Best Laid Plans The Podcast

BLP Ep #127: Fun + Fresh Start to 2023!

January 2, 2023

Part 1: Ideas for kicking off your year

1-  Schedule your next Quarterly or Quintile Review – ideally set Q1 + Q2!  If you haven’t spent time thinking through your year yet, set aside some time for that.

2- Identify a habit of focus, perhaps for the next month or quintile.  You may have a lot of goals or resolutions, especially if you are like me- but decide on one to put your main focus on to start with.

3- Decide what if anything you will track, and where (and don’t go overboard)! This year I plan on tracking my reading, a few core daily habits, and my workouts.

4- Think about connections and how you might incorporate other people in your goals.  This might mean:

  • planning retreat with a partner
  • coffee with a friend
  • vision board party 
  • joining an online community

5- Plan in something FUN for the next month!  January can be bleak.  Look at those fun one-offs on your list and make a plan to make them happen.


Part 2: List of some of my goals for the year

paper version! I need to add more to the ‘fun’ section 🙂


  1. Hoping 2023 will be a big running year – want to set “second running life” PRs in half and start training for a full
  2. Read 60 books
  3. Use “bits of time” better – while I’ve improved a lot in this regard, I want to fight any remaining urge to scroll or check emails etc
  4. Plan out my personal spending
  5. Simplify my skincare


  1. Organize the house! (Using Organize365 and hoping to actually complete the program this time 🙂 )
  2. Mommy day or short trip with each kid
  3. Make Sunday dinners + work on making Sunday nights more relaxing
  4. Work on HW routines with the kids
  5. Take amazing memorable trips + continue to prioritize travel
  6. 15% minimum savings rate
  7. See my parents + sister/niece at least 2x!


  1. Improve office workflow
  2. Attend in person conference
  3. Do something to promote physician wellness where I work


  1. Successfully launch + grow Best Laid Plans Academy
  2. Plan and execute a live retreat
  3. Do more speaking!
  4. Guest on some great podcasts
  5. Improve organization of links on site


  1. Nail care!
  2. Reading habits
  3. Weekly TV!
  4. Continue prior habits (HS, Duo, 5 yr Journal, etc)


  1. Take trip with college BFFs
  2. Date nights 1-2x/month
  3. Seek out concerts, shows, plays
  4. Plan in friend dates 

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One more fun surprise!

Listener/reader Susan has graciously offered up an extra Hobonichi Cousin (English, A5) and was hoping someone in this lovely community could give it a good home. So, I will offer this as a random giveaway for anyone leaving a comment in today’s post mentioning it! US/Canada only just for shipping/cost purposes.

2023 pen included!


  • Reply Jennifer Darnell January 2, 2023 at 9:09 am

    What a great post! I love how you divide your goals into life categories. I would use a new Hobonichi Cousin planner to make and track mine if only I had one 🙂 Susan is so sweet to donate one to the BLP community!

  • Reply Maya January 2, 2023 at 9:21 am

    Appreciate the balance of annual and quintile planning. I would love a hobonochi cousin to track habits, events and tasks. I love the amount of space it seems to provide!

  • Reply Karla January 2, 2023 at 9:31 am

    I’ve been wanting to try the Hobonichi, to see if it works with my Moleskine weekly!

  • Reply Juliana Sharp January 2, 2023 at 9:42 am

    Thank you for the great podcast and yearly planning tips. I am very interested in the Hobonichi planner in helping me track my goals. Thank you for your consideration!

    • Reply Stephanie January 2, 2023 at 11:14 am

      Thanks for creating the content and sharing your life like you do.

      • Reply Elisabeth January 2, 2023 at 12:00 pm

        Your goals are always a good inspiration point for me. Organizing the house is a BIG one for me this year.

        Thank you, Susan, for such a generous share with the SHU community!

  • Reply Marianne January 2, 2023 at 9:44 am

    Logistics question – how do you balance those fun things that are often late at night with your big athletic goals? Is it easy for you to move around hard workouts? I find even one night out late leaves me dragging for two days at least lately….

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger January 2, 2023 at 9:45 am

      I guess I just don’t do that many weekday late night fun things 🙂 Book club is it and it’s over by 9-9:30. Saturday nights I feel I can stay out a bit later sometimes because I can do my Sunday workout later in the day.

    • Reply Jeanna January 2, 2023 at 9:59 pm

      Thanks for sharing! I’m still working up goals for 2023. I also don’t have a planner yet, so would love to be considered for the Cousin.

  • Reply Louisa January 2, 2023 at 9:53 am

    Great inspiration for my 2023 goals! Very generous of Susan to offer a Hobonichi Cousin to the community. I would love to give it a good home!

  • Reply Emily January 2, 2023 at 10:05 am

    I have never tried Hobonichi, but I’d love to!

  • Reply Katie January 2, 2023 at 10:10 am

    At first i misread and thought all those goals were Q1, and while I know comparison is the third of joy, whew! was I relieved to realize that they were annual goals! In all my B years following you, I’ve still never tried out a Hobonichi, so it would be cool to win one 😀

    • Reply Jessica January 3, 2023 at 7:26 pm

      2023 for me is the year of HEALTH! I’m in my late 20s, and want to establish healthy habits now to take me through life. I’m already pretty good at prioritizing sleep and nutrition, so I mostly want to focus on exercise/stretching, mental health, and getting some chronic conditions under better control. I struggle a lot with establishing daily-ish / recurring habits at home such as stretching, strength training, taking walks, etc, so that will be the hardest one that I will really need to play around with how to establish the habits. I’m also committing to some sports leagues to make sure that I get some fun exercise time even if I struggle with working out on my own.

  • Reply Betsy Bernstein January 2, 2023 at 10:11 am

    I always enjoy your goals layout. Great inspiration for organizing my own!

    I’d love to try a Hobonichi Cousin! So generous of Susan to offer it up to someone in this community!

  • Reply Madelyn January 2, 2023 at 10:29 am

    Love these ideas as I am sitting here feeling a bit overwhelmed thinking about the year ahead. THanks for making it feel more manageable 🙂
    Thank you to Susan, too! I would love to try a hobonichi planner!

  • Reply Amy D January 2, 2023 at 10:42 am

    Oh my, this makes me want to make my goals asap! I would love the Hobonichi Cousin-I just left inpatient medicine for outpatient and my schedule along with those of my three kids and husband is crazy and I need to write things
    Down!!! Happy New Year!

  • Reply Tierney January 2, 2023 at 10:48 am

    Thanks for sharing these goals. I really like the idea of focusing on one in particular. I’m torn because I have a fitness goal I really want to focus on but I also need to move the needle on a few work projects. Also, I’d love to go back to a Hobonichi. I’m not sure if I’m feeling my Amazon planner right now!

  • Reply Sue January 2, 2023 at 11:04 am

    Thank you for sharing. Nail care is one of my habits this year as well. I love Hobonichi planners!

  • Reply Jennifer January 2, 2023 at 11:06 am

    Ooh I would love the Hobonichi!

    Does anyone know why it’s called a Cousin by the way?

    Sarah your goals are inspiring and give me some ideas. And I’m hoping to get back to running, with a spring half. After I ran a marathon in 2015 I feel like I lost all my mojo.

  • Reply Lis January 2, 2023 at 11:21 am

    Great goals, Sarah! Happy New Year! And definitely entering for the Hobonichi, as I wanted to try the Weeks and Original this year but miss my Cousin greatly! 🙁

  • Reply Danielle January 2, 2023 at 11:24 am

    Love the focus on travel and shared experiences. Would love to try the hobonichi!

  • Reply Sarah January 2, 2023 at 11:27 am

    Happy new year! I always love reading your goals! Would love to try the cousin, too! 😉

  • Reply Jennifer January 2, 2023 at 11:29 am

    I would love to try a hobonichi this year! Day two of the year and I’m still on track with my daily goals (outside 23 in 23, doing a plank everyday) and am going to try to make weekly and monthly planning / review a habit.

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa’s Yarns January 2, 2023 at 11:48 am

    I love reading and hearing about others’ goals, even though I have a complicated relationship with goals as a recovering perfectionist. I did set some goals this year, though – just posted them today! I am most excited about my travel goals (solo trip with my oldest to visit my sister and niece in AZ and a girls trip with a good friend I haven’t seen since I got married as we’ve both had 2 kids in the last 5 years and live very very far apart). I decided to try the ‘go outside for 23 in ‘23’ challenge, too. That is going to be tricky during our winter months when we leave and come home in the dark and the weather is dangerously cold. But I am telling myself to focus on progress over perfection.

  • Reply Miranda W January 2, 2023 at 12:19 pm

    Happy 2023! How incredibly sweet of Susan. I would love a Hobonochi as I start a new semester of teaching new (to me) classes!

  • Reply Sara January 2, 2023 at 12:25 pm

    Thanks for all that you share! I’m interested in the raffle. 🙂

  • Reply Rachael January 2, 2023 at 12:36 pm

    Would love to try the hobonichi 🙂 I’ve never used one! My kids are starting to be more involved in a lot more activities and I need to keep better track of it all!

  • Reply Diana January 2, 2023 at 12:50 pm

    I had the simplify skincare routine as a goal last year and I’m very happy with what I landed on!
    Morning: glycolic acid face wash (chemical exfoliant, I use L’Oréal revitalist) in shower, vitamin c serum (Maelove), moisturizer (cetaphil) and sunscreen (Australian gold bb cream)
    Evening: rinse face (I just use water since I don’t wear makeup beyond bb cream), tretinoin (prescription, use good rx for best price!, mine was $40 and lasts 4-6 months!)

    My friend is a dermatologist and I consulted her when building my routine! According to her everyone needs: tretinoin, vitamin c and sunscreen. Check check check. Good luck!

  • Reply Annie January 2, 2023 at 12:54 pm

    Starting jury duty next week had thrown off my plans to start some good routines in the new year. It feels like so much is up in the air. Maybe Susan’s generous hobonichi would help 😉

  • Reply Colleen January 2, 2023 at 1:13 pm

    Would love to try out the Hobonichi!

  • Reply Katie Murray January 2, 2023 at 1:17 pm

    Sounds like some great goals for the year. I love seeing what other people find important to focus on for the year. I would love to try out the Hobonichi Cousin.

  • Reply Emily January 2, 2023 at 1:19 pm

    I am doing my 2023 planning now and would love to try the Hobonichi cousin!

  • Reply Sarah January 2, 2023 at 2:13 pm

    I’d love to try the Cousin. Thanks for sharing your goals–it’s always inspiring to hear what other people are focused on as I make my own plans for the new year.

  • Reply Michelle January 2, 2023 at 8:55 pm

    Would love to try the Hobonichi!

  • Reply Coco January 2, 2023 at 9:42 pm

    Don’t need to enter to the giveaway as I ordered it already. I love your goal categories, I used it similarly last year and plan to continue for 2023 although I’d love to hear your tips of how to keep track of the goals. Also, where would you suggest to put them in hobinichinf cousin or weeks? I don’t have a other planner for just goals.

  • Reply Traci January 2, 2023 at 10:00 pm

    I would love to try the Hobonichi Cousin. What a generous offer – happy new year!

  • Reply Lea January 2, 2023 at 10:20 pm

    I’ve really been enjoying your blog/podcast! I would love to try the Hobonichi Cousin. I was thinking of giving it a try this year! Thank you!

  • Reply Coco January 2, 2023 at 10:54 pm

    One more thing, I’d love to join you for a retreat for running and planning??? Hahaha.. that would be my ideal retreat.

  • Reply Mary January 2, 2023 at 11:38 pm

    Will give quintile a try in 2023— would love to try a new planner

  • Reply lawandcreative January 3, 2023 at 5:34 am

    A retreat sounds so exciting! Would it be in FL? I likely couldn’t make one work this year (I’m in England and already have a Norwegian cruise booked for August and Venice for Sept) but if it was repeated in 2024 (!) I’d love to prioritise it ahead of time in my travel plans 🙂

    Not entering the competition, already a devoted fan of the Cousin and have mine set up for the year ready! Such a generous offer, though. Thank you Susan!

  • Reply Colleen January 3, 2023 at 6:06 am

    I would love to try the Cousin! One of my big goals for the year is to make a new template for my notes at work to shorten my documentation time.

  • Reply Lea January 3, 2023 at 7:15 am

    I would love to try out the Cousin! Thank you!!

  • Reply Christine L Donner January 3, 2023 at 9:05 am

    I love your post. I would love to try out the Cousin! I love your podcast too!

  • Reply Christine L Donner January 3, 2023 at 9:06 am

    I love your post. And I would love to try out the Cousin. I’m still trying to find my best planning tool! Thank you for your podcast!

  • Reply Ruth Stewart January 3, 2023 at 11:36 am

    Thank you for both the podcast and blog posts! Best Laid Plans has become one of my favorite podcasts and I’m sad that I’m almost caught up with listening through the back catalogue! I’m getting closer to planner peace with my digital system (ToDoist, Google calendar, and my email) but I REALLY like stationary so I’m intrigued by the idea of a paper planner though I wonder how well it would work out for me. Something to experiment with I suppose!

  • Reply acdalal January 3, 2023 at 11:04 pm

    Thanks for sharing your goals! I enjoyed listening to this episode as well as the BOBW goals episode. I posted my goals and theme for the year on my blog today — not many of them are real stretches, but I needed a gentle year with everything else going on in my life right now. The one I’m most intrigued by, and least sure about, is my goal to visit a beach every day over the summer (I am in the land of 10,000 lakes so *theoretically* this goal is easier than it sounds). Good luck to you!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger January 4, 2023 at 5:20 am

      thank you!!! beach goal sounds awesome – I think it will be a fun project!

  • Reply Lani January 11, 2023 at 7:01 pm

    Would love a Hobonochi. Using the FF binder and really not feeling it

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