Procrastinating is typical of me and arguably my biggest weakness. It’s Thursday evening at 9PM, I have a flight first thing in the morning, and I haven’t finished working, packing, or cleaning my house. While checking off my last minute to-do list before I leave tomorrow my best friend text me a song on Spotify. Her very specific instructions were to “light a candle, turn off my lights and listen to it a few times in a row – eyes closed and steady breathing.” So I listened to the song.
Our generation is one of FaceTime chats and Spotify playlists to express ourselves. However, with the holidays a few days away, and nearly everyone I’ve talked to going through something, I’ve been experiencing a little nostalgia myself. The overwhelming amount of joy and pain I felt consumed my mind while I listened in deep concentration. The lyrics were inspiring leaving me with one thought: Life is extraordinary — but happy?
I don’t know what your 2019 looked like, but mine was unsettling — to say the least. A disappointing year of work, or lack of work, financial stresses, personal lows, and a painful split from someone I love deeply. A year of anger and a lot of depression. I felt alone for most of it which if you are in a dark place now I urge you to realize you are never alone. Thankfully my mother helped pull me out of my somber state. Thanks, Mom! But I had to do the hard part on my own. Get real with myself and learn to appreciate just life. The act of living. Then get in touch with myself.
Living in a city like Los Angels has its pros and cons. When people around you never grow up and that is your reality you don’t put as much pressure on “traditional” values like marriage, family, owning a house and settling down. You think about right now. Like I did excluding mindfulness and happiness. But what about your well being? I had to ask myself questions and answer them honestly. What makes you feel alive? What is happiness? Why are you staying in LA? Why do you pay as much for a two-bedroom apartment in LA when you can own a six bedroom house almost anywhere else? Are you passionate about you career, or is it time for a change? The hardest question of all: Do you want to get married and have kids — ever? When you honest up with yourself there is no room for maybe or confusion.
We have less than two weeks left this year and I found a place of peace and desire again. If you are in a static place you cannot move from, or you are looking for a change and need a little motivation to start, I encourage you to do what I did. Take time to process where you are, then visualize where you want to be. Create a list that you can manifest and attack head on. Set realistic goals with timelines by marking them in a calendar to track your progress weekly. Carve out specific time to do these things with your phone off or in another room so you give your dreams, needs or desires your attention with no distractions.
The most important thing is to be true to yourself. If your goal is to leave your company and pursue something different start planning for that now. Crawl, walk then run until you get there. Don’t stay in comfortable situations that leave you unsatisfied. If you want children be realistic about if you can see the person in your life longterm. I stayed in too many relationships that worked (and were great) but didn’t have longterm potential. At 39 I realized my time and my needs are a priority and not just anyone gets to share that time. Choose the person you want to build a life with not someone who is convenient or fun right now. If you want to buy a house or take a trip start by investing into a savings for that. Sometimes we have to make sacrifices to enjoy more later.
It’s common to get caught up in our day to day and lose sight of things we wanted but never did. When we stop putting pressure on ourselves to be everything all at once and take things one step at a time we appreciate simple joys like family, friends, love, coffee, inspiring church services, long walks with our pets — and in the world of fashion, finding a vintage Fendi skirt you’ve saved for twenty years!
Life doesn’t have to be complicated. It’s meant to be fun. The time of your life. The good news is you are in the drivers seat of your life and get to control what happens next. With the new year approaching it’s great to challenge yourself to achieve healthy resolutions, but don’t pressure yourself into obtaining more than possible. Slowdown and appreciate being here. Being in the now. Get in touch with yourself and find fortune in your happiness. Let’s inspire one another to make more extraordinary moments in 2020.