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The new year is always about “resolutions” – but I look at it differently. Technically, every day is the start of a new year, a chance to start over and make life changes. But there is something about ringing in a new year that pushes us to reevaluate everything!

I’m totally game for that. But the thing is, many of us will fall back into our old ways and then it will be this time next year and you know how it goes. I’m right there too. As I look back on the past decade, I’m proud of all my accomplishments with my Crafty Chica brand, but I feel this little itch inside. I know there is more out there, but I need to really “let go” of some comfort habits.

What is your crazy, wildest goal for your personal life or career? We have to start BIG because there are always compromises that come into play along the way. I’ll share mine.

My dream/goal is to have a year-round commercially successful mass market retail line (I did have one for eight years but it was only displayed during Hispanic Heritage Month). I’m talking a national long-term giftware line to create generational wealth for my family.  I know what doesn’t work and what has worked and I’m excited to keep playing with the Rubik’s Cube of life!

I accept the challenge and am forging ahead to share inspiration far and wide!

Money has never been the only currency in my book, the feeling of accomplishment ranks high! But I’m thinking about retiring someday – savings, setting up for a cushy landing pad when the time comes, money for my someday future grandkids college education, etc – so yes, stacks of paper are a factor in my goals and vision. And it should be in yours too!

It’s time to put those big dreams to work. But like that saying goes – nothing changes if nothing changes. In order to not have a repeat of last year, or even just to level up your game, we absolutely have to work change into our lives.

It’s like moving around the furniture in our mind and thoughts. Oooh, here’s a visual – imagine a chunky, ugly chair in your living room. Every day you walk by it and curse a little because it annoys you. But it’s too heavy and will be too much trouble to get rid of. It does nothing but get in your way.

It’s time to ditch the dang chair. Clear some espacio!!! On that note – here are my ideas to make life changes!

RELATED: How to Reignite Your Creative Spark

Welcome an outside perspective

This is kinda a tough one. This is where you allow someone you trust to really give you a snapshot of what they see you doing, habits and such. Maybe rearrange some puzzle pieces in your routine. I hired a success coach, Harry Lopez, last September and it really shook up my world. I realized I had layers of limited beliefs from my childhood that held me back from tapping into my potential. I also learned I spent a lot of time on the little things, even though I thought I was focusing on the bigger things. It was worth every penny to have this kind of consulting and it helped me realign my personal and professional priorities. If you don’t want to hire someone, maybe you can sit down with a close friend and compare notes. It’s all about seeing your life from a new perspective.

Get right with your money

So many of us have side hustles, some even turn it into a main hustle. What are we doing with that extra cash? Postmates? Amazon? Michaels? How about YOU? Create a separate saving account and deposit at least 10% (go for 20!) of every transaction.

Even better – how about we start this way. Right now, my husband and I are saving for a new roof for our house. We don’t want to put it on credit, we want to pay cash. We calculated the cost and then added cushion. We have our number and now we have come up with five different revenue streams to have the full funds by March. Every penny that is set aside, I feel like I want to kiss it and say – “You are going to become a new roof for our house!”

Say you want to save for a trip, or for stock investments or your kids education, or even for a rainy day. 10-20% of everything that comes in, you’ll be surprised how much it adds up!

At the other end – you can see what you can delete from your outgoing funds. We cut cable last year and went from a $200+ bill to $65! I also went through my statements to find recurring fees for dumb stuff I signed up for and forgot about. And if you don’t have a side hustle, think about ways to get one rolling. If you aren’t crafty, here are some ideas I found where you don’t even have to leave your house!

Keep a tally of how much you save so this time next year we can all clap for you!

Build more time in your schedule

There were days in my past when I worked two jobs, had the kids to parent, plus school. and I still found time to work on my passion project (which turned into all of this!). However, I lost that discipline. I used to be very focused on my daily to-do list and then once I opened the Mucho Mas Art Studio store, I dropped it entirely. Now two years later, I just about had a meltdown during this recent holiday break. So many projects unfinished, dreams dashed, snacks eaten…

I came down with a cold and while hopped up on flu medicine New Year’s Eve …I texted my friend, Alexa, in the middle of the night.

“Who am I anymore? What is my purpose? I don’t even know what I want anymore! I’m lost! I’m stuck! HELP ME!”

Wow. That came out of nowhere. Thank god I sent it to a good friend and not a business associate, right? But I spoke the truth about my feelings. I felt like I’d been too busy to do any of the things that made me happy – like just going in the art room and creating, or even blogging.

Once I felt better with my cold, I grabbed my notebook, my notes from the coaching I received and jotted down my game plan. I’m definitely going back to my to-do lists to make the most of my time. Whether it is to work, write, play. Otherwise, I spend too much time on social media, get drained, and then feel lazy and unproductive. No more of that!

I decided I’m going to make Sundays my art days – a full 12-14 hours dedicated to production. That way I won’t feel cheated for the rest of the week. Then during the week, I can focus on the store, blogging, and business. This is how I started my business and it worked great, so I’m making the change in my schedule to go back to that.

Choose wisely of who you spend the most time with

My friend Eliana once told me, “We are the sum of the five people we spend the most time with” – so she made a conscious effort to choose those five people and connect with them. The result gave her more energy, inspiration, and motivation.

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You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. What about the people you intentionally go out of your way to see just to bask in their beautiful energy and light? I want them in my average too! I've made a super intentional effort to surround myself with the people who bring me life, and it's been an honor to spend time with these incredible people the last few days in person, the last few months in every other way possible! DMs, WhatsApp voice messages, weekly calls, everything! I love you all so so much!! My #WCW goes out to these beautiful women and the amazing man who supports us. "I've never felt so supported by #Latina #women." Oh we are HERE for you, boo! Running right beside you 😘 Sending you all love and light on this beautiful Wednesday! So much #gratutude! xoxo ♥️ Not pictured but def included in my #WCW #love: @mayainthemoment and @craftychica! You're AMAZING and I love how the #universe conspired to bring us all together for this special time!! ✨ You give are so so loved! P.s. when the entire table gets #SALADS at our fave #chicken and #waffles place haha! Don't sleep on the salads at Lo Lo's. They're so bomb! #food #mentors #entrepreneurship #friends

A post shared by Eliana Murillo (@inmyeliment) on

Think about the people who inspire you. Reach out, even if it is just following them on social and leaving them messages. Feed your soul with uplifting examples. not everyone’s life is perfect, but it’s how we handle the bad and good that is memorable.

When I was in grade school, I had a friend who would always make me feel ugly. She cracked jokes that she thought were cute, but they hurt my feelings, even when I told her. She thought I was too sensitive. I told my parents about it at the dinner table one night and my dad told me, “It’s time you make new friends.” I thought they didn’t understand, how could I just cut off my one and only friend? The next day, like magic, I found a new friend by accident. We met at the pencil sharpener and she made me laugh. We ate lunch together and went onto become best friends through junior high and high school.

I always remembered that throughout my life. When someone makes you feel like crap, use your free will to move on to spend time with happier company. Never settle! When Eliana told me her five-friend theory it reminded me of grade school. Life is so much sweeter with cool people around.

Surround yourself with those who help you shine and in turn, you repay the favor to them! You shine, they shine, we all shine!

Set priorities – then focus on them, one day at a time

What do you want out of the year? Be specific.

No goal is too big or too small, but each one has to start with a statement and then a plan to make it happen. Here’s what I do. I’ll come up with an idea, write down why it’s important, what need it will fill, what end goal I want, and then break it down into a timeline. Tasks listed into manageable chunks that I can work into my schedule. Sometimes I’ll even add it in my calendar to train myself to work on that task. If I get led astray, I go back to my original statement of why I wanted to do it in the first place. That usually either reignites my fire or makes me realize I don’t really want to do it if I can’t even make the time. But you have to start it to get there.

Make an uncomfortable decision – and act on it

This was a BIG one for me last year. One of my assignments from Harry was to take specific mandatory routines – ones I’d been doing for years and add an element that made me uncomfortable. At first, I laughed it off… and then I told myself if I chose to spend money on a success coach, I better follow through. Well, I did just that. And you know what, it pushed me to a new higher level of my business. The second time I doubled down and that pushed me higher as well.

The tricky part is there is no going back, you have to sustain that level. I mean, you don’t HAVE to, but if you want to keep growing, it’s good to challenge yourself. At some point, you have to make the leap.

So here is something I’m doing, and maybe you can do it too. Every day, when you automatically make a choice, stop yourself and decide on the opposite. Go against the expected flow and see what happens.

Kinda like your own personal version of a choose your own adventure story!

No matter what time of year – know who you are and celebrate!

I love this post by my friend, Thania. What a great idea!

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Birthdays are a time to celebrate and reflect on how chingona you were as a (insert number) year old. This is my simple way of manifesting more into my life every birthday —– Ever since I was 21, I would write how I see myself in the following year and pin it to my wall. It's truly amazing to see how my intention manifests year after year. —– I am now 26 and in the last year, I traveled to New York for NYE at Times Square and California (five times), I am almost a full time content creator, photographer while running two businesses and working a 9 to 5. I work from home full-time in my PJs and I adopted another pup! Wow, looking back, how did I even sleep? —- So, next time it's your birthday write an "I am" of what you want to be by your next birthday. Focus and work on where you see yourself in a year as if you are already there. It's fucking magical what you can accomplish. —- Thank you to my family and family for the birthday wishes. I promise I will write back to everyone! — #chingona #womenofcolor #birthday #manifestation #womensmarch

A post shared by Thania Betancourt Alcázar (@thaniabetazar) on

RELATED: La Chillona to La Chingona: How to Conquer After a Fail

Love & light,


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