Happy New Year!!!
It’s always a very exciting time when January comes around and everyone’s refreshed and pushing forward with an optimistic mindset.
Over the past few years I have created amazing memories on New Year’s Eve that included bringing in the New Year under the Eiffel Tower in Paris, and jetting across the desert on an ATV with four of my closest friends in Dubai.
This year was very different for me.
There’s no turn up story here about me being in some exotic location or turning up in a room full of famous faces when the clock struck midnight.
Either I’m getting old, or I am truly working on building a life I don’t have to take a huge vacation from. Despite numerous invites and toying around with NYE plans with friends this weekend, I decided to put my phone on Do Not Disturb and spend New Year’s Eve in my bed eating ice cream sandwiches while binge watching The Carmichael Show on Hulu.
And I surprisingly enjoyed every single minute of it.
The next morning I woke up refreshed, recharged, with a peace of mind, and headed to the gym for my first workout of the year (sans a hangover) followed by brunch with a friend. When I returned home, I did a mental check and realized that I was really happy and really hopeful.
No feeling of being flustered
No stalking social media and comparing my life to others.
But what could have possibly changed?
In the current climate of FOMO (Fear of missing out), the thought that every year has to be bigger and better than the last, and “my life is better than yours” hashtags, how could I have possibly been happier Netflix and chilling on New Year’s than on the 46th floor of an apartment in Dubai, watching the fireworks over Palm Islands?
I am convinced it all boils down to not just the moments that we experience, but the actual moment after. Every year, I went on a 10-day vacation that lasted from Christmas to after The New Year because I wanted to escape my life. Although I enjoyed those moments and will remember them forever (I have a whole picture book dedicated to Dubai because it was just that incredible), I felt like “the moment after” somewhat overshadowed the actual moment.
And what I mean by this is, after my amazing New Year’s, I’d wake up with anxiety and sadness after I realized, “Oh my God, I have to go back to this life I don’t love. I have to go and plug back into other people’s lives and see what they are doing and write about it. Although I’m posting ‘New Year, New Me’ quotes, I am being so contradictory because I’m about to go right back to the same routine, the same comfort zone, and I’m about to be doing the same damn thing…all over again until it’s time for me to take my next 10-14 day break at the end of the year.”
Whew! Just thinking about it gives me the jitters (LOL)!
This year, I woke up on New Year’s Day and I felt so liberated in knowing that I could truly spend the day how I pleased and that I wasn’t about to go back to a life I didn’t love. Or work that made me unhappy. Better yet, a relationship that didn’t make me happy.
I was free of all expectations.
I was free.
I share this because I know there is someone out there that may be holding a pity party for themselves if their New Year’s Eve wasn’t as grand as the folks on their many social media timelines, but I’ll be the first to tell you — it’s okay. What you were doing when the clock struck at midnight doesn’t matter as much as what you plan to do with the rest of the year.
That’s what’s important and what counts.
Although 2016 was a little shaky for a lot of people, I view it as the year of transitioning and planting seeds.
2017 will be the year that you watch those seeds grow and blossom into something beautiful…
…but only with the right mindset.
As you prepare to turn the page on your new chapter, I recommend at some point reflecting back on old vision boards and journals and being honest with yourself about if you are truly walking in purpose and living the life of your dreams, or kind of just faking and winging it.
Have you accomplished the goals you set for yourself in 2016? If the answer is no, what stopped you?
If the answer is yes, “You go!!!” Now it’s time to create new ones.
A great way to start the New Year off right is to gather up some accountability partners (could be friends, family, significant others, business associates), and create your vision boards and/or share your goals over brunch.
Last year, on January 2nd, I hosted a vision board party at my house with three women who had migrated to Arizona from the Maryland/DC area, and we chatted about our goals over bacon, eggs, pancakes, and mimosas while cutting up magazines for our vision boards.
After our boards were created, we each took a helium balloon and wrote on one side the things we wanted to let go of in 2016. On the other side, we wrote the things we wanted to attract into our lives.
After we were all done, we stood out on my balcony (which doesn’t have the best view –THANKS Walgreens), and we watched the balloons disappear into the air. Releasing them and watching them float away was one of the most freeing and gratifying ways I could have started my New Year.
In the coming days, I will be refreshing my vision boards because a girl has new goals and I couldn’t be more excited!
Always remember, you are exactly where you are supposed to be. God makes no mistakes and just because it hasn’t happened yet, doesn’t mean it will never happen. Keep working hard at building a life that you love and watch the magic unfold.
It’s all about trusting the process.
And most of all, making every year…YOUR YEAR!
How do you like to spend the New Year and the day after?