March goals – or, an excuse to write a to-do list


Is it just me, or have the first two months of this year fairly flown by? It feels like Christmas was approximately two weeks ago and, consequently, as if I haven't got paid since, but that's another issue. This is all to say that I meant to write a "January goals!" post – which would have opened the door for a monthly update, and perhaps kicked my ass into actually getting shit done, Niall Harbison style, but January totally passed me by. Then February came and went (doing the same), and I feel as though the year is only just getting started.

This may or may not have something to do with the fact that – fanfare please – I have just left my secure, (relatively) well paid job at STELLAR magazine to go back to freelance living and focus on self-promotion writing fulfilling, Pulitzer-worthy features for broadsheet newspapers. I handed in my notice mid-January, but between the jigs and the reels, ended up working two months rather than one – with the result that I feel as if 2016 is just beginning.

So here I am, starting afresh on March 1st – with a whole host of things I'd like to achieve this month (and a serious desire to share those goals with strangers I've never met). Let's begin, shall we?

Start vlogging regularly

My 31st birthday in February saw my parents join forces with my other half and bestow upon me that perennial bloggers' favourite, the Olympus Pen E-PL7. I'm still coming to terms with the technicalities, but it has enabled me to start a YouTube channel, on which I currently have two videos. The ultimate goal? To upload two videos a week – one how-to, one chatty, on a Wednesday and a Sunday. Those days have been chosen arbitrarily; if you have better suggestions, please, do share.

Vlogging is something I'm (so far) really enjoying  – thanks in no small part to how lovely everyone has been, not only in the comments but on Snapchat, Twitter and Facebook. It's also such a skill, and one I'd love to get far, far better at. So ideally, by the end of March, I'll be fully in the swing of twice-weekly vlogging.

Aungier Danger doughnuts donuts

Stick to my macros

Those of you who follow me on Snapchat (@rosemarymaccabe) will know that last week was a pretty tough one for me. I've been exercising regularly and eating clean since the end of September, bar a regular Saturday cheat day, and by and large I've stuck to plan – which is why last week was such a disappointment to me.

It's not like I ate four Mars bars and a box of Krispy Kremes, but I felt myself slipping further and further off the wagon. I even skipped a session, which hasn't happened at all since I started at Lift (below, looking less terrifying than it is), and I felt pretty crappy about it. So I let myself off the hook; I had a huge blowout at the weekend and ate everything I've been craving (including a doughnut, above, from Aungier Danger at Arnotts), hoping that it would help me get back on the straight and narrow on Monday morning.

Lift Training Studios

Did it work? Well, kinda. All of that extra sugar definitely rebooted my cravings for the sweet stuff, and I'm back to wanting dessert with every single meal, but the wobble has definitely made me more determined. So for the month of March, I'm going cheat-free and gonna try to stick to my macros (more on which in a future blog post, I promise) every single day. #fitfamforever right?

body transformation before after

Take progress pics

Related to the above, taking progress pics is one of the main things I use to motivate myself to keep going. So why did I stop? Well, laziness, for one – and secondly, slight mortification. As the studio has got busier, it's tougher to get private time to take my carefully posed "after" pics. But this month: no excuses. I want a new pic every single week – Rosemary, think of the Instagram likes!

Clinique lipsticks

Wear more lipstick

I didn't say all of these goals were going to be of mega importance, okay? Ever since I got my hair cut, I've been struggling a bit with my style. Too girly, and I feel like a 45-year-old who's recapturing her youth by hosting a 60s-themed cocktail party. Too masculine, and I feel, well, like a boy. V-necks make my neck look too big (that's a real thing). And it's not just the hair – having lost weight, and gone from a size 16 to a 12, I know I should stop wearing shapeless sacks. But if I don't wear shapeless sacks, well, what do I wear?!

Until I figure the above out, there's always lipstick – and I own tonnes of them (the above are new from Clinique in the Clinique Pop Lip Colour + Primer range – a glossier, sheer iteration that stills packs a serious punch). So while I'm deciding what my new style is, I'll be mostly wearing black, white and navy and a very, very bright lip.

Go back to black

No, I'm not talking fashion any more – but its polar opposite in terms of the joy it brings to my life: finance. I want to end March 2016 with my bank account in the black, which means no more buying €12 lunches in Alchemy (sob); no more purchasing workout gear from the insanely good H&M Sport range; no more splurging on taxis; waving goodbye to my four-coffee-a-day habit (I know, I know...)

A good friend of mine takes out a set amount for the week each Monday, and spends only that. From now on, I'm going to channel her and attempt to stay within budget – with the hope that, by the time April 1st rolls around, I can tell my dad I've got my financial shit together, and it won't be a hilarious April Fool's joke.

Dusty Boy Designs notebook

Write some good shit down

I can't be the only one who essentially uses her notebook to write down to-do lists and ideas for blog posts / features / fantasy relationships (Kylo Ren and General Hux, anyone?).

So starting now, I want to try writing down some good stuff. Little observations that make me smile, things I overhear that are hilarious or ridiculous. I'd like to take note of the moments that make me love my boyfriend a little bit more than usual, or stupid things my dog does that make me want to squash her little face. And where better to write those than in my definitely gorgeous notebook (above) from Irish brand Dusty Boy Designs?

If you're setting new goals for a new month, I'd love to know what they are! Sharing is caring, right? And whatever they are, I'm with you 100%!