January 3, 2013

Unraveling 2013: Balance

My unravelling the year ahead notebook...just a simple 3-ring binder dressed up a bit. 

Tuesday was the first blank page in a 365 page book. On that day I started working on the pages of my unraveling the year ahead workbook, which not only includes looking back at what 2012 brought, but looking forward into 2013 to dream and design the 12 months ahead.  The primary goal of this process is to find one word that you would like to inspire your actions and sum everything up at the end.

In 2012 my word was Positivity. A few days ago I shared that I felt I was better at being positive. In the past, positivity flowed in and out of my life, but it seemed that I often felt regret about a negative perspective days or weeks after putting that energy out into the Universe. One way that I gauged my improvement was by counting the instances of that guilt. Instead of looking back on a particular day or event and feeling upset that my negative attitude had influenced those around me, I found that I was deliberately adjusting my outlook in the moment. If I found myself starting to go negative, I would find a way to pull out a positive spin. That was a huge improvement for me. I'm not going to say that I was completely innocent in 2012, but there was definitely an improvement.

So...what's on the horizon for 2013? This year, my word will be Balance. At first I thought this word was too simple. But a few minutes later I realized that it summed up so many goals and carried layers of meaning for me. Here's why...
  1. The past few weeks I have been focused on my finances. Paying off debt and freeing myself from credit cards, student loans, and saving for a rainy day. Part of that effort is finding balance between expenses, investments, enjoyment and frugality. While I spent a significant amount on a tropical vacation, I also managed to pay off my student loan. I plan to continue working on this throughout 2013 and finally (and permanently this time!) become debt free. 
  2. Gearing up for said tropical vacation has brought on a huge desire to get into shape. Even through the holidays I have found ways to indulge but also stay healthy. I'm learning a lot about nutrition and motivation and managed to lose 5 pounds in just a few weeks. Let's hope that keeps going, but either way I'm looking to overall become more active and eat better while still enjoying my favorite treats.
  3. Learning to walk was just the first step of the healing process after my foot injury. Now comes some of the hardest parts: starting out with low impact exercise, leaving the house with two shoes instead of a boot, finding enough bravery to run, and finally gaining enough flexibility and balance to get back into yoga. It's going to take a good portion of the year, but I will get there eventually. It's just one step at a time. 
  4. Last is finding enough time and effort to devote to each of my goals. Not just the above items, but finding balance between my relationships, career, creative projects, blog, business, and me time. There is room for all of it, but it has often been sucked up by TV or a lack of focus. Sometimes it has been about follow through (which I will continue to work on in 2013) and not for a lack of planning. The trick for me here will be not to put so much pressure on myself to do it all. It should be fluid and stress free, so I will learn to let it all come naturally.
So...that is why the word of year for me is Balance. Balancing finances, a healthy lifestyle, and passions as well as learning to physically balance again. Now that I have found my one word, the next step is to come up with ways for making that happen. Some of these steps are already in the works, others are just about having the right attitude and awareness, but a little bit of planning will help me to keep it going for 12 months strong.

I can't wait to look back at the end of this year and see how everything went down. It's going to be quite a ride.

Do you have a word for 2013?


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