What Are My Goals For 2021? (And Did I Achieve My 2020 Goals?)

15 Dec 2020


I'll be the first to hold my hands up and say that I'm rubbish at sticking to New Years' resolutions. In fact, I'm yet to meet someone who can wholeheartedly say that they have stuck to one, possibly because they simply just forget what their resolution was or that they just couldn't be bothered (it's the latter camp that I tend to fall into).

But in recent years, I've been trying to set myself five loose goals to aim towards over the coming year, because I find the word 'resolution' to be loaded with unnecessary pressure. No one's bothered if you didn't shift that Christmas stone or whether you picked up that niche and extravagant hobby. As long as you're happy, then that's all that matters, amirite? And I'm happy when I'm taking baby steps to try and achieve these little goals.


What were my goals for 2020?


It's so funny to think back to the end of 2019. I had massive hopes for 2020 and it's all been a bit of a write off, hasn't it? That being said, I'd set myself some goals, as I always do, and it's time to look back on them and see whether I achieved them or not.

1. Start pitching my blog, especially to local businesses

We're starting off on a bad foot because I didn't really achieve this goal. I'm very much a 'shy bairns get nowt' person, but when it comes to pitching, I really am a shy bairn. That being said, this year has seen me receive an influx of requests to work together from local businesses, mainly on Instagram, which has definitely steered The Northernist in the direction of being a Tees focused platform.

2. Get back into exercising regularly

A big tick next to this goal! Matthew and I joined the gym this year after realising that running wasn't going to happen with my dodgy foot (torn ligament accident that's left my foot not quite right). We've been LOVING it and make an effort to go at least 3 times a week. Sure, I'm still a sweaty mess and I can't lift much weight yet, but I can feel myself improving, slowly by surely.

3. Become more assertive

This goal also has a big fat tick next to it. 2020 was the year of Olivia saying 'no' to more things and putting her foot down. And alongside that, it's also been the year of me realising that assertiveness and confidence is linked to my mental wellbeing, so I quit a toxic job this year, I broke off relationships that were unhealthy and I became less of a doormat, I like to think. It's been a year of growing in strength, for sure.

4. Shop smaller

A combination of things has affected this goal. I've 100% been shopping smaller, especially around Christmas, and that's because I've helped my mum set up her own Etsy shop and seen how much that makes her happy. I've also worked a lot with smaller businesses on Instagram (as mentioned in the first goal) and because of that, it's steered The Northernist more towards Tees content, which has opened my eyes to own small business community. It's something that you'll be seeing a lot more of in 2021!

5. Introduce myself to more plant-based meals

I'm sad to say that this one was a bit of a fail. It's funny because I love trying new foods, but I'm also a bit of a creature of habit, which doesn't make sense at all. I've definitely been incorporating more veg into my meals, but having fully plant-based dishes hasn't really happened. I'm disappointed in myself because I really don't mind eating vegan, but it's just something that slipped my mind. I'm going to make more of a conscious effort next year, I promise!



What are my goals for 2021?


I like to think I did ok with my 2020 goals, what do you reckon? 3 out of 5 isn't bad! I feel like I've made significant improvements in myself and I've actually felt pretty happy with the year, despite everything that's gone on. But we're saying bye to 2020 now, so it's time to set myself some 2021 goals.

1. Establish myself as a knowledgeable Teesside advocate

This is the reason why I struggled so much with pitching - I don't see myself as 'established'. And what I mean by that is I want people to come to me for recommendations and advice about the local area, and that's what I want to work on in 2021. I want people to be like 'where shall we go for dinner? Let's look at what The Northernist recommends' or 'where can I buy a present for my mum? I'll ask The Northernist'. So you can expect to see lots of Tees content in the New Year, including the new Independent Tees Collective series - watch this space.

2. Keep going to the gym at least 3 times a week

Ok, so we've established a sort of exercise routine and in 2021, I want to maintain it. We don't have set days that we go on because Matthew's work schedule can sometimes fluctuate, but gymming 3 times a week is working for us. I want to keep that up so that I see some weight loss, a bit of tone and I want to be able to do weights in the scary area of the gym (you know exactly where I mean).

3. Visit more of the UK

In 2021, I'm so keen to explore more of the UK and have some little one-night stopovers in certain spots. I'm someone who loves discovering new places, checking out the local area and being a bit of a tourist, and I've already said to Matthew that when this pandemic is over, I want to have more trips away. So watch this space! I'd love to spend more time in York, parts of the Lake District, parts of Scotland that aren't just Edinburgh, and so many others.

4. Learn how to budget properly and increase my savings

I don't want to toot my own trumpet too hard, but I'm pretty good at saving money. But the way I save money isn't by budgeting or keeping track of my spends. It's all guesswork and stopping myself from spending any money on me, which isn't the way to go about it. In 2021, I want to learn how to budget properly and actually let myself have a treat sometimes, but still manage to put a good wodge into my savings every month.

5. Work on my Pinterest and Instagram game

I'm obsessed with Instagram - I love taking photos, chatting to people on there, making Reels, basically everything about it - but I'm rubbish at growing on it. I'd love to be able to grow more on there across 2021 and transform some of my following on there into blog readers. It's the same with Pinterest - I get a lot of traffic from there, but I don't use it properly or enough to turn it into a proper channel. The New Year is going to change that!


I have a good feeling about 2021 and after the mess that 2020 has been, I think all of us could do with an amazing New Year to make up for it. I'm feeling positive about my goals and I haven't set myself anything that's unachievable or ridiculous. Make sure you visit back in June for a halfway point look at how I'm getting on!

Do you have any goals for 2021? Let me know in the comments!

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