New Year’s seems to be the typical time people reflect on the past 12 months and make goals for the next 12 months. As it seems almost customary, I too follow in suit. However, I encourage everyone to implement self-reflection more than just once a year. I (try) to self-reflect as often as possible, as I believe we can only grow, learn, and make changes by analyzing our victories and our downfalls. I’ve found that having this blog site helps with the reflections, but it’s nice to write thoughts down privately, obtain advice from friends, verbalize my thoughts, and seek guidance through faith and the man 🙏upstairs as well.
In fact, I don’t think it’s even necessary to share your self-reflections. The one component to a SUCCESSFUL self-reflection is HONESTY. You must be able to admit to yourself where you’ve gone wrong or why something may possibly be your fault. This means sincerely looking at yourself and your choices as almost an outsider. This is SCARY! Who wants to me wrong? Not me….I’m right 99% of the time! 😂 Yes, I know I give off that persona sometimes, but the truth is – I KNOW I’m not right all the time. I’m pretty much winging it each day I wake up. Being a mother, wife, daughter, friend, business owner, sister and the many other not-so-glamorous titles I hold is difficult! It’s chaotic, overwhelming, and sometimes just makes me want to throw the towel in and run away. But….I don’t! The good Lord gives me strength to tackle each day and obstacle, and for that, I am beyond grateful. So, with that being said, I’d like to share a few lessons I’ve learned this year!
* Don’t let ANYTHING consume you. It’s not healthy for your body, relationships, or your mental health. I will not ever be perfect, but to my kids I am. Therefore, I have to maintain balance to show them that sometimes you just have to stop, take a break, and trust everything will be okay. Starting a new business REALLY tested this area of my life. I was consumed with being a perfectionist, feeling like everything was urgent and couldn’t wait. Well, once I took a moment to reflect I found this wasn’t healthy. My body was telling me, my kids were telling me, my friends and family were telling me, but I was too stubborn to take a minute to listen. When I finally decided to take that moment to listen, I had to come up with ways to get better and not being totally obsessed with one aspect of my life. I’ve found that asking myself questions, and giving true, honest answers help me to balance. I’ll share a few I like to ask myself to decide if I’m being consumed.
1. What is the WORST thing that will happen to me if I don’t finish the task?
2. Have I taken time – focused, unplugged, active listening time, to dedicate to my family and friends today?
3. How can I spread this goal out to not make myself so anxious that I feel like it needs to be completed now?
4. If I lost EVERYTHING, what would I NEED the most?
* Pay attention and LISTEN to your gut (intuition, holy ghost, inner voice). As I’m getting older, I care less and less about how weird I may be or being judged by others. When my gut is telling me something, I need to listen. Why? Nearly 90% of the time, it’s right. I’ve also learned that I don’t owe ANYONE an explanation. My explanation is only owed to myself and my kids. These are the people I was put on this Earth to protect. I carried them for 9 months, and I will do what I feel is in their best interest. You’re free to give advice, but at the end of the day, it’s just that- advice and opinions. I make the choice to listen to it or not. If you think my decisions are unfair, wack, or not valid, that’s perfectly fine. As a compassionate human being, I’ll try to explain my thought process, but truth is – I owe you nothing. I’ve let other people’s “feelings ” change my mind against what I felt was the right choice. You know what? I’ve found that those gut instincts were right. I DID have a reason to see red flags. Don’t ignore those feelings….TRUST it. If something seems off, question it. YOU know what is the best choice for yourself and children. PERIOD!
* If something or someone is upsetting you, TELL THEM. Explain how it makes you FEEL, and WHY you feel that way. Too many relationships are ruined, because we are scared to show emotion. Why? It doesn’t make you weak. It makes you HUMAN. Nonetheless, what are we teaching our children when we, as adults, can not verbalize to someone we care about in a calm, cool, collected, and honest environment? I want my girls to say, “Mom, I’m sad because….” or “I’m mad because…”. Don’t assume the other person knows what you’re thinking or how it made you feel. We need to learn the triggers in relationships so we can avoid them, and grow. Being honest, vulnerable, and AUTHENTIC is not a weakness. It shows you are brave, big-hearted, strong, and not afraid to face judgement. It’s amazing how much more free, less anxious, and healthier you feel when you take a risk of showing your TRUE SELF. It’s also amazing how much more respect you get and confidence you will gain in your life. Try it for yourself!
Tomorrow, will begin a NEW year, and I will work on NEW goals. I may not accomplish them all, but you know what I will do? SURVIVE. When something feels so debilitating – enough to knock me down – I’ll turn to my faith, my friends, and my family. I’ll turn to my TRIBE, and I will conquer it! How do I know? I’m surrounded by warriors. Whether you know it or not, our TRIBE is the secret to our survival and strength, so don’t get too consumed to ignore your Tribe, trust those gut instincts, and show some vulnerability this year. Looking forward to learning and growing in 2019. Love and encouragement to you all for the same. 😘 THANK YOU for being YOU!