Happy new year to all !
So 2018 is over… It has been a bittersweet year. There were joy at home watching both the girls grow, happily breastfeeding Peanut until she was 8 months, decorating our home, traveling, spending 2 weeks with family this summer. There were tough personal moments : losing my grandfather to Alzheimer’s disease, finding a lump in my breast and fearing breast cancer for a whole week. There was a very painful period in work that seriously knocked my confidence. There were some silver linings in the re-discovery of more junior tasks and in the meeting of clever and supportive new colleagues.
If I had to put a word on 2018, I would definitely say “learning”. In both my personal and professional life, I have learnt a lot, sometimes with hurt and sometimes with grace. I really feel like I have grown and changed in the past 12 months. There are a lot of things I have understood about myself, the world and life.
Relationships with other humans is the most important thing in life. Family, friends, local community. I understood very acutely this year that it is what matters the most. If you keep de-prioritizing this, relationships slowly dry up. So I now do my best to make the time : for coffee with old colleagues I like, for week-ends with my girlfriends, for visiting family even when it is far away and expensive to go. I don’t always succeed but I do my best.
You are responsible for your own happiness : Life can be tough or sweet, the only constant is you are in charge. You decide how events hit you devastate you or not. Making excuses is sometimes necessary to survive through awful times, to give you that little bit of slack you might need, but it is not a good long-term strategy. The good long-term strategy is “chin-up” and “how do I make the best of this situation”.
The “you” you are today is maybe not the one you thought you would be : giving up on some old dreams, pursuing new ones and knowing which ones to stick with until the end. This is a tough science but oh-so-important. I feel I gained a bit of wisdom there in 2018 and am more at peace with who I am.
But 2019 is already started and with it, projects new and resolutions. So to honour the tradition, I will share with you my list of resolutions. They are not too dissimilar to the ones I had set myself in 2018, and I didn’t do too bad, but I think a few deserve several years of work.
- No negative self-talk : use practical tools (meditation, prayer, affirmations, coaching, books) and support from positive people to get rid of this damaging habit and slowly “reprogram” myself towards more confidence
- “Go deep” instead of “Go wide” : select projects and deadlines in work that will give me time and the opportunity to build expertise.
- Keep reducing the carbon footprint of our family : 30% less waste is our goal. We did great at reducing waste in the bathroom and cutting on packaging through less Amazon orders, but there is so much more we need to do.
- Read at least 12 books : alternating between fiction and non-fiction and focusing non-fiction on topics such as sustainable development, sustainable finance, future trends.
- Volunteer at our local homeless shelter : I already committed to that one and my first session is next Wednesday, where I will be assisting the cook in preparing dinner. The shelter finishes in March so I am hoping to find another community engagement for the second half of the year.
- Organize a week-end away for Lion and I’s 5 year anniversary : it’s a nice milestone and we want to celebrate it by a nice long week-end just the two of us.
- Visit friends : at least go and see one of my best friend in Madrid and maybe another in New York.
- Write at least 40 blog posts : I started this blog in March, and have shared 43 posts so far. I get a few visitors a day and a lot of satisfaction from putting a few words out there. Hopefully, I have helped or amused a few people too.
Happy New Year to all of you and may 2019 bring you and your family success, health and many many graces !