2018: Let’s Get Real

Well hello 2018. I am looking back at this past year and for probably the first time in my life, I can say it was a good year. And I do not mean that I have never had a good year before. Because I have. The difference is I used to (note past tense) fixate on the bad parts. Forget if I got a promotion or if I hit a new PR at CrossFit, I would gravitate towards the bad shit that happened. And when you have bad shit happen, it can become a cycle you just cannot get out of. I used to very much be “Woe is me! Why do bad things happen to good people?”

And today I am more like, shut it, sister. It ain’t all bad.

Don’t get me wrong guys. I am by no means minimizing the not so fun things that have happened to any of you this past year. I have had my share of sadness and stress this year as well (things I have not even posted about on social media or blogged about). I have lost someone who was like a father to me. I have seen friends and family go through some pretty scary health stuff. I have almost lost people I have loved. I had plenty of restless nights and a whole lot of tears in 2017. 2017 was not all rainbows and unicorns, I had a lot of heavy and heart wrenching shit go down. I say this not for sympathy or pity but because I 100% get what it is like to have to go through really unpleasant stuff.

 

The thing with New Years is that as that as it gets closer, we all just are ready for it. We want to escape whatever the last year brought us. We want fresh beginnings. We want 2018 to right every wrong from 2017.

But we also have expectations without doing our part. We cannot expect 2018 to bring us all our hopes and wishes if we do not release 2017. We can choose to leave our baggage or travesties or whatever negativity was there but we often take it with us. And then the new year becomes an extension of the previous year.

So if we really want 2018 to be our year, we have to accept all that has happened in 2017. We have to leave it behind. We have to also give ourselves permission to not carry guilt from whatever mistakes or failures we feel we had into 2018. (I may be sounding like I have watched too much Long Island Medium)­.

To me, a new year is a great time to reevaluate ourselves, our lives, our relationships, our jobs, our health routines, our finances. All of it. Whatever it is that we feel may be holding us back from what we want. We probably should have reevaluated them during the year, but let’s be honest. We get complacent. And it takes a milestone, like a new year, to light a fire under our asses. We get awakened when we realize  “FUDGE! A new year and I am still doing X.” Or “A new year and I still have not done Y”. You get what I am saying.

A new year also mean we cut a lot of things from life. We cut out toxic relationships or toxic food or toxic habits. Which we absolutely should do, but we need to do more than that. We also need to really get in our own heads and understand “why” we had those things in our lives in the first place. (When we don’t, it is why we have patterns. Look at dating. The horror!). When we just let things go without understanding the “why”, they are like boomerangs. They will come back to us in some shape or form.

We also forget that a new year is an ENTIRE YEAR. Which means it is 365 days. There is such a tendency to get pumped for January and go after our goals like we are sprinting instead of treating them like a marathon. Then before we know it, we forget even what our goals were. I am not going to give you a how-to set a goal because that is a post all in itself. What I really mean to convey is that it is ok if our goals take more than a few days or a few weeks or a few months. Just do not give up on them. We get discouraged so easily because we fixate on what we still have to do instead of appreciating and applauding what we already have done. Deciding to make a change takes a lot of self-awareness in and of itself and that’s no small feat. Knowing is half the battle, G.I. Joe.

It is like we view a new year as if it is this being sent from the gods. Like it is this creature that is going to bring us everything we want. Call me Debbie Downer, but it is no such thing.  It is just another 365 days in which we can choose how we want it to be. We give a new year so  much power when really we need to give that power to ourselves.

 

 

 

New ‘Tude Part Dos

I blogged recently about lessons learned in 2015. Along those same lines, here are some other things that made this past year educational and informative. Oooh we are going to get deep. Get ready!

  1. Tough decisions sometimes need to be tackled like removing a band aid: Stop avoiding it and pull it off fast. Often your gut instinctively tells you what you need to do but you chose to ignore that. Or justify the opposite of what your gut is saying because change is hard. So stop worrying about it and just do it.
  2. You can’t get what you want without letting something else go. Life is a give and take. Some examples are more obvious than others. You want to lose weight well you may have to sacrifice your favorite meals or late nights to allow time to hit the gym. You want a new car well then you need to give up dinners out to save money. You want to feel happy well then you need to remove yourself from negative people and things in your life. It is such a simple formula yet not always easy to implement.
  3. It is ok to not take on other people’s stuff. Yes we want to be loyal and good friends and be there for someone else. There is an important distinction though between being there for someone versus letting their negativity be toxic to your well being. I pride myself in being a sounding board for friends and a sanity check for them. I love doing that for my friends when they recognize their own accountability in a situation or are on a path to getting to a better place, whatever that means to them. I do not however care much to be around negativity that does nothing but bring me down. I have fought so much throughout my life to try to be as positive as I can because I spent much of my existence being a glass half empty kind of gal. I do not want to revert to that and know how easily that could happen if I am around the wrong company or take on other people’s stuff.
  4. If something doesn’t feel good or right to you, just don’t do it. Like I wrote in my other blog, what worked for you yesterday may not work for you tomorrow. So stop agonizing over trying to fix it or make it right. Sometimes it’s ok to walk away.
  5. People have a tendency to go into difficult situations or conversations with the wrong attitude. We expect the other person to meet us where we are and to just take and agree with everything we say. Then of course we are floored when a conversation escalates and are appalled that the other person didn’t “get it.” Try going into a conversation with a let’s meet half way attitude. If you truly want to resolve conflict, you need to accept that the solution is probably not necessarily what you expect it to be. (One key take away I took from a work training recently is that sometimes the best solution is not one that you thought up on your own. It’s something two or more people came up with together. Why? Because you get their buy in. Without buy in, it’s very difficult to achieve an agreeable outcome).
  6. Have more empathy people! I have been talking about getting buy in and being perceptive of other people’s feelings. It feels pretty shitty when someone dismisses how you feel or tells you how ridiculous you are being. You may not agree with how someone is feeling but it is not for you to dictate how someone else “should” feel. If someone is offended by something that you did that seems quite trivial, try first being, you guessed it, empathetic. Validate how they are feeling and it’s way more likely to have a more positive outcome.

So with that, start 2016 off right and get after what you want. Much love!