So as my version of “2013 year in review,” I am going to begin an ongoing project I’ve always wanted to do: Write a list of all the things I’ve learned about life, happiness, and myself at the end of every year and pass them onto my future children to reassure and guide them as they experience similar periods of personal growth.
SO HERE WE GO! 10 things I learned this year:
1) Keeping promises to ourselves is hard but not impossible. If we treat our self-promises like those we make to family, friends, and co-workers then we will be pleasantly surprised at how much we accomplish. Your self-appreciation and self-esteem will soar when you know you can always trust yourself to follow through.
2) Sleep is sacred. We sleep 1/3 of our lives for a reason, to rejuvenate and revitalize our bodies so we can thrive and be ambitious in the other 2/3. Don’t miss out on this key ingredient for daily success.
3) Time is precious and unlimited. I’m not talking about clock time, I’m talking about perceived time. An hour can be the most productive unit of time you’ll ever experience if you become the master of it. Expect more from your time and watch it deliver.
4) Becoming overwhelmed by goals till the point of paralysis is worse than having no goals at all. Don’t let the anxiety about accomplishing ‘daunting’ goals control your daily emotional experience. Focus on the process and eliminate the feelings of overwhelm and uncertainty that come from over-occupation with the big picture. Instead, make sure that everyday you are systematically moving in the direction of your goal with small steps. I found a great article to sum this lesson up, here!
5) Throwing your hands up and exclaiming “What the heck!” is unbelievably therapeutic. Letting go and being able to live in the moment is a skill and a gift. Learning to let go of expectations, over planning, and over analysis and ‘just be’ will help you to experience and enjoy this journey called life, without the troubled spirit.
6) People change. You change. And that’s okay.
7) Meditation is a human need. I’ve discovered that meditation comes in many forms: lying quietly, dancing to your favorite song, getting in the zone in a workout, admiring your own reflection, listening to the quiet, and taking a shower are all examples of different ways to meditate. Meditation is a human need. It reconnects us with that part of ourself that is aware that our very existence in this life is magical and the ultimate blessing. Experience self-gratitude.
8) Don’t be afraid to chase a dream. You are not hurting yourself but, instead, exploring yourself. You get one life, never forget that.
9) Never assume you know someone’s story. When I meet new people, my pre-concieved assumptions about their character, life experience, and beliefs are usually blown to bits within the first interaction. The moment you believe you can read and understand every person is the moment you lose your ability to connect, learn, and grow. If you are not growing, you are dying.
10) You are not the same person you were yesterday. As hard as this is to wrap your head around, it is true. We like to think of ourselves as static, instead of dynamic, because the familiar is the safe. But every day, every moment, every action is an opportunity to remake yourself. Like clay, we can all change shape with the warm touch of drive and enthusiasm for our personal growth.
What did 2013 teach you? Comment and share your own yearly insights to document your own growth.