Thursday, December 1, 2016

17 changes I hope to make in 2017

2016 has been an interesting, challenging and unexpected year for me. And given the events of last year, it has been significantly better and more rewarding. I healed radically and completely from the deepest sorrow I've ever known. I started to see people, places and things outside of my selfish and cloudy little bubble. I asked for help when I was drowning. I fell in love for possibly and hopefully the last time. I made a life-changing decision and stared back when fear tried to stare me down.

But of course, it's been far from perfect. I have a lot on my plate right now, and more often than not, I feel more compelled to curl up in a ball and go to sleep than begin sorting through it all. I've put important projects and responsibilities on the top shelf, but even though they are out of sight, they are not out of mind. They still exist. They still need to be acknowledged. I've been dealing with some harsh and bewildering conflict in my personal life, and I don't even know where to begin making things right --- or at least making things peaceful and bearable.

At times, I've glimpsed the person I want to become, and at others, I've lost sight of her completely. I've succeeded in some areas and failed in others. But I wake up every day, show up every day, and try every day.

I want next year to be different. In a positive way. In a way that challenges me, breaks me, heals me, and rebuilds me. In a way that teaches me how to be 25 years old.

Here are 17 changes I hope to make in 2017. How about you?

1. My reaction to conflict

I'm not always under attack.

2. The frequency in which I count my blessings

I used to count my blessings every single day, and I was so much happier and calmer because of it. What happened?

3. The way I treat myself

My feelings are worthy, my thoughts are misleading, my goals are valid, and my moments of happiness are deserved.

4. The way I treat my loved ones

I only have a handful of people in my life who care deeply enough about me to keep in touch, prioritize my well-being, and put up with my crap. They deserve the royal treatment every day of their lives.

5. My level of freedom

I'm a grown ass woman, and I can do what I want.

6. My level of fear

Fear is not my friend. Fear is not my friend. Fear is not my friend.

7. My attention to self-care

I'm stuck with myself for the rest of my life, so I better start going to the doctor, eating healthier, drinking more water, and keeping track of my moods and thought patterns.

8. My living situation

Remember that scene from Boy Meets World where Mr. Feeny was telling Cory about moving a flower from a small pot in his living room to his garden? Why? Because if he didn't, he feared it would stop growing. Well, I'm that flower. And it's time for me to find a new home.

9. My inclination to please others

I've disappointed and confused people my whole life, so why bother?

10. My relationship patterns and beliefs 

I may drown in my insecurities, have a history of pain and disappointment, be the poster child for abandonment issues, and believe that I am perpetually unworthy of love, but the relationship I have right now is far too precious and rare to screw up. So I have some serious, serious work to do.

11. My aversion to adulting

It's time. It's time to adult.

12. My level of writing productivity

I must start writing every day again. No exceptions, no excuses.

13. My professional life in general 

I hope to achieve some semblance of professional and financial comfort and happiness next year. I don't ever want to feel stuck or uninspired. (Or broke as hell.)

14. The amount of time I spend online

It's astonishing how much life gets sucked away from you while you're staring at a computer or phone screen for hours every day. I want to cut back and see what happens, for I strongly suspect it will be all good things.  

15. The amount of time I spend procrastinating

It's getting quite ridiculous.

16. My negative assumptions

Can I get an amen from literally everyone who knows me?

17. My overall life balance

Balance is still and will always be everything. If I'm not careful, I might give way too much attention to one thing and not nearly enough to another. And I can say from experience that the results of that can be tragic.

<3 Madison