This is just me on a self-rediscovery mission to find who I am now – a woman in her mid-30s. Read ‘How this all got started‘ post to get the full background. After the death of my father, I began to think about ‘making something of my life’. I began to work hard to develop a career and building my life. I began by starting a MSc and was able to get a career going. We bought a house and once my MSc was completed, we began diy projects. I just kept going, putting one foot in front of another. I had a list of 30 things and 30 places to do and see. But, there was no room in those for me to grow and change. And those things were written in a time when I was still in a huge amount of pain. And I have changed, and grown a little too during this time. These things were achievements, but not fun. By the beginning of 2016, I no longer knew what I found fun. I had so much anxiety that I was falling behind in life and that I wasn’t living it ‘right’ whatever that meant. After reading books about people on similar quests and all the self-help-y type articles that could change my life if I only changed these few things, I began to think about how I could really change my life.
Taking examples from all the books I read, I thought, I’ll work on finding peace with my life and beginning to reintroduce fun by taking on something I enjoy and working on it each month. From Eat, Pray, Love, I decided to focus the first quarter of the year on feeding myself up for the journey. And I loved the stories as themes from the different places. Instead of different places, I have decided to break my year into four themes that I think fit me and who I am becoming: Feeding myself up, Going Spiritual, Adventure, Creativity. From The Happiness Project, I identified the core of me, my values and my beliefs, everything that underpins who I am. From The Year of Living Danishly, I decided I would put together a list of what I learned at the end of each month. My year of things, loosely planned and my key tenets are down below.
Here is my year that I planned:
Feeding myself and my soul:
January: Cooking & finding new recipes
March: Finding the fun & trying new things
September: Personal Growth & Learning something new
December: Design & Decoration
The core of me/what I hope I learn this year:
- Keep it simple
- I can only change me
- Be brave. Be bold.
- Life is meant to be lived. You won’t survive it. Let things happen
- Turn off my thoughts when I need to – think more but overthink less. Don’t over-analyse everything.
- Failure is not final. But, failure is always an option. Quitting life is not.
- Hold on to the positive
- Not everything needs a checklist and life certainly shouldn’t be one
- Not everything needs a plan and in fact sometimes not having a plan is the best plan
- It is okay to be me. Don’t be so hard on myself, I am not perfect – it is okay to make a mistake, it’s what I learn from the mistakes. Be kind and fair to myself. Also – what is perfect? There is no cosmic right answer to life (Sorry Douglas Adams).
- It is okay to spend time with myself.
- It is okay to need to drown out the anxieties and the insecurities in my head.
- TV doesn’t have to be the only form of recuperative downtime.
- Don’t let perfect stand in the way of good.
- Sometimes the first reactions are the best and most honest reactions.
- Don’t be afraid to leave behind the people or situations that are toxic or don’t fit me. Opportunities that aren’t right for me are not my opportunities. If something has outlived its usefulness, it is okay to leave that behind too.
- Stand by my decisions, the tough, the easy and those in between.
- Be creative
- Grow in myself. Stretch my boundaries a little but not to the point where I am too far out of what is comfortable to me. I need to feel safe and comfortable.
- Don’t always do what I have to do – sometimes it is best to do what I want to do.
- Reduce the rigidity of my own rules for myself.
- I don’t always have to overachieve
- Just breath. Enjoy people. Enjoy life.