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Outdoorsy goals for 2014

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So this is New Year's Eve, and what have you done?

If you want to make 2014 a memory-maker, follow these simple steps to set and achieve some goals!

1. Brainstorm. Take 5 un-distracted minutes and write down everything that you have wanted to do for a while, like a bucket list. If you already have a list like this, then narrow it down to a list of 5-10 things that could feasibly be accomplished within the next year. I have different bucket lists for different things. For example, a good recreation list would include places you want to visit or hikes you want to go on.

2. Pick 5-10. Don't overwhelm yourself at the New Year by thinking this year will be the most productive year of your whole life. It could turn into discouragement instead of excitement. Instead, pick 5-10 places/things and set a limit for 2014. This way you will be more likely to accomplish those things, make memories, and be able to take the time to enjoy the experience without a rush.

3. Set concrete plans. So you want to go to Arches National Park? Make a reservation. You want to take a backpacking trip for the first time? Find a free class at an outdoor store near you to learn about the things you need to take with you. The more concrete your plans are, the more likely you will be to follow through with your goals.

4. Don't procrastinate! This one applies to every facet of life, but especially recreation-themed goals. Some people use the rationale that "the mountains will be there tomorrow, they're not going anywhere". This might be true, but for some places it is not true. We don't know what nature has in store, so don't wait to see it! The first time you go out and accomplish a goal will leave you feeling more motivated to do the next one, and so on.

5. Document your experiences. Bring a journal and a camera with you, and of course a buddy. Make sure to not only be in the moment and enjoy it, but document it so that your memories are almost as good as the time you were there. Enjoying the experience is the whole point of setting a goal, so make sure that you set aside enough time to really enjoy yourself!

Hopefully these five tips help you to have a wonderful and adventurous 2014! Some of my bucket list places for 2014 include backpacking to Havasu Falls, hiking Mt. Olympus, and doing a sprint triathlon.

Have a wonderful 2014!

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