So cliche right?
I’ve never been big or even attempted New Year’s resolutions tbh. I always felt that I should simply try to be the best version of me and that was that. What I didn’t realize up until just a year or two ago, is that not setting clear goals or aiming for targets, was simply leading me in a circle without really getting anywhere or accomplishing much. Weeks, months, and years passed me by without feeling any closer to my bigger life goals.
I don’t want to say that the last six years I accomplished nothing, because that is not true either; but for probably the last three or four years, I was living a complacent life and basically just going through my every day motions to keep afloat.
I’ve shared, I lost my corporate job in June of last year; and although I don’t want to blame my complacency on this job, it was a big factor. Things at the job were the same. Different day, same story. I was good at my job, and had an amazing assistant with colleagues that turned into friends; the salary was good and allowed for frequent vacations and getaways. However, I was living my life simply as means to an end. I was working and putting up with the monotony of it, because it afforded me these vacations and provided financial freedom. And what I didn’t realize is that looking forward to the next vacation is one of the only things that kept me going. In the position I had, I could no longer be promoted, I knew and had relationships with all the contacts in the industry, I’d tried, succeeded and failed at all avenues at least 3 different times during my employment with this company. I was no longer being challenged or learning any new skills.
For the last year and a half there, I was constantly complaining, miserable with the commute; would wake up and already be annoyed at my day ahead. I would talk with my best friend about this constantly. I’d read all the motivational quotes we all do like “feel the fear and do it anyway”. But truth is, the fear was too much to actually take any kind of leap. And the biggest thing, I think, was not knowing in which direction I should go next. As we all do, I had become accustomed to a certain lifestyle that would inevitably have to change as soon as I gave my job up- and to an extent, staying in the misery you know is far safer than the bliss you don’t.
So at the end of 2018 I saw Jen Atkin’s insta stories where she was sharing her goal setting for the next year and it looked so simple. I got inspired, read this article that really inspired me and I finally sat down to write some goals and intentions for 2019.
I’ll start by saying, the article is a must read! I didn’t go any further into the tools listed, but it really inspired to set goals in this manner;
First I wrote down very vague overall goals like
- be happier
- be more organized
Then I broke down goals into specific categories. For me, these categories were it: Health, Relationships, Finance/Career, Personal/Spiritual Development, Recreation, Environment, Service/Contribution. It looked like this:
- Better work life balance
- work from home part time
- organize my clothes & shoes
- purge phone from unwanted pics & videos
- backup phone media once a month
- make more time for meditation
I wrote these goals in two places: a document on my computer I could easily access and my planner that I carry with me and reference every day. These were handy and always available for me to look at.
Now, I have to be honest and tell you that while on some of these goals I can pin point and tell you exactly everything I did to achieve them; there are other things that I feel just happened by chance. For example, I knew I wanted to be more organized and took very specific steps to get there. I got storage and organization systems and now every single one of my items has a designated place. So my home and things are organized and neat. This took quite a bit or work, research into what kind of shelving or storage would work best and then lots of hours actually sorting and organizing. And then there are things I “accomplished” by chance, like better work life balance- since I lost my job. So I’ve been a lot more present at home and have had the ability to indulge in my aerial practice and even pick up a few new skills working at the studio.
Something else I want to note is that my purpose of setting these goals and targets was to gain more control (which being type A control is what I always want). And in many ways, in 2019 is when I lost all control. I no longer had my job, title status, and financial freedom I always prided myself with. My salary got cut to a fraction of where I was. Although we did take one more vacation after I was laid off, at this point there is no sight of when the next one might be. I am in many ways, completely dependent on my husband and his salary. Yes I can still very much afford to get and treat myself to my own things- but I am no longer at that salary status where I was in control of our lifestyle.
With all that said- in many ways, I gained all the control. Control of my life. Yes I struggle with my home time because the work I am doing for the aerial studio can be done any time and most of the time from anywhere. So I struggle with a schedule that really diffirentiates my work and home time; but I can say confidently I am 100% more present at home and at family/friend events now than I was the last six years. I gained control of when I wake up, how long I take having breakfast or sipping on my coffee, whether I want to go grocery shopping or have them delivered- all these things that seem so small, I now have a choice, because I have gained the time and energy to actually choose and get them done.
Main reason I wanted to share this and why I gave two opposing examples is because what I really wanted to share is that, I truly believe setting your intentions and having that mindset is really what puts you in the direction of the things that you actually need. For a couple of years now, I was unhappy at work. I knew I wanted out. But I was too chicken to quit or try something else- but by setting my intention of wanting better work life balance, etc; the universe forced me into the uncomfortable for sure, but at the same time showed me I am OK and have not only survived, but in many ways, thrived.
Now this isn’t to say you can just write down your dreams of winning the lottery and becoming a billionaire then just sit back and wait for the universe to hand it to you- that won’t work. But if you set some intentions and work towards your goals, you will achieve them and the universe will reward you with what you need.
Now, I know we are already in the second week of February, but it is never too late to set your goals and intentions and start working towards them. A new year, new week or new day, simply gives us the additional push and motivation of starting fresh. But we don’t have to wait for the new week, month or year to start our focus, set our intentions and goals for how we want to live our lives. We are always one choice away from living a different life than we have been. And I invite you to start living your best life N O W !