I hope you all had a fabulous holiday season and that 2015 is off to a wonderful start for you!
As I do every December, I took the last couple of weeks off from the blog. With the craziness of the holidays, and literally just running out of steam, I needed to step away for a hot minute. Thanks so much for your patience in my absence. It’s nice to be back.
I was hoping to return to blogging this past Monday like most folks did, but I wasn’t quite ready. In fact, I’m not sure if I’m really ready today. You see, 2014 was “a year” for me. It wasn’t particularly good, but it wasn’t particularly bad either. I got to take several awesome, once-in-a-lifetime trips, I made some great memories with friends and family, my house (particularly my living room is starting to take shape), and I’m still living. However, at the same time, I felt like I spent the whole year in a pool, frantically paddling my legs and arms, just to stay afloat so that I could breathe. I lived the year in survival mode – always stressed, tired, and worried. So while I did have some amazing times, unfortunately some are just a haze.
Thankfully, every year, well every day, we are given a chance to turn things around. Like many people, I really want 2015 and every year that follows to be better. I want to get out of survival mode. I want to hop on a fancy raft that’s shaped like an ice cream sandwich with a bite taken out of it and then, wearing a really cool pair of shades, float gracefully on top of the water. Who wouldn’t want that? This has to be the year.
I’ve tried to not get too personal on the blog over the past year, so this all might sound weird or foreign. For my own well-being, however, I need to share this with you. And even though I haven’t figured out my official goals and directions for IBC for 2015, I know a few things. I know that I want to get back to real life. There might be a few more posts like this. While I still want to create beautiful and inspiring content, I want to rewind a bit and get back to that old-school style of blogging where not everything is created to look fabulous on social media and things aren’t overly fussy. Do you know what I mean? Basically, I want IBC to be unapologetically me. Plus, I want to break the rules a little bit. But, we will talk more about that later – probably next week.
So, for the past week I’ve been developing my personal goals for 2015. I was trying to think of a clever acronym but it just wasn’t working and that kept me from getting started. (Which, coincidentally, is one of my goals.) I figured that I would just write what I’ve decided and if I need to make adjustment or additions later. I can certainly do that. *Throw out the rule book.*
Now, I know that sharing one’s goals with the world is kind of self-centered and weird, but I’m going to do it anyway. Here goes.
Love myself. In all honestly, I really don’t like myself. I know that’s hard to read; it’s even harder for me to say, but there it is. At the end of the day, I think that’s the root of my unhappiness. I work from home by myself and live alone so I’m basically spending most of my life with the one person I really don’t like. That’s not a good thing, right? I haven’t figured out a plan of attack for this particular goal (and it’s been a goal for the past three years), but I’m hoping some of my other goals will help me at least start to like myself. I mean it’s okay to not like people and it’s okay if people don’t like you, but YOU need to like YOU.
Be healthy. This past year I truly struggled with healthful eating and my weight. I have lots of excuses, but they don’t matter. Bottom line, I’m not comfortable, my clothes aren’t fitting like they should, and I lack energy, so something has to change. I’m committing to a healthier lifestyle that includes daily exercise, more physical activity, and more nutritious food choices. While I am dieting now to return to a weight I’m comfortable with, my goal is to have a healthier lifestyle so I’m not in this situation again.
Say No. In the moment, I love saying yes to people. I’ve been a people pleaser my entire life. Usually, however, when I’m lying in bed at night or looking at the mile-long list of things I don’t really want to do, the panic sets in. I need to learn to say, “No!” I’ve worked so hard for this amazing career and for the past couple years I’ve been letting others dictate how I live / run it. This needs to change.
Just start. Because I can’t say no, I have a bad habit of piling too much on my plate. When this happens, I get completely overwhelmed. Instead of doing what I need to do because there’s so much to do, I don’t know where to start and I sit and watch YouTube videos or scroll aimlessly though social media. I spend so much time worrying about all there is to do, instead of actually doing it. I know. I know. It makes no sense. If I would just do it, I wouldn’t have time to sit and worry, and inevitably I’d accomplish something.
Be Present. Beyond loving myself, this is my biggest goal. As I touched on above, worry, stress, and self-doubt really put a crappy spin on a lot great moments last year. I know this is a tough thing to do, but I want to be more present and in the moment. This fall I read Amy Poehler’s new book Yes Please (If you haven’t read it, I HIGHLY recommend it.) While I learned so much from that book, there’s a particular chapter toward the end where she talks about time traveling. It’s one of my favorites from the book. And I know this won’t make any sense, but being present in a moment and taking in everything around you allows you to travel back in time and relive and experience those awesome and amazing moments. I’m so sick of letting stress and worry ruin some of the best times of my life. It has to stop.
Practice Confidence. This ties in with loving myself. I lack confidence like you wouldn’t believe. and instead of getting better, I think I’m getting worse. I honestly have no idea how to fix this issue. But I’m determined. If anyone has tips, books, etc., please throw them my way. However, I will say one of the things I want to stop myself from doing is apologizing. By that I mean apologizing for who I am, how I feel, or what I want to do. Now, clearly if I say something or do something wrong to someone, that’s a different matter. However, my thoughts, opinions, and lifestyle choices do not need to be preempted or followed up with an apology.
Simplify. I mean this in two different ways. First, I need to decrease the amount of stuff in my house. If you saw my attic, basement, and spare bedroom, you’d think I was a hoarder. Okay, maybe it’s not THAT bad, but I have way too much stuff. My goal is to go through each room and get rid of the things I no longer use and need. Secondly, I’m slowly realizing that I can’t do it all. While it’s fun to try new things, I need to limit my scope a bit and focus on what I love the most. The things that make me the happiest. As they say, “you can do anything, but you can’t do everything.”
Mix it up. Lastly, 2015 is going to be about change. In the Yes Please chapter I mentioned earlier Amy Poehler says, “Change is the only constant. Your ability to navigate and tolerate change and its painful uncomfortableness directly correlates to your happiness and general well-being.” Every day for the past two years I’ve done things almost exactly the same way. I’ve become a creature of habit, I’ve become comfortable, and I don’t want to change. I guess I’m scared. However, what I’m doing doesn’t seem to be working for me. Last year you might remember me talking about my 52 Habits. Each week of the year I wanted to break a bad habit. I wanted to change. Well, it lasted a good two weeks. I’ve been doing the same thing ever sense. I’m no closer to my ice cream sandwich raft. It’s time for a change. I’m ready.
That’s it, my friends. Some semblance of my goals for 2015 and beyond. Plus, I hope it lets you know why I disappeared for a while.
Again, thanks so much for hanging in and being so kind while I took a little time to breathe, think, and plan. Now let’s get back to some recipes, decorating ideas, crafts, DIYs, and so much more!