There is an irony to a blog post about resolutions coming to you on January twenty something. I start each year ambitious and hopeful to make plans, kick ass, and take names.
I will be FIT! I will crush GOALS! I will do ALL THE THINGS!
Yet, I know well that reality is rarely as accomplished as we would hope. I was even a bit more patient with my 2024 plan because my December was very challenging. My mom was hospitalized with RSV, several family members got COVID, and making the holidays happen was daunting. I allowed myself rest through the first part of the year to recharge.
In years past, I’ve chosen words like unlimited (that was a chaotic year), focus, commit, and finish (which did push towards completing some things, but also ignored the journey). For 2024, I wanted a theme that allowed for pivot, growth, and reality. In truth, I recognized my word choice is meant as my theme or intention for the particular year and perhaps I was complicating it. I meditated, I journaled, and felt at peace once recognizing that intention IS the intention.
Being INTENTIONAL is like the old “tortoise and hare” fable. Slow, steady, consistent. It is acting on PURPOSE. And for me, using my inner wisdom to determine if the thing in front of me is urgent, necessary, and supportive of my goals. It also keeps the compass directing what’s best for the people I love the most in life. If all that I do is done with positive and thoughtful intention, I will honor what is most important. THIS has been my great challenge.
My plan to rest and start strong was foiled. Unexpected water damage and the urgent need to address that situation pushed off the to-do list AGAIN. The physical chaos from the damage clouded my brain and accelerated my stress. I do not do well under these circumstances and immediately spun into a mindset of defeat before I even began.
Rather than give in to the downward spiral, I sat with the intentions in hopes of finding the learning within. As difficult as it was, I recognized that I default to allowing chaos to control the story. In doing this, I use the busyness as justification for not properly prioritizing, creating a pattern of false starts which leads to frequent self sabotage. When the to-do list is full of putting out the proverbial fires, I excuse myself from accountability and success. In this space where I feel no control, I am, in fact, very much controlling the outcome.
The lightbulb moment is a bit of a gut-punch. Acknowledging our part in creating obstacles for ourselves and allowing circumstances to control the story is exceptionally difficult. Admitting mistakes is hard. Understanding how we have prioritized ineffectively, maybe selfishly in some cases, is a challenge difficult to rise to, but assessing the intentions is critical. In this false start of 2024, I leaned in to the intentions of my past, and how to shift them as I move forward. This is my new beginning.