|Image via Action for Happiness|
Well, well, well. It’s 2013! How did that happen?! A belated happy new year to you all!
I know it's boring to have a blog post start with sorry I’ve been such a bad blogger and haven’t checked in for ages…but I’ve been accused of far worse things than being boring so I’ll do it anyway! J
Piss-taking aside, please know, despite my silence, that this little space and you lovely lot have never been far from my thoughts. I have about half a dozen half-written posts that I’ve tried (and failed) on many occasions this past month to bring the various pieces of together to make a coherent whole. That, and it’s been rather crazy round these parts for the last little while.
I’ve been working hard. Actually, I spent some of November and nearly all of December working as an intern at Cosmopolitan, which was absolutely as fun and cool as it sounds. It was amazing and challenging – everything I was hoping for really. I wrote lots of articles for them, you can go and check some of them out if you’re so inclined.
It was also great to have an excuse to dress up, buy a new eyeliner after wearing my last one down to a tiny stub and use my straighteners every day. Not that I don’t make an effort most days, you understand, it’s just that I am lucky enough to have a husband who tells me I am beautiful with wild unbrushed hair and no make-up…and out of laziness more than anything, I choose to believe him! I think I gave myself more manicures in those four weeks than I have in my whole life. I no longer subscribe to the life-long belief that I am a klutz who smudges everything without fail - I kind of rocked the metallic look. Anyway, Cosmo was awesome. I learned so much. It was a great end to a year that hadn’t quite been what I thought, or hoped, it would be.
And as 2012 drew to a close and this new year began, I took some time out to recharge, think and reflect. I started doing things differently, as that’s what you must do if you want things to change. I had some hypnotherapy (which I’m going to write a whole post about soon, it was very interesting). I started doing different work. I started looking at where my time was going and then it slowly began to dawn on me why I hadn’t quite achieved the results I was hoping for….because my energy was going into everything BUT the important work.
I thought I had put all my eggs in one basket but in actual fact I’d been spreading myself too thin. I thought I had leaped off a cliff but in reality I had just picked a prime spot right at the edge, looking down, getting scared, dithering around and chickening out.
2012 was a very, very challenging year. But there were many highs in amongst the lows and I did some work I was very proud of. I have started 2013 with a sense of purpose, focus and clarity that I just didn’t have a year ago. So for all of that I am incredibly grateful.
In the first three weeks of this year, I'm proud to say I’ve been productive and focused and utterly relentless. I’ve adjusted my expectations – in fact I’ve raised them a bit higher, as you do! – and I’ve faced a couple of things I’ve been avoiding, mostly inconvenient truths. I’ve set goals that not only involve things I would like to achieve but other less external things, that can’t necessarily be measured in miles run, medals to display on the dresser or even....dare I continue to hope...a published book.
For so many years my goals have been focused on big impressive things to tick off the list and perhaps that’s where I’ve been going wrong. I got addicted to the high that comes with achieving things. It’s very seductive. But it’s finally dawned on me that at what point do I decide that I’m OK, regardless of what I might have to show for myself? If the
London marathon, the Cosmo blog award and
finishing a novel isn’t enough….what will be?
I don’t really know how to explain it…I still want to achieve things but I also want to work on being happy with myself whether I achieve those goals or not. Does that make sense? I have so much drive and ambition but I want to channel it and use it for goals that will truly fulfil me and help me make a meaningful contribution to the world, not just provide a temporary high.
For the past month the dust from the whirlwind that has been my life these past seven years has started to settle and some voices in my head have finally stopped silent. As a result I’m finding there is now space to listen, to take things in and reassess. I think I am at last starting to understand that, in the words of Anais Nin, not everything needs to be an achievement.
So, this year I hope to move forward in a lot of areas in my life.
This year, I will continue to do work that gives me a deep sense of fulfilment and contentment.
This year, I will evolve. In fact, that’s my word for the year!
This year, I will be equally focused on who I want to be and how I want to feel, not just things I want to do.
There are no big races on the horizon for 2013 so far. I’m just walking and doing Pilates or yoga most days. When I do run it’s for fun or for some mental clarity. I enjoy running so much and don’t want it to become another part of my life that gets morphed into yet another thing to beat myself up about. I know I can run marathons if I want to. If an unmissable opportunity comes along, then fantastic – but for the most part it’s going to be about other things this year. I’m busy and happy with lots of projects so we’ll see how that all pans out.
Most of all, this year I want to apply that driven, ambitious, indefatigable and highly disciplined part of myself that has helped me cross many finish lines over the years to other areas of my life where goals have been set and dreams have started to take roots in reality, but it has proven to be a bit harder than just showing up to train every day.
But actually, maybe it is as simple as that. Showing up. Showing up with the willingness to do what needs to be done and then doing it.
So that’s what I’m doing.
That, and trying to be a better cook J
|Me at a TOTAL cooking masterclass last night! Quietly contemplative.|
Photo courtesy of Satureyes.
What are you up to? What are your plans for 2013?