With everything that has gone on this past year I never even attempted to think about goals or resolutions for 2021. Typically I set high-level quarterly goals for me to reach; one for my business, one for my health, and one for my family. However this year, this month, these days… have all just drawn on seemingly endlessly, and I never really took a moment to pause and think about what I want this year to look like.
The past 11 months have been rough, no doubt. I’m sure you are like me, and you feel that the walls are closing in on you, that it gets increasingly harder day after day to get out of bed, let alone get dressed, shower, work out, or do business. In actuality the first few months of the pandemic and resulting quarantine were easier. I was more optimistic about how long it would last, I would still dress up and hold meeting and attend zoom calls. But now 11 months in, I’m a shadow of my former self. While I actually have more paid and at-home work than I did 10 months ago, I am more of a recluse than ever, sometimes never ever leaving the house for a walk, often not changing out of sweats, shying away from zoom calls or conferences, and going days without showering.
I dislike discussing ‘mental health’ because it’s such a buzzword these days, but the fact alone that I am discussing it here proves how big of a problem it has become. I wouldn’t say I am a person who has struggled with mental health in life. Sure, I have issues like we all do, but typically I know how to take care of my body and mind in a healthy way. But this past year has taken a toll on me.
I lived my entire 3rd and 4th trimesters in quarantine, and brought a beautiful baby into this world… a baby that most of my friends and family have never met. One of the best parts about having a baby is showing them off – I know that sounds weirdly vain, but… find me a mom who doesn’t want to show off the thing she created in her uterus for 9 months. I will be lucky if my family get’s to meet my son before his first birthday. Liam is a such a smiling beacon of positivity in my day, but I get sad looking at him knowing that others won’t get to experience his bright light.
Then there is the postpartum aftermath. Hair falling out, acne, changing body shape, lumps, bumps and pumps… all of these things that make you look at yourself in disgust. And lest we remember that I haven’t had my hair cut, colored or my nails done by a professional in a year. This is the WORST I have ever looked by far, and sure, no one can see me, but I can, and I hate it. I have done as many at home treatments as I can, but at this point, it’s like putting lipstick on a pig.
Add in the isolation, the lack of plans for the future, a difficult toddler, a move, the monotony of every day being the same, and we have a recipe for increased anxiety and depression. The worst part is the complete lack of motivation, which is what is so foreign to me. Even as restaurants open up for outdoor dining I am too scared and too lazy to partake. Plus, that would mean actually getting dressed… and sadly that’s a muscle I haven’t flexed in awhile. The resounding question when this is all over, is who am I? Who will I be? Am I still someone that enjoys putting together a good outfit or going to the city for a fancy dinner? Do I still want to travel or is packing a suitcase too overwhelming? Do I want to blog? Can I entertain? Should my kids even go to school? I have gotten so out of practice of being ‘me’ that I don’t even know who I am anymore.
Anyway, that was a long tangent that leads me to this. Instead of long term resolutions or quarterly goals, I am setting out 10 ‘tasks’ for me to do this month, both easy and a little more difficult, in order to get me on track. Tasks that I don’t want to carry into March, and tasks that will hopefully take me back to ‘normal’, whatever that is. You’ll notice that the first task is simply to write 8 blog posts this month, averaging 2x a week. My blog has gone off track the last few months as I dove deeper into isolation, but I know that future me loves this blog and I need to pull myself out of that slump. So here we go to getting the blog back on track, as well as my life… one February task at a time.
10 Tasks for February
- Write 8 Blog posts (score, this one counts as 1)
- Plan a date night
- Hang our large artwork that’s been sitting in the entryway for 2 months
- Curtains (and hopefully wallpaper) for Liam’s room. Yes, he has beach towels draped in his window
- Create an Atelier tour for YouTube/Reels
- DIY a coffee table
- Pitch 3 brands for SRC (know someone who could use my help? Let’s chat!)
- Pink hair again (for longer this time)
- Get a pedicure (safely of course)
- Work out 16 times/4x a week
You’ll notice there is nothing on here for my kids (well except curtains) and that is by design. While I think Marina’s behavior could be better, I truly don’t think they’ve ‘suffered’ during this pandemic since they are so young. We have prioritized them and their learning and development as best we can, and now it’s time for me to take care of myself, so that I can be better for them, and my husband. I need to get back on track with a few small tasks just so I can escape this cloud of doom that hovering overhead.
I know many people have suffered over this past year from COVID, to mental and physical health challenges, to food and job insecurity, and I don’t want to minimize anyone’s struggle by suggesting getting a pedicure is going to fix it. It won’t, by any means. But personally I have to pull myself out of this rut, and if feeling a little better about my personal appearance will help, then it’s worth a shot. I think the small tasks lead to building self-confidence to attack the larger, scarier tasks that are looming ahead, and I want to be ready, when that day comes.