It's the season for setting resolutions and promising change in the new year. It becomes an adjustment that we hope to keep for the next 365 days and maybe even beyond that. It's the modification that we seek in hopes of bettering ourselves, becoming healthier, and potentially even finding a happier place. For some of us, it's letting go of the bad, and for others it's incorporating habits that bring more balance and peace. While there certainly is no right or wrong resolution, I definitely think there are ways to keep them going all throughout the year. It's so much more than losing those pesky 10 pounds or committing to a social media free night after dinner. It's a change that can truly impact you as a person and the people around you. Let me encourage you to make the most of it, to be all in, and to connect with yourself for the next twelve months.
Deeply connecting with ourselves, is rarely something any of us are taught to do. In fact, I was just telling someone the other day how I didn't truly learn to connect with myself until moving away from home where I knew no one. I would spend many days exploring a city, shopping, and driving all by myself. For those of you who know me, you understand that this was challenging for me. I absolutely LOVE being around people and no doubt can hold a conversation with just about anyone who crosses my path. However, those quiet moments forced me to be silent (like, really hard for me), meditate on my life, and think about what was going on. It was the first time in my life I was able to pause and reflect. I started to understand my feelings, what I needed and where improvements needed to be made.
That connection turned into journaling, reading a lot of self-development books, and setting goals as if it were my job. My little desk here is accompanied by sweet and colorful journals that come packed with ideas, thoughts, and plenty of emotion. It's where I have learned a little more about myself and connected on an even deeper level. Next to those journals, you will find my paper planner. Yes, I'm old fashioned. While electronic ones are great, I still love a good ol' paper planner. Beyond my schedule, I use it to set goals, write quotes that inspire me, and keep important notes. I also use it to plan out each year. As 2017 kicks off, this is the perfect time to do just that. An intention or goal without a plan is rather useless if you ask me. In this new year, start by writing at least three goals you would like to accomplish. Each goal can be broken down, detailing the action steps needed to get there. Keep it practical but set the bar high. I started this two years ago while living in Germany. My business was just a little over a year old and I knew if I wanted to take things to the next level, I needed a plan. Keep the goals in a place (like a planner) where you can see it. It's great to remind yourself of what you're working towards.
This brings me to my most important part of this post. This year came with challenges and many wonderful blessings as well. One of those blessings happens to be the most recent addition to my career. I was given the opportunity to get back into broadcasting and I did. Sure, I was so excited but also had a fear of what it would be like. Would I be good enough? Will people accept me? The crazy thoughts that surely didn't come with anything but self-doubt and worry. I mean, I preach to people the importance of positive thinking and self-love and here I was doubting where this road would take me. It was in a moment of truth that I brought it to someone's attention. This wonderful woman who everyone refers to as Miss. Jess, knows a thing or two about performance. She was a professional ballet dancer and now runs an elite dance studio in Toledo. I shared my concerns with her about taking this job, and she gave me the most beautiful and rewarding advice. She said whatever you do, just be ALL IN. It made a huge difference in not only in my career but also in my life. Here I was going about my life certain that I gave it my all. I worked extremely hard and felt like I went the extra mile. Not even close. When you truly apply this concept, you are present and not staring at the clock for the day to be over. You make the decision that you are going to give it your all, in every moment.
When you're ALL IN, you start to embrace a conversation, even with a stranger. You start to enjoy the little things and moments that you normally wouldn't. I go to bed and wake up each morning with a whole new purpose. I'm putting this everywhere I look, and constantly checking in with myself, with the reminder to be ALL IN with whatever I'm doing. It's a concept that can be applied to all aspects of your life, not just your career. It's a mantra that can change the way you live your life, think and even perform. This year, let's learn to connect with ourselves, live life to the fullest and be all in. We have a whole year to write the most beautiful story. Start writing your story now. Start chasing your goals. Start living a life that you truly can wake up and love. You have the power and control to make it happen. 2017 is your year!