As the new year continues to settle in, social media continues to remind us how everyone was #blessed during 2019. How so?? Posts full of lavish weddings, large groups of friends on rooftops drinking cocktails, extravagant proposals, newborn babies wearing designer clothes…you know what I’m talking about because you have probably seen it, too.
As I scrolled through the top posts of someone’s 365 lived days, I thought how absorbing this idea is dangerous- it teaches us to diminish the beauty in a very normal, ordinary day.
When we make 2020’s goal to hustle for a picture-perfect year, we miss the beauty that is right in front of us. We miss the little connections that are sometimes the most meaningful.
For 2020, what if we stopped hustling for perfection and our self-worth and instead practiced gratitude for the little things? How different would social media look if we all posted pictures of the following:
- Your receptionist: someone who takes your phone calls, messages, organizes your schedule.
- Running water: having access to fresh, clean water to drink, bathe in, and freshen up with at our own leisure.
- A light switch: or a fridge that keeps your food fresh, or the stove that cooks your food.
- Your local grocery store: the place that keeps you alive and fuels your body.
- A close friend: someone who has earned your trust and your story. They know how to sit with you in pain and how to make small victories feel like your greatest success.
- That Uber driver who got you home safely one night: because they really deserve a shout-out.
5 Self-Improvement Tips for 2020
Have a Beginner’s Mind
Try to notice your day as if you have never experienced life before. What colors are in your food? What emotions are present and how can you tell- where can you feel them in your body? How do your clothes feel against your skin?
The more curious you can be from moment to moment, everyday tasks will become more meaningful.
Know Your Worth
One of my favorite quotes by Dr. Brené Brown is, “True belonging and self-worth are NOT goods; we don’t negotiate their value with the world.” How freeing!
There is nothing that we need to prove to the world (or amount of likes we need to get on Instagram) to earn our worth.
Simply being human means you are worthy of a meaningful, loving, and authentic connection. Sometimes having a mantra can be a helpful reminder- especially when you notice yourself in comparing mode. Here are a few examples: “I am enough”, “I am strong”, “I am present.”
When social media deceives us into measuring our worth and focusing on imperfections, it is CRITICAL to practice gratitude.
Next time you catch yourself stalking a friend of a friend’s two-week trip to Greece, try to put your phone down and list 5 small things you are grateful for- it can be anything ranging from your health, your ability to breathe with ease, clothes to keep you warm, a pet, a close friend, Justin Timberlake’s new song, etc.
Having a daily gratitude practice this New Year will help cultivate a more grounded and positive you.
Know Your Values
I find myself saying “yes” to requests which only drain me when my goal is to people please and hustle for perfection. When I am more intentional about everyday choices- from the food I purchase to the amount of time I spend on electronic devices- I feel more balanced and confident throughout my days.
Knowing your values simplifies everyday choices and boosts your self-worth. And do you suffer from indecision and guilt? Reflecting on your core values with any choice will bring the best option into focus and drain any emotional weight of a potential shame and guilt attack, too.
Identifying and living a life based on your values will help you achieve long-term goals, improve relationships, and will give you energy! The perfection game is EXHAUSTING- mentally, physically, and emotionally. This year, prioritize your values before perfection and see what you will achieve!
If you want self-esteem, do esteem-able things. Giving back to your community can be directly linked to knowing your values, too!
In a society that values self-serving ideas (eg; the number of likes you receive on a post and the number of followers you have on Instagram), it can be helpful to fight back that message and serve others! Challenge yourself to lean into some of the brokenness in your community and give back.
Volunteer with an organization you are passionate about and ask a friend or co-worker to join you! This year, let’s make 2020 about intentionally investing in the relationship we have with ourselves and our community around us!