No matter if you love resolutions or not, the new year has a fresh kind of vibe that provides a little jolt out of the December doldrums. The recipe for doldrums is this: too many parties, too many drinks, too much family, and too much darkness. It's guilt, hangover, and gluttony mixed with a wee bit of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Every December I ask myself, "Why am I not happy? All these good things are happening. Why am I so blah?" It usually takes a few days before I remember, "Oh, yeah, this happened last year. And the year before that."
It's chemistry, people. Joy is affected by so many things, but the big one for me is warmth and sunlight. I once went on a vacation to Mexico I called "The Omega 3 and Vitamin D Holiday," in which I gorged on fresh fish and sunbathing, and I was in bliss.
This time around, I'm practicing gratitude to shake off the doldrums. Instead of declaring what I intend to accomplish this year, I've decided to reflect on 2013. It was the best year of my life so far.
1. I met the man I want to marry on New Years Eve 2012, and spent all of 2013 enjoying him.
2. I got accepted into both schools that I applied for (one in Winnipeg, one in Vancouver) and decided to stay in Winnipeg (because of 1.)
3. After 6 years of being bored with Pharmacy, I took the leap into something new, and I feel like I'm exactly where I belong.
4. I took the trip that I had dreamed of for more than a year. It was a road-trip across Canada and the U.S. It was the first time that I travelled in a way that feels delightful to me, which was focusing on people rather than places. The places were amazing too, but what sticks with me are the soul-filling conversations I had with people who I love. They live in Regina, Calgary, Kelowna, Vancouver, Victoria, Seattle, Portland, San Jose, San Francisco, and L.A. I look forward to sharing bits of my interviews with all of them here in the coming year.
5. I became a student again, and felt actively engaged in what I was doing with my days.
I feel all kinds of grateful when I reflect, and that is the space I like to be in when I start imagining this next year. Instead of wondering what I can "do" this year, I'll say this, "I want to 'be' here this year."