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Reset is not a restart.

Reset is a thing that we think of at the beginning of the year. We make goals and we get going on them, but that’s not the part that we think is failing us. It’s the goals themselves that are half baked and we try to eat them.

And having eaten a half-baked cake for my birthday one year, it does not taste nearly as good as a fully baked one.

We focus on the feeling that we want to have at the end of next year without seeing the feelings we have for this year.

And that’s what catches us up. We trip over that bit, time and time again, because we think that we can skip that step.

And we can’t. It’s essential to get where you’re going.

This year, my annual review was a lot longer, and stronger than it has been in previous years. Some of that is a building process, a thing that I figured out which questions I need to ask myself to make sure that I really do know right where I am so that I can move forward. 

But there’s also the part of the process where I see where this year has taken me.

JUICE (JUST) CONCENTRATE was the motto for the year. 

The intent behind it was to have less projects on my plate so that I could slowly but surely get things done. I was meant to ‘concentrate’ my efforts.

That was the idea anyways.

It had the same effect that 2013-TAKE CHANCES did.

There is a fuckload of whiplash and I can already feel it.

But it’s good. Because when I really looked at this last year and applied it to the motto.

It fits.

I worked on a lot on my own self, a lot of focus on getting a lot of other people’s thoughts, opinions, and baggage out of my life.

I started to whittle down to just me and the things that I really wanted to keep in my head. I found limiting beliefs buried so deep that I didn’t know I was even thinking a thing.

Man, was that an irritation about a jerk of a professor in college that I couldn’t even remember his name. For a while anyways. I sent a prayer up that you’re less of an asshole now, but I don’t know if it worked or not.

It makes going into the coming calendar year, a whole lot more freeing because his voice is no longer valid in my head. I like my messy art. I like the way that I express on a page. And my handwriting is the schnizzle thank you very much.

Reset is putting your recalibration to work.

The reset cannot happen, with its full power in your life, without the recalibration first. The reset without a direction will not get you any further than you already are. It’s a spinning your wheels moment. Recalibration is getting stuck in mud and figuring out where to put the board so that you can get unstuck. It’s not about just going through the motions to get yourself out of a short term problem.

That is a thing I have trouble with. I have an ability to find a solution, usually the desperate kind, and employ it without always running the final cost later on beforehand. 

EXAMPLE: My furniture painting project that I tried to finish during the last few months that I was in Charleston.

I got all of it painted, quickly and without doing the prep work to make sure that it was good. You know, primer, paint, sealer.

And when I moved, guess who had a bajillion scratches and paint smears on her furniture?

Me. 

So I decided I would do it again, but this time, we’re starting with the primer. And as such, it’s going to be sanded first so that the old paint doesn’t come up when all is said and done. It’s a longer process, but since I’m not in a rush to finish before I move and get a dozen other things done, it’s fine. I realize this is going to be a process and that I have time to decide the things that I’m working on.

Also, it helps that I’m not trying to work on it till the spring when the weather warms up and I want to be outside, because I haven’t decided if the top coat is going to be spray paint or not. 

Reset is finding where you fell off and making sure that you don’t do it the same way again.

This whole reset business is about not doing the same thing over and over again, expecting a different result. Sure, there’s having the same standards in place that you had last year, like I do with writing 365,000 words for the year. 

That standard is a sign post that I’m making progress on the whole goal which is to write for a living. I’m trying to stop predicting exactly how it’ll play out over the next twelve months, I have plans sure, but I’ve also learned that plans never happen as you predict.

They just help you freak out less when the first obstacle comes along.

When I moved to Charleston, I made a church family right away. I have a need for a group of people that can help guide me to a better person than I am now. But I made a mistake in only building the community of church. I still needed other areas to grow and have those circles ever expanding outwards. I started with making new friends in new spaces but I didn’t really understand how much I needed all the things. 

I needed a work circle, I needed a church circle, and I needed a circle that had nothing to do with either. 

It reminds me of the quote that you need three habits in life.

  • One to keep you fit.
  • One to feed your finances.
  • One to create.

Throughout my life, I have made the mistake of trying to make one thing, my end all be all. Well, I didn’t think anything was going to get me fit, so I left that shit alone. 

The thing is, I moved in the middle of a pandemic, I can’t just make friends in all these spaces here because we’re all on lockdown. I have to be a little more creative to fulfill my needs and wants in the midst of not having the same people to call and figure out a solution.

I have gotten comfortable on video calls because well, I had to. I still don’t have to like it, and in all honesty, I’m still not a fan of sitting on the phone talking to people. I like email, and chats, and texting. 

I can also read 500 words a minute with ease. It’s one of my strengths.

Reset is not actually finding which way to go, it’s going the way that you’ve decided to go, whether or not it was your original destination beforehand.

This year has been a whirlwind of things, people, and places. And yet, not a lot of any of that either. I live alone these days, so the only people I see on a regular basis are the people I work with. And most of the time, I feel like the mother. It happens when you’re the middle of the ages in a department, and you’re the only female in that department.

But it’s also my element so I deal with my cub scouts and hope that they’ve been behaving for the last two days that I was off work.

I also know that I can’t just let other people walk into my life. I learned that in Charleston, I can’t just sit back and wait for friends to appear. 

One of my best friends is a result of me reaching out. In my own awkward way. The other best friend, well she decided to hug me when I was an angry little punk kid.

I’m still an angry little punk kid, but I accept more people into my life. She taught me how to make friends, frenemies, and family. The other has allowed me all my weirdness and freakouts to finally find who and what I am.

A writer, by the way.

Just in case you were wondering. 

Reset is taking where you are and making sure that you’re on the path that you’re meant to be on.

The new year has begun as I’m writing this and I’m struck with the thought that this is when everything is going to change. And yet nothing is going to change. Because this isn’t about radical change. It’s about progressive change.

Reset is about finding out where you want to go and getting there. It’s making the plans that will take you there.

But it’s not always the first step. 

The first real step, anyways.

Your restart is something else.  

Enjoy the journey and see you next time.

J Joy

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