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A Note on the New Year

Confession: I do not make New Year’s resolutions. My reason is that if I want to do something to improve myself or make a change in my life, I’m going to do it no matter what time of year it is. My belief is that there is never a bad time to better yourself or to make a decision that will positively impact your life. I’m not against New Year’s resolutions per se, they are just not my shtick.

I do, however, like to set an overall goal I’d like to achieve by year’s end. These goals are usually high-level, umbrella goals that require me to take several steps and make many life modifications throughout the year in order to achieve them. In 2018, my goal was to start my blog. I had been planning and preparing to start my blog for three years, but I always seemed to find one reason or another to chicken out. So, at the start of 2018, I set my intention and achieved my goal in August of that year.

For 2019, I initially thought my goal would be to continue to grow my blog and cultivate a meaningful relationship with my audience. This is still my main goal for this year and will probably be my primary focus for many years to come.

Ironically though, my other goal, or theme if you will, for 2019 came from being sick as a dog for the past few days. I spent NYE weekend in New York City where it was cold and raining most of the time. Somewhere between that and the travel back to a stormy and damp Atlanta I caught something and have been out of commission for the first few days of the New Year. As I mentally beat myself up for being sick and not able to work or unpack or do anything on my to-do list, a 2019 goal was born: W E L L N E S S.

To be clear, this goal did not stem from being physically sick, sometimes there’s just nothing you can do about that. No, it came from the fact that mentally I did not want to allow myself to be sick and recover. My anxiety spiked from not being able to shoot new content or put up new posts on my blog, as if somehow all of my progress and hard work would be lost because there’s a gap for a few days. My OCD went haywire at not being able to immediately unpack and reset once we got home from our trip. My to-do list got longer by the minute, my frustration built, yet still my sickness lingered and there was nothing I could do about it.

When I say “wellness” I mean in all senses of the word, and what wellness means to me may not be the same as what it means to you. I spend a lot of time beating myself up for not getting blog posts up fast enough due to circumstances beyond my control (weather, sickness, etc.). I had a great time over the holidays and my heart was so full when partaking in all of the festivities with friends and family, yet now I’m chastising myself for how much unhealthy food I ate and how little I exercised. It’s as if by mentally scolding myself, I can somehow negate the calories I consumed or control the weather or create more hours in the day to get more things done.

Sadly, none of that is true and by beating myself up I’m only removing the joy I felt in the first place. I know I already work hard and I LOVE what I do, so why cause myself so much anxiety when things don’t go as planned? I know I eat well and cook at home and I enjoy doing so, so why begrudge myself a few extra glasses of champagne or a bit too much sugar over the holidays when that also brings me joy?

To me, achieving “wellness” will mean learning to give myself a break. Sure, there are other little goals under this umbrella such as “take better care of my skin” or “do more yoga and meditation instead of hardcore cardio”, the list goes on. However, I think all of these little things contribute to an overall mental state of well.

I want to take a more whole-istic approach to life. I want to enjoy my work, but learn to relax when it doesn’t go as planned. I want to have my cake as well as my kale. I want to drink champagne and dance all night (only on occasion, though, because hello I’m like 30), but also learn to get more sleep. In other words, I want to find balance. And, most importantly, I want to share it with all of you.

Because after all, isn’t that the point? In 2018, I chose to embark on this path of sharing my life with all of you. So, shouldn’t that mean that I actually share my life? The good and the bad, the perfect and the not perfect, the Instagram vs. the reality?

In 2019, as I journey towards wellness, you can expect a few more personal posts sprinkled in amongst the regularly scheduled programming. I’m going to talk more about my internal struggles and how I work through them. Like many of us I am terrible at self-care, so I’m going to develop self-care habits and share them with you, in hopes that they can be useful. Don’t worry, the fashion posts aren’t going anywhere, because that is part of my everyday life too. You’re just going to get a more whole-istic look at my life, which includes what I’m personally working on or going through at the time.

I say in my bio that “sometimes you need yoga, sometimes you need champagne. It’s called balance”. And that, my friends, will be my mantra for 2019.

As always, thank you for reading and sharing. If this post resonates with you, let me know in the comments! I LOVE hearing from you!

I look forward to a great year together! XOXO

By Paces West

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  • JP

    January 4, 2019 at 3:41 PM

    Happy 2019!!!!

    1. Paces West

      January 4, 2019 at 4:19 PM

      Happy New Year to you as well!

  • Melissa

    January 5, 2019 at 2:11 PM

    I am an acupuncturist and I have treated a lot of clients (mostly us ladies!) with the same patterns you share here about beating ourselves up for slowing down and listening to our bodies and our emotions. I believe this puts us at risk for autoimmune issues and disease. Listening to our own boundaries and sticking to them will pay off for your future health! You will end up at an acupuncturist for increased longevity instead of complete collapse. Thank you for spreading this information in such a fun way.

    1. Paces West

      January 5, 2019 at 2:16 PM

      Thanks so much for sharing this, Melissa! I completely agree! Glad to know it’s not just me haha!

  • Kimberly

    January 11, 2019 at 5:29 PM

    You are amazing, Hannah! Wonderful words to live by not only in 2019 but throughout life! Finding your balance. I love your blog – please keep up the amazing work! I know 2019 will find you amazing new adventures and continued success. You go girl!!! xoxo

    1. Paces West

      January 11, 2019 at 5:39 PM

      Thank you so much, Kimberly! Your kind words mean so much to me. I’m so happy that you are enjoying the blog, that gives me so much motivation 💪🏻
      Much love ❤️❤️

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