Don’t Rush In: A Resolve Not to Resolve

Author’s 2021 vision board

In the waning week of 2021, I glanced at last year’s vision board (above) and overall goal list (in my Legend planner) and wasn’t in a mood to add anything new.

Cue my long-ago two-year old self. “No, no, no, no, noooooooo. I don’t wanna.”

It’s not like I’ve given up and become some sort of deadbeat dreamer, some lump of coal Creative, or even that this endless pandemic has got me feeling whipped and hopeless.

It’s that I’ve done enough stuff to know that it’s time to inch forward a few more legacy pieces or not much.

So, I’m just floating now, happily adrift from excess productivity, because it feels right. It feels good.

If anyone asks, I’m resting.

Needless to say, I have an anchor on the boat, so I can stop when I spot something bright and shiny in the distance and do worthwhile deep dives when I’m ready.

That is usually the best of starts for me anyway. When I’m relaxing or moving about at a less urgent pace and thinking about something entirely unrelated, and a “unicorn” project drops into my spirit, sort of possessing me until I obey, indulge and finish it. It is often loud and scrappy as it wants to live in the world and I take the dare because there’s something in it for me too. Often free therapy, trauma release, or something I didn’t know I was trying to learn or be.

So, unforced, I do it, celebrate, and move on, trusting that the next big thing will make itself known.

When I was younger and more about action than meaningful action, at the start of a year, I’d randomly take off in any direction, grab a mission, hype myself into it, and head for the goal post. Then, I’d end up weaving aimlessly, checking boxes or finishing something I’d grown mild disdain for because it wasn’t The Thing although I’d stubbornly stick it out anyway.

Now, I’m taking my time, hunting for treasure.

So, I say this to you from that place of restful waiting.

Don’t rush into 2022.

While new dreams and desires might be dancing in your head, along with dizzying calls to action that can seductively hypnotize, tantalize and even shame us into motion, be still.

It was all there in my inbox on January 1st – email offers to help me lose weight, save money, remodel my home, get motivated, find a new job or love. I deleted them all. I don’t want an agenda yet while I’m savoring my small plate and this chill pace.

You don’t have to barrel forward either, putting on a show of busy-ness, hurriedly logging resolutions and monumental plans.

Lies and ambitious foolishness descend in the twilight days of a new year. Why else do most people abandoned their resolutions by February or March? Why else are gym parking lots full the first week of January and almost empty again by Valentine’s Day? Why, why, why?

Hasty decisions, FOMO, boredom, marketing are all to blame.

Be a rebel.

Clean your house, organize your photos, catch up with friends and family, cook delicious meals, read, do squats and nap. Wait for the light, the gravitational pull, the butterflies.

You have time to take your time and time will collapse when you find your next thing or your next you.

Most of all, it’s important to launch something that truly matters to you because if it’s the right thing, you’re going to be in it for AWHILE.

If you’re still itching to start something right now, sit with your restlessness, explore your motivations until you see what’s really yours to do. Anything and everything are not good answers.  It could take a few weeks, it might take a month, but keep the brake on until then.

And maybe, just maybe you need to rest the whole of 2022.

What a luxurious idea, yes?

To choose the traveled road this year instead of one that makes you tremble.

Or what if you slid a few dangling projects off the shelf that need a bit of attention.

Old is new if you cock your head slightly.

Do what matters most to you; it won’t be wrong.

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