If we have learned anything in the last couple of years, it is that we can make all the plans we want, but those plans can very easily be changed by things out of our control. 2020 and 2021 taught us to roll with the punches. Nobody likes a punch (unless it’s a spiked kind and you are immune to hangovers), so don’t let this sound like I am downplaying how massively traumatic, confusing, and frustrating these years have been.
But now, 2022 is here and I think it’s important to take what we’ve learned as we move forward. Kind of like Maya Angelou’s quote, “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” We were doing our best, but now after 2020 and 2021 we know better, so in 2022 we need to do better.
To avoid disappointment, as you enter this next year make plans and resolutions in the areas of your life that you have a pretty solid grasp on. Make small changes like: “I will make my bed every morning,” “I will call a friend once a week,” “I will pet my dog before I check Instagram when I wake up.” These small things can add up to big things. Making your bed will help you start your day feeling accomplished, calling friends you haven’t talked to in a while will make you reminisce and smile, and dogs are better than most things – definitely, better than Instagram.
BUT – and, I mean the capitalizations and the boldness here, these years have also taught us life is short (a lot of the time too short for our liking). We know what was once unimaginable is possible. So, if you want to live boldly and capitalized instead of just “to avoid disappointment”, I say make your 2022 resolutions, goals and aspirations bigger than any years prior. Make big changes like: “I will start writing my book I’ve shyly brainstormed for two years,” “I will move to that big city I have always dreamt of and leave the only town I’ve ever known,” “I will run a marathon in 2022, even if I can’t run more than a mile without stopping today.”
There is beauty and benefit to both types of goals. I actually encourage you to make a couple of both. You can pet your dog in the morning and search for new apartments at night. Big and small, bad and good, frustrating and exciting are all things that can exist synonymously. 2020 and 2021 have definitely taught us that.
We aren’t going back to “normal” – whatever that even was. We must move forward from here – from being redirected by things out of our control. And as quickly as these last two years have gone by, just think about how much has changed. These years have been jam-packed with every emotion and I don’t see that changing.
2022 will be just as full. Fill as much of it with goodness, love, fun, laughter, joy and excitement as you can. It leaves less room for the bad and gives you a solid cushion when the uncontrollable sneaks in.