Now that school is back in full-swing for the semester, I've been thinking a lot about my priorities and how I want to spend my time. School has always been a big one, of course, but my daily to-do lists seem to consist of a wide variety of things these days, including my faith life, my new job, physical fitness, housekeeping, extracurriculars, etc. As I get older, I'm slowly (but surely) learning that time management is not only necessary but critical in maintaining a stress-free and happy life. Without organization, important things simply get tossed aside and forgotten about... And could result in one day waking up alone, penniless, and 40 pounds heavier. Okay, that may be a slight exaggeration, but whatever.

To serve as a reminder of what I want to accomplish, here are my top priorities and resolutions for 2013:

Priority #1: Spiritual growth.
Resolution #1: I will spend time in prayer and meditation with Christ each morning and evening. I will continue attending mass each Sunday (at least) and take part in the sacrament of reconciliation once a month. I will better my knowledge of the church's doctrines, get to know my Heavenly Mother on a deeper level and depend on her powerful intercession. I will work towards discovering the Lord's will for my life, rather than simply concentrating on my own. And I will strive to be a light to others in any way that I can.
Notes: Making extra time for prayer in the morning and evening hours (when I'm drifting in and out of exhaustion) is always a challenge for me, but I'm determined to make this a habit. Sharing my faith with others has always been somewhat difficult as well, but there's really no excuse when the opportunity presents itself.

Priority #2: My relationships with friends and family.
Resolution #2: I will learn the meaning of patience and hospitality. I will be considerate and understanding. I will love more freely than I ever have before. I will make an effort to get in touch with those I haven't seen in a while. I will write more letters. I will make plans and stick to them. I will attend more events, meet new people, and go on all kinds of adventures. I will dance with boys I find attractive and not worry about embarrassing myself.
Notes: For a classic introvert like me, this one might be tough.

Priority #3: My health, emotional and physical.
Resolution #3: I will partake in at least 30 minutes of physical activity 5-7 days of the week.  I will cook dinner three or more times a week, snack on fruits and veggies, and kick the sugar addiction once and for all. I will eat out less often and frequent the farmers' market. In order to avoid stress, I will make sure to treat myself every now and again with a hot bath, an inspiring movie, or an afternoon nap.  I will drink more tea and seek out good conversation. I will learn to be honest with myself and others about how I'm feeling, while at the same time keeping my emotions in check. I will practice the art of listening.
Notes: My friend, Colleen, and I have already established a new workout regimen for ourselves, and our first sweat session was this morning at 6:30am! (I just might be crazy, but I'm also super excited to get in shape!) Also, Kristen and I are using a meal planning website called The Fresh 20 to help us with inexpensive dinner ideas, and we've already made three delicious and healthy meals this week. Off to a good start!

Priority #4: Academics.
Resolution #4: I will keep up with my assignments. I will read as much as I can of everything, including novels, the news, blogs, and textbooks (except maybe accounting). I will become a better public speaker. Rather than simply striving to get the grade, I will immerse myself in my studies and get as much I can from my classes. I will get to know my professors and connect with my fellow classmates. I will learn to enjoy my studies.
Notes: I only have one year left. Why not make the best of it?

Priority #5: Professional growth.
Resolution #5: I will learn the ins-and-outs of social media marketing in order to excel at my current internship with Bodhi Leaf Media. I will gain work experience, add to my journalism portfolio, continue improving my personal blog (while perhaps expanding my follower base?), and hopefully receive a job offer after I graduate from college in December. I will begin saving my own money for my next one-way trip to England.
Notes: I'm so blessed to have an internship that I love this semester. There's no telling what the future holds, but things are looking up.

Phew, did you actually read all of that? I'm impressed. To conclude this post, I'm deeming 2013 my year of balance. Although this time in my life is full of uncertainties, this will be the year I find my footing.