Give Yourself a Damn Break

New Year

How’s your year going so far? I’ll be totally honest, I’ve gotten off to what seems like a slow start.

I intentionally took the last 2 weeks of the year (and a couple of days in January too!) off. We went on vacation — I needed a full break. I talked a good game to myself about wanting to fully unplug, but truth be told, I secretly thought I’d get just a little bit of work done. Wondering how that worked out for me? Yeah: NOPE, nada, zilch, zero.

Fast forward to the first Monday of 2020, and let me tell you: I didn’t feel organized. Sure, there was the to-do list I made before I skipped town, but my well-intentioned plan just kind of fizzled, and it made me feel like I was way behind the eight ball. The year had only just begun and I already felt:

……….“I’m so behind!”
……….“What were my goals for the year again?”
……….“I have to pick a word for the year?”
……….“What was that 2020 vision for the business I was so excited about just a few weeks ago?”

It’s got me thinking that maybe the problem wasn’t that I wasn’t organized, but that I actually wanted more time (and less pressure) to plan my year, my way. Here’s what I want to say: The widespread idea of hitting the ground running in January is flat-out DUMB. I mean, what is so important about having all of 2020 figured out before it even begins, anyway? So you can keep up with some arbitrary timeline set by someone else (like some stranger on social media)? No thank you. Going forward, I propose shifting all that planning for the year ahead from December to January. Does that take the pressure off? It does for me.

Here’s what else takes the pressure off for me: Daily rituals, like my meditation practice. Which — full disclosure — I just got back into. I skipped meditating on vacation, and it was a mistake. I didn’t think I needed it, but it wasn’t until I got back into it that I realized how much I missed and even craved it. Now that I’m back in the routine, I feel more grounded, more relaxed, and better able to deal with the start-of-the-year-vacation-is-over overwhelm that was freaking me out.

I don’t believe in should’s, and I certainly don’t believe there’s any one way to handle planning, visioning, and goal-setting. I do however believe in listening to what works for you, and finding your personal way. This “way” isn’t static, and is something that can change over time, depending on what you need. What’s working for me right now is the idea of having a single word to guide me forward. Like daily meditation, my word is an anchor I can return to again and again.

What’s my word? Wait for it… FUN. I know, right? It feels simultaneously silly, ridiculous, superficial, and also totally right. I have a tendency to make things harder than they need to be, especially in business. So I’m committed to having FUN this year. Work, the news, the world — life is hard enough, I don’t know need to make it worse. I need a reminder to stay light amidst all the heaviness.

What works for you? How do you stay grounded when it feels like things are getting away from you or you feel overwhelmed. Please let me know!

I’m excited, and feeling my back-to-work mojo. Not such a slow start after all :).

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