New Beginnings & Reflections - Welcome 2018!

New year, new beginnings! The turn of the year is always a little bittersweet for me. Change is not something that I like and a new year screams change. It always makes me a little sad to say goodbye to the current year and move on to the next but at the same time, I also get excited for a fresh start. Needless to say, it’s complicated. I didn’t choose a word of the year for 2017 because I couldn’t commit to one. I didn’t know what I wanted for the new year, I didn’t have good feelings about the coming year and I was all sorts of confused.

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I turned 26 in 2017 and all these thoughts came rushing through my brain. I felt that because I was now closer to 30, I should have so many things figured out. Where I should set down roots. What my 10-year financial plan looked like. At least one long-term relationship down on the books. I felt like I should have answers to so many questions and I didn’t. So for the better part of 2017, I was in a panic which caused me to withdraw from life. While this inner turmoil was happening, I also had a lot of stressful family issues going on and I seemed to somewhere along the way take on the role of rock for everyone. It caused me to take on this false sense of responsibility for so many things and it tore my life apart. I started slacking in my career, making mistakes that I never make. I took a long blog hiatus, turning away my passion and number one outlet for embracing my creativity and interests. I didn’t see friends hardly at all. I pushed family away. I was a very dark version of myself. It wasn’t until I visited family in Texas back in early November that I even realized any of this. Talking to a few older cousins who had a more objective perspective was integral to a much needed change in my own perspective.

Why is this important? I don’t normally share information so personal but a new year gives us all a blank slate. It gives us a chance to work on ourselves and reach for new goals. I lost track of my goals in 2017 and my personal conundrums were the reason why. I let things that I had no control over dominate my life. I let them damage relationships and negatively affect my health. I know that I am not the only one who had a rough 2017. It seemed to be a hard year for a lot of people which is why I wanted to share a little background to the reason I chose CHANGE and COMMITMENT as my not one, but two words for 2018.

I chose CHANGE because I need to stop being so resistant to life! I need to stop resisting every small decision and anomaly that comes up. For example, it took me almost two weeks to decide to move in with my best friend part time. I lost hours of sleep over the decision and there was no reason for it. I have delayed launching new things with the site because I was too afraid all of you would resist it. And it’s not personal, it’s 100% me! I am terrified of anything new. So 2018 will be half about CHANGE for me. I haven’t quite figured out how to incorporate change into my life on a weekly basis to become more accepting of it, but I will figure it out.

I also chose COMMITMENT because my fear of commitment has hindered me in every single aspect of my life. I cried for a week after adopting Scooby, my new pup, because the thought of having to commit myself to the care of a living, breathing animal was terrifying. My fear of commitment coupled with my fear to change just about paralyzed me. Relationships with my family and friends may as well be non-existent. It’s not conscious but I also haven’t made a conscious effort to change it. So this year, each week I will be choosing one person whether it’s a friend or family member and I’m going to reach out to them. I’ll give them a call, shoot them a text message and see how they’re doing. If they’re local, I’ll see if they want to meet up for coffee or lunch. Relationships are vital to a healthy existence and you get what you give. So 2018 is all about committing to giving more. COMMITMENT is about more than relationships though. It’s also about committing to goals. Each month, I’ll be setting one or two larger goals for myself and following through by committing to three smaller weekly goals in order to accomplish the larger goals. These might be personal goals, work goals or side hustle goals. Whatever the goal, I am committing to it and embracing the change that comes with it.

My two largest fears are CHANGE and COMMITMENT. Those fears have held me back in so many ways it makes me regretful thinking of the time I’ve wasted. I want to stop the regret this year and learn to embrace the curveballs in life. I’m going to stop giving myself a false sense of responsibility to the things that are out of my control and instead commit to my own goals, my own success, and my own relationships. If that means I have to ride out a few changes, so be it. It’s the year of the dog and I am a dog lover. That has to give me an edge to conquer 2018. Right?

Tell me about your word or words for 2018. What made you choose them and how did 2017 affect your decision?