(ENG only) It’s December 30th 2021, as I’m writing this. I didn’t work today, actually I haven’t been working the whole week because the company I work for is on Christmas break. I went to check on my friend’s cat, I’ve grocery shopped, vacuumed, did my eyebrows with tweezers, fixed (or tried to, not sure if it worked yet) an issue that I had with the electricity provider, folded laundry and made a new load of laundry. Now I’m supposed to get ready for a date and instead of rushing back and forth in my apartment in the attempt to get ready, I’m sitting on my sofa munching vegan nuggets and carrots while writing this.
I am absolutely terrified of dating at 36 and I’d rather stay home binge watching something (Netflix, how dare you take away HIMYM from me???????) than feeling how I feel now. Do I hate the thought of potential small talk with someone who technically is still a stranger to me? Well yes, I do. But I cannot help thinking about the fact that 365 days ago I was a much different person. And despite the bumps along this year long road, I am grateful for these moment of discomfort.
For the first time ever, I am not focusing exclusively on everything I wasn’t able to accomplish yet or at all. See, when a year ends, and I think we can all pretty much agree to that, making an evaluation of the year that is about to finish is inevitable. We put everything on a scale, measuring carefully how far we’ve come along in life: work, kids, home, relationships, personal goals, health, projects, etc. And I’m pretty sure many can agree with me when I say that we mostly focus on the negative, aka what we haven’t accomplished yet or have “failed” at rather than our successes and accomplishments. Because when a goal is reached, we tick something off a list and somehow we keep chasing the next big goal thinking that THAT will be the key to our ultimate happiness.
As there’s only a few hours left to this 2021, I finally sit down and give myself credit for everything I was able to achieve this year.
I went through a hard, painful breakup. I settled into a small studio apartment with my cat and started a whole new routine of this new life as a single, with all of the difficulties that this implies. I embraced my feelings, good and bad. I got a new tattoo. I started a creative writing class and forced myself to get out of my comfort zone. I have cemented my friendships in a way that gave my heart and my soul precious vital energy. I’ve put myself out there and went out with a guy for a couple of months, had my heart broken and then went on a few other dates. I’ve bought tickets to more concerts because I want 2022 to be epic (fingers crossed that the Corona situation will get better… get vaccinated people!! It’s the only way to get out of it!!). I have taken care of my cat and she seems healthy and happy. I’ve made my apartment a nice, cozy place I can truly feel myself at home at. I’ve finally got the unlimited residence permit I’ve worked so hard for for the last 7,5 years.
If I keep focusing on the dream job I haven’t found yet, on the creative projects I haven’t accomplished, on the places I haven’t visited, on the money I haven’t saved, the things I haven’t done and the books I haven’t read etc. …. oh well, what would I have learned from the rollercoaster that these past 365 days were? Not only I wouldn’t really learn anything on myself and all I’ve went through, but I’d keep chasing some grandiose dream hoping that it’d be the next big thing that will make me happy and I wouldn’t even be able to appreciate everything that I am today.
So, I want you to do the same. Give yourself a massive handshake or even better a massive hug for everything you’ve done last year. Even if that “everything” means waking up and go to work everyday, even and especially on those days when you felt lost and hopeless but showed up for yourself anyway.
The ultimate secret to a happy life is that there is no secret. Life is as good as WE make it. How? By being able to look at anything beautiful life has to offer.
So I raise my glass to this. Let’s make 2022 beautiful in any way we can.
Happy new year folks!