Are you pumped about 2019?
The new year always feels like a bright and shiny opportunity for inching out all the goodness the 365 days ahead have to offer.
You might have goals and plans — now that we’re out of the holiday season they’ll hopefully be plans that don’t involve eating an entire bag of Lindt chocolates in one sitting. Or maybe they do — hey, we don’t judge.
But I have a more important mission for you.
Let’s make 2019 the most fun you’ve ever had in your (adult) life.
Adulting can be intense. Sometimes adulting means fun is put on the backburner.
What if you put a pot of FUN on the front of your stove?
What if you optimized your entire year for FUN?
Fun has something in common with getting 11 hours of sleep in a row or having great sex — when you make time for it in your life, you wonder why you don’t do that more often.
So here’s a plan to get you to have more fun. (The sleep and sex, that’s your other homework.)
Making 2019 Your Most Fun Year in 7 Easy Steps
Step 1: Brainstorm your “FUN” list.
Create a vision for what fun looks like to you.
What lights you up? What makes you feel free? What makes you laugh?
List alllll the things. This is a brainstorm list so go wild, and be nonsensical and weird.
WARNING: Don’t think of “how” you’ll do x, y, and z. In this step, you’re not trying to figure any mechanics or logistics out.
All you’re doing is a) identifying and b) writing them down.
This is personal and private, so don’t hold back! Don’t edit as you write. The more the better. Shoot for a minimum of 15 things on your list — but challenge yourself and be unreasonable and write down everything that sounds even remotely cool.
If this is hard for you, all the more reason to make this list. (And if you’re getting all Negative Nancy on yourself because you’re having a hard time listing more than a few things, know you’re so not alone in thinking life is serious business. Sometime it’s just been so long since you’ve had fun, your brain needs longer to get the ideas rolling. Be kind to yourself and take a few days to add to the list if you need it.)
- Riding horses, fast
- Dancing in the living room when no one is looking
- Skinny dipping at night, in phosphorescence
- Driving a convertible, top down, music loud
- Clients: Dinners, planning new tours, launching new products
- Monopoly/Checkers/Exploding Kittens with my husband and daughter
- Snow angels after a hot sauna #Canadians
Step 2: Brainstorm a “BIG DREAM” list.
This is a “wouldn’t it be nice” list — some big, milestone or “hell yeah” things you would like to do before you die. This is pushing you to expand your ideas. Be unreasonable and allow your Big Dream List to be a place where you dream big!
- 10-day catamaran trip in Sardinia, with 10 friends
- Flamenco lessons (and performing in a hot-pink dress) in Spain
- Create an annual meet-up for clients, with your own awards show
- Learn equestrian jumping on a top horse
Step 3: Brainstorm your “fun” people.
Write your fun people list.
I call them my “yes” friends. Friends who, when you propose an idea, are usually all in.
Or friends who just make you feel good and alive when you’re with them. Remember we’re concentrating on FUN, not shoulds or have-to-dos.
Step 4: Color code.
Take the brainstormed lists you’ve created in step 1, 2 and 3.
Take 3 colored pens.
a) Easy: Use one colored pen and circle all things that can be done with minimal effort, time and expense.
b) Investment: Use another colored pen and circle 3-6 things that take a bigger investment of time and money, but that you are most excited about on your list.
c) Epic: Use another color to circle 1-3 things that you absolutely WANT/NEED/HAVE TO DO ONCE in 2019.
Now use the same system for your Fun People list from Step 3.
Who could come along for the ride to make your Easy, Investment, and Epic experiences even more fun, and to be your cheerleaders as you get them off the ground? Make a Dream Team list for each.
Step 5: Schedule.
Look at the things you’ve circled in Step 4 and create 3 columns:
- Quarterly (every 3 months)
- Once this year
In the “weekly column” — write the things you’ve identified as “easy” and take minimal time and effort to do.
In the “quarterly column” — write a few things you’ve identified as “investments” taking more time and effort.
In the “once this year” column — write all your “epic” ideas.
Step 6: Stop and sleep on it.
Now that you have your ideas listed in columns, you need to take time to sit on the ideas and let your subconscious mind do some work. Let things marinate. Put your list beside your bed or stick it to your kitchen cupboards so you can review it in the next few days.
Step 7: Filter + Finalize + Make it Happen!
Cross off anything from your list that doesn’t resonate with you.
Optimal balance is:
Weekly: 2-3 things on your list you can do regularly each week (dance classes, for example).
Quarterly: 3 things on your list that involve a bit more planning.
Once this year: 1 EPIC thing on your list that’s a once-a-year kind of experience.
Now reach out to your Dream Team for the experiences that you can or want to do with friends. Get them on board and get it on your calendars!
Et voila! You have FUN baked into your weeks and months throughout 2019. You have things to look forward to. Your year is optimized for FUN.
If you’re reading this, I have a hunch that travel one of the things that lights you up.
If you’re a DIY type (or a women’s trip doesn’t work for you), use Gigi Guides City Guides to plan for your trip to Italy. We have step-by-step instructions for planning your entire trip to Italy, no matter where you go, and city guides to Venice, Rome, Florence or the Cinque Terre. ‘Cause if we’re going to tell you to have fun this year, we want to help you do that!
Now, we would love to hear about what’s fun for YOU! What are some of the things on your Easy, Harder and Epic lists? Please share in the comments below.