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new year, new word - or something like that

I spent the first weekend of 2021 at home with my people - just resting. They were no-pants, ice cream for lunch, afternoon nap kind of days - you know the ones. There were puzzles and books and long conversations. Real, actual rest.


After ringing in the new year with my closest friends, I woke up early on Friday, switched on the coffee pot and took Olive out to do her business. I walked around in my coat and my slippers, secretly enjoying the cold, foggy morning (everyone knows I’m a sunny kind of gal). I came back in, curled up in the corner of the couch with my coffee and watched as the sun lazily lit up the sky.


For me, there’s not much that beats a quiet, slow morning like that. I love the special kind of silence that the early morning brings.


As I sat, I reflected on this past year and thought about what I want out of 2021. Every year, I hesitate to make resolutions. I find they’re generally fueled by shame or unhappiness and I just can’t bring myself to participate in them. I’m sure many people will argue that they’re helpful or motivating or whatever but they’re just not for me. I think New Year’s resolutions are a mighty fine way to set yourself up for failure.


Instead, I like to choose a word or a feeling that I want to focus on in the new year. Then, I list ways that I could fill my year in that way. No one loses - you get credit just for trying!


In 2021, I chose joy. I will do things that make me feel happy and I will make an effort to look for joy when it’s not easily found...


I will laugh without reservation.

I will wear clothes that make me feel good.

I will go places I’ve never been.

I will try new things.

I will move my body.

I will play.

I will climb mountains

And swim in oceans

And sleep outside.

I will eat food that looks like art

And food that I’ve made with my hands.

I will be silly without worrying.

I will read a lot of books.

I will paint and sketch and make things.

I will give love

And allow myself to receive it.

I will nurture relationships with friends.

I will be at peace with being alone.

I will accept the things meant for me with grace

And I will let go of the rest gently.

I will make time for the things that make my soul sing.

I will remember what living is for.


To me, finding focus for a year is helpful because it still allows for bad days. When you can’t get out of bed, or you feel cranky for no reason, or you zone out to Netflix so you don’t have to deal with life, you haven’t failed. You’ve experienced being human and you get another chance to find joy with each tick of the clock.


So, here’s to a joyful 2021 - let's talk about where you find joy!


@poppyhouseca on instagram

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