2016: The Year of the Hustle

How to define your 2016 with one word and why I'm saying no to resolutions!

Hello, friends. Before I dive into the post, I'd like to welcome you to my new website. Seriously, love having an actual domain and this SquareSpace platform makes me feel so legit. It's definitely a nice way to ring in the new year. Oh yea, HAPPY NEW YEAR :)

2016 is full of high hopes on my end, but while I have many goals I'd like to accomplish, I am saying no to resolutions this year (gasp!). Instead I am going to try to live my year and define it in ONE word: HUSTLE!

Found on Zullily.com

So you might be wondering what made me decide on the word Hustle for 2016? Well, if I were to have created a regular resolutions list as I've done in the past, it may make more sense. That list would look a little something like this, so you can understand my choice of this word:

  • Grow the blog
  • Create opportunities for the blog to become a business
  • Work on past passion projects as well as future ones
  • Gain financial stability
  • Get my shit together

Can you see the similarities? Maybe not right away, and believe me at first I was struggling to find a good word to define my year. But once I really thought about it, what all these goals have in common is that I have to work hard at them–a blood, sweat and tears level commitment. 

While 2015 was great and I became more present, I know I got lazy in a lot of areas in my life, so that's also why Hustle is a good fit for 2016. I'm done with the slacking off and then beating myself up because "I could have done that" or wondering about numerous what ifs, while feeling "stuck" in my life. So of course this year, I got to change that! I want to go for what I want so I can have the lifestyle I want and can be present in a life that means something!



And the reason I am saying no to the typical resolutions is because often, we write this long list of them down only to forget about them or find a lack of motivation to accomplish them. On top of that, by choosing a word to define my year, I allow myself flexibility, cuz sometimes life happens and you have to adjust. For example, for my blog, maybe I start off thinking offering services is the way to go, but then find that my audience needs courses instead of services, I am still hustling, just the goal gets shifted in a new direction.

Also, the word can apply to different aspects of my life. Even though HUSTLE  is often associated with making money and can seem business-centric, it can actually apply to my personal life too. For example, I can hustle and work towards better time management or hustle it with my workouts or even hustle hard to make sure my friendships stay strong. 

So how will you define your year? What word will you use to make the most out of 2016, cuz between you and me, I whole-heartedly believe this is our year!! But if you can't think of a word right now, no worries, I have your back. I've create a free worksheet just for you, so it can help get those creative juices flowing!




Hello October Goals

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Wow does time fly by! I cannot believe its already October, but I don't mind at all. It's not just that it's my birthday month (Holla! and yes I celebrate throughout the whole month), but it's also when temperatures start to finally cool down a bit in Los Angeles and it really starts feeling like fall. In fact, we were lucky enough to get some rain today, which just makes me so happy. And to continue in the happy spirit, I hope to set the bar with my October goals just as high as I set them in September. So let's see what I accomplished from my lengthy list of goals.

As a reminder, here are the goals I set for myself in September and which I was able to cross off:

Personal Goals:

  • Read The The Total Money Makeover: Classic Edition: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness and The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous & Broke
  • Plan out social events such as book club meetings, dates and workouts. This one is pretty self explanatory. Just didn't follow through on the workouts...oops.
  • Workout at least 5 days a week
  • Continue decluttering room
  • Read 4 books - Only got through Fallout by Ellen Hopkins
  • Catch up on my Emmy's nominees  I got through Parks and Recreation and Silicon Valley! Will try to get through more during October
  • Eat healthier- only have takeout 2x a week
  • Play with my dog at least 20 minutes a day Towards the end of the month, I got better at waking up early enough to take him for a walk and play with him before and after work.
  • Plan my birthday- Everything is all set for that weekend! Hotel, hot air balloon ride and horseback + wine tours are booked! James and me will definitely have fun.

Blog Goals:

  • Design new site- i.e. banner, color code, etc.
  • Create Editorial Calendar- for this I will be using this as one of my guides. I did get this done in my physical planner but still have to digitize it and get better at sticking to it.
  • Schedule posts in advance- including graphics.
  • Add all the blog chats I attend on Twitter to my planner/calendar. Done! Been enjoying them so much. I follow #nectarchat, #ellechat, #FBLChat and #createlounge
  • Begin creating a business plan
  • Launch sponsor program/ads
  • Create a budget- since I want to invest on my blog
  • Sign up for E-Courses, starting with this oneI might have actually gone overboard with this one lol!
  • Continue the 30 Day Blogging Challenge  Other than needing to be more consistent with this, I have been following this, even though it isn't daily the way it's intended to be
  • Engage with my communities online

Other goals:

  • Work on my Youtube channel- starting with biweekly videos
  • Look for Freelance writing ops
  • Look for screenwriting courses
  • Finish screenplay....

So yes, there were a lot of things I didn't get through, but you know what, that's ok. Instead of discouraging me, it makes me just want to try harder or at least have some stuff on the horizon constantly. On that note, here are my goals for October:

Personal Goals:

  • Workout 5x a week- Today I started the 28-day program from Tone It Up: 28 Days to Fit, Fierce, and Fabulousby Katrina Scott and Karena Dawn . I am also following their Fit For Fall Challenge as well asLauren Gleisburg's fall program.
  • Eat healthier- Just did a one-day juice cleanse from Pressed Juicery yesterday and today started the Tone It Up Wedding Slimdown (it's 10 days, just in time for my bday).
  • Finish Decluttering my room- Last month it was continue to declutter my room, but I want more intention this month so I'm hoping to finish doing this, particularly the throwing out old magazines part.
  • Read 4 books- Since it's really starting to feel like fall, the weather is perfect to get some good reading done. I'm especially looking forward to the new fall books, which I mentioned in my previous post
  • Stay up to date with TV Shows- I want to continue catching up with the shows I said I'd watch for the Emmy's but also not get too behind the fall shows I'm loving.
  • Watch some scary movies- Because hello, Halloween is this month. Plus I have a few I haven't seen yet, both classics and new ones.

Blog Goals:

  • Create/Engage with the community- Social media is a great tool for connecting with all of you guys, so anytime a new platform comes out, its definitely worth exploring. This month I am trying out Periscope! In fact, I will be hosting my first "real" (cuz the other two were me goofing off) scope tonight at 8pm PST to discuss October goals! My handle is @astridstars
  • Follow through with my E-courses- Like I mentioned, I've been signing up for E-courses like crazy. Mostly because I now have this fire to make this blog something I'm really proud of and this pushes me to keep the fire blazing. I even just signed up for a bundle yesterday. But now I need to actually do the work and put them to use. Some of the ones I signed up for are: Pinfinite Growth, Your First 1K and Quit + Commit(I got the bundle price). 
  • Work on Design and Branding- I've actually got this one rolling already. The Quit + Commit course was part of a bundle that came with the Breathtaking Brand Package from Lemon and the Sea. Our first session is on Saturday!
  • Launch Newsletter and Sponsor program- I'm so nervous for these, but I've got to rip the band-aid off sometime.
  • Create a collaboration program- This is something that I thought off during a blog chat. Seriously the chats are great for brainstorming and getting motivated. Get ready for this!
  • Create a budget - While I love investing in the blog, I also can't get too crazy.

Other goals:

  • Work on my Youtube channel- starting with biweekly videos

Again, I know my list may seem a bit impossible, but you gotta aim high right?! Share your goals with me in the comments below, or better yet join me during tonight's Periscope. Again that's tonight at 8pm PST and my handle is @astridstars! Hope to chat with you there!