10 things to let go of this New Year

There are few things that you can be sure of. I have 10 things you can be happy to let go of in this New Year.

  1. Unmet expectations: If you wanted to learn French last year and all you managed to learn was some names of French wine, that’s good enough. You know more than you did last year, and now you’ll be able to drink that Beaujolais Nouveau with a smug look you wouldn’t have had last year. If you wanted your kid to learn the flute because she rocked on the recorder so hard, and all she wanted to do was copy songs from YouTube and sing off-key, whatever floats her boat. She’s happy, you’re winning.
  2. Body Image Ideals: When someone who is size 8 in vintage clothing can wear a size from 8-16 in american sizing, we have a problem. Let go of the idea that you need to be a certain size to matter. Get strong enough to punch life in the throat when it makes you feel small. Throw hay bales, chop wood, dance till your feet want to fall off or simply walk until you have to go slowly to notice the sound of the trees. Find something you like doing, instead of making exercise a chore, make it a destination that you can’t wait to arrive at. I like working while I workout. You won’t seem me running unless I am running after some errant child or a taco truck, but I will hit a heavy bag for a good 45 minutes or until I can’t hold up my hands anymore. Find a way to workout that you like, so you can be strong and healthy from the inside out.
  3. Crap and clutter: I am talking about the things that you see that either make you annoyed to look at them, like unfinished projects or items you could use someday but aren’t your favorite. I routinely cull things that I don’t need to give to someone who can actually use them. For instance, we have these really cool big wheel type tricycles that the kids used when they were younger. They are awesome and actually make sparks when you deploy a hand brake. My kids have these long legs and never ride them anymore so we are taking them to the Pre-K section of my kids school so they can use them. Whatever you don’t use, let go of it. Even better if it was something your family really loved, because it’s like you’re passing along a legacy of fun and memories.
  4. Pinterest board goals: I like making stuff, but sometimes I could be on the “Pinterest Fails” Hall of Shame. Sometimes it looks great, sometimes you laugh and hope it tastes good. My family likes most of the new recipes, but they also like nuggets from any drive through. Some days, just get the easy option so you can sit and enjoy a few moments reading at the end of the day instead of scraping 5 pans that the delish idea called for.
  5. Squad Goals: This is a new ideal that you must have a “squad” of friends to go do amazing things with. I am sure that not all of these people at brunch are having the time of their life, that’s why there are so many mimosas. If your stage of life is eating leftover veggie puffs while you sip coffee in what many people would describe as riot conditions, that’s your squad. Your squad might be under 3 ft tall for a while but they will one day sneak whiskey into your retirement community so treat them right.
  6. OOTD, Brows on Fleek and other fashion ideals: Somedays, you really feel yourself and think you couldn’t be cuter if you were the cover of a magazine. Let’s be honest, my ideal is probably a local publication with limited distribution, but I still feel #cuteaf some days. My ratio, however is sometimes 2/45 and that’s fine. I live in the real world without a personal trainer or someone to do my hair, makeup and nails. Let’s be honest, my nails are never going to be pretty with as much paint they’re in. That’s fine. My face and my “look” is for my edification. I am not here to decorate the world for anyone except myself.
  7. Judgement: You’d think that I would want everyone to be a kinder and bring about world peace. I think that’s a great ideal to aspire to, but unrealistic if people don’t first stop judging themselves so harshly. Be nicer to yourself. If you are so hard on yourself that you are unable to find a way to believe in your own dreams, they just won’t have space to come true.
  8. Perfection: This will drive you crazy. Give up the idea of perfection and embrace the “good enough”. Good enough is having a car that needs a wash but runs great. Good enough is having clean clothes that are in a basket on the washing machine as I type this. I mean, they’re clean…no one here is missing a matching sock or going hungry. I forgot the trash bags, but I have lawn bags until I remember and that’s good enough. I am happy to be imperfect and have time to work out and take a nap when I am sick. Embrace the “good enough” ideal and be happier.
  9. Being right: This is hard for us who are always right, but sometimes it’s counterproductive to insist on your correctness and hurt feelings. My kids do things wrong all the time, but they’re trying. They’re learning, and part of letting them learn is letting them do it the wrong way in order to be able to show a willing student the correct way. I let go of standing in my rightness, and trying to argue with people that hurt me to do so. Some people will keep you in a disagreement, not because they don’t see your point, but because they like that you are hurting, trying to explain the situation. Don’t stand on principles when it’s harmful
  10. Happiness: I mean the idea that you have to always be happy. Feel how you feel, and let your people in to see how that is. If you are struggling, let someone know and carry the burden with you. Don’t hold onto a false image of happiness that conceals your true feelings. Everyone experiences a range of feelings, and no one is more important than the other. It’s okay to be happy, or sad, or a mixture of the two and call it melancholy. Don’t hide away feelings other than happiness. We know you’re not always the Instagram filtered version of your life. It’s good. It’s more real to live without that filter that turns you into a creepy big-eyed deer.

leftover halloween candy and bread crusts arent lunch (5)

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