Every year as NYE approaches, everything is geared towards the pressure of having to have a new plan for the new year. What are you going to change? What are you going to do? Did you do your cleaning? Vision board? And, of course, there’s that weight. And every year, we all make these declarations of change. We look forward to starting fresh and seeing the things we’ve long awaited and prayed for finally come to fruition. We meditate and set intentions. We map out fitness and meal plans. We set high expectations and goals, fully aware of the potential for disappointment ahead.
Following an unprecedented year in so many ways, I’ve decided to approach 2021 a little differently this year. No pressure, no lofty expectations. I’ve made a concerted effort to be as in tune with how I’m feeling and what I need as possible. I won’t add the burden of being anything other than who I am and be okay with where I am. As I continue to grow, evolve, and work hard for the life I desire, I choose to have faith in the process. To allow things to flow as they should and press for progress where I can. To take it one day at a time, understanding that some days will be better than others and that’s okay. Simply put, I choose to honor the work I’ve already done on becoming the greatest version of me possible. This is, in fact, a new year, and for that, I am grateful. Not only to have reached it but for all of the possibilities it holds. I lost my cousin last Oct, and it shook me to my core. She had plans and so much more to do in a world that she’d already impacted in such significant ways. I don’t take for granted a single second I am given to live with the hopes that I can be as much of a bright light as she was. It also helped me to put things into perspective. We spend so much time worrying about things that ultimately don’t matter. We cannot get back time, so why spend any of it doing anything that doesn’t make you happy. I refuse. Enough things are working hard to steal my joy; I will not aid them.
This is a new year, and the you that you brought into it is more than enough. Is more than capable of whatever it is that you’re after. And no matter how you choose to approach it, approach it at your own speed. Your own pace. In the ways that best serve you. This year I just want success, happiness, and real love. Dassit. There are plenty of details that go into those desires; however, I’ve also decided not to be bogged down by them.
My hope for us all is the freedom to live a life that feels good. Even as the world burns, even amid all the uncertainty, you deserve happiness. You deserve to experience the fullness of life in whatever way that looks and feels like for you. We are all battling our own things, from mental health to grief, from financial stress to family life. And in particular, as a Black person, to have the constant reminder of just how hated we are in a place we call home. The weight of it all sometimes feels like too much to bear. But here we are, still standing. Still going. Still functioning at high levels, which quite frankly considering all of the trauma we’ve experienced, is a miracle. In other words, you are a walking miracle. Be proud and hold your head high. So no, this year will not be filled with lofty expectations of a brand new beginning but instead an open-minded, free-spirited, hopeful heart whose work has been strong enough to continue forward. I fell in love again with this Erica. I am excited to take her with me into this year of unknowns knowing that things will be alright wherever she goes.
So be fearless, be true to yourself, choose happiness, choose you. And on the days you can’t, know that that’s okay too. Either way, I’ll be here rooting for you!
Happy New year!