2021: Gratitude, Routine & Calm

2021: Gratitude, Routine & Calm

Happy New Year! Guys – we did it. 2020 is over! And while I realize that the new year does not flip a switch in world events, I will say that I feel optimistic and hopeful about what this year has in store.

Part of me is genuinely hopeful that Covid will be less of a concern by this year’s end. I think (and hope) that the vaccines being administered will be successful and that with vaccination and continued adherence to recommended protocols, we might be able to find our way out of this.

However, even if we don’t go back to “normal” any time soon, I am still hopeful and optimistic for 2021 because 2020 taught us how to live through this mess. We’ve learned and adjusted to navigating life during a pandemic and while it is no one’s preferred way of living, we know now what to expect and that we can persevere.

When it comes to my 2021 goals I have been thinking long and hard about them for months. I almost considered throwing out the whole idea. But I have done this type of “new year’s resolution” for three years now. That is, rather than choosing very specific goals, I instead pick 2 or 3 keywords to focus on throughout the year. It works for me. It gives me a sense of focus in my day-to-day life, journaling, and even my blogging.
So, intro aside, here are my goals for 2021.

Gratitude. Routine. Calm.


Gratitude

diary with flowers between pages on crumpled fabric
Photo by Olha Ruskykh on Pexels.com

I was flipping through an old journal of mine recently and realized that 2019 (and pre-pandemic 2020) was a good time for me as far as feelings of fulfillment. I was so motived! I wrote so many blog posts that year. I made gratitude lists daily in my journal, as well as regularly writing out affirmations. Clearly, it was working. When I fell off this practice at some point in the last year, my mental health suffered. It was hard at certain points of the pandemic to even take out my journal let alone make a list of anything. Parenting burnout, loss of routine, and trying to keep up with a toddler who was also feeling the effects of quarantine found me leaving myself and my daily gratitude habit in the dust.

In 2021 I will focus on gratitude (and writing) again. It is so easy to forget how much we have to be thankful for in our day-to-day life. But spending even a few minutes of each day consciously focusing on your blessings and privileges can truly ground you and lift your mood at the same time.

Routine

I thrive when I have a routine. I love having a schedule and knowing what to expect out of my day. It is something that 2020 took away from me that I’m taking back.

This year I want to stick to a few routine practices again. Incorporating daily writing, meditation, and yoga into my life is important to me. I get overstimulated easily and these things tend to ground me – which is something I need. I don’t necessarily have a ton of time to dedicate to either of those things but I’m going to try. I can journal when Julia eats breakfast and I can meditate and do yoga in the evening after she goes to bed.

For Julia, there are a couple of routines I would like to reincorporate into our days together. One of these things is structured educational activities. We do some seated learning activities almost daily but we don’t really have a “set” time for it. I’d like to work on that for our own benefit (knowing what to expect each day) and to prepare her for the structure that will come with pre-school in the fall. I’d also like to work on getting outside to play every day, even in the winter (à la “outdoor all 4”) excusing days that are literally freezing. We both love getting outside and now that we have our own yard, there’s no reason for us not to do this.

Calm

blossoming lavender in agricultural field on farmland
Photo by Maria Orlova on Pexels.com

I don’t have any particularly heavy themes or goals for 2021 and that is intentional. I truly want to focus on living in the present and living slowly, and gratefully this year. The past few years have been full of so many uncertainties, waiting, and fear. I’m tired of living in a state of constant anticipation. In some ways, for the past few years, this way of living wasn’t necessarily a choice due to circumstances. However, in 2021, I want to fill my life with more calm – at least in ways that I can control.
For me, this means a lot of letting go and choosing to let life unfold how it is meant to. In 2020 one of my goals was to “trust” life more and I have gotten better at it. I will be continuing to lean into that mindset this year as well.

Here’s to a healthy, fulfilling, beautiful year.
I wish you all the very best in 2021!

Sending love & light,

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