As the year continues to wind down and we finish our journeys of self-reflection, it’s time to start turning toward the future. 2021, what will you have in store for us? I’m such a huge believer in self-reflection because it helps me find clarity in my future plans. Whatever your hopes and dreams for the coming year and years ahead, I implore you to ensure that they will bring you a sense of JOY.
When I am focused on setting goals in my life, I always make sure I am following my JOY and I encourage you to do the same. Our goals should be leading us to more joy, happiness, and an overall sense of fulfillment in our lives. Otherwise, what are we doing?
Once you have a solid sense of what your ultimate goals are, it’s important to determine the things that are going to get you closer to achieving them. I have found that incorporating a few daily practices into my life has a hugely positive effect on my mindset. And if my mindset is in a good place, my creativity is able to thrive. Different practices resonate with different people, but I wanted to share some of my favorites with you:
I try to do both of these first things in the morning, which helps set me on the right path for the day. It’s a built-in way for me to get in touch with myself and how I’m feeling every morning. Once I know my feelings, it’s so much easier to give myself what I need throughout the day.
Take a walk!
It sounds simple, but fresh air really can help turn a bad mood around or bust through a creative block.
Laugh/dance with abandon (or…embodiment practice).
They say laughter is the best medicine. It has the unique power to get you out of any funk that you’re in. If you’re having trouble getting started, turn your favorite song on maximum volume and dance like crazy. Catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror and I bet you won’t be able to keep a smile off your face. Exuding joy in your physicality can totally change your mindset.
But it’s not just about laughter… I love moving with the music and allowing myself to feel any emotions that come up. Flowing with the music and practicing embodiment feels so magical and pure. I feel connected to my core and reach emotional clarity.
When planning and goal setting, another thing I find immensely helpful is to be proactive about challenges that I might face along the way. When you’re setting your intentions and making plans, consider what roadblocks you might encounter and strategize ways to combat them. One struggle I see often, in my own creative work as well as amongst others I know, is the
frustration of working for little to no recognition. We invest time and energy into following our inspiration and we can’t stand the idea of the world not getting to experience the fruits of our labor. And you know what? That feeling sucks. That said, it’s important to remember that anytime we are inspired to create something, that in itself can be the reward. We chose this life, this professional path because, at some point or another, we discovered the immense joy that following our creative muse brings.
So ask yourself this:
Remember that joy is what brought you here in the first place. Focus more on the journey and less on the destination. Another thing that those of us who create for a living sometimes struggle with is being BAD at things. We’ve finely honed our skills over the years, working day in and day out to be the masters of our craft.
The idea of stepping out of our comfort zones and trying new things that we have yet to master can be less than appealing – even if it’s to try something that really interests us.
Maybe if we gave ourselves permission to be bad at something, to go into whatever it is with reasonable expectations, we might surprise ourselves. We might even have fun! Let your guard down and try something new. Give yourself permission to be bad! Let it make you laugh. Let it make you strive to be better. When you think about it that way, it’s worth a try, isn’t it? What’s the worst that could happen?
My wish for you, as we close out one year and head into the next, is this: that you challenge yourself to venture outside of your creative comfort zone. Dream big and play! Push the boundaries of what you think you’re capable of. There are no limits to what you can create and achieve. And don’t forget to go after that JOY! Happy New Year, friends! Here’s to 2021!