Wednesday, January 4, 2012

so it's a new year, huh?

Well, 2012 is a few days old now. Nothing out of the ordinary for the start of a new year. However, I was beyond excited when I returned home from work one day this week to some of that oh-so-wonderful white stuff on the ground!!

Albeit...not much, but still, it made my day. :)

After going the this far into the winter 2011-2012 season without a flake, and having it be so unseasonably warm (60 degrees on New Years Eve!?!) it got me thinking. The first few flakes of the season and some bitterly cold wintry days to start off the new year. Already a bit different than last year. What else would be different? What will I do to make it different? ...Better, even. And then, I started to ponder all of the things floating around in the back of my mind that I would like to accomplish this year.

Let me tell's not a short list...

Not only that, but the list is long for each part of my life. Does anyone else out there compartmentalize their life? I certainly have been lately, and I'm not sure if it's a good or bad thing.

First and foremost - home life. The House of Chaos and Crazy - my husband, our pup, and our home. And hopefully, not too far away in the distant future, a pint sized addition to the 'D' household. This is easy and hard. Perfectly imperfect, and navigated with many wrong turns, and just as many right ones. This will always be a constant. I could never ask for anything more, or less.

I also have my personal life. My friends and family that I keep close. I know how many of those relationships I have let slip away little by little. Let the business of everyday life get in the way of life, I guess. I think this compartment needs a little attention.

Then there's my work/professional life. Like many young women starting off in their first years of college, I was as gung-ho as you can get. Go-get-'em and then some. Fast forward seven years, two degrees, and three jobs, I've found that I've lost a good bit of that fervor. That lust for success and drive to be an expert at what I do. Instead, I have headed down a path that I never would have thought I'd find myself. A good path, definitely, but a completely unexpected turn for me. One that I'm still a little unsure of; one that I'm not quite convinced that I fit into just yet. Unfortunately, there is no pause button for life that will allow me that time to become comfortable and ready for this change. And there is an endless list of things to do - things I should do, and really, I have to do to keep up.

Last, but not least, my creative life. I have been spending so much time on this part of my life. I love it. It's why every person who creates starts creating in the first place. That wonderful feeling you get from making something. Having something grow and blossom from a tiny idea that spontaneously flashes in your mind - usually at the strangest and least opportune moment - and watching it become something real, something beautiful and personal. Something handmade. It's an amazing thing, and I blog about it here just because I feel so passionately about it. I will never expect anything more from it than self gratification and the warmth that comes from giving a gift that involves such intense amount of thought, effort and love. I never expect to sell anything, or to have a superbly popular craft blog with 1000+ followers. (I'll be tickled pink if I even hit 10 ten followers!) But, there is a part of me that knows that I can never let go of any part of this world that I've fallen so in love with. It has enchanted my mind, is entwined with my soul, and has been etched into my DNA. It's permanent.

So how do I accomplish all my goals in each of these compartments of my life? Not an easy answer, I fear, especially if I plan on keeping my sanity.

After thinking long and hard (my head actually hurts, believe it or not...), I've decided to focus my energy towards following five things - and *hope* with all my might that everything will fall into place.

1. Balance. This will be hard. So many of these things are significantly time consuming. And, I tend to lend my attention and energy towards the things that provide a more instant and personal gratification. Namely, the creative side of my life. I think this will be the biggest challenge.

2. Schedules and Lists. Okay, I know this sounds a little OCD. I am a little OCD. I also suffer from self-diagnosed ADD. So a schedule helps keep this little OCD-er on task. And I also think it will help with #1 on this list.

3. Limit myself. If I were Wonder Woman, I would do everything on my to-do list. Right now. All of it. Everything would be done by COB today, and I would have a new lengthy list ready for tackling tomorrow. Unfortunately, I do not have superhuman strength, speed, or the ability to fly through the air. With this unfortunate lack of super-human powers, I must resort to the realization that I do have limits. And I should not try to exceed them.

4. Take it easy. I can be a little tightly wound sometimes. This does the most harm in my marriage, and I fear it would do the same with children, if I let it continue. I think, like many women, the fact that I am not accomplishing every little thing on that ever-growing daily to-do list stresses me the heck out. On top of that, add a very lovable husband that likes to provoke and antagonize me when he sees the mercury rising in my face... Bad news, folks. So I am going to use Goosfraba to no end, and work to taking things more lightly.

5. Believe in myself. I know I'm not the only one. I know there are thousands, likely millions, of people out there who struggle with self-confidence. People who are holding back and not reaching their potential for fear of failure or judgement. People who spend too much time comparing themselves to others, comparing their accomplishments to accomplishments of their peers and thinking poorly of themselves when their accomplishments don't seem to measure up. I read something recently that rang home in this department. "There will always be someone prettier. There will always be someone smarter. There will always be someone better. But, there will never be another me." I have resolved to start each day by saying something to this effect to myself. A ritual morning pep-talk, if you will. So it may be a little silly. But if I'm not being my confident self, I'm not being my best self. And I am determined to be my best self as much as possible.

So here's to 2012 and accomplishing all my goals. And if I don't, it'll all be okay. I have next year, too. And the following year. And, ...well, you get the point. Next up - lists and schedules for keep me sane and on task :)

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