The new year comes with 365 new chances to improve yourself. I love the idea of getting a do-over at the beginning of the year to take what you have learned from the year before and apply it in the year ahead. In order to do that, I like taking a look at the things I did right over the past year. We can often beat ourselves up about the things we didn’t get right over the course of the year but why do that when you have 365 NEW chances to get it right. So, I started a tradition last year of looking at the ways I kicked ass in during the year. It really has shown me how much I’ve grown, how strong I am and reminds me of the importance of silencing my inner critique and loving up on myself. I hope this post reminds you to take a look back at your own wins and to celebrate them and show your OWN self some love. Here are mine…
- My mediation practice started in the middle of the summer. I was looking for ways to practice more self-care and as I was researching activities to incorporate into my life, mediation kept popping up. I’m no stranger to mediation and did it heavily a few years back, but I had let a lot of time-lapse in my practice and believed it would be too hard to start again. I kept thinking that I’d thrown away all that time and that my once trained mind, would go back to its inability to quiet down. However after listening to the 10% Happier podcast with Dan Harris I now realize that’s not the case, and that starting and stopping is not out of the ordinary. In fact what I once thought was out of the ordinary and only applied to me, happens to even the most experienced meditator. So now when I do my practice, I don’t beat myself up about not being able to concentrate for long, or that I do it for 5-10 minutes and not the 15-30 minutes I was doing before. I’m way more accepting of the journey and not so tied to the outcome.
- Speaking of podcasts, even though I have one that I have been creating for a little over a year, I never quite took an interest in listening to any others until a few months ago. Now I LOVE LISTENING TO PODCASTS! I’m not even sure how it started, but I think it began as I was attempting my self-care routine. I was looking for something to keep my mind entertained on my morning runs and I started to research motivational podcasts. Well that turned into murder mystery podcasts that turned into storytelling podcasts that turned into news and current event podcasts and now I have at least 20 in constant rotation! It feels so good to look forward to waking up on Monday morning because I know that This American Life has released a new episode. My morning podcasts also keep me abreast of current events which allows me to steer clear of the doom and gloom of the morning news. I’m so intrigued and moved by the stories that are told, they inspire me to look within and also have more compassion for others.
- Aside from listening to podcasts in the morning, I also workout in the a.m. I am a morning person by nature and have been since I was really young. My friends look at me sideways when I spend the night at their houses and wake up at 5:30 A.M. to head home. I don’t know what it is, but I love the energy of the morning. I am more inspired, have the most energy and feel my best in the morning, so I have changed my workouts to about 6:30 A.M. in order capture those feelings. I do admit that when I’ve had a particularly good sleep and my covers are warm, it’s hard to get myself out of bed. But once I put my running shoes on and step out into the brisk air, I get a shock of what I can only describe as euphoria when I hit the pavement. It also feels good to have gotten it out-of-the-way so that I have my evenings open to do whatever it is I want.
- Because I have my evenings pretty open now that I workout in the morning, I’ve been able to try new places around town to eat, drink and explore. It’s so easy to stay in the neighborhood you reside, in Los Angeles. People rarely leave because of heavy traffic and the fact that you probably have everything you need in your little enclave. But I’m an adventurer at heart and as such, I’m open to what lives outside my comfort zone. This means that when friends invite me to dinner on the West Side (about 45 minutes give or take from my hood), and I have an open evening, I’m going to say yes! I’ve been introduced to some pretty fly bars ( Hello Chestnut Club) restaurants (I adored Love & Salt) and cute little neighborhoods (I see you Conejo Valley), when I decided to venture outside of my own.
- As I said I’m a pretty adventurous person, this extends not only to what I am up for doing, but also how I look. I’ve been playing with my look a lot more than I ever have and I’m always willing to take chances and try new hairstyles, hair colors and outfits. I’m not worried about being too overdressed anymore and I look at each day as a new opportunity to look and feel my best! These were some of my favorite looks of the year!
Style awards lookMy Birthday LookCurlyBraided & Loose
- This year I premiered my Find Your Passion brunch and it’s really just reinforced how much I love to uplift and motivate people so that they can be their best selves. I’ve held about 6 or 7 workshop’s this year and each time I’m told how inspired guests are when they leave, however, I let them know how much THEY inspire me. I get to connect with people, hear their stories and in turn, help them figure out what truly makes them happy. There’s not enough words to explain how good it feels when you see the “a ha” moment happen before your eyes. When someone is moved to tears because they are being broken open and are allowing what they’ve never been able to quite articulate, emerge. I feel like I’m apart of something bigger than myself when I do this work, like Gods plan is working through me in an attempt to improve someone else’s life. Simply put it’s powerful! I had been so cautious of calling myself a “life coach” prior to doing these workshop’s. I felt like the community was a bit over saturated, and to be honest I was dealing with my own stuff and felt I needed to be perfect or come with more accolades to be considered anyone’s “life coach”. But I’ve learned through this process that I am indeed a life coach and that we all are in some ways because we all have life experience and knowledge to impart. We weather the storms of our own lives so that we can help someone in the midst of their own storm. I embrace my life coach title and in the year to come I will use it more to uplift, motivate, inspire and LEARN!
- As I continue to help others I realize the importance of helping myself in the form of therapy. I’ve been in therapy for the last 2 years and I have to say it’s been the best decision I have made for my life. I go when I’m happy and when I’m not in a good place. Sometimes I think I have nothing to talk about and when I get there I’m amazed how fast the time has gone by. There is such a stigma attached to therapy and I’ve never quite understood why. I mean there aren’t many people you can go to and drivel on about your problems without them getting annoyed or turning it around and making it about themselves, besides a therapist. My therapist has helped me with everything from my dating life to my relationship with my family, friends and work. I feel renewed after each session and ready to tackle my problems head on! This is one practice that if I have the ability to take advantage of, I always will.
- Travel was at the forefront of my year with a trip to Cuba in February. I already have my sights set on Thailand and New Orleans this year. I have said it time and time again, but travel is the best gift you can give yourself. I feel so alive when I’m in another country and I am reminded of the things I’m grateful for and those things I need to incorporate into my lifestyle when I return home. Travel will continue in 2018 and it will get bigger and bigger as the year progresses.
- The Hollywood Bowl was a must for the summer of 2017 and this year will be no different. I will go to concerts of performers I know and those I don’t, I will soak up the summer sun and take advantage of their wine policy (which pretty much states you can bring your own to any show). Regardless of whether I am surrounded by 15 friends or my trusty 2, I will be at The Hollywood Bowl Summer Concert Series.
- Disneyland trips will also be at the forefront of my year. People either love or hate the house of the mouse. I obviously fall into the former. I have an annual pass and will take full advantage of that pass whenever I can. This includes midweek evening trips and weekends. I may even take a vacation day or 2 in the middle of the week to beat the crowds. Disneyland is just my thing and I’m all about having ” your thing” and being unapologetic about doing it as much as and whenever you can!
So party people! What practices do you want to take into the new year? I would love to know in the comments below!