Happy New Year (almost)! I have to say I’m very excited that we are now pretty much done with 2018. It definitely wasn’t the easiest year for me, and while I really can’t complain and I still feel a lot of gratitude for all the good things, I’m allowing myself to feel through the less shiny bits.
My health was a challenge at times in 2018, further issues with my bladder which led to be having to be tested for ovarian cancer amongst other things. That was all clear thankfully and the current working hypothesis is that I have an allergic bladder that reacts to some kind of seasonal allergen as it only flares up in the spring (thank god). Then I had issues with headaches, jaw ache and neck ache with vision problems. Both of these issues have given me pretty bad anxiety.
All in all, I’ve allowed myself to get way too stressed out. Self care has been there, but not to the extent at which I feel I need it. This is an ongoing area of work for me – giving myself what I want, or giving myself what I need.
Yes, having several weeks off from doing much movement was what I wanted, but maybe not what I needed. I’m trying not to beat myself up too much about this because I know this balance takes a long time to figure out and often you need to learn the lesson before you can make the change. On the other hand I have done many things regarding self care well. I’ve set better boundaries for myself, I’ve invested in relationships, become better with money etc, I’ve done a lot of inner work – it’s the physical that’s been neglected.
2018 has been the year where my body has said enough. It’s been 4 years since I had Finley and since I really started to grow my business and being only human, a lot of my wellbeing practices just fell by the wayside.
Many of my thoughts this year (when they haven’t been anxious ones!) have been around what’s important to me. I’ve often thought about myself as an 80 year old woman looking back at this time, and I already know what I want those memories to be. I don’t want them to be sitting at a desk all the time – I want them to be of my little boy and fun and adventures.
Being around while my child is young and really enjoying that is my no 1 priority. Obviously that has to be tempered with the need to make money to keep a roof over our heads as well as for me to feel fulfilled and making a contribution, but having that realisation has helped me clarify a lot of things. Obviously I’d like to still be around when I’m 80 with a good quality of life so my health and wellbeing can no longer be left to the bottom of the pile. Relationships and my creativity are key things too.
So while my business and the work I do within it is still deeply important to me, I’ve realised I need a serious change in priorities. It needs to be wellbeing first, business second.
So that leads me on to 2019 and how I’d like to do things differently!
There always seems to be two camps when it comes to the New Year – the new year new you approach of diets and detoxes and then the fuck resolutions you’re fine as you are camp. I tend to fall somewhere in the middle. While I don’t think there’s any need to change anything if you don’t want to, I can see why the start of a New Year serves as a potent time of reflection and re-evaluation – growth and change are a natural outcome of that.
I always try and bear in mind the season we’re in at the New Year too – winter is not the most conductive time for big action, nature is still inviting us to turn inward, to do the inner work before all that spring growth. I talk much more about this in my Wholehearted Journal of course.
So I’m a middle person and while there’s no chance I’ll be doing any detoxing, I will be using the energy of the New Year to bring in changes to how I live my life for my own and others benefit. It’s worth noting that I haven’t been waiting until 1st Jan to suddenly step into these shifts, they’re things I’ve been gradually inviting in over the last few weeks.
In early Dec I sat down and thought about the shifts and changes I’d like to make and how I’d like my life to look and feel in 2019.
My word for the year is Flow. After a year that felt hard going, flow is absolutely what I’d like to invite into my life in 2019. To me this word represents ease, slowness, abundance, allowing, trust, creativity and support.
For the first time in many, many years weight loss is not an outcome that is in my mind one jot. While I’ve never focused on it for a while, it was always something there in the back of my head – the ‘oh it would also be nice to lose some weight wouldn’t it’. To feel really free of that completely is so good.
If you’ve ever checked out of my Wholehearted Journals you’ll see that rather than setting big annual goals I set seasonal intentions – this way of doing things is proven to be more effective. So while I have a couple of ‘life actions’ as I call them, I do most of my intention setting on a seasonal basis.
My life actions for 2019 however include getting back into personal blogging (you can count this post as getting a head start on that!) reading more – I have a reading list on Amazon for 2019 here and finally, doing some home improvements. Since we moved in March 2015 we’ve spent pretty much all our spare cash on our home partially out of necessity and partially out of desire for a more functional beautiful space. Since I spend a huge proportion of my time here as do the rest of the family we always see this money as well spent and a big investment in our wellbeing too.
The first of my three winter intentions are to move more – I’ve signed up for the Barre3 January challenge and I plan to do more yoga and swimming too. I’m really loving Barre3’s messaging at the moment around empowerment over looking a certain way and I’ve always enjoyed their online workouts plus the January challenge comes with access to Headspace which feeds nicely into one of my other intentions too.
Secondly I’d like to focus on food. Over the last few years I’ve definitely become an intuitive eater, despite never wanting to label myself as that – but in reality that is exactly how I eat these days. I eat what I want. The issue is that often I want to eat something more vegetable based or ‘healthy’ but because I’ve done fuck all planning I default to toast or whatever is in the freezer which leads to me not feeling very vibrant at all (and could be a factor in my headaches). So my second winter intention is food, but from a more practical standpoint. I’d like to try at least 3 new recipes and I might even share more recipes on here!
Finally my third winter intention is to deal with my stress levels. This one has a few different actions within it – firstly I’d like to keep up with the Headspace element of the Barre3 challenge, I’d like to spend more time in nature, I need to shore up my boundaries around work and I’d like to get some massage / chiropractor treatment. I believe what’s been causing my headaches is tension in my jaw (I clamp my jaw and hold a lot of tension in it) so I’d like to invest in a series of massages or other treatment to really work on this because the headaches I’ve had are not fun.
And that pretty much brings you up to date with me! I have to say I’m so excited about the New Year, there’s so many things I’m looking forward to including blogging more personally. I feel like the last few years I’ve been very inward facing but it feels like the tide is gently turning the other way.
Don’t forget, if you’d like to develop your own intentions / word for the year etc I cover all of that and more in my Wholehearted Journal.
How was 2018 for you? Do you have any 2019 intentions or a word for the year?
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