Goals, intentions, words, depth. I know some might find this all overwhelming. Others may find it ridiculous. I have felt both ways in my adult life. And I was jealous and wishing I had my shit together.
It’s easy to blame life, to blame circumstances, to blame. I’ve dealt with a lot of that this past year. At what point are we solely responsible for where we are at in life? At what point do we decide that having our shit together feels good, even if it is hard?
Growth, my word of the year, is really a departure from the old “me”. I think before, I felt like I was pretty together, but that my circumstances conspired to inhibit where I wanted to go. And I didn’t really know where I wanted to go. I still don’t, but it’s not a matter of getting somewhere and settling in, being done with my “growth phase”. I want to continue learning, continue to be inspired, continue to, well, grow. As a person, as a friend, as a community member, as a soul.
Sometimes a quote in a book, or a meme on Pinterest, connects with me in mind, body, and soul. The feeling of that “aha” moment is like an endorphin rush, and is addictive. Blinking once or twice, asking yourself, did I really just read or hear or think that? Feeling like in that moment in time, everything is coming together and you feel so . . . right.
Growth can be painful too, of course. It seems, at least in the past year, that an idea or action or situation that I want to avoid is in all reality a huge moment of growth. Take my separation. I had been unhappy for a while, feeling I had ignored a lot of factors and made a huge mistake. But I couldn’t just give up, could I? I’m an adult, I made this decision, whether deluded or not. I wanted to end the relationship, but that seemed too drastic, too hard. And to be honest, too flaky. Yes, I wanted to avoid the pain. But I also didn’t want people to think I was “like that”. Just another flaky person in a disposable society. So I just stayed with the status quo, until circumstances conspired to shove that decision right in my face. I couldn’t back up, climb over, or go around. I had to go through. And as I emerge on the other side, I feel simultaneously like I’ve shed a shell that had formed around me, and grown in my heart and soul by leaps and bounds.
My goals for this year range from mundane to off-the-charts exciting. I want to lose another 20 pounds. That will put me at an easily maintainable weight. By focusing on nutrition, and especially sugar intake, as opposed to basic calories, I have already dropped five pounds since right after Christmas. Nutritionally dense foods help me feel my best so I can achieve other goals, like hiking several peaks here in Southern California, and of course, Kaua’i.
I decided to cut back on added sugar in foods because I realized that was why I was achy every day. Another “aha” moment. The inflammation that sugar caused in my body left me feeling old and run down, even when I was packing my diet with other nutritious foods. It is amazing how quickly I felt better – I didn’t even go through withdrawal because my body was so damn happy about receiving real foods that it could use quicker and better.
One of my biggest goals this year is selling my business. Yes, you read that correctly! This is another example of having to face something head on and work through it. The majority of my employees have been with me since long before G-Man died. Some of them predate my arrival on the job, and I’ve been there over 26 years. Not bad for a micro business in the construction industry. But, I’m ready to be done. Somehow, I kept the business open and successfully running for the last six years. I didn’t think about it, I just did it.
My salesman’s son worked for us on and off as a teenager, and he’s now 30. This kid is a go-getter. After a successful career in motorcross, he helped a startup gear and clothing company turn into a multi-million dollar international business. Yet it was taking a toll on his life, his marriage, and his kids.
Jr. approached me last fall about opening a second location. This quickly turned into buying the company from me. While I desperately wanted this, it was definitely pushing me out of my comfort zone. I am a creature of habit, happy inside my box for the most part. Every time I had to step outside the lines was uncomfortable and downright stressful. Yet I came away from those meetings encouraged and excited. Could it really happen? Yes, I could actually see it.
And that brings me to my intention for this year: strength.
I use strength as one of my intentions at every yoga class, because just thinking the word helped me center myself and focus on really trying, really pushing. I’ve needed – and had – a lot of strength in my life, and this year will be no exception. But instead of asking for strength to manage my troubles, I’m using strength to help give me the courage to accomplish my goals for the year: hike a crazy difficult place, to train for that to strengthen my body, mind and soul, sell my business, look toward the next chapter in my life. Instead of needing strength to manage, I’m incorporating it to move ahead. It’s a subtle shift in how I think, and it makes all the difference. Does that make sense?
Well, it has officially taken me the whole month of January to write two blog posts. Again, gotta get my shit together. A friend of mine has been “micro-blogging” – taking a picture of something over the course of her day and then writing a short post about it. I’m going to set the goal of doing this every day for the next two weeks. If you want to write, you have to write, right?