"New Year, New Me" -- probably one of the most reused sayings when it comes to bringing in the new year. I think the notion behind it is actually very beautiful. Celebrating the end of an era and starting fresh with a brand new chapter; it gives us reason to want to re-invent ourselves, almost like a blank slate. 2013 is dunzo and it's been a little under a week that we've peered into 2014, yet it already feels like such a change compared to this past year.
I had one of the wildest years of my life. One that I think stands out dramatically from the rest when I look back. Turning 24 at the end of this past year set things in motion for a dramatic change come these next few months. SO much change has happened. I took one of the biggest leaps of faith 8 months ago and opted to take an internship, which in turn led to being hired permanently as a content writer for my dream company. Words can't express how much of a blessing that has been. Not only that, but it's a literal dream come true for me because I'm now in the process of preparing to move to the city in less than a month. It feels so surreal. That's been something I've dreamt of since college days and now it's a reality. I'm so glad I had the experience of commuting and living life within the city before opting to actually move there. I figured out what I wanted and what I didn't, and now the pieces just seem to fit so well.
At the start of every new year, we've been taught to come up with our list of resolutions. For me, I don't like saying things and then not keeping them because it only leads to regret at the end of that year, but lets face it, you're more inclined to go after these resolutions if you write them out and make them goals. I don't have like a top ten list or anything, but these are a few of the things I'm really set out to aspire to accomplish in 2014:
1) Travel more. In 2013 another dream that came true for me was my trip to NYC. It's funny because I think that's so normal to some people who have had the luxury of traveling a lot and having lavish vacations all their lives, but for me big vacations are something we tend to do once every two years or so. In 2012 it was two weeks in Europe which was AMAZING, but this trip to NYC was something different. The fact that I was able to plan it all and pay for all of it on my own was so rewarding. It was just me and one dear friend and we made the MOST of our 3 days there. I will never forget that trip. It made me realize how much I value self-discovery while traveling. It's something I want to invest my money in and make sure to cross one trip off my list each year from now on. That makes 2014 very exciting to look forward to:)
2) Be completely present, no matter where I am. I have made this mistake on numerous occasions throughout my life. I tend to let my curiosity, or my "fear of missing out" (coined in pop culture as FOMO lately), get the best of me. I want to resolve in 2014 to be 100% present no matter where I am. Especially with this move to SF, I want to savor every single moment of it. From moving in, to the weeknights coming back to my neighborhood after work, to spending some weekends venturing out on my own -- I want all of it to be an adventure that I can look back on and reflect on true self-discovery and growth as a person. No more worry about not being invited to this/ missing out on that event back home/ wishing I was somewhere that I'm not. Instead just full devotion to the present and what a gift that truly is.
3) Last but not least (since the rest are random and borderline embarrassing like learning to play guitar and whatnot lol), I want to fully accept and come to terms with the truth that "Timing is Everything." One of the toughest lessons I've had to learn has been giving up my own control; letting go and letting God. Call it the perfectionist in me or maybe it's this fear of having to settle or compensate.. but I've always wanted things to go the way I've imagined them. This truth about timing was made very clear to me a few days before the New Year. Truth be told, it was actually a tough word to receive because come on, in reality, we don't really like hearing that we have to simply sit back and just wait for God to open doors in His timing. That's so unknown! But that's what a step of faith looks like. It's confidence in the unknown and unseen. I think this past year I've been so preoccupied with worry.. wondering when my time will come for certain things and that's led to major comparison to others around me, which in turn, has led to a depletion of joy. But towards the end of 2013, it just clicked that this is a notion I have to walk with every day --> let go of your own control and trust that the best is yet to come and the best is in store. Why would I doubt that for a second? The fear is crippling, I can vouch for that first hand. The fear of "what if it isn't what I hoped for?" //"what if I feel like I'm settling?"// "When will it come?" -- I mean the list goes on. There is so much fear in the unknown. But I realized I can either spend a year in confusion and anxiety about this, or I can live in joy knowing it's in God's hands and that He will give me the desires of my heart once I delight solely in Him. It's a hard pill to swallow.. but it's such a challenge. I can think of 20 different things that I've allowed my heart to "delight in" over Him sometimes. It's a good reality check to go back and reevaluate these things, and that's what I've been doing as the year started.
I know this year is going to be different, yet so much better than before. I don't believe I need to become a "new me" as the new year has started, yet I'm so thankful that I can take the old me and add to her what amazing lessons I've learned in 2013 and the ones I will continue to learn in 2014. That's what I mean when I say new me.. Same person, but new lessons learned. New growth. New ways of reacting to things in different ways than I would in years past. No more comparisons, no more fear.
Photo credit: Logan Cole Photography