Those of you who have been following this blog for a few years (?!?! weird that that’s a possibility at this point) know that I have largely given up on New Year’s Resolutions. You know, those ones that you try for January and then forget about. I do resolution type things for Lent every year which is more effective for me, and I prefer to start the New Year with a theme instead of a goal that’s going to make me feel bad about myself.
For 2018, the theme was Unashamed, Unafraid, Unfinished.
Unashamed: I have found myself defending the things I like less this year while contemplating this word. I can more confidently say, “Yeah I just really didn’t like that” or “My favorite album of the year was 5 Seconds of Summer’s Youngblood” and not feel like I have to explain it or put myself down for it. I’ve also been working on self-deprecating myself less – I’ve realized that it’s a reflex for me a lot and I really don’t like that because I do like myself.
Unafraid: I have gone out on a lot of limbs this year. I’ve met a lot of new people and gone to a lot of social events and put myself in situations that I never would have before. I’ve talked about my feelings to friends and family more with the motivation that, you know, if these people are really important in my life, they’re not going to run away or be offended by me saying how I really feel about something. I gave a speech to all the teacher leaders in my district where I almost cried onstage! I’ve fallen back on the old phrase my college roommate and I used to use all the time: “what’s the worst that could happen?” – we would explore the worst case scenario about something we were afraid of and realize that, actually, that wasn’t so bad. I’ve done a lot of things this year where the worst case scenario was just like, “I won’t have very much fun at this thing” which…is not a great reason to not try something.
Unfinished: Pushing myself to be better this year has been really rewarding. In addition to working on less self-deprecation, I’ve worked on less insult based humor towards others – realizing that I’ve used that to cover up actually talking about how I feel. I’ve become a better teacher by trying new things and learning a ton in grad school. I worked so hard in our real analysis course in particular but also in other courses and am very proud to have maintained my 4.0 GPA for the master’s program so far!
So now, where am I headed for 2019?
Multiplying Me, Adding You
Okay, so it’s cheesy and mathy. Yes. But. Here’s what it means to me.
I’ve read a few things as 2018 ended talking about how New Year’s Resolutions are too often about changing ourselves. It got me thinking that I don’t really want to change who I am in 2019. I am really, really happy with my life right now, and proud of a lot of things. So I want to multiply the things I like about myself, including some of the positive changes I started to make in 2018.
I think I’ve become a pretty good baker and a pretty good cook and I want to continue trying new recipes and new skills and do it more often, including sharing what I make with others.
I’m really excited about finishing my master’s degree this summer and I am ready to be super proud of myself and to celebrate the accomplishment – along with working really hard on my last two classes and my action research project paper. (My last two classes are also both branches of math that I really, really love, discrete math and statistics, so I am psyched).
I want to continue to work on my self confidence and read good books and keep my house clean and celebrate teaching moments I am proud of. And yeah, I want to make myself better in a few ways, but do it by emphasizing characteristics I already have but don’t embrace fully instead of trying to change who I am.
I haven’t always been great at letting other people into my life. I am not always a great communicator. In 2018, I struggled a bit with my family relationships but developed a lot of friendships and started dating someone incredible.
So in 2019, I want to isolate myself less. I pushed myself a lot last year as I mentioned to go to more social things that I wouldn’t normally, instead of shutting myself in my house every school night and pretending I had things to do.
I love my trivia team and spending time with them outside of trivia nights as well – one of our team members got a new job so she no longer works with me, so it’s even nicer to see her every week (or most weeks).
I love spending time at the local brewery where my boyfriend spins records once a week, and getting to know all the regulars there. I love that I am a regular there.
I love spending time with my niece and nephew and seeing them learn and grow, even if my nephew is going through a phase of meltdowns and attitude right now. I realized last year how much I miss spending time with my sister without them, though, so my goal is to invite her to do more things just us.
I am bad at communicating with my parents regularly. They’re both retiring this year, and I want to include them in my life more and not have it feel like an obligation. I want to figure out how to bridge the gap between the relationship my mom wants us to have and the one I want us to have.
I want to be a good girlfriend, to not shut down when I’m upset or when I get stressed or when I’m scared of how I feel. To find new and interesting things for us to do together, but also go to lots and lots of concerts and like, make dinner together and watch four hours of Great British Bakeoff in a row.
I want to go to concerts with my friends and go visit them on random weekends and not have to have a specific event to see the ones who live far away. (That will also be easier when grad school wraps up!) I want to develop the new friendships I’ve made this year with incredible people that I really treasure as a part of my life, and I want to stay in touch with my grad school cohort after we graduate.
In all these relationships, I want to be more present in the moments that I am with other people. I want to use my phone as a defense mechanism for my introversion less and be more attentive to conversations. I want to not worry about tweeting about everything or posting about everything right away, but I also want to stay close to my internet friends whom I love dearly. I want my social media posts to feel important because they aren’t too frequent.
I want to reach out to the #mtbos and #dcsdpln communities again, but to not burn myself out with requirements about how often I post.
I want to celebrate all the incredible people I have in my life, including myself. Happy 2019.