Hello! It has been quite a while since I have sat down and really focused on a post for y'all! My life has definitely been a whirlwind since my last post and it was very important that I take a mental break and refocus. I spent a great deal of time thinking about what mattered to me and how I wanted to approach life this year, and that brings me to the whole point of this post. The word important just keeps coming to my mind as I'm typing, and as much as I hate repeating the same words a million times, it is my word choice for this year. Important.
Back in November, not long after our first Body Positivity Shoot (here), I found out that my dad has cancer. It rocked my world in a way that I hope no one ever has to endure. I remember my mom waking me up at 6am to tell me. I was half asleep and it took me a few minutes to process the words coming out of her mouth. Am I still dreaming? Did I hear her correctly? Surely she isn't talking about MY dad. As the day continued it did not fully hit me until I was on my drive to work. I was so angry, confused, devastated, and scared. Everyone that I had the strength to tell kept telling me to be strong and positive for my dad. "Don't show him your negative feelings." said one person. "You need to be strong for him" said another. I don't know why, but those two sentences made me enraged. Didn't I have a right to be upset as well? Obviously, I would be strong for my dad, but wasn't I allowed to feel pain?
In the end, I took the advice. I spent many nights in my room crying alone, begging God to make it go away, and questioning everything in my life. How was I going to continue on in this world without the one person that truly understood me? How do I continue to care about anything else when this is the most important thing right now? It was hard, especially because we had entered the busiest time in retail and there is definitely not a lot of room for time off during November through December. We got through it and my dad had his surgery in early December. They DID get all of that, but he is at high risk for getting it again. Basically, he needs to go back every three month and get all checked out! Best news EVERRR.
AND NOW. The for real reason for this post. Now that you are all caught up on why there was such a long break and how this whole new mindset came about, lets get to it! With a new year comes all sorts of possibilities, but I simply wanted to take a step back. I did not set any goals at first. I took my two week long vacation and visited Philly, New Orleans, and Puerto Rico. (that post is coming soon) I did a lot of self reflection on those trips and finally decided on what was important to me. I don't like the idea of setting goals. Not since the day I asked my boss if she was setting goals and she point blank told me "I don't set goals. If there is something I want to do I just do it." That was really powerful for me and made me question why people set goals when she was right. Why not just do it, start now! So instead of goals, I propose everyone set focus points for the year. Pick a few small things you want to focus on to better yourself and start there.
The goals we often set for ourselves are so large. Immediately we jump to "I will start working out and eating healthier." Bitch, you and I both know you haven't done physical activity in years and your normal meals consist of fast food and restaurants. I want you to succeed! Instead of setting that intense goal for yourself, set a focus! This year you want to focus on being healthier. Then make a plan for how you will achieve this! Maybe that means cutting down to one soda a day until you can cut it out for good, or exercising at home at first at least twice a week. Build up to the bigger goal by setting focus points and making a plan.
This is what I am doing. Setting focus points for myself.
1. Read a book a month
2. Less screen time before bed: this plays into my book a month goal, but this has actually been my biggest struggle so far.
3. Develop a consistent morning routine: each week I add something new to my morning routine instead of thinking I can just change it completely!
4. Two Blog Posts a Week: Expect them on Tuesday and Thursday.
Swinging into this new year with all positive vibes! These are the first four things I am focusing on for the first 6 months of this year! I will reevaluate in June and set some more as I go. Don't worry, you know I will let you know how it is going. Simply need to follow me on social media to find out!