New Year, Same Consistently Evolving Me

A new year is upon us and, if you’re like me, you don’t believe that January 1st magically makes you a better or more motivated person, just like your birthday doesn’t make you feel any older or wiser. Everything is always achieved gradually. But perhaps it is the new year, the recent passing of my birthday, a lull after the busy holiday season, or the thought of graduating from college this year that has me being increasingly reflective. I had previous plans to make a deep-into-the-future vision board that has since shifted into making a smaller bulletin board that acts as a representation of what’s regularly at play in my heart. Let me walk you through it…

Work towards going vegetarian and eating seasonally, be mindful of the waste I produce, do my best to not operate out of a place of carelessness. The veggie cow, leaf handprints, bison, and Jane Goodall all serve to remind me of these very things. Considering watching the documentary, Jane, was what brought the thought of going vegetarian into my head, I felt it was appropriate to include something that’s a strong reminder. The picture I chose also reminds me of the ability to connect between species and focus on our likenesses. The bison, besides being my favorite animal, is an example of what can happen when we act carelessly and choose to exploit rather than conserve. Don’t even get me started on how their populations were obliterated… (But thanks to those that cared and worked towards bringing their numbers back up, even if they’ll never reach what they once were!)

Keep what matters to me at the center and remember my values. I always have these thoughts of feeding my family a good meal that I prepared with ingredients fresh from my garden. Along with that comes a great desire to teach children about nature, the simpler things in life, and how to do things for themselves (I personally love seeing how this is don through the Wild + Free Instagram). If I could make a living out of those very things, I’d be truly content. Good food, the people that I choose to surround myself with, children, nature, enjoying the little things, and having several skills are things I always want to keep central in my life.

Pursue different things. After college, I’ll be honest, I don’t know entirely what I’m going to do. However, things like yoga, writing, and learning sign language have all been on my mind a lot over the years and I’d like to dip my toe in to see what could possibly lie ahead.

Appreciate my various sides. From being in my garden with my cats to building something to cooking to being active to having a simple classic style, these are all parts of who I am. No one side is more important than another, but they all work together to create the person I’m beginning to know and love. I never want to forget that or deny myself of who I am.

Simplify. I feel like it gets clearer and clearer to me every year that I have too much stuff. One of the easiest ways to lighten the load is to go through my wardrobe. I recently did that and have a trash bag full of mostly never worn clothes that are ready to be donated or given away to someone who can really use them. Even after a closet cleaning, I’m still sitting here thinking of other clothes I could probably do without. Out of curiosity, I want to put aside my absolute favorite clothes to see how much is actually there. Depending on how manic I get, maybe I’ll attempt Project 333 (wear 33 items including shoes and accessories for 3 months), but I don’t think I’m quite there yet. My goal is to move away from fast fashion and no longer idolize the massive beautifully displayed closets that just make me want more more MORE despite never feeling fully satisfied no matter how much I obtain. Looking back, I’ve spent so much on clothes that I’ve hardly worn or have never even worn. I’m talking a lot of money. I’m hoping that through simplifying, even just my clothing, I can spend less, save more, and buy things here and there that I truly love, like cookbooks and the occasional jigsaw puzzle. More inspiration, less feelings of being overwhelmed!

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