Subscribe. Comments below are always welcome.

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What does that mean for me for 2017? Like with anything, it's about trying, and getting back up to try again when I’m not successful. We aren't perfect. Just because I didn't reach my 2016 goals doesn't mean I can't try them again for 2017.

Office Organization Tools

Getting Organized: Or at Least Trying

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Raising Your Pets, Dogs and Cats Naturally

Office Organization Tools

Staying organized has never been one of my strengths. I try and try again. I love organizational tools, like containers and planners, but when it comes down to it, I still end up with a messy desk, sticky notes all over, pieces of paper with ideas written down all over the place, including my car, which is where most of my ideas come from!

But first, I have to refer to a study done by scientist Kathleen Vohs. She and her fellow researchers discovered that a messy desk may promote creative thinking and stimulate new ideas. So, that helps me feel a bit better about having such a hard time staying prim and spotless. So, I hope by keeping a clean workstation I don’t crush my creativity. 😉

Being a business owner, I wear many hats. I actually wear ALL the hats related to my company. Pet trainer, author, blogger, public speaker, entertainer, social media expert, videographer, producer, advertiser, graphic designer and of, course, a Dog Mom, Cat Mom and Daughter. I have a lot of ideas and to-do lists floating around in my head, on my desk, in my car….

Home Office Organizing TipsMy first stop was my local office supply store to pick up a ton of spiral notebooks. OK, not a ton, about 20. I labeled each notebook with my main topics that I have ideas. Blog posts, social media ideas, video ideas, advertising, you get the idea. I made these notebooks about 2 weeks ago, and they are quite helpful when I know I want to work on a project, I just grab my notebook for those ideas and lists.

Now, the actual lists and jotting notes is what ties me up a bit. I keep extra note pads in prime locations, with at least three pens next to them. When I have an idea, I can quickly jot it down. That part is easy. The part I slip up on is staying organized by then taking those notes and either taping or entering them in the proper notebook. This is a step I have to really stay on top of. This is one of my “keep trying” things.

Organizing A Small OfficeMy next organizational tool is to try to keep me on a daily track. Meaning, when I sit at the computer to do work, I tend to go from one idea to the next. By doing this, I feel that I am not accomplishing my tasks. Granted, I’m still doing work and something is getting done, but it may not be what I had planned for the day or week. This can be a bit challenging to schedule ahead because of the other part of my business, actual dog and cat behavioral training, returning client inquiries etc. So, my goal is just to have a topic for the day to work on in between seeing and talking with clients. So, today I made a new tool, my magnetic dry erase board.

I started with a large, magnetic dry erase board. I purchased magnetic tape strips (1/2″) and made labels for 24 tasks that I wanted to accomplish in a month (blog writing, social media, video etc.), and attached them to the magnet strips. Now, I have 24 magnetic topics for the month! I placed one on each day, leaving Saturdays open for free or make-up days. Since they’re magnetic, I can change them around as I need, which is easier than writing, erasing, and re-writing. Now, when I sit down to work at my desk, I will have my task for the day to work on. If I never get to sit down to work, which does happen, then I will just skip it. I’m hoping that helps get my to-do list accomplished better.

organizing tips Best office apps

The other organizing tool I’m trying out is Google’s Keep app for checklists and notes, which synchs between the computer and smart phone. Right now, I’m working on getting my article ideas organized, so when it’s time to write a blog post, I can open it up, pick a topic and go. I’m hoping this will also help me get more words down, whether on paper or computer.

Finally, the last step is a timer. It’s so important to take breaks, stretch and unwind. I can get so focused on what I’m doing that the time flies by. My plan is to set the timer for 60 minutes, then do a little something with Dexter. Maybe a potty break, a little play, or just a belly rub. Then, back to work.

All I can do is to keep trying to stay on track and keep trying to stay organized. We all have our weaknesses, and this is certainly one of mine. I’m an organizing freak waiting to make an appearance.

What are your must-haves for staying organized?

Are you looking for even more ways to stay up to date with Raising Your Pets Naturally? Sign up for the newsletter for more tips and promotions. Don’t forget to be social and Like, Follow and Subscribe. Comments below are always welcome.

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