It’s hard to believe that 2019 is almost here. In the morning quiet, I contemplate what the new year will bring, but then again I realize that in order to move forward, I get to look back and see how far I have come forward or back. It’s an uncomfortable feeling to see some goals that I write year after year still looking at me, mocking me, making feel that I got nothing done this year. Then I look at all the new unexpected things that I also added that made my life not only better but different.
I also there is a long road ahead, and there is so much more I need to do, or do better. To make others feel acknowledged and loved, to let them know that they are thought about even if I don’t see them regularly or if I do to find better ways to show my love for them. Each day is a new 24 hours to spend either the same way or maybe, just maybe a bit differently. I keep thinking of the quote by Jack Kornfield (but most often wrongly attributed to the Buddha), “the trouble is you think you have time.”
It is true, I forget that I meant to tell my dad more often that I loved him, or to my aunt that her joy in the world brought me joy. And now it’s too late. It hits me that I spend more time doing tasks or being in service, yet those closest to me (my wife, mom, sisters) don’t get as much intimate time as they deserve.
So I spend this Eve making the promise to make those around me feel more loved. If I manage that, I consider 2019 to be a success.
It’s strange to realize that 2018 is done in 20 days, and a new year begins. As I review my Law of Attraction of Planner, I am struck at how many goals I stated, and how few I finished. It seems that when I do not keep my vision in front of me on a constant basis, I forget. That’s the other thing. Keeping track of all that I want to do, to foster the intimate relationships I wish to foster, to be in service, to be a full time attorney while also writing. Inevitably, something gets left behind.
Each year, I fill out 50 goals that I wish to achieve in my life. I then put a timeline on it, yet every year there are things that just don’t make the cut or never get done. When I am not focused on my vision, no! when I am not ruthlessly focused on my vision, daily life and distractions take over. The dreams of vacationing quarterly fall away to random getaways because I didn’t take the time to plan time for us to do things. So we repeat the same places well because it’s just easier.
So as the year ends, and I review my actions, I do see sprinkles of hope, and areas of improvement. I do see movement forward and some backward. So I review my visions, write down my 2019 goals, and know that I may not get to all of them, the important thing is that I did the exercise and know what is important to me. And then maybe, some day, one time, they will become to important that I will get off my butt and do something about then.
On November 30, I managed to write 50,100 words which under Nanowrimo meant I had written a novel in 30 days. Yet I also know that those words will never see the light of day. You see, all of writing is revision, yet what I wrote not only is beyond revision, it was also not my intent. I used Nanowrimo to force the cobwebs off my brain, and recreate the habit of writing daily. I wanted to get the joy back into creating a fictional story, to go into a world of my creation where I was God.
As time goes by, I realize that one of the things I discard easily is my habit of daily writing. Reason being is, it is just too hard to sit there day by day to create something and because I Am a panster (someone who makes it up as he goes along), it feels as if I am wasting time. That I could be doing something else of meaning. And so I convinced myself to stop writing, yet there wasn’t a day that I didn’t think about it. And then it hit me that just like being a lawyer, the real reason for giving up was fear. What if I wasn’t good enough, what if no one read my stuff, what if I was a failure. And that insecurity convinced me to let go of writing.
Yet I never really wrote for others. I wrote for myself, and if others read then, it was an added bonus. Getting readership or being published has never been my goal (although it would nice) because when I wrote daily, it helped me to get what was inside me, out. I wrote because it helped me make sense of my world. And so I am grateful for Nanowrimo for rekindling that joy in me.
Today, as I went down to get my coffee, I couldn’t help thinking about my family dog Bebo would usually waiting for me to wake up so I could let her in. Papa did that duty when he was alive and now both are gone. An emotional start for the day for sure, yet there always was quiet calmness in me. I felt their presence, and instead of being lost in feeling sad or wanting them back, it just became a moment of gratitude for how much time I had with them both.
And then of course, my aunt came up who never missed out on any reason to come along and connect, and her always smiling face came to mind. So I took in the morning, and counted my blessings for what I did have not what I had lost. For once, no tears just a sweet yearning and remembering snippets of time that I’d gotten to spend with each of them. It hit me that time is the only commodity that mattered, and how I used it determined the kind of life I would lead.
And it hits me that in this morning quiet, a yearning to look ahead and keep reaching out for things because I have and had so many loved ones who support and believe in me. And so I begin this Monday not only with glad for what I had, but excitement at what is to come. I miss them, but remind myself not to wallow. I want to do great things but also need balance. I know I need to move forward but not be scattershot. And so I take a moment. Breathe. And start another week.
I have a tendency to want to get everything on my to do list done, but I also keep adding things to it. It becomes a game in which even the smallest things get added to this list, and what seemed like a manageable day turns into a rush to complete every single thing on my list. So I had to take a step back and ask myself, why? What was the point of all this items? What is causing this need to list and try to get to everything instead of staying present and enjoying the day for what it is.
I wish I could I could I was successful in always dampening this need to do things, but it is getting better. I am more aware now not to allow a to do list to dictate things that are truly me like reaching out to others that I love and care about, recognize the good in others, and really not let my day be run by a series of tasks. Yet I have to admit it’s not easy as I commit to more things for my vision. From volunteering at the Harriet Buhai Center to becoming Vice President of my BNI Chapter, there is a constant low-level anxiety that I am not going enough. And then I take a breath. It hits me that all of this is self-inflicted and easy to take myself too seriously.
So I breathe, and I do the best I can and move on.