Day 1 of 365. The start of a new chapter.

Chances are you’ve gathered a list of goals you want to do this year. Let’s take a look at this list. Does it include things that helping towards you growing or feeling comfortable?

Hopefully, your list includes more of the former. Sure it seems scary to set massive goals but that’s how you grow. Life is never experienced from the comfort zone. If there was one lesson 2017 taught me, it was to get comfortable being uncomfortable.

So instead of the usual New Year’s resolution route. I chose to set goals which are a bit more like personal initiatives. Like most things, I like to keep things simple. Keeps things easier to remember, put in place, and hold myself accountable towards.

In short, the three words I’m aiming to manifest within this year are: Gentleness. Creativity. Intentional. As a parent, spouse, leader, I want to be deploy more empathy and gentleness to those that rely on me. As a creative, I’m going back to my core of digging deep within the realms of creativity. When it comes to my goals, taking more risks is key to me being a bit more intentional.

From there I was able to distill a list of goals initiatives that I’ll be focusing on for 2018. In each of these goals, I know my anxiety as an introvert is going to be a small battle to overcome. I also know that I haven’t completely won the war against my depression either.

I do know that unlike many years prior, I have an amazing powerhouse of support around me. With that said, let’s dig a little deeper into my initiatives for 2018:

  • Love more. We all could improve in this area but this isn’t about anyone else but me. Why do I want to focus on loving more? Simple. Love and positivity always wins. Every area of life tends to benefit when love is present. Careers, relationships, and even skills. The more we love something, the more we want to invest in that thing.
  • Grow more. In a way, I have the feeling that I’ve not been as hard on myself in the area of growth as I should be. If we’re being honest, I’ve neglected my creativity a bit by dreaming and playing small. Instead of putting myself in a box and standing in the way of my blessings. I’m pushing myself outside my comfort zone and challenging myself to go all in on being a creative. Besides, I’m not doing this for me anymore. My tiny human sequel is watching. I want her to have a proper example of what it is to be a creative to reference.
  • Collaborate more. 2017 was a year where I got a proper taste of what it’s like to be able to collaborate with amazing individuals. People who were as passionate about creating good through practical positivity. The feeling of being able to stick to my lane while helping others do their thing is one I’m a bit addicted to. Thus doubling down on collaborations made perfect sense.
  • Create more. The one thing that I realized kept me going, even on my darkest days was the feeling after I created something. Anything. Even if it was doing my daughters hair. The feeling of doing something constructive and positive. It enabled me to shift my perspective onto better and brighter things.
  • Write more. There’s a level of serenity that comes to me while writing. It’s as if my thoughts and feelings become aligned and my threshold of clarity rises. As I enter 17 years of being a creative, I’ve come to realize there’s a ton locked away in the vaults of my mind. Information and experiences that I’ve taken for granted. Things that I’ve learned over the course of 2017 actually have value. It’s funny how life opens up ways for you to dig deeper into your talents. Writing has always been a huge part of my life. From documenting my journey, thoughts, goals, and creative process. Writing more can only help me to reach a better level of clarity. Also, I want to get my second book out and into the world. I’ve put up enough excuses about why it’s not done yet. This is the year to remove those excuses and get to work.
  • Aim Always Upward. This one is pretty straightforward. First it was a side project but then it grew into something much more. A lifestyle at this point. One where the goal is to be better than you were the day before. To stay focused on the goal. To trust the process but above all, trust that our Creator knows best. Aiming upward on a continuous basis has challenged me to leave the comfort zone behind. Now 3+ years later, I’m excited and curious to see where this mindset takes me.

Instead of focusing on what I can’t do or what I don’t have. I’m going to be focusing on getting the good out of my head and into the world. Focusing on keeping things real with myself, on being humble, and moving upward.  Time is too short to be faking it until you make it. Keep things real with yourself and you’ll be able to keep things real with others.

We all started somewhere but that doesn’t mean you stay where you start. We’re all on our way somewhere, whether it’s a place of regret or joy in the end comes down to you and no one else. In the end the choice is yours.

This is where I’m drawing the line with myself. Less talk, more action. Less doubt and more willingness to at least try. What about you?