Pause more, accelerate less

I wanted to have a profound thought. I wanted to write a new post that would sing and sway the way I hope the coming year does. But in all honestly, this year doesn’t feel like a “new” start. It isn’t a new page, turned and blank, ready to be filled with goals or dreams or hopes or wishes. And for once, this in itself feels like a victory. My 2018 was ripe with revelations to stop planning, stop looking ahead, stop saying “I’ll be better when…” and instead sit in that space and just be. The space where I was sure I’d drown in my own tears, or where all I could do was say “fuck it.” The space where my heart was so full I was terrified of the moment it would end. The space where I was so busy and exhausted or the space where I was lazy and unmotivated. I learned to confidently say “I have no idea.” I learned to set expectations for things I could control— and more importantly, how to be ok when those expectations weren’t met. 

As I softened my calculated life, giving myself grace and space, I found it that much easier to do so for those around me. And I watched them become lovable and broken and oh so refreshing to be around. I found my capacity for connection growing— seeking people out rather than hiding. I wasn’t as exhausted by a lunch or coffee or shopping date, and it felt like an accomplishment, one I hadn't forced on myself. And that was a gift I couldn’t help but boast about.

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So, sure, in 2019 there are things I’d like to do, or be better at, or just stop doing, but I’m fighting the urge to give massive weight to these expectations. Not because goal-setting is so last year, but because for me, my evolution cannot be marked by a calendar. Don’t get me wrong, I know so many people who thrive by setting goals. But for me, dates and resolutions are like blinders. The perfectionist in me must accomplish them, and instead of this motivation propelling me towards success, it keeps me from seeing all the organic opportunity around me. 

As 2019 dances or marches or earthquakes its way in my life, I will evolve and resolve where it serves me. I will adapt reactively, instead of living in a defensive mindset— paralyzed by the fear of not doing or being or stopping. I will be open to the lessons and setbacks, opportunities and changes as they come. I will be hellbent on being less hellbent and pause more than I accelerate. 

I got this tattoo a few months ago to remind me to just be wherever I am. In the sadness, the joy, the success and failure, and to meet others where they are as well. It’s a location pin, but a cute lollipop works too.

Happy New Year, friends.

Mackenzie GrantComment