2022, a year meant for healing.
If you haven’t seen our latest two Instagram posts (one & two) we have experienced a lot of heartache in 2021 that just cannot be remedied. We have experienced loss on multiple occasions and right now I can say that 2021 has been one of the hardest years we’ve ever endured.
With our most recent loss, I took the whole month of December off from work. Actually, to be more accurate, everything just shut down for me, work included. So I’ve spent a lot of this past month pondering how I want to move into 2022, what I want to prioritize and what can fall by the wayside. I’ve actually come to realize recently that work was consuming too much of my mental space, even when we were facing grief, and in some ways all of that mental pushing to be productive while also in crisis mode felt like it was crushing me last year.
So this year I’m changing things up a bit. I’m heading into 2022 with a new vision for what I want out of this year and all of my yearly goals have absolutely nothing to do with work. Sure, I have work goals too, but I’m just choosing to prioritize other things moving forward.
Maybe your goals looks similar, maybe they look different, but I hope you’ll also take a moment to reflect on the things that you REALLY want out of 2022.
Nourishing My Body
1. Cook delicious food
I must admit I am NOT a chef. Thank goodness I’m married to a man that is. Though, lately with all we have had going on our time in the kitchen has been limited and pick-up orders have been our go-to. Time spent cooking together has been a beautiful thing for us in the past and lord knows my body could use some delicious home cooked meals. Time to whip out the cookbooks and find something yummy to make together.
2. Do things I love in order to get my body moving
I used to be so active growing up. I danced competitively, I skated, I ran, I played tennis. The older I’ve gotten the more I realize that working out feels like a chore and is not nearly as fun as it was when I was a kid. And why is that?? Why do we punish our bodies in order to keep them healthy? I’m bringing the fun back to working out by moving in ways I actually look forward to: solo dance parties in the living room, taking our skateboards to the Greenway, playing tennis when it warms up outside, having a pool day where I actually swim in the pool, or just strolling the neighborhood on a beautiful day.
3. Prioritizing maintaining a clean and organized space
I’m really more of a type B person than type A but there is no denying what a clean and organized space can do for your mental health. Mike and I have already started doing little things around the house each day and it’s so wonderful to just take care of our home and the things we own. Nothing monumental, just picking up the tv room before going to bed or vacuuming when we think about it. Small things that make a big difference in the long run.
4. Start a morning routine
I have big dreams of having a peaceful morning routine to get me started for the day but for some reason I’ve just never made it happen. My goal is to have time in the morning to drink my coffee and read a bit or journal before starting my work for the day. Some introspective alone time feels like just what I need before chatting with clients and tackling my to-do list.
5. Make room for rest
I already have two long vacations built into my year of work: one in April (when I would have taken maternity leave) and one in December to enjoy the holidays and recoup at the end of the year. I decided to keep my April break just as a way to reset part way through the year and to again avoid trying to be productive through grief. Rest is SO important, especially in careers that are so demanding, and I’m already giving myself permission to take time when I need it.
Expanding My Mind
1. Read for fun again
I’m embarrassed to say that I have 12 books that I started in 2021 that I never finished and my list of “must reads” is still growing. I honestly stopped reading for fun around the summer when life started to get too stressful and I didn’t need the added drama or suspense from the books I was reading. But I love to read and I’m getting excited again about picking up some of my in-progress books and maybe starting my days with reading a few chapters at a time.
2. Try to carry on a conversation solely in French
Mike and I both have been learning French for years (thanks Duolingo!) and while we aren’t fluent by any means we were able to get around Paris a bit easier than expected and I was super proud of us for that. I would love at some point in this year to be able to carry on a conversation solely in French without needing to prompt or explain anything in English. It will take a lot of work but even a simple conversation will do!
3. Start learning piano again
If you know me personally you know that my family is very musical. Everyone in my family plays an instrument and sings. My instrument of choice has always been the guitar but I did take piano as a kid (didn’t everyone?). I’ve always loved the piano and there are several instrumental pieces that I want to learn to play this year. I also know this would thrill my mother if I could play a few songs for her because she adores the piano!
4. Only surround myself with encouraging and uplifting people
After 2021, and 2020 for that matter, I just no longer have space in my life for negative or toxic people. I’ve always surrounded myself with an excellent friend group and these past few months they have been more important than ever. A community of friends that is encouraging, understanding, and ready to connect on an emotional level are my kind of people and I’m purposefully seeking out hangout sessions with people that make others feel good.
5. Actively participate in therapy
Last year brought a lot of heartache and with that I made the choice to start grief counseling. I don’t know how long I’ll do counseling but I think that I’ll know when I feel like a part of me is healed again. I have one-on-one counseling every week and I’m also in a group for mothers who have lost babies further along in pregnancy. I’m hopeful that both of these forms of therapy together can help me process and think through all the emotions I’m facing these days.
Healing My Heart
1. Journal thoughts, concerns & feelings to give them a home outside of my head
I’ve always liked the idea of journaling, and I guess in some ways this blog is kind of a journal, but recently I have found that writing down fears, concerns, and anxieties actually helps me process them. I think it has something to do with getting them out of my head and making them tangible somehow, like saying them out loud but without having to speak them out loud to another person or feel silly saying them out loud to myself. I want to journal more, even if it’s in a digital format that I delete later, just to clear my mind.
2. Track the wins & joyful moments throughout the year
I have a spot in my planner this year that I think is typically for goal setting and there’s about a dozen lines for each month. Though I know I could fill them with work goals at the beginning of each month, I’ve decided instead to fill them in at the end of each month with personal wins or wonderful moments that happened. That way, at the end of the year, instead of looking back at a yearly to-do list, I’ll instead have year or joyful memories.
3. Prioritize our marriage
2021 was hard for Mike and I and all of it had to do with things external to our marriage. Even so, in the midst of heartbreak sometimes things like date nights and just appreciating your spouse can slip through the cracks. We’ve said multiple times we want to prioritize us again so this year is going to be full of evenings having picnics at the park, date nights to our favorite bookstores and coffee shops, playing games together, and lots more time spent focusing on each other.
4. Be creative purely for self expression
Being creative for a job may just seem like loads of fun but it can honestly be really draining at times. It feels like I have to always be “on” and also always be thinking up my next great idea. I realized at some point last fall that I hadn’t painted for fun in months. So this year I want to paint, draw, write, and create purely for myself, outside of work. I want to fall back in love with the mediums that made me want to start this career in the first place.
5. Set perfectionism aside
This is an ongoing process for me but it’s a HUGE goal for me this year to set my perfectionism aside and just allow myself to be. I’m done feeling guilty about not being “perfect” because who the heck is actually perfect?! I’m done beating myself up for not being a certain weight or for feeling like I don’t always have my life together. I’m done comparing myself to other designers that I think are better than me. I’m done stressing about how others perceive me. Instead I just want to enjoy my life and enjoy the things and people that make my life so wonderful.
I’m rooting for you 2022. Let’s make this a great year.
For this month’s free background, I needed a clean slate and a fresh start. It’s a tad hard to see in the pictures but I’ve created a bright letterpress lace, almost snowflake background for any device you have. For the free background there are versions for your computer, tablet and phone wallpapers. Just scroll back to the top and sign up to our newsletter receive your free download!
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