A new year is such a strange concept, I do not think that we often grasp the reality of what it is. Scratch that, I do not fully grasp the reality of what it is. For something that I have experienced some twenty something times, the joy that comes from the transition of a year still makes little sense to me and is more often than not, likely the sheer consequence of societal conditioning.
One of my favorite things to do is to unwind life. To take the mundane things that have come to form building blocks our existence, and see what is left on the spool after this undoing. It is a process for me that helps with a realignment with what the reality of our human experience is.
What I often find is that there is nothing more than an individual. I might have written a dozen times about the utter aloneness that is the reality of human experience and humanity, but the concept never ceases to delight me.
How that, if you go far back enough, every decision that now forms what classifies as some sort of social norm can be traced to a single person’s suggestion, often borne of their personal tendencies and proclivities. This is the human experience. A private and personal show spread across an entire globe to fit as many people as it can but ultimately, still just personal.
A classic new year often starts off for me, with anxiety.
2021 was no different. Post pandemic life was slowly creeping on and my body, being my body, decided that its first and best reaction to this would be to freak out. If 2021 was a year of rebirth, I was a fetus being pushed out before I was quite ready and my body wasn’t having any of it.
When you are often anxious, you would think that some of it would feel familiar, that at some point you could probably just snap your fingers and come off it. Not quite. Every time there is turmoil and the painstaking need to remind yourself that this is all in your body, and your mind. I am okay, and I am not sinking.
One some days, this is true – that you are not sinking. But when a year is made entirely of tsunamis, you learn that sometimes, your body is right and that on those times, anxiety is a prophecy.
A guideline for surviving a tsunami, is to find some higher ground and maybe this was another lesson I learnt – the importance of always pushing higher.
For an introvert, 2021 was a year filled with putting myself out there. I found new opportunities and growth by choosing to speak when I usually would have been silent. I learnt the purpose of a voice, language and expression.
As often as you can, choose to speak up. Find some higher ground.
I also learnt that time is finite when dreams often aren’t, and life is a river you can only cross on a bridge of sacrifices. If you must get to the other side, you must let some things go. This is not a bad thing.
We often think of letting go as some form of undoing, but it never really is that. More often than not, letting go is how we move forward. A rocket that’s going to make it into space must shed some weight. This is sacrifice, but it is not villainy.
From breaking down a few times, I learnt the importance of balance. I learnt over and over again that I am human, fragile and made of parts that can break and burn, but can also grow and evolve.
Half these lessons I stumbled on while chasing the things I loved doing and perhaps this is the biggest lesson of all – that life happens, and will happen to you. Let it.
It’s great if you have new year resolutions but equally fine if you don’t. In truth, all of the greatest things that happened to me in 2021 were unplanned and unforeseen, but they only came because I was, in some way, ready.
Make resolutions if you want to, or don’t; just keep yourself open to growth and change.
Good things don’t come to just those who wait, but those who are ready.
So, cheers to a new year and the many magical things we hope it brings as always – rebirth, fresh starts and new beginnings. I hope you find all that you want from it but most of all, I hope you find yourself, and let yourself grow.
Happy New Year.