Do you reflect on the themes of each passing year and season of life? Which words best describe your experience? Looking back on 2017, mine were: truth, clarity, acceptance and alignment: who I am, my values, strengths, how I feel about myself, how I feel about others, what I truly want out of life and the courage to be open and honest about it. All of it! Even when it was painful. There were times when I had to stay firmly rooted in my personal truth, when it would’ve been easier to submit to everyone else’s ideals.
Moving into a new year, this is what I’m continuing to practice in my own life as I teach it to others. When we care more about being the fullest expression of who we are, that’s when life becomes delicious. Joy, freedom, peace, clarity and knowing flow through us with ease.
Here’s why 2017 was such a great transformational year for me:
I focused on Being more and doing less. Before taking action, I understood it was imperative to tend to my internal environment and get myself to a place of feeling better first. Sometimes filling our lives with tasks is a form of procrastination and a distraction from what our instincts are calling us to do.
I decided to let things be easy. When faced with challenging situations or fearful thoughts, I asked myself, ‘What is the path of least resistance right now?’ and allowed the answer to come. Inspired, aligned action materializes from being relaxed. It comes quicker when we submit. The more trust ourselves, the less we second guess ourselves.
I let go of explaining why I feel the way I feel. If someone can’t hear it the first or second time, they’re not going to get it the fourth, fifth, twentieth, hundredth time around. Occasionally, I so desperately wanted everyone to understand me. Things click or they don’t. If you have to force it, let it go. I’ve learned to smile and say, “Thank you. But I know what I’m doing.”
I stopped dimming my light to make others feel more comfortable. I declared, “Hey, I like it up here and everyone else can come meet me. If they don’t, that’s perfectly okay, I wish them well on their journey. It doesn’t make sense to lower myself and try to elevate us both. SO GOOD DAY.” And you know what? I started meeting and seeing more evidence of people who were also flying high and we have so much fun together!
I learned to self-soothe and keep myself balanced through regular meditation, visualization and gratitude journaling. When I’m feeling out of control, it’s because I’m trying to control everything. Willingness combined with a quick prayer of, “Please replace my thoughts with Yours” seems to stop the momentum of crazy and I feel instant relief and clarity.
I created a seasonal capsule wardrobe containing a handful of sweaters, tanks, tees and a few pairs of pants. I don’t care about clothing that much and it didn’t make sense to hold onto more than I needed. Less options = less clutter = a clearer mind. Athletic gear is an entirely different story, though! 😉
I accepted my calling as a teacher, writer and mentor. Sometimes we downplay our passions and purpose. We destroy so many great things with doubt and I’m guilty of holding myself back from pursuing how I truly wanted to spend my time: teaching, writing, connecting and improving the lives of others. There’s nothing more satisfying to me and no amount of money in the world that could make me want to do anything else. It takes great courage to accept the truth about yourself, even when it doesn’t seem logical.
I stopped caring less about how other people felt about me and their opinions on what I’m doing. Instead, I pledged to care more about what I think! Feeling good became my number one priority. I used it to leverage how life was going and what I wanted more and less of.
I read at least one book per week! The perks of having a library membership is it creates a sense of urgency. Also, If I didn’t like a book, I didn’t force myself to finish it. Some of the best reads were:
The Miracle Morning – Hal Elrod
Marry Him: The Case for Settling for Mr. Good Enough – Lori Gottlieb
Think & Grow Rich – Napoleon Hill
Woman Code -Alisa Vitti
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo + anything by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Her Every Fear – Peter Swanson (I couldn’t put this down!)
Love Warrior – Glennon Doyle
The Couple Next Door – Shari Lapena
Always – Sarah Jio
I shed Living Mint Green’s identity of what I thought people wanted me to be and began offering valuable information on a better way for all of us to live. Long gone are the days of how to be healthy from a food and exercise standpoint. There are so many blogs and Instagram accounts offering recipes and practical ‘how-to make a smoothie’ advice. I’m over it. I don’t really care about the latest health trends or what we’re doing with coconut oil these days. True, sustainable wellness comes from within and it starts with thought. It’s how we FEEL about anything, not what we do.
Thank you for following along on this years adventures with me! I wanna hear from you: what were some of the best things you did for yourself in 2017?