I wasn’t going to write this post. I wasn’t going to write it for two reasons:
First, because I didn’t want to bore my audience with my whiney oh-woah-is-me I need to do all of these things for the betterment of my self and my life in 2010.
Second, because I’m afraid. I’m afraid of all the things that I feel I need to do, and that I’m not sure if I have the resources, time and energy to do. It’s frightening to think that your to-do list is more than just getting up, getting coffee, and going to work. I quit my job. I have bigger aspirations. I’m still not quite sure what they are. They relate to vintage and fashion and living a conscious life … but how do you monetize that? How do you pay your New York City rent on goodness and pure intentions?
So, SDV reader, this is a post you can forget about. You can read up to this point and click the “x” on your tab right now. Go ahead. Do it. I’m not upset.
But if you’re still reading – what you’re about to read is a quick top 10 things I’d like to TRY in 2010. Not DO. But TRY.
I’m a huge proponent of effort, and positive energy. If my output of energy is positive, what I am trying to accomplish will generate previously unforeseen, and undesired accomplishments. In other words: I receive what I deserve, based on my output of positivity.
So let’s create some TRYS. That may lead to GOALS I didn’t know I even had and which could potentially enrich my life.
You never know until you try, right?
TRY #10: To do pilates and/or yoga once a week
I’ve owned a “Pilates for Weight Loss” DVD for three years now that remains unopened. It’s currently resting on my TV, just … resting.
But, beginning this weekend, that DVD is breaking out, I am getting on my new gifted yoga/pilates mat and I am testing that DVD out.
Because running, lifting, and doing crunches is not enough for the fitness-life-new experience balance I continue to seek.
I also think I just need some time to decompress and dehyperize.
TRY #09: Seek out positive relationships with the opposite sex
Wow. Rereading that, it sounds sort of stilted, and like I’m writing a text book on how to find a boyfriend.
Well, to be honest, that’s how I feel in the dating realm – stilted. I continually meet amazing people – both men & women. But for the most part, the relationships stick to friendship. Within my guy circle of friends, it’s like I’m friends with the coolest guys on my floor in the dorm freshman year.
These are guys I can trust and shoot the shit with. We’re open with each other, we share the highs and lows of life, and for some of them, they share tragic dating/hook-up/that-girl-was-so-skanky stories with me.
Clearly I can communicate with the opposite sex. I’m just having trouble finding the one that wants to communicate with me on a different level.
So I’ll put it out there now: I plan on [TRYING] online dating. Just to see what shakes.
At the very least, it will be an ego booster. At least that’s some positive energy, right?
TRY #08: Freelance, freelance, freelance
When I left my full time gig, I knew that I wanted to write. About fashion. To get those measly $25 blog posts – add ‘em up – and definitely not make rent, but the bylines and chance to rock my writing chops would more than make up for it.
Too bad I’ve hardly written for anyone but Sammy D. It just hasn’t been a priority, because I’ve been throwing other “priorities” in my life – working through a series of trial & error experiences [cough cough babysitting] and also giving myself some time to find clarity in all of this haze.
It’s been a rollercoaster of an end to 2009. Can’t wait to use that energy toward punching my keyboard and working on monetizing my passion.
Because a girl’s gotta pay her rent.
TRY #07: Become active in fashion communities online
God, maybe I am a narcissist. Or just really self-pretentious. Or all of those words that describe people who like to promote themselves without shame because they have this burning faith that what they have to offer the world is something of interest.
Yup. That’s me — in fashion.
I don’t think I’m an expert, or anything particularly “new.” But I’m relatable. I’m quirky. I’m … real.
I also want someone to like what I wear everyday besides the men who drink liqueur on my apartment building stoop at 9 in the morning, and therefore are out and about when I leave for work. Or well, used to leave, that is.
Either way. I want my colors out in the digital world for all to see.
TRY #06: End the evening early – even on the weekend
This past week – which was sort of a vacation anyway – I slept. And I don’t mean 7 hours. I mean TEN HOUR nights. And my body really needed it, too — one night I was in bed by 11 and up the next day at 9. Naturally.
I just read a great post about how to detox in the winter without changing your diet. Because as we relate to the term “detox,” we think it means crazy juice diets and lots of yoga.
No. What the author of this blog post was saying is that over history, before the industrial revolution and working 9-5 became working 8-9; man rested in the winter. He had farmed hard for three seasons. The weather was cold and hard on his physical self. So he slept. 10 hours a night.
Historically speaking, we sleep less than ever before. Shocking why we have psychologists, and fitness trainers, and diet plans, and self-help books … where was all that jazz 100 years ago?
As man has progressed, he’s progressed his self to needing more outbound assistance, i.e. he reaches to others to cure the ailments that he gives himself.
If I can sleep 8 hours a night, by golly, I’m going to do it, even if it cuts into my quote, unquote, “productivity.”
TRY #05: Set five work goals per day, and put first things first
I love “to-do” lists. But when your to-do lists are longer than 10 lines, or you find yourself rewriting and re prioritizing them every night before you go to bed an realizing just how much you didn’t get done that day that you really wanted to [like, ahem, the priorities], then you know that there um, has to be some re prioritizing to your prioritizing. Or something like that.
Anyway – try #05 is to write five work goals a day. Those are the only things I focus on. When they are done, I move forward. But not until I am done. By setting lower goal bars, I will be less likely to “fail.” Because I haven’t set such a high bar that no matter what I am doing, I am “failing.” And that negative energy can’t get me anywhere, can it?
TRY #04: Talk less, ask more, and listen with consciousness
I’ve always been a gabber. But I’ve always been a listener, too. I guess my relationship between talking and listening has been reciprocal: I listen as much as I talk.
But, what I’ve realized about myself lately, is that I have so many things whirling in my brain at once. Checking my blackberry. Thinking about the people around me. The food in front of me. If my lip gloss looks OK.
I don’t focus on the words. Or rather, on the person behind the words. It’s been so bad that I’ve lately had to ask people to repeat themselves… when they are sitting right before me.
I’m not quite sure how to tackle this one. Stare at someone in their eyes? Work on good communication skills, like repeating back what the person told you in conversation, and asking “empathic understanding” questions?
Yeah, probably. Conscious listening, here I come.
TRY #03: Run three times per week
This is an extension of something I’ve already accomplished: to run in the morning in Central Park with my running partner, Rachel Mount.
Way back in April ‘09, when I was still working at Hearst, Rachel (an ed assistant at Oprah Mag) and I started talking about running. Together. In Central Park.
She had just moved to the UWS from Murray Hill. I lived UES. Between us? A huge, fully running-friendly park. So, in the cool mornings of April, we found companionship unlike any other running side by side at the refreshingly early hour of 7AM.
We’ve started a new blog to help us master the art of blogging motivation.
I’ve started a food journal again, to master the art of mindful eating.
Get the pattern here? This is my “live healthy” TRY. My “don’t eat peanut butter from the jar” or “steal your roommates oreo cookies because you refuse to buy sweets for yourself.”
Well, truth is that I do want to exercise, and eat better, and look pretty, and be thin and lovely and think that life will be perfect once I’ve achieved all of that.
But no. That’s not reality. Butterflies will not follow me when I lose those extra five pounds.
It’s striking the balance [thanks, Dad] and realizing that healthful living is in small goals [like running 3 times a week] and indulgences when needed [like eating straight from the peanut butter jar].
TRY #02: Turn off my email between 9AM and 12PM
Email is a huge time sucker. People like Tim Ferriss in the Four Hour Work Week tout the miraculous things one can accomplish when email becomes just an assistant, and not a focus.
I love connecting with people. I love sending out random “how are you emails.” I also love cold emails and the thrill of getting a reply back. You could say I have a nepotistic vein in me. I just like being liked in a digital way.
In 2010, I’d like to create one hour of email time a day. Ideally, at night, before I go to bed. I reply to what is most urgent, and although this hurts to say – I don’t reply to what isn’t.
You can’t be Miss Popular on Gmail, Sammy.
TRY #01: Say “no” to requests at least once a day.
Sounds harsh, no? But saying no is a powerful thing. It’s the awareness that you can’t do everything because by trying to do everything, you are actually doing less. You’re spreading your energy in such a way that whatever you’ve said yes to becomes a mediocre experience for you. Not to mention the results – you can’t be a rockstar at 10 different things. There’s a reason people “specialize.”
I’d like to begin specializing my life into a “yes” channel that is focused and fulfilling, and not obligatory.
It’s slightly ironic that my last New Year Resolution TRY is to say NO.
Hm. Sounds like I’ll be breaking one of my TRYS right off the bat – by saying YES to a few of those TRYS above.
God bless trying.