I hope everyone had the happiest of holidays! Sometimes the holidays can be a bit of a struggle for me and a lot of struggle for so many others, for so many reasons. Mine turned out to be FULL of blessings and I hope everyone else’s did as well.
You can’t help but think about the new year once Christmas is over. If you’re like me and love fresh starts, you’re probably trying to reflect on this past year and figure out how to get ready for the upcoming one!
I came across this quote that I think pairs perfectly with trying to let go of things to make room for new growth:
“Run the old stuff down, run it out, toss the weight of trash in your heart into the fire. December is the ruthless month. Pick up all your heartbreak and fling it out the window. Call everybody. Make peace and move on.” – John Patrick Shanley
I can’t lie, I have no idea who that person is whose words I quoted but he speaks the truth! I think we should probably all take his advice but here are some extra pieces of guidance:
1. Delete old meaningless texts. I have a habit of never deleting messages but you won’t believe how much lighter you feel after you de-clutter. There’s now more space on your phone for things that matter!
2. Delete old photos. Print off the ones with sentimental value. There’s even apps you can get on your phone (I use FreePrints where you get 85 free photo prints/month) where you can select photos from your phone to print off for FREE. After that, delete them! Make room for new memories. This board lives in the guest room of our apartment and when friends come over, they love to look at it! I print out all the best photos from the year and once they’re on the collage, I clear out my phone’s photos and start fresh. I did this for the first time last year and I think I’m going to make it a December tradition.
3. Clean out your e-mail. You’ll just feel better, I promise. For the messages you need to keep, put them in organized folders. You’ll be able to keep track of bills, of online shopping, of coupons, of tickets, you see where I’m going with this!
4. Clean up your friends list. If you find yourself on social media ever, it’s good to clean up your friends list or list of people you’re following. Why not do it in time for the new year? If you’re going to log on, get rid of connections to people who post things that put you in a bad mood. Unfriend those that make you feel as if your life isn’t as valuable because it doesn’t look as happy as their life appears to be. If you feel social media is necessary, just stay social with those that you love and take a true interest in!
5. Clean up your REAL friends list. If you have friends outside of social media that you don’t really enjoy talking to often, friends that you are constantly hoping will cancel the plans you made, reconsider if 2018 you want to continue forcing yourself to interact with people who you’ve grown apart from. Would you rather spend your valuable free time with people that actually bring you joy? People that you can bring joy to? As people get older, they change. That means your relationships with people will too. I’m not saying you have to have a formal break-up, but some trimming won’t hurt if your friendships weigh you down.
6. Invest in a planner. Every year after Christmas is over, I head over to the $1 section at Target where I purchase one calendar and one agenda/planner. Hurry and get one before the first! It’s harder to stick to your goals when you’re already behind starting with day 1. Getting organized is the 1st step. Planning things out can help you stay accountable for whatever new resolutions you may have. If you don’t have any resolutions, keep in mind that I use these tools simply because my stress levels are way higher when I don’t have an idea ahead of time of what my week is going to look like. I use these things to keep track of when I have extra work gigs, to plan when to buy birthday gifts, what I’m wearing for the week, what I’m cooking for dinner for the week. This has helped me in so many ways ranging from being late much less often, to saving money! I’ll make another post later on in regards to my organizational habits.
7. Make peace. It is super common that at some point this past year, you had some sort of conflict with someone or even yourself. Try your best to figure out how you can make peace for yourself. If not for the new year, at least for the fact that life is too short to hold grudges. I’m not saying you have to force friendships! I do mean that if it’s possible for you to handle, try ending any long term grudges. Try forgiveness. Try apologizing. Try agreeing to disagree simply because negative feelings take up a lot of energy. If your conflict lies within yourself, you could try talking to a wise person you know. There are even apps now that you can download where counselors and therapists can talk with you online for a much less expensive rate than meeting with a therapist at their office! If you can help it, mend some bridges.
If it is just taking up space in your heart that could be used for better, get rid of it! The texts from people who mistreat you, the photos of people who don’t truly care about your well being, the heartache of this long year, throw it away. Let the failed resolutions go. Let the disappointments go. Stop holding onto all the negativity because you fear change. It’s much easier said than done but you can do it!
What are you planning to get rid of this year?