Never have I been so ready to see one year end and another begin. My grandmother used to say that is wishing your life away, but I see it differently. Yes, I know logistically nothing is changing with an approaching new year. One day leads to another, just as always. But the emphasis we put on the day (year) is what counts because attitude is everything. It motivates us, drives us and can make all the difference in our accomplishments.
For me, 2016 was rough indeed. I lost the most important person in my life, my mom and am still trying to live a life without her in it. That is my new norm and so many other sad moments revolved around coping with that. There were so many more losses this past year from family members, to friends, to people I only knew through the news. And there were some bumps in the road that I did not see coming and have left residual effects.
But 2016 was not all bad. There were good times and there were good moments. I got to attend the wedding of my nephew which was a wonderful family time. There is also some fabulous news I get to share in my next blog and it is pretty cool to me. And I got to spend Thanksgiving with my extended family in Florida. Overall, I am an optimist and am eagerly looking forward to a new year and new changes to come. Now that being said, I have to ask myself, “What lies ahead?” and “Where do I go from here to make 2017 a better year? When I look at my blog posting from this time last year, I see I set out to do 4 things and now, reflectively, I see I pretty much accomplished 2 of the 4 plans that I had. So what do I want for my life in 2017?
Here are some of my thoughts:
- In 2016, I wanted to make it a habit to get up and move more. Well guess what? It did not fully happen. Netflix marathons happened….So what can I do to ensure this goal will be done in 2017? I believe success will lie in adopting an overall “living well” and “healthy” lifestyle. That means not just getting up and moving, but getting rid of processed foods, eating clean, walking a bit more, and drinking more water. Bottom line is I want to “feel” better. I know when I do start feeling better because of healthier choices, I will start moving those pounds. I am putting the scale on the back burner and getting out the tape measure. I am paying more attention to the signals my body is giving me.
- You do understand that stress can kill you, right? Well here is to more stress free living. Another goal I had last year was to put “social media on the back burner. Well guess what? Along came Donald Trump and an out of control media and I was totally caught up in voicing my discontent and distain for this wretched, horrible man and I wanted the world to know it. But…where did that get me? He won anyway. I had to regroup and come to terms that life has gone on, even with him as the elected leader. But I have to say what added to my huge disappointment were the supporters who voted for him and coming to grips with some of them. So I am still going to strive to put social media on the back burner and strive to be more positive. Ways I am going to aleve stress is through possibly taking a “Yoga” class at my gym, continuing my Water Aerobics, and pumping more weights. Those are the physical things.
- My next goal remains the same as 2016, and that is…. I am going to continue my closer walk with God. This has been my greatest accomplishment this year. It is a continuing goal. I start each day in devotion time, reading my Bible, reading a devotional and in prayer. It has been the compass I use in being mindful of how God is continuously at work. It is also the foundation that my day is built upon. I treasure this time and have every intention of continuing it. And in addition to that, I pray continuously through the day, whether it is short conversational prayers or just moments of petition or thanksgiving. It keeps me mindful that God is always with me and always at work around me. I encourage you to spend time with the Father. It will benefit you more than you will ever know.
- My last goal from last year was not fully achieved and that was making myself happy. Happiness is a choice, yet sometimes, we allow others to make choices on our lives or be intrusive to the point that we put their happiness over ours. While I am improving in this area, it is still a work in progress. I like those moments when I have put myself first, and have felt no guilt. I am going to continue to work to increase those moments and know this is a lifestyle that I am keeping because it is working for me.
- My last thought on this plan for 2017 is to add another goal and that is “I will not allow approaching the unknown to immobilize me from experiencing joy.” As a former teacher, I pretty much was used to controlling situations. I mean, you had to have control of 25+ students everyday. You had to go into class fully prepared, fully ready to handle the unknown because you were solely responsible for young lives who were depending on you. Well, retirement has a way of changing some of that. You get lulled into a complacency of living where routine becomes a norm and anything new to that routine becomes sometimes a challenge or even a bother. Well, that is not happening here. I am pretty much done with that. I have some major decisions, choices and changes to make this year and I know I must be ready to take action on a lot of unknowns. Am I scared? You bet! But, I choose joyful living! I am ready! I am up for it and I will take responsibility for making it happen.
I don’t know how reflective you get at this time of the year, but I always look for ways to reset my life. For me, that is a gift for myself. Make your mantra for 2017 be….”I am so glad I did!” Don’t let it be “I wish I had”…..