Remember that one time I wrote about the importance of journaling? Well friends, while I’ve been very bad at talking to you, I’ve been really good at talking to myself over the last year. Often times, I write and write and write and rarely look back. Each entry usually ends with me figuring it out or making a decision or realizing that I have something else I need to be doing. But this morning, as I was sitting on my living room floor, drinking my 5th iced matcha tea latte of the week, I decided to look.
The human psyche is a peculiar thing. Sometimes we forget how much we know about ourselves. Really, we’re the experts on our own lives. We are the keepers of the lessons and the dictators of what we do after they’re learned.
Last September, I took a dive into “Morning Pages,” which is essentially a journaling practice that involves writing stream of conscious style for three full pages as soon as you wake up in the morning. This kick started the habit and since then, I’ve written short and long entries about everything under the sun. One in particular, written on December 31st, listed 12 lessons that I learned in 2016. What little did I know about what would come my way.
These past 8 months have been nothing short of dramatic. Despite my absence on Sense of Sunny, my thoughts have often come back to this place. I intentionally took a posting hiatus to stay better connected with my IRL life, but I have not stopped writing. Like any writer, I have drafts and lists and unfinished thoughts weaved through out my phone, my notebooks, my journal and my Google Drive. Since the very beginning, I’ve wanted to use this space as any good blogger would–to use the perspective I’ve gained from my own experiences to help other people make better choices for themselves. But sometimes, it takes you 8 months to gain perspective, to gather the pieces and arrange them for all they’re worth.
In the spirit of drama, I have to admit that my presence here today was fueled by the last week of unfortunate events in my life. The week started with me getting hit in the clavicle by a fly ball and ended with my poor car getting hit by an inattentive driver. My knack for positivity allows me to find comedic relief in it all, but a crappy thing is a crappy thing, no matter how you look at it. I decided to stay home today to watch the rain fall down my window and drink my weight in tea. Which brings me to the re-discovery of my December 31st journal entry. Today isn’t the start of a New Year, or even a new week. But, I have a sneaking suspicion that no matter what day of the year it is, you could use a little advice or a new day or a new thought or a new friend to tell you that life is hard, but you can do hard things. Here I am to be all of that for you. Welcome back.
I’m here again. It’s New Years Eve and I find myself pondering life. Am I thinking about the past or the future? To be honest, probably the future. It’s the only place I can control. I think if I just reflect on lessons learned, I can carry that. I can use that as fuel for a better me. A me-er me. So, let’s reflect, why don’t we:
1 – “This above all: to thine own self be true.” There are so many interpretations of this and each one is so relevant. Always be true to who you are; your values, morals and deepest self. At the end of each day, know your truth, wrap that around yourself tightly and never let it go.
2 – Blur the trappings of your life. What really makes a life? Do you find yourself with those things? For me, that’s love and truth and acceptance and freedom and beauty. The bigger question is, what doesn’t make your life? Identify what you’re mistaking as being important and critical to your days and blur those. Focus more closely on everything else.
3 – Let it out, write it down, live outside yourself. I’ve never written as much I have this past year. I’m so much better for it. What good are the thoughts in your head if you don’t let them breathe?
4 – Recognize your growth opportunities. Be confident, but stay humble in your imperfections. We can always do more, be more, say more. Have a growth mindset and do the best you can.
5 – Being okay is okay. You cannot be 100% 100% of the time. Let yourself be just okay. When the season changes, you will too.
6 – Dreaming is not doing. Get out and experience life. Do the big scary thing. It’s the only way to evolve into the better version of yourself.
7 – Live more with less. Rid your life of excess, for the stuff will always be void of the deepest meaning. Make room for more of who and what you need.
8 – Learn to be firm, yet flexible in your convictions. Always keep your actions aligned with your values, but allow opportunities to change your mind. It’s okay to reassess.
9 – Look more carefully at everything. Food, products, choices, people. Don’t live blinded by what you’ve always assumed to be true. Look deeper.
10 – Avoid tethering your happiness and well being to anyone but yourself. Do not prioritize other people, places or things at the expense of your own life.
11 – Are you who you want to be? Ask this to yourself and accept the answer. This is our one and only life. You are all you have at the end of every day. Are you really who you want to be? If not, work on that. Focus on that.
12 – Rejection makes the heart grow fonder. Not everyone or everything is meant for you. Let the farewell be enough evidence. You only need room for what is meant to be.
And there it is. A year of lessons. What will the next ones be? Only time will tell. The time is now. The time is telling.