Being in Guinea at the start of 2022 has been great for me for many reasons, but mostly, because I’ve just been living.
We don’t really have that in the US. Of course people struggle in Guinea, but I feel like people actually have the time and energy to live a full life. They eat meals together, they celebrate milestones, they spend time as a family. They are not as tied down by time. If I’m being honest? I’m dreading the idea of going back to my schedule: the 9-5, the daycare drop offs and pickups, the crazy calendar planning. I’m going to miss the slow pace. It’s been a chance to reflect on what is important to me and valuable lessons about myself. So these are just my ramblings and I hope they help if you’ve been having some of the same thoughts. Happy New Year!
I want to get away from the culture of always needing to be doing something.
I’m not sure where exactly this pressure comes from but whether it’s in my day-to-day or my life in general, I feel like I always need to be ‘doing something.’ Our normal start to the new year is usually with new goals. I want to have goals, yes. But I really don’t want to be chasing goals anymore. I want to live and discover and move towards goals. I don’t want my schedule to be packed every single day of the week. Why can’t we just live?
I don’t want to live by FOMO – fear of missing out.
Along with our culture of “always doing” we also have this fear of being left out or left behind. I think a big part of this has to do with social media. For example, if there’s an event, we feel like we have to go. Even if we would rather be in bed, cuddled under the blankets, binging Netflix. I’m realizing that it’s okay to not go. Yes, it will be on social media and people might ask why you didn’t go, but it definitely won’t be the end of the world. So for 2022, I’ve decided that I don’t have to go to the event, I don’t have to go on the trip, I don’t have to do the activity. I don’t have to fear missing out. Because life can still be filled with joy even if you miss out on certain things.
Again, I don’t want to live only by my goals but it’s important to me to have them. So I’ve decided I want to create more tangible goals.
Meaning that I want goals that take into consideration my life and my other responsibilities (as a mom, a wife, a working woman, etc etc). I also don’t want to do just because other people are doing. Her way to success might not be the best way for me. What does success even mean to me? I’ve talked about SMART goals in the past because they really do help give a template for your path.
I’m also asking myself questions like: if social media didn’t exist, what would you be doing? What would you actually want to work on?
And by this I mean social media as a whole: the constant scrolling and consuming of other people’s lives. Of course, I’m a fan of social media and there’s so much good in us being connected. But we are also comparing ourselves to what we see on social media, whether we mean to or not, and unfortunately, the curated feeds are never the whole story. So we can feel inadequate. In 2022, I want to challenge myself to find the things in real life that make me happy. I want to be intentional about my time on social media so I can leave room to enjoy painting, a new exercise class, walking on the Canal or whatever brings me the most joy without feeling like I’m late because a 19-year-old built a mansion in Texas (even though I’m proud of her lol!).
I no longer feel the need to preserve dying friendships.
As someone who feels things very strongly, a part of me is broken when I am having a falling out with a friend. Even if they hurt me, if they fail to communicate their feelings, or they just cut me off completely, I feel obligated to reconnect and do the work of finding out what’s wrong. I realized this puts a lot of pressure on me day-in and day-out. I’m thinking about them, but they don’t seem to be thinking about me.
I’ve decided that I want to maintain friendships that communicate and also are conscious of my feelings. If a friend reaches out, I’m prepared to talk through things and decide what our new friendship looks like. Maybe it means we’re not as close as we used to be but we’re still there for each other. But I won’t settle for the silent “fade to black” end of friendships where I sit and worry about how to save it by myself anymore. I’ll always care, but I’ve decided to care for me more.
My main point in writing this post was to have an honest conversation about how I’m feeling at the beginning of this year.
I’m feeling fear, doubts, and worries but also hope for what the future will bring. In 2022, I want the joy that I know I deserve. This is a dear diary moment! But I also know that I can’t be the only one who feels this way.
So I encourage you to be selective of the energy you allow into your life.
People, dead weight, and unhappiness can drain the life out of you. Clean up your social media, decide the content that reaches you and remove the content that’s not good for you. Make the most of 2022! Here’s to new year, healthier you 🎉