Real Simple readers share their goals for the new year. 

By Real Simple
Updated December 08, 2016
Silverjohn/iStock/Getty Images
Silverjohn/iStock/Getty Images

Disco ball

Start cutting myself some slack and stop setting ridiculously high expectations (that I would never expect anyone else to live up to). I’ll no longer feel guilty about things that are out of my control. And when I slip up and judge myself too harshly, I’ll remind myself that I’m only human.
—Mandy Fleeger, Tulsa, Oklahoma


Convince my two-year-old foster daughter to sleep in her own bed!
—Christine Kolczak, Missoula, Montana


Visit another country. I am a first-year teacher and have always dreamed of traveling the world. Now that I will have a full two months of vacation, I plan on crossing at least one country off my bucket list.
—Brooke Facciani, Jacksonville, Florida


Prioritize date night. Even if it’s just eating dinner and watching a movie at home, my husband and I need to make more time for just us.
—Jamie Marquardt, Oconomowoc, Wisconsin


Back up, organize, and edit the family videos. In their current state, they’re much too long to watch and fully enjoy. My goal this year is to edit, edit, edit—keeping only my family’s best sound bites and most visually interesting footage.
—Dorothy Mancuso, Denville, New Jersey


Say no! I’ll say no to letting social media affect how I feel about myself. (It’s OK that I don’t run 5Ks, or run at all; brag how smart my children are; or go on exotic trips.) No to extending myself at work longer than I’m getting paid for and no to volunteering for yet another school event. No to beating myself up because we don’t have family dinners every week, I don’t keep a Pinterest-worthy house, and I don’t closely regulate my children’s screen time. Best of all? I will finally say yes to just being me.
—Tracie Seed, Saunderstown, Rhode Island


I will finally see more of this great country.


Write down all my recipes so my children will always have them. It’s going to be difficult, since I tend not to measure, but so worth it!
—Marlene Greenberg, Cherry Hill, New Jersey


Prepare Julia Child’s boeuf bourguignon. I have always wanted to throw a dinner party with my closest friends and feature some of the French chef’s most iconic recipes. Good friends, good food—it doesn’t get any better.
—Amanda Campbell, Columbus, Ohio


Take up a new hobby. I will tap into my inner rock star and finally treat myself to an electric guitar and lessons.
—Lisa Kimmel, Milford, Connecticut


I will hold myself to a standard of grace, not perfection. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized that it’s not perfection that my loved ones want—it’s me and all my wonderful flaws and imperfections!
—Robyn Chilcoat, Dallas, Texas