Did you make a New Year’s resolution last year? Some of you lost weight, quit smoking, took up origami, or singlehandedly overthrew a corrupt government and became its benevolent dictator. Others gave up watching the Kardashians on 1st January, then binged the latest series on 2nd.
Frances Whiting, my favourite newspaper columnist, likes to come up with a yearly ‘remotely achievable list’ rather than resolutions. This year’s list includes ‘[Posting] on social media more. Tell people what you are wearing, hearing, seeing, eating, buying, doing, listening to and thinking. Do this whether they want to hear it or not’. Great idea, Frances!
Did I Achieve My Goal in 2022?
Rather than using the nasty ‘R’ word, I set myself a challenge in 2022. It was part of an overall plan to lose weight and get fitter. Let’s not talk about the losing weight part. Okay, if we must talk about it, I lost 10 kg and then put 8 kg back on. Let’s give it another burl this year and see how that goal flies. (Did someone say fries?)
However, the main challenge was to walk in a new location for every week of the year, in addition to my regular dog walking and spins around the block. I came flying out of the gates and managed to do 44 new walks in the first four months of the year.
But somewhere in there, I started to experience increasing pain in my back, derriere, right hip, and right leg. It was probably the result of a combination of factors that included going too hard, having an awkward fall, and pressing on when I was in pain. I had to cut back a lot and there were some weeks when I didn’t do any new walks at all.
So did I reach my goal? I didn’t manage to do a new walk each week, but I did surpass the overall number of new walks, with 58 in total.
I’m fortunate that I live in Toowoomba, the Garden City of Australia, so I found lots of lovely parks right here in my own back yard. You can see all of my walks here.
How Spotify Got Into the Act
One of the good things about the walking challenge was that I intentionally tried to find new places to walk, rather than just going to my favourite parks all the time. As a result, I discovered a lot of beautiful places I didn’t even know about, and some of those have been added to my favourites.
However, the bots at Spotify had the audacity to tell me I was still in a rut! Well, they didn’t put it in those exact words, but that’s what they meant!
I subscribe to Spotify, a streaming service that allows you to listen to music, podcasts, radio plays, and probably other things I haven’t discovered yet. You can make your own playlists, find other people’s playlists, get daily recommendations based on your preferences, and it’s all covered by a monthly fee. I’ve really enjoyed it.
A couple of weeks before the end of 2022, you could click onto a link to find your own ‘Spotify Wrapped’ for a summary of your listening for the year.
I still listen to a lot of my music on CD, so that’s obviously not reflected in the Spotify summary. However, even more alarming is that they predicted my personality type based on listening habits. Apparently, I’m ‘the Replayer’.
You’re a comfort listener. You stick with the songs you like, by the artists you like, from whenever and wherever. Why rock the boat?
According to Spotify, my key listening traits are familiarity, timelessness, loyalty and uniqueness. At least I’m unique (Translation – I listen to obscure singers a lot of people haven’t heard of. I even had to look up one of my Top 5 artists to remind myself who she was!) Click here to see a list of their 16 personality types.
My 2023 Challenge
So what has this detour into Spotify, and the freaky amount of personal data about me in cyberspace, got to do with this year’s challenge? Well, it reinforced something I’ve known for a while. It’s easy for me to get into a comfortable rut rather than trying new things. I broke out of that a bit in 2022, but I want to go a step further.
My challenge for 2023 is to try 52 new things by the end of the year.
That makes roughly once a week, though I won’t stress if I miss a week here and there and catch up in other weeks.
Sometimes, it might be something simple like going to a new park or trying a new cafe, but hopefully there’ll be some more adventurous things in there too. You probably won’t see me skydiving or going to an Iron Maiden concert, but you might see me go-karting, doing an escape room experience, or going on a themed train trip.
I’ll document my ‘new things’ on a separate page and will keep updating it as I do each one. To see how I’m going, click HERE.
How about you? Have you made any New Year’s resolutions, slightly-achievable lists, or embarked on a challenge? I’d love to hear about your plans for the new year.
Whatever’s on your heart, I hope 2023 is filled with love, joy and blessings for you. Bring it on!
Sources and Photo Credits
Frances Whiting quote from The Sunday Mail, 1 January 2023, p. 21.
Featured photo from Pixabay.
Walking pic of Nola at Mt Peel, February 2022.
Spotify pic is a screenshot of Nola’s Spotify Wrapped 2022.