It's 2016. It's freaking January 1, 2016.

Yet again, we are thrust into another year, a clean slate to work on, a new 'life' to improve. It's always been the same process for me since 2012: Create a list of New Year Resolutions and stick to the plan. The process has always never faltered either. I create a list, I stay on track for a month, and then... I end right back to the old me. As if I was ever new to begin with, right?

I keep telling myself change is a mindset. I now believe it's way, way more. Changing is more than just setting your mind to it, more than telling yourself it's time to move forward. It's a sacrifice you're willing to make, to let go of some parts of you to give way to a better you. Saying you want to change is like saying you want to get a new haircut - just saying. You need to DO the change to feel the change.

So this year, I am no longer creating "New Year Resolutions". Instead, I'm focusing my energy into S.M.A.R.T. Goals.

It's something I got from this website, and found that the genius behind the plan was so simple, I swept right passed it in the previous years. (There's a little 'me' for you.)

So what are S.M.A.R.T. Goals?

Simple, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-Sensitive

There are three things I want to accomplish by the third quarter of this year. Before the year ended, I had set my mind to those three goals (NOT resolutions) and I know achieving them will be a hell of a ride. I know I'll be disappointing people with my decisions, and I'm well aware that I might lose some friendships and experience insane longing for my family (hint, hint), but all these things will make me better. 

Independence is key. No more hoping, just doing. 

This is day one of three-hundred and sixty-six (hello, Leap year). This is my year, the Year of the Monkey. (Well, if did believe in the Chinese Zodiac, but whatever. Haha.)