• ashley krause

21 Goals for My 21st Year

Every year I try to set new goals to strive toward and this year is a big one, full of lots of changes and opportunities! So, I wanted to write it all out to reinforce the aspirations I have for myself and inspire us both to make the most of each new chapter of our lives.

*This post is inspired by one of my friends, Elspeth, who wrote out her 21 wishes over on her blog: Elspeth's Day by Day.*

ONE // graduate college.

I felt like I had to put this at #1 because graduating college has been a goal of mine forever and it's happenin this year!!! I'm not going to lie, I'm going to be so sad to leave Saint Vincent {explained more below}

TWO // make the most of my senior year.

I LOVE this place, so I want to make every last moment count. College has brought the most amazing people into my life and there's so much for us to look forward to in our senior year. You bet I'll never miss a Falbo's Wednesday or any opportunity to cherish my people and this place.

THREE // move to the city.

Once I graduate, a goal of mine is to work in Pittsburgh, so I'd have to move there! This is something I NEVER thought I would say {I looove the rural lifestyle}, but there are too many job opportunities in my field in the city and I at least want to experience city livin for a few years while I'm young.

FOUR // commit to a vegetarian diet.

In 2018, right before my 20th birthday, I stopped eating meat, aside from seafood. So, I'm a pescatarian. However, I'd love to see how an entirely no-meat diet would make my body feel!

FIVE // shoot my first wedding.

The thought of shooting a wedding solo still scares the crap outta me, but the best things can be found on the other side of fear! My ultimate goal with photography is to do weddings, just got to build up some more experience this year before taking it on myself next year.

SIX // adopt a kitty.

Since I'll be moving out of a dorm room, I can FINALLY have my own kitty! An apartment that is cat-friendly is a must for me.

SEVEN // minimize my wardrobe + belongings.

This is something I've worked very hard on and want to continue + improve upon this year. Coming into college my freshman year, I had an excessive amount of clothes and clutter. It upsets me to think about, but at least I'm changing that bad habit now and focusing on the most ethical ways to declutter and repurpose what I can. I've been keeping track of that progress and hope to share it in future blog posts {and videos??} in the future!

EIGHT // less screen time.

This has been a challenge for as long as technology has been in my life. I don't want to fall into the tech-addicted stereotypes of our generation. It's unfair to myself to let time with loved ones and so many experiences slip by while I'm aimlessly scrolling online.

NINE // explore around + travel to new places. I crave adventure like nothing else. I want to dedicate a big portion of my life to travel, so post-grad is the perfect time to start. My dream destination is the Grand Canyon, lol, basic but it's SO COOL.

TEN // read more + continue learning about topics i'm passionate about.

I used to be such a bookworm, but have lost touch with that side of me since being overwhelmed with adulthood. So I want to carve out time to relax / escape with good books. I also freaking love learning, so I want to read things about sustainability, natural health practices, astrology, and human interactions.

ELEVEN // learn film photography + develop more prints

Photos are forever. Having them digitally is one thing, but there's something so special about printed photographs. I want to start scrapbooking again, gifting photo books, and hanging up photos of my loved ones in my room.

TWELVE // spend more time in nature

I love being outdoors, but too often I find myself choosing to stay inside to do work. There are plenty of places for me to go outside and get my stuff done while taking in some fresh air, too.

THIRTEEN // shop small + take on more DIY projects

Me, a few goals up: dEcLuTTeR

Me, now: *shoppiiiing* lol, but there are going to be things I need to purchase and there's no harm in wanting things, too. Realizing that excess is unnecessary is the first step toward conscious consumerism. I am making a pledge to myself to primarily shop secondhand and only buy new from small businesses. For the things that may be too pricy to buy or I can prevent waste by making myself, I will learn new skills and make my own products or decor.

FOURTEEN // daily stretching + yoga + meditation

These are things I do on a weekly basis, but I know my body would thank me for doing them daily.

*now we're getting into more of the deeper goals, ones that reflect mindset changes or character tweaks I want to make this year*

FIFTEEN // be more present in the lives of those who matter most + show more appreciation to those in my corner.

I have the best support system and I strive to be there for them as much as I can. But I want to put more effort into making my loved ones feel special and that they have my full attention + support.

SIXTEEN // actively listen and be present in my conversations with others + myself.

I'm not the best listener, I can admit it. I notice sometimes that truly listening takes effort whenever it should happen naturally. It's not that I don't care, but my mind runs a million miles per hour and I'm easily distracted, so we have some work to do.

SEVENTEEN // fully recover from my eating disorder.

I've been very open about my eating disorder, so if this is your first time finding out: yes, I have suffered with an eating disorder for about 6 years. Last fall, I began my first attempt at formal recovery, visiting with a dietician to get things on track. I have made great strides, but haven't fully recovered. I have hope that I will form a healthy relationship with food and my body image this year. I have a great support system and if I put the other goals on this list into motion, I'll have the mindset to make it happen. {If you're in a similar situation, please utilize NEDA's resources. They have helped me immensely.}

EIGHTEEN // give my all to a few things i love, don't spread myself too thin.

I've always been someone who loves to be as involved as possible. I always jump to take leadership positions, try new things, and experiment with my skillset. However, I've noticed that sometimes I get overwhelmed with it all. They're all things I'm happy to be doing, but I can't risk burn out!! So I plan to lay out my activities and hone in on the ones that fuel my fire.

NINETEEN // remove negativity in my personal life + online.

I've removed almost all the negativity from my life over the past 3 years, but there's still some work to be done. I don't want to enter the next chapter of my life being negatively influenced by anyone trying to hold me back, so a detox is coming!

TWENTY // welcome positivity all around + spread those good vibes

Ive always had trust issues and am the worst at accepting compliments. I love to spread love all around me, but rarely accept it for myself. So for the amount I spread, I want to welcome into my life, which will only allow me to have a more positive mindset all around.

' TWENTY ONE // build my confidence in general, but especially as a photographer

I've always dealt with life's hardships with self-deprecating humor (it's the 6w7 in me), but I really need to work on confidence. Lack of self-worth has held me back from so many opportunities and blooming to reach my full potential. With photography especially, I want to be more confident in my posing / editing skills.

In one year, I will post an update to this blog post to talk about what went well, what was challenging, and everything in between! I thank you for taking the time to read this and would love to chat about your goals, too!! Feel free to shoot me a DM @ashkcaptures and we can work toward them together + cheer on each others' successes. Having someone who has your back is so important when striving to stay on track with your dreams. I wish you a great week + a great year!

{it doesn't have to be your birthday to set dreams into motion}



photo credit to Marah Frank of A Gypsy in the City

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Ashley Krause

TEXT: 724-963-6909

EMAIL: ashkcaptures@gmail.com

© 2023 by Ash K. Captures


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