I’m not going to mince words here: 2016 was not fun for anyone. I spent the second portion of December sick as a dog – including on Christmas, as if I needed to be punched in the boob one more time for good measure – and I fell behind on everything. 2016 was stressful and difficult for me personally, and there are tons of listicles and tweets out there with reasons why this was the case for most other people too.
But 2017 is here. We’re moving on. We’re starting fresh, and it’s going to be great.
So this year, I’ve chosen the word EVOLVE.
Anyone who knows me knows that for roughly the last six months, I have been really, really, really into Pokemon, especially Pokemon Go. And although Pikachu still holds a precious place in my heart, my mascot for this year is this little guy:
This is Eevee. Isn’t he cute? Eevees are considered “Normal” Pokemon but they are extremely adaptable. Under different conditions, Eevees can evolve into eight different forms that are all unique, powerful and really freaking awesome. But the thing about it is that an Eevee that remains an Eevee is still fantastic! Look at that face! He’s good just the way he is.
I want so much to be better in 2017. I want to take the things that I do and kick them up a notch. I want to be better, do better, make better and give better to the world. When something challenges me, I want to take a step back and say, “Here is the bare minimum I could do. But how can I do more?” But I also want to recognize and be confident with the person that I am in the present. I want to choose to be happy and honest and comfortable with the ‘me’ that I am now so I know that the changes I’m making are just to enhance that goodness.
So how about you guys? What are you looking forward to evolving into in the new year?
Not every day is going to be packed with good will or even productivity. There will be bad days, even during the season where it seems like everything should be red and green and silver and gold 24/7. Try to be present. When bad things happen, acknowledge them for what they are – seconds, minutes, hours – and then, move on and make the decision to feel the way you want to feel.
During December, I’m going to share 30 small affirmations/mantras/whatever you want to call them to help people feel good during this time of year. I love the holidays, but I also know it can be fraught with stress and anxiety and not-so-great tidings. I hope these help you. You deserve it.
It’s okay to not be “in the spirit” as soon as December rolls around. You don’t have to immediately be in the ‘deck the halls’ mode, nor do you have to compete against anyone else for how important the holiday season is. You do you, at your pace. You get to decide what this all means, ultimately.
I don’t know when I started getting anxious about interacting with strangers.
When I was a kid, trick-or-treat was not even a question. The task was simple: go to the door, knock, say a thing, get candy. Boom. Then do it as many times as possible before people started turning off their lights and hiding.
Now? If I get a piece of mail that belongs to my neighbor, I’m immediately in crawling-over-enemy-lines mode. I pull out spreadsheets and paper bags and I focus on not losing my mind over having to actually walk over and give it to them for the love of God why.
It’s so important to try to recall that joyful abandon that most people had as children. When we were kids, we had no problem asking people for things. We could wear stupid crap and love every second. We didn’t worry constantly about being judged (maybe now and then but not like adults do). We would draw pictures and paint and at no point did we go, “I’m not sure if this crayon dinosaur is really promoting my brand. Could I be doing something better with my time right now?”
Play. Don’t overthink the tiny things. Get stuff done because once you get that stuff done you can do something fun. Decide why you want something and then do the thing. Because remember the really, really great part about being an adult: you don’t need permission from anyone. No bedtimes. So long as you aren’t hurting anyone, you get to decide what you’re doing.
Now go get some damn candy.