Wow, it’s been a while since I’ve written anything for public consumption. I forgot how good it felt to share snippets of my life and what I’m learning with all of you.
Let me take you back to December 2019. I’m sitting on a train to Banglore with my good friend Vivek (check out his blog too!!) and planning out how I want 2020 to look by writing in my notebook. I come up with my main theme for the year: 2020 Vision. To me, it meant a year of getting a crystal clear vision for my life (haha, get it) and working towards making it happen. Who do I want to be? What are my priorities? I just found a list of questions off the internet and shared it with Vivek. We wrote our answers separately and discussed them after. But more on that later.
I FINALLY WENT BACK TO INDIA!!
I had lived there with my parents when I was around 3 to 4 years old and my recollection of it was sketchy. Thanks to Vivek, who planned the whole trip, I managed to visit his hometown of Chennai, as well as the two places I’d lived in – Mumbai and Bangalore. I am also sooooo soooo sooooo grateful to Vivek’s family, his cousins Hemanth and Vishaka, as well as Sumona and Bonnie for making the trip so damn enjoyable.
Ya girl does not do planning of any sort for trips and these people just made it so easy for me to enjoy every single moment of it. The accommodation was sorted, sightseeing was sorted, food was sorted and was BLOODY AMAZING (the variety of tastes and spices oh my goodness), and Hemanth and Vivek even carried my heavy-ass luggage up and down flights of stairs! So yes, I am very very grateful. I got to experience life as a local and that is the best kind of experience ever when you’re travelling.
And then it was back to the grind…
Okay, back to 2020 Vision. Once I got back from India, I went straight into the daily grind again. Work work work work work. And felt like I’d kinda lost myself again. It’s funny to think about it now, because it’s like, “surely you have weekends off to do things you wanna do?” I did spend a lot of weekends doing some reading and hanging out with my boyfriend. Who, by the way, seemed to be doing A LOT of things with his life. Studying for the GMAT, going for Vietnamese classes on the weekend… I, on the other hand, didn’t feel like I was working towards anything in life. I was just floating day to day going through the motions.
It’s like I’d forgotten all of the things I’d wanted to achieve, all that ink left on the pages of my notebook, never to be looked at again. I couldn’t help but think about who I was in the past, that chick who was always going to events, meeting new people, learning new things and super excited to share what I was learning. That chick who was living her best life always feeling inspired and filled with energy. Was that really me?
Meanwhile, present me had not gotten her finances in better shape, let her health and fitness deteriorate way more than she’d liked and had not fostered deep and meaningful relationships with people who mattered (i.e. the top 3 areas that I’d written down as my priorities for the year). To top it off, 90% of my waking hours were spent at a job that did not excite me in any way. I’d found myself stagnating, not seeing any way for me to learn and grow in my role anymore.
No wonder I was unhappy, my goodness! I LOVE learning and growing – it’s what lights me up and gets me excited. Hence, after many discussions, I decided to quit even though I had no idea where I was heading. That’s not to discount the fact that I did learn quite a bit there and worked with some awesome colleagues. It just wasn’t doing anything for me anymore and I knew it was time to go.
Once I figured out what I didn’t want, I began the journey of figuring out what I did want. First, I reminded myself that nobody has life figured out. We’re all in a constant process of testing, learning and refining. Then, I forgave myself for slipping into a slump and resolved to move forward with greater intention so that I don’t let that happen again. Even though these times have been challenging due to the Coronavirus, I’m so glad that I’ve had so much time to discover, learn and explore what I really want to do with my life.
I think it’s normal for us to get comfortable with playing at a lower level than we’d like. Somehow in the busyness of life, excuses get in the way, good habits slowly slip, momentum is lost and willpower is non-existent. Before you know it, you’ve eradicated all of your progress and are starting back at square one again. But it’s okay! As Ray Dalio says, Pain + Reflection = Progress.
And so, upon reflection…
Financially, I know that I do not want to be dependent on an employer for income. I may be lucky enough one day to find a job where I love what I do, but I will never have true freedom and security. So it’s important that I find multiple sources of income, as well as learn how to grow what I do have.
Health is so important for day-to-day functioning and just how I feel overall. I have kept up exercise but let my diet slip entirely, which seems quite counter-productive. I need to find a way of eating that is easy enough for me to keep up so that it is sustainable in the long-term. And then, I need to put aside all my excuses and just do it.
Relationships are really just fundamental to living in our world. We are wired to seeking out connection with other human beings. I need to constantly work at being the best partner I can be for my special human being, as well as cultivating meaningful relationships with friends. I need to truly get to know people and let them get to know me so that we know how to best support each other. I also need to take time to develop my relationship with myself, so that I get to know myself better and can show up as the person that I know I’m meant to be.
I am making progress with each of these areas day by day and will be sharing what I learn along my journey. Sometimes I forget that I have unique wisdom to share (and everyone does because all of our experiences are different) and I don’t need to have all the answers. We can learn from each other and I encourage you to share too! If you want to get in touch, you can drop me a message here.
I don’t remember where we got the questions from, but here are some examples if you want to do some reflection:
- Where do you want to be 1 year from now? Describe it.
- What is your #1 goal? How will you achieve it?
- What are your top 3 priorities?
- What does a perfect day look like for you?
- What are some beneficial daily habits to start?
- Who do you want to become?
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