Now I know this sounds a bit selfish, but I promise it’s not. Well maybe a little. But everyone deserves to be a little selfish sometimes, right? In my honest opinion, people are sometimes not selfish enough, and furthermore feel guilty spending time on themselves. This can lead to a whole slew of things like burnout, depression, increased anxiety, poor health, and the list goes on.
Also, welcome to 2021.
In the spirit of this new year, I have a very different mindset than the last. First being that I have absolutely NO expectations. And I mean zero. I am starting this year from the ground up and am taking it one day at a time. Which in turn, will hopefully allow myself to focus a little more on me. What does this actually look like?
I wouldn’t necessarily call these “new year’s resolutions” per se, more so focal points that I lost focus on in the year that shall remain nameless. So here we go:
- Sober January. I have done it the past couple of years, and the cleanse has done wonders for my physical and mental wellbeing. I am successfully on day 5, as of today.
- Rethinking nutrition. My husband and I are embarking on a 21-day “Real Food Reset” through a local nutrition coach. For the next 19 days (we started yesterday), we will be eliminating grains, added sugars, alcohol (which we had already decided on anyway), hydrating, and doing some form of movement for 15 minutes. I think the key here is not going absolutely bananas with everything. Did I get on the scale yesterday? Yes. Was it scary? Yes. Am I going to go through carb withdrawal? Yes. Sugar cravings? Yes. But It’s all about progress over perfection. It’s truly not about the number on the scale for me. It’s about feeling better, physically and mentally, and believing in myself enough to complete these 21 days. And yes we are eliminating things, but there is no calorie counting, which historically has made me go a bit insane. And we aren’t diving into these hour-long crazy workouts. 15 minutes of anything: a walk, lifting weights, stretching. I can do anything for 15 minutes.
- Consistently asking for help. This is tough for me, because I am definitely the type to take everything on and Do. It. All. And yes, I may get it all done. But then what happens? I crash. I become irritable. I become resentful. I have a very short fuse that gets taken out on my kids and husband. Bottom line: it doesn’t all have to get done all the time. Ask for help.
- Journaling. I know I am not alone in this – every time I write my thoughts and feelings, whatever may be on my mind, my anxiety levels instantly drop. It’s like I’m having a therapy session with my pen and paper. I get everything “off” my chest, onto the paper, and close the book, keeping the fears and worries in the form of words on paper, rather than thoughts in my head. This year, I am going to spend more time doing this, plain and simple.
- “Me” time every single day. This is something I have struggled with over the past year. We give and give and give ourselves to everything to make the world turn. Our kids, our significant others, our jobs, our sorrows, our tragedies. And what is the first thing to go when all of these things are at the forefront? Me. (and you). Without spending time on ourselves, we slowly become unable to spend time on everything else. So, this “me” time can look like anything. It doesn’t have to cost money. It doesn’t have to be fancy. But it needs to happen. Encourage others in your family and friend circle to do it too, including your kids (a little tip I picked up in my last therapy session!) Kids need “me” time just as much as we do. I personally plan on spending some time on the floor of my closet journaling. It’s cozy and quaint, and if I’m super careful, no one can find me for a good 10 minutes.
There is a cycle here. A method to my madness. The more I focus on my physical health, the more it helps my mental health, therefore the more motivated I am to ask for help, journal, and ensure I have enough me time.
See? The me bead of life isn’t as self-centered as it initially sounded. It’s going to look different for everyone, but I encourage you all to identify five focal points for yourself. And in turn, your world will hopefully turn a little easier, a little happier, a little less stressed. And maybe, just maybe, 2021 won’t be half bad. But remember, no expectations!
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