My annual November birthday blog of reflections on what I’ve done and learned in the previous year has slowly become a part of my end-of-year closeout, visioning, and intention setting.
Going into the previous year, my sights were set on one theme: Releasing that which was no longer aligned. In retrospect, this showed up most notably as selling my first home, selling the second company I started, purging physical belongings, many friendships changed including many which seemed to have ended, and I outgrew some mindsets that no longer served me.
A year ago I wrote what “I’d hope to be able to say about 2021”. Some things I penned were spot on and others weren’t even close. But the things that were off-base, I’m glad they didn’t pan out because what happened was just as great, in its own way. The final one on the list was spot on, “I had more fun, play, joy, and rest than ever before!” Which is also interesting to point out because 2021 was a year in which I felt anxious and depressed more than any year before (emotionally constipated was a description that came up in my writing). What’s interesting is that I remember most of it only through reflecting on my journal entries and my calling it out there. When I think about the year as a whole, those feelings don’t top the list.
Because this is a public-facing record of my previous 12 months, it always feels important to share why I do this in the first place. For one, I don’t want to break my streak of 12 consecutive years running. Secondly, this feels like a time capsule for me and a place to honor what’s happened and to use it as a place from which to launch ahead. While it’s a tedious process to unearth a year’s worth of journal entries, calendars, pictures, and social media clues to remind me of what transpired, it’s always worth it to get the 30,000-foot view, as well as to compare one year to the next. I tend to find one thing to be true: We change and we don’t at all. The essence of who I am when I started this practice at age 27 is still precisely the person I am today. That said, she’s also evolved tremendously. Lastly, I get so many beautiful remarks from others who read this about how it inspires them to live lives of their own design as well as to be more intentional in their choices and their reflections.
Without further ado, here’s to 2021 (a second pandemic year):
I kicked off age 37 with a small outdoor backyard birthday party at a friend’s house. It was fitting for a year that was marked with the realization that the last 2 years created major shifts in my social circle. I’ve always been one to collect friendships. I love people: connecting them to one another and to learn curiously and experience life together. So where my first 36-or-so years were full of friendships old and new, the last two were noticeably scaled back. Clearly the pandemic played its role, but it also created the space to actively choose where to invest into which relationships. I felt a mixture of sadness, grieving, reverence, nostalgia, and even gratitude, depending on the timing and the relationship. I closed the year out with a strong belief that when you clear out anything and make space, that it’s an invitation for what is more aligned to take its place. I also proactively chose not to back-fill these holes immediately to soothe or busy myself. But, like clockwork, new and aligned friends (aka those who are deeply on their own paths of growth and self-knowledge) showed up.
Selling my first home
I sold the home I bought at 23 (at 37) and it was a huge moment because I’d bought that home under duress after filing for a restraining order against my then-landlord. It was a symbol of my independence, freedom, and security. And I had so many ups and down in that house. I’d been renting it out to wonderful tenants for about 3 years. Closing that chapter and making a profit after buying at the height of the market boom in 2007 thinking that was something I didn’t know if I’d ever be able to dig out of, so that wasn’t lost on me in that moment.
Building a house
After a 7-month long ‘under contract’ period for our new house (the one we’d demo to build anew (only made that choice because the foundation was irreparable)), we officially closed on January 21! This may be one of the longest ‘under contract’ periods ever allowed for a residential purchase, and we are so grateful that the sellers stood by us during the financing insanity of COVID, for 2 self-employed people, on a construction loan (which means the necessity of completed architectural drawings along with our variances getting approved by the county). Even after losing our project manager (she quit the company), our architect (he died), 3 designers who didn’t work, many, many, many price increases and overages, and endless delays (I thought I’d be writing this from the new home we were living in by now), we have a fully framed house and a newfound love for interior finishes and design.
I began to translate my eye for design from my early career in fashion to becoming the sole designer on our house build. After hiring three designers, firing 2, and one firing me (long story but if your designer isn’t open to questions or feedback, then fires you because of it, it was bound not to work out anyway). For the entirety of the process (now 1.5 years and counting), the team has told me I have what it takes to take on this role. I was scared to take on such a huge task with such expensive and time-consuming ramifications, as well as believing deeply that we should hire out the things at which others are experts, learn alongside them, and get further together faster and with less stress. I’m also a believer that there is nuance to every situation. While that mentality works in many situations, in this one it really gave me an opportunity to lean into my design eye, get really creative, do a lot of research, put on my question-asker hat, and learn how to do it myself. It’s been really emboldening to see it all begin to come together and to know that I can do this. It feels like a giant art project that we will soon live in, and that feels scary at times and exciting at others.
In general, this project has been a giant crucible for growth and learning, all bundled up into the package of building a home. Some of the lessons that have brewed include asking for what I want unapologetically; to trust that if I can envision it, I can create it; to speak up and use my voice, even when people are trying to diminish it; things have to look a little ugly and messy before they look neat, organized, and beautiful; and oh-so-many lessons on money, abundance, and the circulation of resources.
Selling my company
While all of this was taking up as much time in my schedule as a part-time job, some major respite came on April 7th. That was the day that I officially sold my networking events company! That was also 22 months from when I decided to sell it.
Thanks to the devastation of in-person events for just about all of 2020, I found a window when vaccines started to become available and the right buyer quite literally showed up in my inbox (we knew each other a bit before the deal). I learned a lot of specific lessons about the logistics of selling a business, but more than that, I was reminded of some important lessons: 45 minutes after the deal closed, I felt sad. Not because I lamented selling it or felt some part of my identity was gone. I felt great about the choice. But because even as much as I knew heading into it that I wouldn’t feel any different once it was done, I was then sad that I didn’t, that the glow wore off that quickly, and then I was back to homeostasis. It was a strong reminder that no thing or circumstance will change our internal state for long (arrival fallacy). So the work is to continue to create an inner environment of contentedness (or beyond) that isn’t dramatically shaken by the in and outflows of life’s circumstances. One other lesson I learned here was in making the proactive choice not to fill the time that was opened up once I no longer had any of this company’s responsibilities on my plate or on my mental load. The most common question I’d get was, “What’s next?” and it’s tempting to have a sexy answer. But the truth was my answer, “I’m actively working against my natural inclination to fill this time back up. I’m choosing to rest. I’m choosing ‘unproductive’ things. I’m going to let this be what’s ‘next’ for a season. And then I’ll see what feels most aligned to fill in its place.”
This company taught me a lot and did so much for me. I learned how to run a company without a partner. It grew my local profile. My earnings from it allowed me to reinvest into other endeavors. I got comfortable working with major brands like Audi, Google, Nationwide, and BlackRock. It showed me some folks who weren’t my true friends and ushered in some lifelong ones. It gave me a testing ground to experiment with different business models like licensing, course creation, business-to-consumer offerings, and live and virtual events. It taught me about the importance of intellectual property law and how to enforce infringements. I learned how to build a remote team. It’s been a real proving ground for me and I’ll be taking all of these lessons with me into the future.
A separate lesson I continue to learn is how to keep it moving and not get unraveled when others have unkind things to say about/to me, particularly when it’s because I feel they are misunderstanding me. One example of this was one random internet person who told me to stop bragging about my vacation after I sold my company. I didn’t see my sharing the news as bragging, but she clearly did. And rather than just brushing it off, I let it get to me. I intend to keep distancing myself in real time from the collateral damage these off-handed remarks can create in me.
In my other work, coaching became my number-one focus and I felt so fortunate to be able to saddle up alongside business owners to help them marry their dream life with their business (as the vehicle to create the time and financial freedom they need to live that life, while making the impact they seek). As I continued to level up in my abilities, offerings, skills, and price point (almost 3x’d in 12 months), I noticed a cycle in myself: I’d feel strong in the correlation and congruence of my offer and its outcomes and value to my clients. But cyclically, I’d also feel ill-equipped, as if I weren’t capable of helping people, and that this wasn’t what I should be doing. Those were always short-lived and always in the times where I was on a new growth edge. Those are my inner critics talking and they’re loud. When I wasn’t letting them take over, great things happened: Clients were happier and saw better results than ever. I made more and was more profitable than ever. I worked less than the previous year. And even ‘failures’ like a $10k social media campaign to sell one of my courses that totally flopped didn’t hurt all that much because I saw it for what it was: an (expensive) and worthwhile lesson.
I trusted my instincts, coupled with data, to shift my model and pricing (2 groups: 1. Mind Your Business ongoing monthly membership for service-based business owners who want to make a profit and an impact and 2. Co-facilitator of a group of CEOs of property management companies that a bank fills, curates, and programs, and I facilitate). I also created 3 evergreen digital courses to offer as ‘leave behinds’ for my speaking gigs and as offerings to my clients and for those who can’t afford 1-on-1 support.
My team was more stable and effective than ever. But getting there wasn’t easy. I have a note in my journal about my instinct to fire a woman who was on my team after only a couple of months together. I even dreamed about it. I delayed and delayed it for a number of reasons (holiday time, wanting to see her become the person I believed she could be, not wanting to hurt her or leave her in a lurch, not wanting her not to like me). But ultimately, no matter how much direction, coaching, and feedback I gave, I needed to let her go. And I did. And she didn’t like it. But it was the right choice and I brought on someone who was a much better fit and we’ve had a successful relationship for the past year. When I give her feedback, she appreciates it, and vice-versa.
Writing + Interviewing
While I continued to write for the media, my relationship with Forbes came to an abrupt ending in September after receiving what I can only describe as a very cold and thoughtless email from them about how they were ‘going in a new direction’ and how I wasn’t a part of it. 5 years of quality work for them, almost entirely unpaid, and that was their choice of breakups. After reassessing why I’m writing for outlets outside of my own anymore, I decided there was still enough reason to give it another try, and I was quickly able to parlay my experience into a contributorship at Inc. Magazine (thanks to a friend (Morgan) who put me in touch with their editor). Prior to my Forbes departure, I was able to do a few interviews I deeply enjoyed (like with Nia Sioux of Dance Moms fame, a second with Seth Godin, Ally Brooke from Fifth Harmony). One of the greatest compliments I can get and always appreciate is when the person I’m interviewing tells me once we wrap that, “you made me feel so comfortable” and when they read the piece that they feel I really honored them and brought out the best in them.
I continue to feel a nudge from the Universe whenever I’m hired to be in a role as interviewer/commenter/on-site correspondent. When I had the chance to do that, in a real studio, for an organization I admire, I was reminded of that and left with a curiosity about how to make that a more regular part of my professional livelihood.
On the speaking front, I was invited to speak to American Family Insurance’s team as well as a few other companies. A note to self: you have a lot to offer that moves the needle for those who are listening. Keep using your voice.
On the finance front, I made an income goal for myself for the year that was almost 2x what I’d made fairly routinely over the past several years… and I got very close to hitting it! I also changed my relationship with money realizing that it’s abundant and renewable, and while I don’t spend frivolously, I have a lot more fun spending on myself and others now than I used to and feel way less guilt or remorse for it. The more I cycle it into the economy, the more comes back to me. I also gave more to charity and in gifts than I ever had before.
For the past 2 years, I’ve had a TV show idea in the works in various forms and stages. I keep hitting walls and will continue to strike the balance of pushing it along without forcing it and staying open to what unfolds. I may also change the intended direction from an ensemble cast I curate to one where I get to interview and bring out the genius in others. Let’s see what happens!
I had an ongoing awareness that my energy was higher on average and more sustained this year. I credit that to getting on a treadmill and walking every morning while I work on my laptop, as well as saying ‘yes’ to activities that bring me energy, and ‘no’ to many activities that strip my energy.
It was a really successful year of building out a post-incarceration mentorship program with Common Good Atlanta. In doing so and in helping a number of their community get ongoing mentorship that helped them grow and stay out of prison, I also started mentoring the co-director of the program. Watching him grow and impact the system in huge ways was so rewarding!
As one part pop-culture anthropology experiment and one part for work/marketing, I dove head-first into some of the new social media trends (Clubhouse and Reels, mostly). I went into both with the mindset which I have about most things in this vein: try it, see if it feels like a good fit for you, and if the juice is worth the squeeze (the ‘juice’ being any positive byproduct). For me, so far at least, the answers were ‘no’ and I reallocated that time elsewhere.
Brendan’s partnership continues to teach me about the depths of patience, generosity, grace, kindness, and lightness of spirit that I’ve never before accessed. He’s helping me to unearth parts of myself I never saw or avoided, and is helping me to release outdated personal narratives and identities that are holding me back. I’m very grateful for him! We celebrated 5 years together (in October) and 2 years engaged (in June). In the way that I continue to design my life (and we ours, together), we currently have no wedding or marriage plans (but thanks for asking)!
With a mom who was a competitive ballroom dancer and a personal dream to one day be on Dancing With The Stars, I thought it would be fun to take online salsa classes. It was fun, until it actually wasn’t. But I was glad I tried.
In an effort to deepen my spiritual practice, I continued my meditations, self-reiki, and also learned a new channeling writing practice.
I read 47 books this year and loved many of them.
Had a “CEO week’ in the Airstream in Tarpon Spring, FL (outside of Tampa) to clear the schedule, reflect, and plan for the year ahead.
New Years was spent in Charleston and St John’s Island, SC at a horse farm (oddly reminiscent of the historic horse farm I grew up on outside of Philadelphia). Fire pits, great conversations with friends, reading, and word that my house was under contract on Jan 1! Oh, and celebrating ‘Rio New Year’ from East Coast time as an excuse to go to bed at 10pm.
Outer Banks: Brendan thought he found the venue for our wedding so off we went on a whim. We both thought he was right after we saw it, but when the property’s owners didn’t communicate for 4 weeks at a time, we quickly realized that planning a large-scale event with them would be out of the question (add to that the many uncertainties we still had last January about COVID and gatherings).
Next, we went to Boca Raton and Palm Beach, FL. My dad has been getting medical treatments in Florida every 3 months (he and my mom live in Panama- the country, not the city in Florida) and he was there on his 75th birthday, as well as that we hadn’t seen him since his diagnosis 3 months prior because of COVID lockdowns in Panama. So we drove the long-distance and spent the milestone birthday with him and my mom. Topped the trip off with a night with friends in Palm Beach which felt like a remnant of the past to be in the space of others again.
Back to Florida, but this time to the ‘armpit’ (that’s what it looks like on a map) to St. George Island. Even though it rained the whole week, we were right on the beach and had a great time with friends, working, reading, and finding my new favorite local store ever (no joke, I’m going back again soon, 5.5-hour drive and all).
St. Thomas and St. John because Brendan double-surprised me: First with a V-Day gift trip to the US Virgin Islands and then, while en route to the airport, picking up our friends who were surprising us and joining us! It was so nice to be there, in the sunshine, on the beaches, with the beautiful water. Super rejuvenating.
Brendan’s parents spend part of every winter in Hilton Head, SC, so we drove to visit them, getting the first COVID vaccine en route. We enjoyed Easter together, golf (I just rode on the cart and did my best ‘Happy Gilmore’ impersonations), and the beauty of the island. For the sake of respect for the parties involved, I’ll say this, too: I began to learn some of the harder lessons of blending families and had to spend a lot of time on my own healing some emotional wounds that came from this experience.
Later, since the Airstream was getting dusty, we drove her up to Asheville for a beautiful weekend of antiquing, breweries, great vegan food, and art.
A friend gifted us with one of the nicest villas I’ve ever stayed in in the biosphere in Tulum, Mexico. She, we, and some of her friends enjoyed the chef’s meals, a private beach, and lots of time for great conversation. From there, we went up to Holbox which was such a wonderful and much more untouched island off of Mexico where the waters were bathtub warm and completely clear.
Upon returning home, we had an Airstream camping weekend at a lake in North Georgia to reconnect with nature and each other.
After over a year of lockdown, my mom and dad did a tour of the US to see the kids and grandkids. We had a great time touring Atlanta, getting my mom’s help with home design selections, and berry and flower picking at a local farm. The older I get, the more I see my parents as people and can see their growth from the hands they were dealt in their upbringings. It allows me to have more empathy and forgiveness for them.
Next was another North Georgia lake weekend of camping. This was a notable one for me because I became aware of how much I was letting the house build deeply stress me out. I was sleeping poorly, was heavy-handed on my management of the project, and was getting snappy with the team. I stepped back and asked myself, “What choices can you make that will get you to the outcome you seek with more ease?”. At that moment I shifted my over-attachment to every detail, focused on what was within my control and reoriented my relationship with the ballooning budget and majorly-delayed timeline.
Off to Highlands, NC for the first time to discover that it’s a magical little pocket in the mountains! We spent the holiday with multi-generational friends, new and old, soaked in their wisdom, enjoyed the beauty of nature, and the slower pace.
Then we took the long haul to Hawaii!! We spent a week in a log cabin in a rainforest-like section of the Big Island with friends. The week was filled with a lot of laughs, deep connection, and the beauty of the island.
From there, we extended a layover in LA to see some friends and spend a day at Harry Potter World with my older brother and nieces. It’s so nice that they are at a stage where they’re old enough for us to share interests and we had a lot of fun together at the park all day (polyester costumes in the 95-degree heat and all).
Our first big group event was in Sundance, Utah for the recommitment ceremony of our 80-year-old friends. It was beautiful and it was a reminder that I needed to ease my way back into the energy of group environments. We went from there to Moab and hit up a couple of national parks. I’m ever-amazed at the beauty our country has to offer.
We went North to Cape Cod to see Brendan’s family and enjoy the late summer in only the way that the Northeast does!
From there we went to Newport, RI to hop on a friend’s boat and ride for a few nights up to Nantucket.
Then I flew to Indianapolis to be there for a friend who had a recent challenging health diagnosis and to meet another friend’s newborn. I remember being 23 and envisioning my life in the future and one of the most important things to me was to be there for my friends in good times and in bad, and this felt like that was coming to pass.
Breakout (the organization that introduced me to Brendan) convened in Newark, NJ. It was wonderful to connect with friends new and old in the way that only Breakout knows how to do. It was both exhausting and deeply refreshing. One note to self: Don’t partake in a THC-infused dinner again– dosing is not your friend!
I headed from there over to NYC for the first time since early March 2020 when the pandemic broke out. It was great to see friends and be back in the city’s energy.
For our 5-year anniversary, we went to DC: The city where we got engaged and had a beautiful time with my aunt and uncle, touring the mall and looking at the site where Brendan proposed (Chuck Schumer’s balcony at the Capitol), and taking in the beautiful fall days of New England.
Highlight: a surprise visit to a cat cafe!
One night in NYC at the famed TSA Hotel for a Halloween event unlike any other!
Our birthdays being 1 day apart, we love to celebrate together and this year decided to go to London and Paris. Being back in Europe felt fantastic and enjoying the scenery, art, fashion, and food was a delight.
The family selected Galveston, TX for Thanksgiving so we took the Airstream and spent a night en route in New Orleans in the French Quarter. We had a really nice time in Galveston and were pleasantly surprised at all there was to do there (cute historic town center, carnival on a pier, mini-golf, beach). On the trip back, we were surprised in a different way when our car broke down at 10pm on a Saturday night in rural Alabama. So, after 2 nights at a Comfort Inn waiting for the shop to open, we learned that the transmission had failed, and left both the car and the Airstream there for 5 weeks until they could get a new one.
We’d decided not to travel for Christmas and that was fortuitous given the COVID Omicron surge over the holidays. So, instead, we made a new tradition and went to a hotel/winery in Georgia for Christmas Eve. We then canceled our plans for a wellness-spa week in Arizona and decided to take the Airstream to a campsite literally on the beach in Destin, Florida. It’s from there that I’m writing this, with my feet in the sand, as the sun sets. We came home on New Year’s Eve day and closed out the year cuddly at home. Recognizing that the strike of a clock changes nothing, we appreciated the collective agreement that we all felt a newness and invitation for a fresh start.
Here’s a rundown of miscellaneous lessons I learned or re-learned this year:
-An ability to see and catch myself in old stories and thought patterns that don’t serve me (or anyone else) in real-time. It’s almost like being in my body and outside of it at the same time, able to make more level-headed choices. I credit two things for this: my ongoing meditation practice and my continued diligence into my true Self, which also detaches me from old ‘identities’ or ideas about myself or others that are unnecessary.
-I hold people, particularly my friends, to a really high standard. I like to think that I’m a good friend and when I feel unappreciated or overlooked, it hurts me. I want to choose to release resentment that can build up and/or talk to them so they know how I’m feeling.
-When two family members were battling cancer in the same year, and both are doing great now, it’s a reminder of how quickly things can change. I realized how much our health is truly most important, how we must invest in relationships so we won’t regret it when it’s too late, and how any pain will feel less acute over time.
-Two things that will always bring me joy: Chairman Meow (my cat) and a good book.
-Ladybugs are my personal symbol from my Guides that they’re with me. When I see them, I smile. And I saw them a lot this year.
-A lot of people are paying attention to how I show up in the world, what I share, and what I have to say (and the same goes for you). They may never tell me, but some will. Those are great reminders to keep going, particularly in those moments when it feels for naught.
-When I focus my energies first on me and my growth, the outgrowth from there is immense. When I let that go to the wayside and focus on other metrics or goals first, things don’t go as smoothly.
-’Supposed to’s’ and ‘shoulds’ are always immediate call-outs for me to reorient my direction and reconnect with my own ‘why’.
-Similarly, holidays and events that are ‘supposed to’ feel a certain way often leave me feeling sad. Then it compounds because there is an awareness of the chasm between my actual feelings and the ideal or expected ones. Then, this is coupled with my annoyance of self in real-time as I’m aware of these dual feelings and not just letting myself feel what I feel or process the root of the feeling.
-I/we have the tools we need to get where we want to be/go. When I reflect back on my 12 years of these reflections, it reminds me that at my core, my essence, I’ve been the same all along. I’ve certainly grown and learned things, but I’ve been me. This reminds me that it’s important not to hold myself back or count myself out of things. I have what I need.
-I noticed a lot of fear in myself when I was alone out in the world, particularly at night. I think it stemmed from letting the news seep into my consciousness with crime on the rise in Atlanta, but I didn’t like allowing it to get to me in this way.
-Our architect who became a dear friend passed away this year. Even with his global legacy, I was reminded how quickly life goes on. As much as we take ourselves seriously, it was a reminder to have a lightness in my days because it’s all temporary.
-Continue to trust myself… when I do, even if it doesn’t make sense to onlookers, things work out well.
-Future orientation is a natural state of mind for me, and it can often come at the expense of my peace and presence.
-I’m nearing 13 years as an entrepreneur. Now I recognize that nothing that feels critical or monumental in the moment matters anymore. That it takes longer to get to the goals than I might typically imagine, but that also prepares me for the ongoing nurturing and continuation of that success.
-My journal shows a number of places where I remark on places where I’m ready for something to happen that hasn’t yet. Or my overt frustration that it hasn’t. I’m now able to see how putting energy into those things is creating more lifeforce behind them, rather than doing what I hope will attract them.
-One of the quickest ways to get me unnerved is to encroach on my time boundaries.
-A close friend and I who started doing a work project together this year experimented with more in-real-time candor and feedback to one another. Not always fun to hear, but it’s definitely improved our relationship, trust, and outcomes.
-When I don’t need or seek external validation, but can feel it from a place of inner groundedness, I’m much better off.
-We all/I have the potential to connect with anyone. The doors that opened this year sometimes blew my mind.
-This one surprised me a bit but I came to find how much I like doing domestic chores, particularly for us as a unit.
-Sometimes I step outside of myself and watch and think, ‘That’s not the person I want to be/how I want to show up in that situation.” It feels embarrassing to recognize, but essential to change.
-I was the epitome of socially awkward in the spring when people started to convene in person again. Naming it made it a lot more palatable.
-Building in self-care like therapeutic massages, epsom salt baths, and time to and for myself is always a good choice.
-I have a history of equating my self-worth to my performance. I ‘know’ this isn’t true, and I’m learning to better catch these stories playing out in real-time to adjust accordingly.
-More isn’t always better.
-I’m a work in progress, a soul on its mission.
-Fun was something I pondered a lot, which feels like the antithesis of the mission of having fun. I realized that I’d lost sight of how to have it as an adult. That if it’s not tied to a project, something that feels forward-moving or productive, or involves travel or other people, that I wasn’t sure what to do when I’d ask myself, “What should I do for fun today?”. I found that ‘fun’ doesn’t have to mean a barrel of laughs. And that fun can also mean finding pleasure in nature, through reading, or organizing something around the house.
-I learned about the depths of love and how that shifts and morphs after the early stages. How each year it gets deeper, but not necessarily driven by the brain chemicals, so it takes more intention and also feels more connected, more solid, more trusting.
-I cannot watch stressful tv or movies. I embody it and it seeps into my consciousness and energy. It’s not worth it.
-Spaciousness in my mind and schedule is my friend.
-I’m not yet immune to needing positive affirmation and feedback in my work to feel validated.
-It’s amazing how many times I’d set intentions for the day and they’d be matched/met. I think that’s because it’s the lens through which I see the day when I look for things at its frequency.
-As a coach, I recognize the value in being coached, so I hired a new coach (who also happens to be a long-time friend). It’s sometimes difficult for me to get out of my head in breaking down the process and getting in the way of it. Also, I am reminded of what it might be like to be in my clients’ seats some days looking forward to the sessions, other times not, but always being appreciative for them after, even when they aren’t ‘enjoyable’.
-My thoughts and reactions to circumstances create my reality. A situation is neutral until I apply a judgment to it.
-I worked through a lot of wounds, stories, and fears around the possibility of becoming a mother.
-I found myself in many ‘liminal spaces’, meaning that I felt in between things literally and/or emotionally. These periods served as great reminders that this is what life is: the in-betweens because we never truly ‘arrive’. So that meant coming to terms with it and finding some comfort there.
-I spoke my truth and honored my boundaries more, and people didn’t always like that. But I did, and that matters most.
-Thoughts aren’t always true and the stories that I tell myself matter, and I get to choose which to believe.
-One of the things that most excites and energizes me is getting new businesses and projects off the ground. It’s my intention to stay connected to that energy and not shortchange myself by cutting off that supply.
-I can get negative and critical (of myself and others) when I’m off-balance, so I need to stick to my practices that ground and center me.
-”Lean into love, bigger love.” I wrote this in my journal and it reminds me that everything ultimately boils down to a root in love or fear. It’s okay to lean even more into love.
-There’s no escaping my inner life. No amount of travel, busyness, or things will change that. My inner life comes with me so if something is unsettled, the external thing is just a bandaid.
-Progress matters, even if there’s still a long way to go. In this case, I’m referring to how each birthday is in some way a disappointment for me. No matter how much I prepare mentally to appreciate those who care and reach out, I always end up getting sad about the people who forgot or seemingly didn’t care. Then, I get disappointed in myself for letting it get to me. But it’s also begun to teach me how to extend grace and compassion for other people’s priorities, to appreciate those who do show up, and to learn about some wounds that underpin these beliefs.
-Years ago, I chose to put up a boundary with a family member who’d hurt me over and over again, and I wasn’t willing to continue investing in the relationship. She popped back up wanting to reconcile and we did. I was reminded that while my feelings are absolutely valid, I also didn’t fully know her perspective. This helped me to empathize, forgive, and move on.
-Doing for, giving to, and supporting others, not out of obligation or pressure, but out of sincerity, is one of the most rewarding feelings.
-Some of my greatest suffering comes as a result of my attachment to my expectation of what ‘should have been’ or ‘should be’ rather than letting what is be what it is. My needs for control and comfort are deeply rooted here.
-These past 2 ‘lockdown years’ have hurled me at lightspeed into introversion and I saw how quickly I’d get depleted when with others, no matter how wonderful they are. This was a reminder to do what I need to do for myself and protect my energy.
-Having not been stung by a bee for over 20 years, I learned that I am, in fact, still allergic and that a sting in the palm of my hand makes it look like the Hulk.
-Slow motion is better than no motion (when it comes to progress).
-I make my own rules, and I can decide which to break.
-Things that seem intimidating upon entry don’t after doing them. Everyone started as a beginner, so try.
-You’re allowed to change your mind.
-‘Difficult conversations’ never go as badly as I think they will, and it always pays off to have them sooner, rather than later.
Intentions for 2022:
I’ve been thinking a lot about the words I’d like to encapsulate my upcoming year. They are:
And so it will be.
If you made it this far, thank you. I appreciate you and would love to know your intentions for the coming year.