Always on day 1 we have aspirations. We set goals. We think of all the things we could do and our minds go crazy with wonder. Our minds are at ease, and our brains are in gear, goodbye muffin top, good bye pancake flaps under my arms, goodbye spending money on things I don’t need. This year I will do it. This year is mine for the taking.
Always on day 360 we are ready for the year to end so that we can start over. We think back on the year upset with the outcome saying good ridden to nothing more than a number. What happens during those 360 days that could be so bad? How could it all be bad? What was good and why doesn’t that trump the bad? Most importantly what is the reason that we didn’t meet our goals and how will we change that during the next 365 days.
As I look back at the last two years I can certainly see the difference. 2015 was a year of fighting to get out of a funk I was in. I was in a job that I less than loved, just trying to make it work while I worked and worked and worked doing something that gave me no joy. Meanwhile I was missing out on my me time, and kid time, and family time, my friends, my dog, my own life! No wonder I was in a funk. I was skipping out on all the things that bring me joy, make me laugh, and make me smile. I was spending all my time on something that did the opposite. Why would anyone do that?? I’ll tell you why, MONEY! I needed it to support those things that I loved and therefore I compromised my happiness. I never realized that because I was compromising my happiness I was giving up any chance I had of change. If I wasn’t willing to take the leap of faith, jump off the cliff and feel the freedom, get scared, get motivated, and get going, then things would never change for me. 2015 was an unhappy and unhealthy year and I too was one of the people who sat on day 360 and said next year it’s going to be different. Good ridden 2015, so long, fair well, and may we never meet again! But how would I make the next year different?
I sit here now on day 363 of 2016 and I am a completely different person. I am healthy, I am happy, I feel financially more stable than I did in previous years, I have a job that I love, hobbies that I spend time on that make me joyful, a beautiful family with a new addition, and a new home with a yard, and in a good neighborhood (and most importantly less than a mile form the hockey rink 😉
How did it all change? It didn’t, I did! Did bad things happen throughout the year in 2016? Of course they did; that’s life, and inevitable. I couldn’t, however, tell you what they were because the bad things aren’t important, the good ones are. In the past year I took on fitness/wellness coaching which allowed me to get healthy, change my lifestyle and my nutrition, leading to all sorts of healthy changes in my life. I was joyful because becoming a coach allowed me to help other people be healthy & happy too. More importantly I could do this on my time, meaning I still had time for my friends and family. Speaking of friends, becoming a coach brought more of those in to my life as well. JOY! Because I was getting healthier and happier, the stress on my mind and my body was reduced and after almost a year of trying I got pregnant with my second baby. MORE JOY! As I was finding this out, our family finally found a house that was the perfect size and in the right area and our offer was accepted. MORE JOY! Shortly after completing the move into our new home where we would raise our family with less worries and more peace, I started my new job. MORE JOY! Since all of this change, I have settled into my job (which I love), had my baby girl (who is the perfect addition to our crazy family), made this house our own (with colors and pictures galore), and continued my health and wellness journey while helping others do the same (all on my time). These are the things I will remember about 2016; all the things that brought me joy. So on day 365 I will be thankful for all that has happened in the past, and I will look forward to even more joy in the next 365 days
So with all the wonderful things that I was able to experience in 2016, how do I have anything left to wish for in 2017? To that I say there is always more to give, and may we never forget that. I think of all the people in my life that are constantly giving and how much that has helped me; from family taking my children to cover when I don’t have daycare, my parents providing my kids with the cutest clothes and newest toys, or driving for 5 hours just to see my kids or help me our for a couple hours, to friends who take professional photos of my family and ask for nothing in return, my work providing extra paid leave for me to use as needed with my newborn, cousins coming over just to help us move furniture around the house, or even family members dropping everything on a holiday to help us move into our new home, and oh so much more. These people inspire me everyday. Because of all the amazing people in my life, my number one goal in the next 365 days is to get involved with a non-profit and give whatever I am able (money, time, skill, etc.) throughout the year. “We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.” – Winston Churchill. We only live once, so let’s make a life of it! The trick is to give to something you are passionate about, not something you feel you have to, or worse, are told you have to. Find something you love and spend your time on that, whatever it may be, there is a need for it somewhere and it will bring joy to others and to you.
The definition of joy is the emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune or by the prospect of possessing what one desires. Possessing what one desires is a huge part of new year’s resolutions. Often times people don’t feel joy on day 365 because they did not possess what they had set out to on day 1. Just because you haven’t gotten it on day 60 or 90 or 142, doesn’t mean you can’t still get there and allow yourself some joy on day 365. Look back and remember the joyful things, times, and people and forget everything else because when you eventually hit your last day you will want people to think of you with an emotion evoked by well-being, success, and good fortune! BE JOYFUL!