Your Style Girlfriend

    2013 Resolutions: A Look Back at the Wins (and Losses) of the Year

    6th January 2014

    2014-resolutions-style-girlfriend{Ah ah ahh…not so fast, 2014!}

    Happy New Year, guys! Did you miss me? I missed you. I can barely count the number of times a flash of an idea I wanted to share with you sat me straight up…before slowly rolling back over and going back to napping on my parents’ couch in Wisconsin whilst wearing very grungy sweatpants that I would never want any of you to see me in.

    Once I finally got back to reality (and into real pants again), I considered what I wanted to write about this week – outerwear on sale? the importance of tipping your barber well at the holidays? Yes, all of those things, but first, I want to close the book on 2013 – with talk of resolutions kept and resolutions broken. Seems fair to keep myself accountable; I expect it from you guys, so it ought to work both ways.

    So, let’s first look back, with my past year’s resolutions below. Let’s see how I did, and let’s hear about how you did with yours. Tomorrow, we’ll get to our goals (lofty and otherwise) for 2014.

    First, my 2013 style resolution:

    “This year, I’m going to focus on buying less while reminding myself I’m really getting more.”

        – a young, idealistic Megan Collins, January 2, 2013

    And I did! In 2013, I became the proud owner of a stupidly beautiful leather bag, a gorgeous and sturdy wallet that nearly set me in tears when I handed over my credit card to buy it, and a few great pairs of shoes. I even splurged on a few facials to keep my skin in check, rather than giving it attention only after disturbances (ahem) popped up.

    And what about the personal resolutions?

    They still fell under the “less, but better” mantra, though their scope was a little more broad. A reminder:

    1. See more movies

    Nailed it. Her, American Hustle, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, and all three Iron Man movies (I know! Can you belive I’d somehow missed those in theatres) topped my list of faves this year.

    2. Cut out negative nellies 

    An ongoing process, I think. Sometimes it’s hard to determine who’s negative, and with whom I’ve just let a good relationship deteriorate into a bad one. For the most part, though, I’m much happier with the people I’m surround by (both online and off). Probably a good part of that is my reactions to them.

    3. Get all “Save the Last Dance” on somebody

    Ha, uhh, so this one..well, it didn’t go so well. But I tried? After a year feeling pretty badly burned by the endeavor early in the year, I think I might be ready to try again. But not an actual dance class this time – Zumba, maybe or some kind of cardio dance class? But not like, a DANCE CLASS. No one in leg warmers, no one who gives directions about moves I’ve never heard of without explaining them. Let’s take things slower. I need to learn to walk before I can dance, apparently.

    4. Close up shop on Saturdays

    Another one that I didn’t really succeed on. It’s funny. This seemed to be such a good resolution – I’ll get out more! Breathe in fresh air, give my eyes a break from squinting at my computer screen! But funny thing about loving what you really doesn’t feel like work. When I tried to force myself not to work on Saturdays, it ended up stressing me more than anything else.

    So I changed the resolution a few months into the year. Abandoned it, really. I started doing something ELSE first, though. With my half-marathon training, that something was my long run. But even after, I found a good deep clean of my apartment gave me a clear head for whatever I wanted to do after. Sometimes that was work; sometimes it wasn’t. But I felt better putting myself back into the driver’s seat of my time, rather than a well-meaning but ultimately wrong-for-me “should.”

    5. Destroy 13.1 miles (or be destroyed trying)

    What what! Check a-a-a-and check. Running two half marathons this year gave me such a sense of accomplishment. I think the only thing that could have felt better would be to pop a baby out at the end and receive an honorary doctorate from an ivy league. And be made a U.S. senator.

    It just felt awesome to push your body beyond what you thought were its limits. Training and running these races made me feel like I could do anything, and I’ll continue to run them for years to come I hope (not anything longer, though..I kept hearing, “You’ll want to run a full after completing your first  half!”, but it’s simply not in my bucket list. Major respect to anyone who does ‘em, though)

    6. Fight the good fight for girls

    Yes, SG is about clothes, but it’s really about living with style in all aspects of your life. And I love that we can have open, honest conversations on here about just how to do that. In 2013, I started talking more about the stuff that somehow seems to fall in between Mars and Venus. If any of this helps you understand the mysterious female mind a little better, I’m glad. For both my happily married readers and those readers still happily looking, I could probably do a better job of talking about how to be a good partner. Expect (a bit) more of that in 2014.

    Ahh, feels good to get that all out there! Now I’m ready for you, 2014. Let’s get it on.

    Now you go!

    Did you make resolutions at the start of 2013? If so, did you keep ‘em?


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    • Tod C

      2013 was the year of getting myself sorted wardrobe wise and I am pretty much there. I think I have dialed in on a personal style through some trial and error (and Style Girlfriend!) so now I am going for some high quality pieces I will wear a lot.

      I did your skillshare course and that got my thinking a little more casual than I was and that turned out to be the right decision.

      2014 is the upgrade year. In 2013 I got a lot of stuff I thought I would wear and didn’t really so now I know what I am going to get more use out of. Less ebay, more made to measure and a willingness to pay more and but less often. I’ll still thrift as it is a good way to try out some ideas but I still ended up donating about a third of what I got over the last 2 years as I learned more. This year everything has to count.

      Already started with a pair of AE strands and a MTM sportscoat so I now broke until March or so (when I will be near a Johnson and Murphy outlet so I may do my next upgrade then).

    • ilyac

      For 2013 was a tricky year, because a lot of my resolutions depended on the one big one, which was to finish my masters or die trying, which I did. After that I was able to complete a few other, most notably to start chipping away at my vacation days (of which I had about 28…I kinda didn’t take a vacation for a while). 4 distant states, 3 countries, and 12+ friends visited therein, I’d call it a success. A few others knocked out: pay off my car, upgrade my threads a bit, read more.

      2014 on the other hand is a year starting on a high note, with a lot of new things to resolve to (new job, by extension move to a new place, I want to learn to play banjo), and a chance to renew my resolve, and dial in my skills, with existing hobbies (e.g: 3+ woodworking projects, 2 outdoor climbing trips, 12 books), and the ever popular “go to the gym more” and “start running again”. It wouldn’t be a new years resolution list without those last 2.

      I also always make a ludicrous resolution every year, but I haven’t figured out this years yet actually. Last year is was 6 months vegetarian (fail), the year before it was 1 year no beard, alcohol, or coffee (fail x 3, coffee being the hardest to give up). It’s always a fun experiment to try though. Open to suggestions…

    • Adam Wyatt

      Maybe I should have posted my New Years resolutions online so I could remember what they were… For longer than the month of January…

      • Style Girlfriend

        It’s not a bad idea! I definitely thought about mine more for writing them down.

        But don’t’ll get a chance to do just that tomorrow :)

    • leilanitechaira

      Last year I said “Here’s to surviving not just 2012 but your entire life, the raputre, the mayans…Mondays. Cooties, bullies, mystery meat, gym. Prom, braces, puberty, Nickelback. Heartbreak and loss.
      Here’s to ditching the resolutions that imply you’re not good enough and to embracing the ones that help you be the best version of yourself.
      Here’s to love, life, family, friends, a new year.
      Here’s to you”

      I definitely think I am a better version of myself coming into 2014. I turned 30 last year. I had the chance to travel to places I never thought I’d go. I’ve reconnected with some old great friends and have built new relationships. I try to do what’s right, fight for what I believe in, learn from my mistakes and let happiness find me. Im still figuring out myself and life and I’m excited for what is to come in this new year. I’ll take more photos, learn more songs, travel to more places and even if I can’t accomplish all those things, there’s always next year :)

    • Jonathan C.

      In 2013, I started a personal resolution that I called “The Positivity Project” and it was to help me be more positive about about my life and not to stress out on little things since I was struggling in college and was stressed with my life. As 2013 went along, I felt more positive, less stressed, did better in school, worked out more, tried new things, and felt great most of the year. I never knew how a simple change in my state of mind could change the way I live my life.

      • Style Girlfriend

        I love this!!! Thanks for sharing, Jonathan

    • AL-MO

      “it just felt awesome to push your body beyond what you thought were its limits. Training and running these races made me feel like I could do anything, and I’ll continue to run them for years to come”

      I read this earlier today and it really rings true for me. I ran my first half marathon (the Canadian distance 21.1k! Lol) this past September and that’s what I really learned. I can do pretty much anything when I set my mind to it. (although that will be tested later this week when I get a test score back…. Lol)

      • AL-MO

        My only 2013 resolution was “everything in moderation”. And I’m happy because I definitely achieved that.

      • Style Girlfriend

        Even though it’s the same, 21.1 sounds so much more intimidating..congrats! :)

    • John Tripp

      I generally don’t make resolutions, and didn’t for 2013, but I’m considering setting a couple for 2014. Because of past bad luck with “Resolutions,” these two are more about process than specifics…

      1) Do something every day to try to build better habits.
      2) Take it slow, and don’t try to do too many things at once.

      It may sound simple, but I like those ones.

    • Spencer Jenkins

      Quit smoking was mine. It’s a success, save for stealing one at a party here and there.

      • Style Girlfriend

        Nice!! Congrats, Spencer!

    • brianmo95

      Haha #5. Cracks me up