I started this blog post last week with the intention of publishing it over the weekend. Long story short, a few hard and somewhat scary things happened, so I took some time away to process my thoughts and get in a better head space. I’m not sure how long this present clarity of mind will last, so let’s jump right in and get some things in writing.
I’ve been thinking a lot about one of the best and well known definitions of insanity, i.e., “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.” These words stuck with me all year yet my fear of change and letting go of old ways of doing things kept me in some of the same places as the year before — places I desperately needed to move away from. Given that, I didn’t make as much progress in my personal and professional journey as I had hoped for; and that left me feeling a bit down and unmotivated as I’ve watched the year come to a close. (Only a few more days. Yikes!) Moreover, it made me think long and hard about how tragic it would be to live another year doing the same things, feeling the same way, and ultimately, not moving forward for the better.
If you’re a regular here at EP, you know that I give fear a lot of credit for my current position in life, but as some of you might know, there’s more to it than that. In all honesty, I’m still fighting to get back to being me — to better manage my symptoms of depression and win the battle for my mind and my life.
After processing a few things aloud – both on my own and with family and friends – I’ve developed an overwhelming sense of urgency to make some real, tangible changes in the new year. This prompted an initial list of ideas that I’ve already began to implement slowly, but surely; and my plan is to continue to add to it. I won’t share the list verbatim, but I will say that the most significant points surround my church community, my career path, and my overall health.
Below, I’ve listed a few next steps forward; and although they’re pretty general, I think that makes them more relevant to you:
Recently I set both long-term and short-term goals that are mine and mine alone, and I committed to sharing them on my own terms. Why?? Because sometimes you have to turn down the outside voices and listen to your own (that is, when you’re of sound mind); and I feel 100% confident in the goals I’ve laid out thus far. In my last blog post and at the end of my last series, I was pretty upfront about my present state and my desire to get beyond it, so here goes nothing. Digging into my past and developing a clear picture of what I’ve carried into my present played a huge part in how I arrived at my list of goals, and I don’t want to forget that. (You’ll read about any new developments in the weeks ahead.)
I don’t expect to meet these goals in isolation, so I’ve identified a few people in my corner who can keep me accountable by asking the right questions. Additionally, as a way of keeping myself accountable, I’ve started journaling again — something I gave up in early 2016 after a rough (and well documented) close to 2015. In the new year, my journal will include more musings on goals and aspirations rather than just the heart-wrenching, day-to-day hard stuff. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, I’m just thinking about what will serve me well in the new year. Checking in with friends and documenting any steps in the right (or wrong) direction will help me maintain focus and awareness.
Enjoy the Ride
Lastly, as an ENFJ who struggles to remember, make known, and prioritize her own wants and needs, I’ve committed to getting to know myself a little more as I continue to grow in and nurture my creative side. This will play a huge part in what career moves I’ll make or what opportunities I’ll entertain / turn down. Should be an interesting yet fun time. Thanks for sticking around.
What are your plans for the new year?
P.S. Today, I’m most grateful for the people who helped me through this month. You know who you are.