by Lisa May Young
I’ve got a confession to make.
I don’t like New Year.
For the last few years and certainly since my marriage ended, I’ve felt the weighty and public expectation to be seen doing something, anything, to convey the sweet life.
La Dolce Vita style.
Playing the game
I played the game shrewdly, took the selfies and drank the champagne. While secretly plotting the moment when I could return home, slip off my too high Cinderella heels, change into a fresh pair of pyjamas and fall starfish style into a warm and cosy bed.
And don’t get me started on resolutions, I’ve done them all. I’ve joined the gym when I prefer walking in nature.
I’ve tried every diet under the sun rather than accepting myself as I am and I’ve tried to manifest Mr Perfect aware nobody could fully embody my superman expectations.
In retrospect and as a Trainee Counsellor, I now understand being the Queen of self-denial and self-sabotage has fostered only lessons and little favours.
A few days ago, I was scrolling through Facebook reading the happy posts and pictures and I felt self-doubt creeping in as I compared my current circumstances, on a couch watching television, to others.
I sat with the feeling, consoled myself with some chocolate and then decided to do something about it.
Sitting with a sheet of paper, I went through my last year online and wrote down everything I’ve done, every experience, every lesson, every pivotal conversation and every epiphany and I understood the gift of 2019 – while I find resolutions challenging, intentions are magical.
Last January, I wanted to share my creativity through podcasting.
Holding the Space and Scottish Ancestral Records, has a worldwide audience ushering in a wealth of opportunities in radio and media I never believed possible.
Boundaries and the power of no
I didn’t plan any of this, however, when the door knocked I believed in myself enough to take a step forward and I learned the lessons I needed.
As a lifelong people pleaser, I’ve learned ‘no’ is a full sentence and essential to my self-care.
I’ve drawn boundaries where there were none and asked myself what I need to make it work. You cannot say yes to others and say no to yourself.
When I find myself in stormy waters, I ask myself ‘what is this trying to teach me’ and when I doubt or think negatively, I take positive action by sending the email, picking up the phone or sending the message. The results have been surprising and life changing.
These experiences, some uncomfortable, has made me who I am today. When I look in the mirror there are no masks only, authenticity.
So, in 2020, I’m starting a memory jar filled with pretty crystals and lucky pennies on my bookshelf I will fill with post-its of memories, events, conversations, experiences and observations because, for me, it’s the moments that matter.
And as for New Year’s Eve’s, my historic nemesis, I’m spending it exactly the way I want to for the first time in a long time.
Will you join me?
Wishing you well in all your adventures, creative and otherwise, in 2020.
Lisa is a Radio Presenter, Podcaster and Author who lives in Fife.