Last week, while I was still on holiday, I read this article from Boho Berry (one of my favorite places for all things planner-related) about the 17 before 2017. 17 habits she wants to start achieving or projects she wants to finish.

She did it last year and while she didn’t complete everything that year it gave her a great sense of accomplishment and opened up her new year for the things she really wanted to do, not the things she still needed to do.

That sounded amazing to me and so I am very excited to join her in the challenge this year: I created my own 17 before 2017 list and I will do my utmost best to accomplish as many of these as possible.


Finish 2016 on a high by finishing up these 17 items

I made this list of 17 things I want to accomplish before 2017 based on a few things:

  • What did I take away from my holiday that I want to use?
  • What projects have I been procrastinating on?
  • What do I want to improve on?
  • What would end 2016 on a high?

I brainstormed and came up with a lot more than 17, 28 to be exact. They were both for my business and personal life, since well there is just more to life than business 🙂 I then reflected on the brainstorm I did, sorted the items per theme, combined some and scratched off some others and this is what I came up with:

1. Read 8 books

One of the take-aways from my holiday is that I only read during holidays. And that’s a pity! Because I love reading books. Whether they are fictional or business related, there is so much you gain by reading. So I was sure this had to be one of the items of my 17 before 2017 list. I want to read 8 books this year. I have some books half-read that will count towards this goal. Some I am half-way, others I only read one chapter. My reading will be a mix of both business-related books and fiction.

2. Do yoga at home

Right now I do yoga at a fitness studio. I pay quite a lot of money for it while I don’t go that much. Some of it is just a lack of discipline but I also notice that their timing doesn’t really work for me. The yoga sessions are halfway the morning (either at 9 o’clock or 9.30), while I am a morning person. By the time these sessions begin I can also be working for an hour already… That is why a lot of times I just decide to go to work and forget about yoga. Wrong, I know but that’s just how it goes. That is why I want to start doing yoga at home. That way I can decide the timing, which will be more like 7/7.30 than 9 or 9.30. So I will need to find a way to do yoga at home, maybe find an online provider of yoga videos (if you know of something good, let me know!) and than start easing myself into the practice of doing yoga in my own bedroom.

3. Meditate

I heard Alexis (Miss Trenchcoat) talk about meditation the other day in her Work Week Vlog (around 26:20), she was using it to get more focused. By meditation she learned when her focus was wondering and she is able more and more quickly to get her focus back. I loved that idea! I did meditation a bit while I was in university so it will be great to pick up the practice again.

4. Change/organize the office

For those of you who don’t know: I work from home. I have almost the whole attic to myself which is wonderful!! I run both my businesses (Digitalie and my crafting business Het Knutsellab) from this office.

But I do feel like I want and need a change in the office. The space is very big and right now my back in towards the whole room. Somehow that doesn’t feel right to me and it somehow stops me from making videos for you. So something I have been wanted to do for a while is rearrange the office and then also sort through everything. My friend Krishna and I already made a new plan for how the office will look and so it’s time to get it done!

Office Drawings

Office plans – these are the drawings made for the new layout of my office. Can’t wait to get started!

5. Use my Bullet Journal for more than just daily planning

At the end of last year I really got into planners. I wanted to have a great planning system for 2016. I bought several planners over the stretch of a few months and made a lot of layouts myself. I finally settled in june on my Bullet Journal where I can make my own layouts and change whenever I want. It has definitely been the right fit for me and really helps me with my daily, weekly and monthly planning. But a bullet journal can also be used for making notes, planning out projects and such, just like the notes of the 17 before 2017 page. I want to make more pages like that in my bujo so that it becomes even more effective!

6. Systemize my business

The last few months I have started with little steps to systemize my business. The bullet journal definitely helped. I got a trello board with all projects I am currently doing or that will need to be done in the near future. Projects that are reoccurring (or have a same order of to-do’s every time) now get master lists so that I can never forget a step again (as long as it is in my masterlist, I am still tweaking those for now). I want to add more masterlists (I have 3 right now, there can definitely be loads more in there) and add other ways to systemize my business like adding a monthly review, getting my finances systemized, etcetera.

I could definitely talk a few blog posts long about my systems and how I am using them but I think I will not do that here, so if you are interested let me know and I will make a post or 2 about the systems I use to get my business in order.

7. Finish my website

Oh my gosh, some of you might remember that I started to overhaul my website LAST YEAR!! I have been very busy, both in changing my business around and helping loads of clients and therefore I have been working on that website on and off for more than a year! It’s high time to finish it up so I can let it be for a while.

8. Practice my handwriting and drawing

I am learning handlettering. That is the practice of writing pretty letters on pieces of paper. It is mostly used to make goodlooking texts and images. I bought a book a while back to teach me and have been practicing a bit but I definitely need more training. I also would love to learn to draw small images. Nothing to fancy but just to spruce up my texts a bit, especially in my bullet journal.

9. Bring the creative side into my business

As you might have gathered by now I have a strong creative side to me. I love making cards, I do memorykeeping, I sew, knit (though that has been a while)… whatever I can get my hands on 😉 And I feel I could link my creative side more to my Digitalie business. I have no clue yet as to how I am going to do this so this will be one of the more difficult projects but I will be pleased if by the end of 2016 I just know what I am going to do and how.

10. Change my products a bit

In 2017 I want to launch some big new programs and options for you all. I am really excited about my ideas for the future. But I want to make sure that the products I offer right now are right where I want them. So that is why I will be changing my current products a bit. Some will get new pricing. I might add or remove features in certain packages or add/delete packages all together. I almost know what I want and I can’t wait to get started on this so the products will flow even better for you as a client.

If I have time I might even already release some smaller DIY stuff so you can start getting your marketing simplified with ease!

11. Be more visible

This is a big one. I know deep down that I need to be more visible but I am having a hard time doing so. I know what channels I want to use: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn primarily and Twitter and Pinterest secondly and so it is high time to step up the game and show myself more. I will be trying out Facebook Lives in my Facebook group Simplify your marketing, I will be posting more on Instagram, I want to do guest blogs and I might even start doing videos (after the office change)!


Want to see me do Facebook Lives and have a say on what I talk about? Come join the Simplify your marketing Facebook group and join in the fun.

12. Learn brand photography

I have an amazing DSLR camera that I use to make videos for my crafting business. And I make loads of photos of every day scenes (and our holiday) with it. But I haven’t used it to make my own branded pictures for Digitalie. I want to figure out how that can be done and start doing more and more of it.

13. Get a personal brand going

Ok, confession time: a lot of days I sit at my desk in jeans and a t-shirt while I love dresses and skirts. It’s just so much easier to pick up a jeans and shirt and be dressed. When I was in my twenties I did a lot of experimenting with styles but I don’t think I ever settled on one I liked, was comfortable and useful. So I just gave up. I really want to start thinking about my personal style again. What do I like, which colors work for me, and then work out a style that works for me, my business and my life.

One of the big problems might be that I just don’t like shopping. I walk into a clothing store, trying to find something I like but even if I do it will never match with other things I like and would wear. I am very good in shopping when I have a plan though. If I know I need a shirt that is x or a jeans or whatever then I am in and out in no time, having found what I need. So having a personal style and than a plan to know what I need is the way forward I think.

I got no clue how to start though so any tips are very very welcome 🙂

14. Sew clothes at home

This might be partially because I don’t know my style but I got a brand new sewing machine I have never used. I have never sat down and just figured out how it works so I can use it and start making clothes at home. I do go to sewing class every week but I want to be able to do it in the comfort of my own home too! That is why I have the sewing machine, isn’t it? So in the next few months I really want to put down the sewing machine on my hobby table and just start fiddling till I work it out. And then, with my own personal style worked out, I can make clothes that look good on me!

15. Decorate for Christmas

Ever since I started working I am always a bit confused when Christmas comes around. When did that happen? We hardly prepare and then it is over so fast! And that is too bad because I LOVE the holiday time. So this time I want to be prepared. I want to decorate, bake cookies, maybe make some gifts for friends & family myself. Not be surprised that the end of december is here already.

16. Find new places to walk the dog

While we were on holiday we had no problem taking the dog on a 30 minute drive to find a nice place to walk but at home we have a select few routes we use every day, even during the weekends! So I want to find some new, fun places to walk even if they are a bit of a drive, so we can have the joy of walking around a park we haven’t been before.

17. Get up to date with Project Life 2016

At the beginning of the year I decided I wanted to make a Project Life album portraying every week in the year 2016. But after 2 months I stopped keeping up to date. Yes, that means I have a backlog of 7 months!! That is why I really want to try and get up to date with Project Life 2016 so I can really have the album I wanted.

17 before 2017

How about you? What do you want to finish before the end of the year? I would love to see your lists. You could even post them on Instagram or Facebook with the hashtag #17before2017