New Year, New Mindset

Hello, friends! It’s been awhile, I know, and I’ve missed you. Welcome back to this very sporadic blog of mine. I’d also like to welcome you to 2020: the year of Barbara Walters and oh so many vision jokes.

It’s so exciting and invigorating to have a fresh, shiny new year to explore. It’s like that feeling you get after brushing your teeth – you feel so clean, fresh and capable of anything. (Everyone else feels this way after brushing their teeth too, right? Not just me?)

I’ll admit, I’m a glutton for that New Year energy. I like to set goals, especially BIG goals, and I LOVE writing out New Year’s resolutions. For example, my 2019 resolutions list was a two-page, itemized document complete with bold headings, bulleted lists, check boxes and inspirational quotes. Some strong Rory Gilmore vibes over here.

The end of 2019 was incredibly busy for me, and busy in many of the right ways, but also delayed a chance for me to write out my resolutions for 2020, which kind of works out because…

Thus far 2020 hasn’t worked out the way I envisioned it to AT ALL. 😅

It’s been a weird, frustrating and challenging first week leaving me already emotionally exhausted. Based on the conversations I’ve had with friends, colleagues and strangers my sentiments about a rough start to 2020 appear to be on par for many others. Must be something in the water?

Part of my burnt-out feeling is caused by my own hand due to self-imposed pressure. This pressure can be motivating, but can easily be taken to an extreme. I’m still striving to strike a balance of self-imposed pressure in my life. Factors outside my control also contributed to the week. Not much to be done about those except learn how to weather those moments as they happen and devise strategies to weather them in the future.

Coincidentally I have the next two days off to regroup and reorganize. Opportune timing, Universe, thank you. One of my to-dos is carve my plan for 2020. To prepare I’m reflecting on my 2019 resolutions, the experiences I’ve had this past week and the experiences of those around me. Thinking of all that brings this quote to mind:

“Just because someone carries it well doesn’t mean it isn’t heavy.”   – Anonymous

A list of resolutions just doesn’t feel appropriate for me this year. I want this year to be more intuitively based and more introspective. I’m thinking a lot about the years I spent living in Asheville, NC and the emphasis the city places on mental health and overall well-being. It remains the only place I’ve lived that values and encourages personal well-being above anything else. I still plan to accomplish a lot, but I want to do it with the best mindset above all.

I plan to be pickier with my gigs and the ways I spend my time. I want to spend more time on my own, outdoors, and away from social media (which is tough with a career that values a social media presence). I want to metaphorically put down what I no longer need to carry. When I can’t put it down, I want to invite a buddy to help me shoulder the weight. I want to structure my days with mental health moments to ensure that 2020 clarity we’ve all been making puns about. I’m going to make these moments non-negotiables in my daily agenda. My schedule constraints will be different every day, but I know there’s always room for yourself. Some days there will be enough time to take a lackadaisical stroll through the park near my apartment. Other days my “me” moment may be driving from one gig to the next in complete silence. My friend Amanda suggested that one to me and it’s honestly brilliant. Highly recommend!

Everyone’s schedule is filled to maximum capacity and often it’s hard to justify taking time for yourself amidst the chaos of daily life, trust me I get it. I pushed me-time to the wayside for most of 2019. But I also know for a FACT that when you prioritize self-care, you show up better for yourself and the people who depend on you.

My number one goal for this year is to live authentically and acknowledge when I need to set down that metaphoric load I’m carrying. I haven’t liked the way I’ve shown up in this year so far. I’ve felt anxious, tired and cranky. By easing the pressure on myself and structuring self-care time I hope to not feel as icky as I have this first week. To help accomplish that I’m going to experiment with having a very small list of goals for the year, but prioritizing mental wellbeing and happiness. I’ll still be working hard and making big moves, but I will be doing so mindfully.

Cheers to you, dear reader, and your best year yet.

Every Moment is a Resolution

I’m not a winter person. By any means. Never have been and never will be. But, boy do I love this time of year solely because December always holds such magic and power. Sure, it can be somewhat chaotic as we prepare for holiday gatherings and wrap up loose ends before the new year, but you have to admit, the air is charged with this intoxicating energy. Everyone’s looking toward the future and making resolutions; deciding how they want to show up in 2018. The coming new year is so shiny and pristine, completely untarnished and packaged with endless possibilities. Regardless of what happened during the past year, you’re now given a brand new, fresh year. It’s a great time to reflect, focus and center yourself before the coming year. While I love this time of year and am giddy with anticipation for what 2018 might bring, I just want to reiterate that you can have this restart sensation at any time.

We’ve all been there – we begin January feeling extra empowered and ready to make this THE year! This is the year that everything we’ve ever envisioned will happen and it will be stupendous! We all charge into the year determined to uphold every resolution! And maybe we’ll even find the cure for the common cold while we’re at it! Who knows! We’re unstoppable and ready to take on the year!

But inevitably, our superpower energy starts to wane. We might fall off the proverbial wagon. Maybe other unforeseen and uncontrollable circumstances come into effect. Or the life we envision for ourselves may require more patience and perseverance than initially anticipated. Whatever the case may be, the superpower energy that launched the new year dissipates and it becomes a struggle to find more.

Allow me to let you in on a little secret: Despite the societal emphasis that this power to restart occurs only once per year, remember that within every single moment YOU have the opportunity to redirect and reset as you need or desire. Yep. YOU. You have to ability to change course or get back on course whenever you like. It’s all you, my friend.

Allow yourself to feel this invigorating charge of the coming year and let it propel you into the new year, but remember to carry this unstoppable energy through to every single minute of 2018. The seasons will change and before we know it 2018 will be well underway. Understand that not only are you able to carry this energy with you constantly, but you are able to create this “new year sensation” for yourself any time. You have everything you need within you to have the most fantastic year and can recreate the energy you have at the cusp of 2018 for yourself every moment. You simply have to recognize this ability within yourself and pledge to recommit to your new year intentions multiple times throughout the year. Heck, sometimes you’ll have to recommit multiple times throughout the day. And trust me, that is A-OK.

I like to write (obviously) and I write down everything and anything I want to bring into my life. I tend to write the most at the end and beginning of the year as I evaluate my past year and define how I want to show up in the coming year. As I wrote out my vision and resolutions for 2018 I wrote this reminder for myself:

Resolution Quote

This mantra allows me to forgive myself when I don’t feel like things are working out. This mantra gives me an energy boost when I feel my drive begin to slow. This mantra reminds me to listen to myself and determine my next best move to keep moving forward and continue creating the best life for myself.

If this helps you, feel free to borrow it. Print it out and place it somewhere you’ll see it whenever you may need the reminder. Or use this as a starting point – modify it, make it your own. Write whatever suits you to remind yourself it doesn’t need to be January 1 for you to kick start your life.

Be good to yourself & cheers to the most magical 2018!