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My 2015 Mindset Shift

11:21 AM

Isn't it amazing how, with just a few ticks of the ever-ticking clock, we take a collective deep breath and transform our December revelry into January reflection? The first day of the new year brings such great nostalgia and so much hope as we simultaneously look back and ahead. There's a fondness for the good things and a purging of the bad—a recognition that the person I am today can be better than she of years past, if only I tweak some things to make it so.

Instead of making a list of resolutions, I tend to embrace one mindset shift that can influence various aspects of my life in different ways, making me closer to the person I'd like to be —or perhaps the best version of who I inherently am. 

Last year's was this: Be Content. Rebecca of the five-year-plan, Rebecca of the impossibly high standards, be content. Accept who you are and where you are in life. Focus on what makes you feel happy/peaceful/alive, not on what could be improved. To me, contentment meant things like:

  • Recognize comparison as a thief of joy. 
  • Embrace where you are in life. You won't be here forever. Find joy in the flux that is your twenty-somethings. 
  • Be vulnerable. Admit the need for help. Admit not knowing everything. 
  • Be okay with imperfect. Let your imperfections show. 
  • Shift your focus from living according to what you believe others think about you to living according to what you know about yourself. 
It's an awesome feeling to reflect on 2014 and realize that I've been successful—and to recognize that life is better for our family as a result. That overwhelming need to impress, that "but what will they think of me?" panic, has all but disappeared. You could show up on my doorstep on an average Wednesday and I'd let you in happily, despite whatever mess is in our house. This would not have happened a year ago.

This year's mindset shift is a stepping stone from last year's: Be Proactive. Rebecca the chronic daydreamer, the sometimes-lazy thinker, translate your being into doing. Taking a year to be content let me separate the "what I want" from the "what I think I'm supposed to want." Being proactive is not the same as being competitive—being proactive is working to make my daydreams a reality. This year I want to:

  • Bias towards action. Thoughts don't count unless there's action attached. 
  • Embrace empowerment. Create the life you want for yourself instead of sitting back and waiting for it to happen. 
  • Recognize the hard work of others. Your idols weren't born great. They don't have perfect lives. They're putting in their ten thousand hours—doing, not just thinking about doing. 
So 2015 will be a year of proactive friendships, of budgets, of a photography class or two, of a clean and organized home, of more journaling, of a recipe box, of an enhanced proficiency at work. It will be a year of dreaming and planning and doing, of seeing things through to the end and celebrating accomplishment.

Here's to a beautiful new year!

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  1. Thank you, Rebecca, for your encouraging words and for the time we spent together in 2014.You inspire me. I've never tied myself to resolutions, but I feel the need for a more positive outlook. In 2014, I unconsciously vowed to stop trying to be special -- stop writing songs, poetry, prose. I stopped growing my spirit and became a regular Joe, sitting around watching cable TV. As a result, I felt drawn toward a sedentary, boring life. I realized that I create, not to be special and different, but because I feel connected to worlds around and within me -- complete with nearly unbearable pain and joy. My watchwords for 2015 are CREATE and MOVE. Like water, feel the ebb and flow of life and allow it to form impressions that make their way back into the world.

    1. Uncle Gene, it's been amazing getting to know you in the context of adult life. You've verbalized something that I feel as well—a desire to create for connection and for self-actualization instead of any sort of "personal brand."

      I like your watchwords very much and would like to stay connected to see how they manifest in your life this year. Keep me posted :)

      xo, R.

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