A Year in Review: 29 before 30

My enthusiasm over New Year goal setting is at the top of the charts.  Whatever you call it, a resolution, a goal, an intention I am ALL over it. For almost a decade now I have tried various approaches, but mainly I’ve done monthly resolutions that had me adding or removing certain aspect to, or from my daily life to encourage more health, more challenge and/or more LIFE.


In 2017 I opted to kick it up a notch with a new ‘extra’ every WEEK, some big, others small I was encouraged to try new flavors, experiences, and landscapes the left me feeling like I made the absolute most out of the year. When I looked ahead to 2018 a big birthday was staring me in the face, the big 3-0. While I wasn’t harboring the anxiety and feelings of inadequacies Hollywood amplifies when approaching this milestone birthday (ie. The One Where They all Turn Thirty), I thought it was the perfect excuse to marry goal setting and my aptitude for to-do list checking and in came the 29 before 30 list. This list was packed with intentional goals and experiences I had hoped to cross off before I turned thirty, and if you were to check out my tracker here you’ll see I wasn’t 100% successful. Because despite my experience and expertise with almost a decade of experience under my belt, life happens.


My 29th year was a roller coaster; my husband and I embarked on an EPIC honeymoon to Thailand, we welcomed our niece into the world a couple months early, we suffered the lost of our first pregnancy, and then shortly thereafter welcomed the news of our second pregnancy that eventually brought us our sweet little man. I tried my hand at full time self-employment and all the welcome and unwelcome stresses and anxieties that come along with that, I rushed to finish my certification before mama hood hit, I rode the waves of pregnancy and we snuck in a few other adventures along the way. Needless to say, my intentions were good but life had it’s own plan.


As someone who really thrives on crossing those things off, I would be lying if I told you I was easy breezy come August when I was 9.5 months pregnancy, swollen from head to toe and staring down an incomplete list of goals. It took a little re framing and some gentle self-love to allow my 30th birthday to come and go without a second thought.


So in true A Year in Review fashion, here is what I learnt…


Life Happens

We can have the best laid plans, but ultimately we are not psychic (Welp! I am not anyway!) and we cannot always predict what hurdles will come our way. Allowing for flexibility and adaptation when goal setting is super important, as is planning for predictable roadblocks.


Never an Expert, Always Learning

As I alluded to, after almost a decade of diligent goal setting I would have assumed I had a level of expertise I could rely on to carry me through this ambitious list, alas I was wrong. Just as life is ever evolving, as is my focus and energy and I need to cater to my biggest weaknesses in order to succeed.


Scheduling & Structure is Key

The list was well intentioned, but it was far too loosey goosey for me. I found that as the year went on I forgot what I needed/wanted to accomplish and by the time I rekindled the enthusiasm some tasks were inaccessible (ie. pole dancing and/or water skiing when pregnant) and/or null & void. I have found the most success in breaking goals and intentions down to shorter time frames – weeks or months rather than year long.


Here Are My Top 3 Experiences from my 29th year:


#3. Completing my nutrition & personal training certificate

I had been working towards my Holistic Nutritionist designation and my Nutritional Consultant designation for a couple of years now. My program was all online and so with full time work and life’s adventures it was easy to prolong the work in favor of what was right in front of me. But with the news of baby I was keen to wrap up my course work and hang up my certification once and for all. I was so ready to do away with the ever nagging feeling of pending homework, quizzes and exams and was ultimately so proud of myself for submitting that final exam and finishing with high marks. The information I captured in this program will forever shape me as a practitioner, but also as a mama and woman. For those wondering, I studied through Alive Academy.


This was a double whammy because I also completed my personal training certificate this year. Over the years I have developed such a deep passion and respect for fitness and was keen to incorporate it into my practice, alongside nutrition. That all being said, science (in all forms) does NOT come easy for me, and I have a special thank you owed to my incredibly patient husband (who was a biologist in a former life) who helped me push past all the bones, muscles, and bodily functions until it CLICKED, and I was able to pass this exam process with flying colours.


#2. Complete 30 Random Acts of Kindness

This is a prime example of evolving your goals.  While I had ticked off a handful of R.A.K.s, I was staring down this goal as I approached my due date feeling very disappointed that I wasn’t able to tick this one off completely. Alas, I turned to the #itsalifestyle community and encouraged the ripple effect to take the lead. Many of you took on the challenge and shared your R.A.K. experiences with me before the summer wrapped. Collectively, we picked up cigarette butts in the city parks (butts are STILL LITTERING, people!), we left empowering and kind notes in chalk on the city’s sidewalks, we paid for strangers warm beverages, we donated blood, and we offered warm smiles amoung so many other things.  This concept of positive impact has been sitting heavily with me lately, I suspect this might play a bigger role in my 2019 goals.


#1. Start a family

This is a doosy. I didn’t expect to experience a loss so early in our journey, and I didn’t expect to be so affected by it. I felt like I had taken my health for granted and made big giant assumptions without really knowing the statistics and likelihood. And while this might be true because I wholeheartedly feel we don’t talk about the tough stuff enough (I share more on this here), we were persistent and are so darn thankful that we got to bring our little man Hudson into the world, just two weeks before my 30th birthday.


I knew this love was special, I knew I would feel something for him that I had never felt before, but I didn’t quite grasp the magnitude of this mama love. In reality, our family started when my husband and I met and started to build our home with our two fur babes… but MAN did it get a whole lot cuter and much fuller with this newest addition.


All in all, with a few loses, some massive challenges, and a few giant wins I would say my 29th year was more than I could have ever dreamed.




Did you set any goals in 2018? Did you have any smashing successes or disappointing misses? Whatever the answer, I encourage you to find the time to take inventory of the year that has come and gone and start dreaming up the possibilities for the New Year ahead.


If you are interested in setting some goals for 2019, but aren’t sure where to start I’ve created a DIY Goal Setting Starter Kit that I’d love to share with you, in exchange for a little positive impact.

Complete one of the following things, send me a picture or share your experience with me via email or DM (@hashtagitsalifestyle) and I will send you the goods:

  1. Donate to a cause you are passionate about. Any cause, any amount. OR
  2. Give of your time. Volunteer to help someone/people in need, or lend your skills or services free of charge but full of heart.

I can’t wait to see what lies ahead for the #itsalifestyle community in 2019.


Onward and upwards,



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