My 2014 Inspiration Board

Well it’s the last week of February and I’m finally sharing my 2014 Inspiration Board. Last year I spent all of January 1st sitting on my bedroom floor cutting/planning/glueing/piecing together what would become my 2013 Inspiration Board. This year turned out to be slightly different – it took me the entire month of January and half of February to create my board, but I finished at long last!

2014 inspiration board

Once again, let’s break it down by each section.

~NYC Life~

NYC Life

{ * develop my life in NYC * meet new friends * explore the city * establish close, lasting friendships with females * venture out of my comfort zone * take (smart) risks * be limitless and fearless * manage my finances better * establish stability * socialize daily * say ‘yes’ more * embrace independence without isolation * avoid stay-at-home ruts * find the middle ground between my introvert & extrovert self * accept more dates * }

While the second half of last year felt like one long transition into independence and living (far) away from home, this year will be all about acclimating to my new urban surroundings. I finally feel ready to take a giant leap forward and start building new friendships and relationships here on the east coast! As much as I miss everyone back home, I need to establish some fulfilling female friendships if I want to maintain my sanity. This means that avoiding introverted ruts and keeping social fears away are crucial to my development here in New York. Bring it on!



{ * get back in-tune with my body * add variety into my diet * embrace wholesome foods * continue shopping organic but add in more local purchases * focus on balance and moderation * eat to live (not vis-versa) * find what foods make me feel best * establish a proper runner’s palate * honor my cravings * balance my hormones * drink less alcohol * explore the food culture of NYC * manage my grocery budget * }

Ahh the food topic strikes again! Moving to NYC threw my body into a bit of a loop – I feel completely out-of-sync with my hunger cues and my relationship with food is way too focused. I want to put food on the back-burner again and focus on the ‘food as fuel’ mentality. My hormones are wacky again as well, so my primary focus will be to gain overall internal health and balance. The key here is to trust my body and let it lead me in the right direction.



{ * find what makes me happy * shift away from superficial happiness (materialism) * focus on joy-inducing hobbies (running, blogging, reading, writing, baking) * read more books * travel out of the country * visit new U.S. cities * take more spontaneous trips * travel somewhere solo * explore the East Coast * take more staycations in NYC * feel beautiful inside and out * stress less about the future and focus more on day-to-day life * never settle for good enough * }

New York is the city of (my) dreams, and I can’t wait to fully immerse myself in this mentality. While the cutthroat go-getter attitude is absolutely not for me, I still plan to make New York City my own. The intention here is to mold NYC into my life instead of molding my life into NYC standards. My goal is to view each day as a new adventure and never lose sight of the inspiration around me. This of course includes getting to know Manhattan better and being open to adventures right outside my door. The reality is that it would truly be a waste if I didn’t experience everything that makes this city unique. Travel will hopefully be a big part of my life in the upcoming months, although long trips abroad will most likely be pushed out to next year. I also have big plans to integrate this blog into my daily life and have it grow with me.



{ * establish a running habit * focus on strength and agility * include weekly speedwork * add in cross-training * get faster * avoid injuries * run smarter (listen to my body) * conquer the half marathon * experiment with minimalist running * }

The main takeaway here is the addition of cross-training. I joined a gym last December and it’s been truly life-changing. I want to become a stronger, faster runner and I plan to accomplish this with the help of strength-training and speedwork. I also intend to do everything in my power to avoid aggravating my pesky shin injury. This includes experimenting with different shoes and dabbling in minimalist running.

~Family, Friends, and I~

Family, Friends, and I

{ * focus primarily on my family and our relationships/attitudes * spend more time with my sister * continue maintaining all friendships * reconnect with old friends * build lasting relationships * give more, take less * be open to love * continue focusing on self-love * never fear failure or starting over * go back to basics with who I am and always was as a person * }

Whereas last year’s focus was selfishly on myself, my gaze will shift towards loved ones this year. I realize more than ever before just how precious my family is to me, and I want to nurture our attitudes towards one another. I also want to wipe away the careless neglect I’ve developed towards my old friends back home after moving out east. Phone calls and video chat sessions will make a big comeback this year! And finally, my quarter-life crisis is still going strong and I want nothing more than to continue alleviating it. I tend to make rash decisions and enjoy this quality of my personality, but I’m reaching the point in my life where some big decisions need additional attention.


I don’t intend for this to sound pessimistic, but I suspect this year will be a tough one. The truth is, I am absolutely ecstatic for what 2014 has in store. Moving to a new city without knowing anyone will surely continue to bring its challenges, but every year comes with ups and downs. In the end, this year will be one about constantly pushing myself out of my comfort zone and exploring the outskirts of my persona. I will work to define myself not by my surroundings but by who I was born as. This means going back to basics and digging down deep to unravel the woman I was meant to be. Each area of focus on this inspiration board will help guide me in the right direction, but it will ultimately be up to my gut to guide me. 2014 will be the year I look outwards and focus on connecting my internal self to the external world (family, friends, New York City, etc.).

♥ Irina


  1. February 27, 2014 / 2:31 pm

    Wow it seems like yesterday you were sharing your 2013 inspiration board with us! I love the idea of putting graphics together with goals. It really does give you a picture of something to aim towards!

    • February 28, 2014 / 11:44 pm

      I know right?! How time flies. I highly recommend creating a visual inspiration board…I love looking at mine and it really helps me stay focused.

  2. March 23, 2014 / 6:49 pm

    Oh, wow, this is one seriously thought through inspirational board. Mine is looking so childish after i saw yours. Great job. So many things to see, achieve and enjoy. Super motivational. You made me wanna go for a run 🙂 Maybe this is not a bad idea 🙂