|Photo by Jonathan Klok on Unsplash|
I looked at the calendar today and realized that there are only two more days until the new year. It is just another day, though a recognized bank holiday, that you can wake up and start fresh. You can do that any day. However, the new year is also a benchmark in time to consider how much has changed since the beginning of last year. I don't know about you, but my world has changed a lot.
Since the beginning of 2018 I have moved residents, began homeschooling my daughter, made a new commitment to publishing my novel and strived to find balance and confidence in my life. I have been more healthy in this past year than I have been in my entire life. I feel good and I am trying so hard to keep working towards my goals and consistently make improvements in my life.
The process is hard. Sitting down and doing the work is hard. Keeping the house and family running smoothly is hard. Trying to keep anxiety to a dull hum is hard. Taking time for self-care is hard. I'm not sure why it takes us by surprise, but life is hard.
At least as I realize how hard life really is, I am also discovering that I am strong enough to take it on. I have the support of people who believe in me and I am actively trying to change my habits to create a lifestyle of inspiration, peace and resilience.
In doing this, I am trying to change small daily habits.
One is to stop apologizing for things outside of my control. I hear myself apologizing because the red light didn't change fast enough or the store was out of our favorite flavor of potato chips. I can't control this, there is no reason for me to be sorry. In fact, it degrades my self-worth. I want to be sorry when I do something inconsiderate and it really matters. I want my apologies to be meaningful, not frivolous and I want to lift my self-esteem, not tank it.
Another small change is to answer in confidence instead of meekness. I've realized a lot of my indecision stems from my anxiety. I don't know which outcome or item will be better. The crux is that neither are better (in most mundane situations), but it a decision that must be made to be able to move forward. I am trying to trust that lean in one direction and just go with it without worrying what other people will think about it.
As a result of answering with confidence I am gaining a calm in my mind. To aid in this, I am getting rid of as many distractions as possible. I have very little contact with social media or things like that. I check my email once in the morning and then stop worrying about it for the day (unless I am waiting on a reply for something important I suppose, but that is rare.) I do my best, that's all I can do. That's all anyone can do.
I am also trying to focus on one thing at a time. It seems counter-intuitive in this society to not multitask, but I find I do a better, more concentrated, thorough and peaceful job at my tasks if I use my full attention on them. This goes for working, writing, reading, cooking, spending time with my family, even for walking or waiting in line. I take that time to observe my surroundings and the (mostly) amazing people I share this city with. There is a great joy in being entirely where you are.
As the new year quickly approaches, I am trying these adjustments. I've been working them in one at a time over the past couple weeks and I am finding great improvements to my mood, productivity and energy levels. I am ready for these changes and I am looking forward to the potential of what this new year has in store.
Are you making any new year's changes in your life? What are you seeking during the next year?