Well, it’s that time of year again. The time where we all feel like we get to hit the reset button and be the amazing “new year, new me” people, that we have always wanted to be. Unfortunately, even those of us with the best intentions and plans for our new selves, give up on these goals before the month of January is over. Trust me, if you are one of these people I am not judging at all, I am right there with you. I am notorious for claiming every new year that I am going to make these huge changes, and starting January 1st I am going to be a totally new and improved person. So why doesn’t this work? Why do we still fail in spite of our best intentions? The answer is simple, human nature. We are all pattern oriented beings. We like our routines. We are inclined to keep doing what we are used to doing, even when that’s not in the best interest of our goals. The biggest problem we run into is ourselves! It is impossible to go to bed and wake up a totally different person. No one can make that many changes all at once and except them to stick. Trying to become a completely new version of yourself over night is a recipe for disaster. So what do we do then? How do we successfully work towards our goals? By honoring our imperfect human selves, and setting small attainable goals that we can continue to build upon. The best thing we can do for our end goals is to realize that they cannot be reached over night. The best goals require a long hard hustle, but accomplishing them is so worth it. This year, I am sharing all of my New Year’s Resolutions and how I plan on making them last. 1. Goodbye comfort zone – Let’s be real, it is so easy to stay in our comfort zones, but no one can grow like this. The best decisions I have ever made involved putting myself out there. Trust me, I know how scary putting yourself out there can be, but the worst thing that can come out of this is that you gain nothing. If you go for something and it doesn’t work out, you haven’t lost anything and you can go look for your next opportunity. In 2018 I want to make it a priority to put myself out there and continue to grow both as a future pharmacist and as a human being in general. Starting this blog is the perfect way to start off the new year for me. I have wanted to do this for years, but I was always too scared or too unsure of how to actually get started. Just like so many other times, I am so glad I took a leap of faith and made it happen! This year is all about believing in yourself and going for it, so that thing that scares you, go conquer it! 2. Be Healthier – So cliché, I know, but hear me out. My main goal is not to lose weight or have a particular look. It can be discouraging to not lose weight as fast as you want or you may want to give up when you hit a plateau, but keeping the bigger picture in mind can help us keep going. I want to feel good. I want my body to be healthy. Not only does eating take out make me feel guilty, but I physically don’t feel well afterwards. It is amazing how much better you can feel and how much more energy you can have when you feed your body what it needs.
My goal in 2018 is to eat as naturally as possible. This means focusing on veggies, fruits, organic meat, and natural grains. I love all of these things, but often slack on eating properly when I get really busy. Time is the biggest challenge I face when it comes to eating right. Planning is everything. If I walk into Trader Joe’s without a grocery list that can actually be used to make meals for the whole week, I will probably end up roaming the store (wine isle? yes) and then by Wednesday have nothing but bars and greek yogurt to eat. Another healthy habit I want to work on is drinking water. I absolutely do NOT drink enough water ever and I know how bad that is, but I’ve never been able to stick to it. My goal is to drink two of my 32oz water bottles a day. However, right now I barely drink half a water bottle, so my immediate goal is to drink a full bottle a day and work my way up. This year I added a few useful accessories to my favorite planner that will let me plan meals ahead of time and track all of my other health goals I want to focus on.
The most important thing about trying to be healthier is consistency. Yes I am going to eat out once in a while, or crave something and treat myself to it. That is completely normal and necessary to feel healthy and happy. The point is to not give up on your healthy habits just because you ate a donut (or 3, I mean donuts are delicious), just eat a normal lunch and dinner after and keep after it!3. Look at the big picture – The closer I get to graduation, the more I think about what I want for my life afterwards. It is so easy to get wrapped up in pharmacy school being your whole life, while you are going through it. Between all of the exams, labs, professional organizations, and internships, the feeling of being overwhelmed is almost inevitable. In my P1 and P2 years, I remember always feeling like I wasn’t doing enough, even when my calendar was jam packed. As I sit here and look back I wish I had taken more time for myself; more time to relax and explore the city. It is important to realize that as much as you want to be successful in your future career, pharmacy will never be and should never be your whole life. I by no means am saying that being involved is a bad thing. I absolutely believe all students should be involved in some way, but get involved in something you are truly passionate about; learn to say no to things you really don’t want to do or have time for. I have always been the type to take on everything that is available to me, but in 2018 I want to be more selective with my time and focus on having a well rounded life.
Another important lesson to realize in pharmacy school is that failure is okay. I used to get so frustrated if the grade I got wasn’t what I wanted. It is important to strive for success and try your hardest, but it is also vital to remember that we are all here to learn. Failing one community lab because you missed the intervention is better than missing that intervention in real life and harming a patient. School is the time to fall on your face a little, learn from your mistakes and do better next time. Whether you failed an exam, a lab, or didn’t get a position you wanted, there is always a lesson that you can grow from. At the end of the day we are all going to graduate with the same degree and be pharmacists, so let’s give ourselves a little break while we get there.
4. Me Time – Taking time for yourself is SO important. This year I want to focus on taking the time to do things that I enjoy. I always joke that I am the least creative person in my entire family. My youngest sister is like a little art genius. I seriously can’t believe the work she has done and every time she shows me something, all I can think is, “wow I have zero talents!” Writing and reading have always been something that I have enjoyed and starting this blog has made me so incredibly excited to get back to that. I have been suppressing my creative energy to focus my mind on pharmacy, but what I have realized is that I can do both. It feels so good to be doing something I love and to be feeding my brain something other than pharmacy. I also love to cook. My Italian grandmother is a true master in the kitchen. Hopefully, one day my homemade sauce and chicken soup will be as good as hers. I want to start making more things from scratch this year, which fits perfectly with my goal of eating as naturally as possible. While I finish up my last semester of classes; I am going to focus on quick and easy things like protein packed muffins, homemade bread, dinners that will last me a few days and so on. 2018 is going to be the year of finding my talents and letting my creative side run free!
5. Travel – I LOVE traveling. As a kid my family never left the United States. All of our vacations were on the east coast, mainly Florida, and as much as I love all those memories, I’ve always wanted to explore new places. I have been to Canada a few times, once for my 21st birthday (I am the oldest of all my friends, so thank you Canada for the drinking age of 18) and this past January with my cousin. I also went to the Cayman Island’s with my awesome roomie/best friend. After going to the Caribbean I was so eager to keep traveling, especially around the world. My boyfriend and I took the most amazing two week vacation to Italy this past summer, (post coming soon). We are both Italian, so it has always been a dream of ours to travel there. Our two week trip took us all over the country: Rome, Sorrento, Capri, Florence, Milan, Venice, Cinque Terre, etc. We will definitely be going back very soon, most likely spending the majority of our time on the coast. I do not have a specific destination in mind for 2018 but I would love to travel somewhere new both in the States and over seas. Here are some photos from my last trip:
I hope that my resolutions resonated with you, and inspire you to take action towards all that you wish to achieve this coming year. I wish all of you a Happy New Year to pursue all of your intentions into a lucrative, productive and fulfilling 2018!