The Ultimate Guide to Planning the Most Awesome Year Ever

Hey it’s December, which means it’s time to start planning for the new year! Yay! Fun! Unless you are a negative Nancy or Nathan who says things like, “Oh, nobody ever follows through on those pointless new year’s resolutions,” in the best grumpy old man voice you can muster. That doesn’t mean it’s not fun, and there are ways you can make your resolutions more achievable. Plus it doesn’t just have to be resolutions. How about a New Year’s vision?

Well, in order to plan the THE MOST AWESOME YEAR EVER!… you can start by listing out everything you want to do next year. What do you want it look like? What were you lacking this year that you want to have in 2016? The key to this is being very specific. This year I got to participate in the Color Run, go to Six Flags, bought a piece of land, went camping on Cumberland Island, stargazed more than I ever have, and whole lots more fun stuff. All things I probably wouldn’t have done if I hadn’t planned them last year. PLUS it gets you super excited for the coming year, and fills you with all kinds of hope and promise and ooey gooey things.

After you’ve made your list, it’s best to only choose the stuff you really want to accomplish next year, because if you load too many things on your plate, you probably won’t get many done. The fewer you have the better you can focus. So grab a scrap piece of paper and a pen, and let’s get started.


Make a list of all the adventures you want to go on, and then pick your top three (or less if you’re not very adventurous, and I guess more if you don’t like being told what to do). This could include fun events you want to participate in or places you want to travel to. I’ve made a list of ideas below if you’re befuddled.

  • Marathon
  • Renaissance Faire
  • Sporting events
  • Comic-Con
  • A festival (like a hot air balloon festival)
  • Climb a mountain
  • A state park
  • A specific tourist attraction
  • Road trip
  • Camping trip
  • Train trip
  • Theme parks
  • Mountain retreat
  • Overseas vacation
  • Beach trip
  • Boat trip (like a whale watching tour!)
  • Concerts


Pick three things you want to accomplish in the coming year. This would include things you want to learn, goals, self-improvement, etc. I’ve made a list of ideas below.

  • Become a Yoga expert
  • Get rid of some nasty habit
  • Learn to cook healthier meals
  • Learn self-defense
  • Find the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe
  • Read the entire bible
  • Lose weight
  • Create a morning routine
  • Start an emergency fund
  • Save a certain amount for a house
  • Drink more water or eat more veggies
  • Learn telekinesis


Now, one of my favorite parts is creating a New Year’s vision. What do you want next year to look like? A.K.A. what do you want your life to look like? Make it happen! Envision your version of the most awesome year ever.

  • What do you want to do more of? star gazing and meteor showers, nights around the fire with friends, nature walks, drive in movies?
  • What do you want your life to look like? Bunches of snuggly kittens, early mornings, people you love around a table sharing a meal, running through a field of flowers?
  • What are some awesome quotes or mantras you want to focus on? Hakuna Matata, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, or shake it like a Polaroid picture? You know…whatever inspires you. My quotes this year are a couple on writing and this one by Albus Dumbledore, “It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.”


I also like to include some mini goals when I am planning the next year without limiting myself to just a few, because, well, they’re mini. You aren’t likely to feel overwhelmed by a list of restaurants you hope to try out next year as you would climbing Mount Everest, or as guilty for not completing it. I personally like to make a separate list of some of the books I hope to read in the coming year, but maybe there is something that would be more applicable to you to include, such as a list of records you hope to find, or a list of birds you want to watch (because you’re a nerd! a big old nerd! embrace your nerdiness.). These would mainly be things that wouldn’t take much planning to accomplish, because you just you know, do them.

2016 goals printable

Oh, and guess what? I’ve made a fancy printable for you to write out all of your fancy plans and goals on, so you can throw out that frumpy old scrap piece of paper. I’ve even included a section for you to doodle on and write out your vision for the year. Just click on the image above, and print it out.


2016 Goal Plan Printable

Now the next step is to break your goals down into steps, and create an action plan for them. I’ve made you yet another printable, so you can do just that!

If you want to save $1,200 for an emergency fund, then you would need to plan to save $100 every month. I will use one of my goals as another example, creating a morning routine. First, I would write out a list of what I want my routine to consist of, then start waking up 10 minutes earlier every day until I start waking up at my goal time (and going to sleep earlier, eek!), and then slowly start implementing each thing I want to be apart of my routine.

Next, organize your plans, and pick a specific month for your adventures and mini goals, and deadlines for your bigger goals.


2016 Collage

Now the last and final step, my favorite part, make a picture collage of your adventures, goals, and vision for next year, and put it somewhere you will see it constantly! I like to put mine in the front of my planner with the year on the front, so I see it almost everyday and get inspired.

Happy planning!

14 thoughts on “The Ultimate Guide to Planning the Most Awesome Year Ever

  1. This is such a great idea. I know I get more done if I plan. I never thought of planning out my whole year though. Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. I like your methods for planning for the upcoming year. I am definitely going to implement some of them. I like the reminder to do things bit by bit versus overfilling the plate. This is how I tend to do things, but I am finding it valuable to see my goals written down versus leaving them in my mind. Your collage is awesome. I never thought of doing that.

  3. I love your ideas on planing for the coming year! I love plotting out the coming year and in turn looking back to see what I’ve accomplished!

  4. I love this idea =) I’ll definitely try to implement it!

    Just a quick note, in case you get any other runners reading this – a marathon is 26.2 miles, a Color Run is usually a 5k, which is 3.1 miles. I would just make sure you use the correct terminology!

  5. You just made my life easier. I needed a good plan for 2016. Not the one with usual resolutions which are forgotten right on January 2. And the way you have discussed everything, I think this has better chances of working.
    Picking up 3 most important things one wants to do from one section is an amazing idea. When you have put too many things on the list, it becomes tough to accomplish those. But when you have a number as less as three, you’re more likely to get these things done.
    Thanks a lot for sharing. <3
    Happy new year. Have a great 2016. :)

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