2017 goal recap

2017 goal recap | chainyan.co
A week late, but Happy New Year! :) I hope your 2018's off to a great start. I spent the first week of the new year by meeting friends that I haven't met in a long time. I thought I wouldn't have enough energy for it, considering I spent the last few days of 2017 rushing to different family celebrations, but I managed somehow! I spent most of the following weekend hibernating, lol. So now that I'm well-rested and re-energized, I'm ready to really really (ehem, 2017 song of the year) start the new year! (My pace is the best pace, after all!) As always, I'll be sharing with you my new goals for the year. But for today, I'd like to look back over 2017's goals and talk a little bit about how I did :)

2017 Goals

1. Take more photos – Probably the easiest of all my goals for the year. Taking photos is pretty much second nature to me, and with all the new photo apps coming out these days I've been taking more photos than ever. For next year though, I'd like to be able to use my dSLR more. I haven't been using much ever since the batteries started acting off, so I plan on getting new batteries and a battery grip for my camera so I can start taking photos with it again.

2. Project 52 or 365 – I started a Project 365, but I never got to finish it. It's about 1/2 done, I guess. I kept doing it up until July, and then I just got tired of it. 90% of my time is spent at home, so the most interesting thing I could ever take photos of is the cats. And as expected, there were times when my 365 posts only ever had photos of our cats. It began to feel quite monotonous, so I decided to stop doing it and return to doing my monthly photodiaries instead. (Which are still mostly just photos of our cats, lol.)

3. Open a bank account and start saving up – I already have a bank account, but the plan was to open a new one, at a more accessible bank. I couldn't do this in 2017, so maybe next year! Not a priority, though it would make transactions for my online sales much easier.

4. Do one big closet purge – I did a few not-so-big closet purges, which is at least something! My closet is still a mess though, sigh.

4.5 Declutter makeup and skincare stash – Not 100% done, but I did a lot of decluttering and managed to downsize my makeup and skincare stash A LOT. After experimenting with different products for about 2 years, I now have a clear idea of what I like and don't like. My stash isn't overflowing with products anymore. Still not as ~curated~ as I'd like it to be, but it's close. Getting ready in the morning and getting ready for bed are also much easier now since I don't have to think too much about what products to use.

2017 goal recap | chainyan.co

5. Take better care of my body – In an effort to finally lose weight, I started watching what I eat. At first I went with the calorie counting method, but it eventually became too bothersome for me. So instead, I tried becoming more conscious of what I put into my body. I also started working out with Nike Run Club and Nike Training Club. I still haven't lost any weight, but that's okay, because I did get a lot stronger! I can now walk long distances without getting tired easily. (I realized this during our last KL trip, where Aian and I spent almost 4 days walking around.) Now that I've seen the results of exercising regularly, I only plan to keep getting stronger this 2018!

5.5 Do all the medical things that I've been putting off for so long – I wanted to, but my social anxiety made it impossible to even schedule any appointments... sigh. I still plan to do this, but I'm going to take it slow and start by booking an appointment with a dentist.

2017 goal recap | chainyan.co

6. Start a monthly skincare journal – Started one. Wrote a staggering total of two entries. I realized that writing monthly skincare updates is a bit too much. I don't change up my skincare that often, and if I do, one month just isn't enough time for it to show a visible effect on my skin. I do plan to continue writing skincare journals on the blog, though not as often. Maybe every 6 months, or whenever I make a drastic skincare routine change.

2017 goal recap | chainyan.co

7. Take the JLPT in December – I put this goal off for YEARS before finally biting the bullet. Being able to do the listening exam with ease was 10/10 one of my personal proudest moments of 2017. The grammar section was much harder than I expected though, because I focused too much on studying kanji. But I did pretty okay overall, so I'm hoping for a good result! *prayer hands emoji*

8. Watch more classic anime films – Did I watch any? I'm not sure if I did! Aian and I watched a ton of anime in 2017 as well, but I can't remember if we watched any classics. I still haven't seen most of Satoshi Kon's movies though, so I'm considering this one as unaccomplished.

9. Buy a cat tree for the kids – I realized this wouldn't work as well as I imagine it to be since our apartment is so small. So I'm putting this off until when we move to a bigger place or something.

9.5 Do something for cats in general – This year we've rehomed a total of four kittens! We're also currently fostering two kittens, and we're looking to rehome them in the future as well. And as my last good deed for the year, I donated 60 meals of dry cat food to one of my favorite local animal welfare organizations, CARA Philippines.

10. Visit at least one new travel destination, be it local or abroad – No time to do this, sadly! Last year Aian was busier than ever, and I can't do a solo trip because Aian might get envious lol.

2017 goal recap | chainyan.co

11. Take more outfit photos – I'm glad that I put this goal at the very end of my list because I have A Lot To Say about this. First of all I didn't take any outfit photos in 2017. Except for one, which is the photo above, taken mid-December.

The above photo is special to me for reasons. I have a long-ass explanation why, but not all of you might want to read it, so feel free to skip this part! ↓ ↓ ↓


For a long time now, I've been struggling with issues regarding my physical appearance and weight. The reason stems from the fact that I chose to be a public figure (bc ✨blogger✨, u kno). Because of this, I'm always worrying about how I look and how other people might perceive me. At the height of my blog's ~*~popularity~*~ in 2012 (#morigirldays), I used to get a lot of messages about people spotting me outside. At the mall with family, hanging out with friends at a cafe, etc. This made me hyper-aware of the fact that any of my followers might be able to see me at any given time, so I had to be presentable 100% of the time I'm outside. Fast forward to 2017. My blog following has since dwindled down since then. The number I have now is small compared to the numerous successful local bloggers out there, but it's a number that I'm happy with. But still, that hyper-awareness of people stuck with me. It's one of the main factors for my social anxiety. It actually wasn't so bad before, but it got much worse in 2017.

If you follow any of my SNS, then you've probably noticed that during the past year, I've only been posting selfies. Not a single outfit photo. Just selfies. All of this, just because this year, my weight peaked at 70kg. 70kg is the heaviest I've ever been – 20kg from my "ideal" weight of 50kg. (The reason why I say "ideal" is because that was the weight that I'm the most comfortable). So now, having a body that was SO DIFFERENT from what I was used to.. it was hard. It was hard for me to accept. So I stopped posting outfit photos completely. I'd ask Aian to take some, but I'd delete them right away. It was hard just looking at them. Wanting to lose weight, in August I started watching what I ate and working out. This only made things worse, since I became frustrated when I couldn't see results quickly enough. To top it all off, my skin became 10x worse because all the anxiety from this issue led me to pick at my skin. My self-esteem reached an all-time low, and I would cry thinking about how ugly I've become. I would cry thinking about how weak I was for crying over my physical appearance. By November, I was a mess. At one point, I stopped showering altogether. It was crazy. I don't know what it was that changed, but by the last few days of November, I'd already snapped out of it. I went back to doing my usual routines, but did simplified versions of everything. No counting calories, but no eating too much sugar. I'd do my skincare routine, but only a three-step version instead of the usual six or seven. I worked out, but only when I felt like I was up to it. I wasn't 100% back to my usual self, but I was stable. Somehow I was able to keep it together.

And then in December, I decided to do a drastic change. I cut my hair. I was growing my hair out so I could donate it to cancer patients in need of wigs, so I'd already planned on cutting it anyway. When I finally did my hair cut—12 whole inches of it—I felt so much lighter. It wasn't just that the weight of all that hair was finally off. I felt like I was changed, somehow. The change of my mental state was almost instantaneous, it was amazing. That's what haircuts do, I guess? After that, I started becoming more comfortable with my physical appearance again. And then.. this outfit photo happened. Aian and I were outside this cafe in KL, and I asked him to take an outfit photo. We were in KL for four days, but I only asked him to take a photo on our last day there. And when I saw the photo, I thought, "hey....I actually look kind of cute!". The fact that the first thought that came into my head when I saw the photo was that I looked cute and not that my arms looked big or that my face looked hella round.. to me, that only means I've become okay with my body again. Finally, after a year or so of not being able to come to terms with this 'new' body. Not gonna lie, I'm still not 100% happy with my current physical appearance. I'd still really like to lose the extra fat since my current body can't fit into a lot of my favorite clothes anymore. Other than that, I'm slowly learning to appreciate my fuller figure. Slowly.

The silver lining in all of this is even though I haven't lost any weight, I'm about 3x stronger physically than I was last year, so there's that! I'm planning to get even stronger. Maybe even try a new physical activity! For that #fightlikeagirl realness.


So, I didn't accomplish every one of my goals. But!! The past year has been a year of tremendous growth for me. Compared to the me of last year, the me right now is much stronger. Wiser. Kinder. My personal goal for the year was to 'become a better version of myself' — more than anything, I'm glad that I was able to stay true to that :)

2018, come at me!