One step at a time
One of the things about the New Year is there is a certain hope and contagious expectation with which most people start a year. Somehow there is a new surge of faith that says that the life that has been afforded is a divine sign that there is going to be change for the better in the future. With this new surge, several people start out with New Year resolutions that sadly do not last the first week of the year.
I cannot say if the year 2021 had as much excitement of the newness that previous years have enjoyed because it seemed like several people were afraid to hope again.
2020 is a year that most of us will not forget in a hurry and by the time 2021 arrived, we sort of grudgingly accepted it with an eye of suspicion. I do not also know how well writing of New Year resolutions went for the general populace.
I was talking to a dear friend the other day who mentioned that she feels like she has started the year slowly and I almost agreed with her. My January already had her diary filled with some serious issues that made all the days blur out till a certain day almost three weeks into the year. Almost all of my energy was expended working for that day and to tell you how bad it was, I did not even realize when the Biden/Harris swearing in took place!
After that day came, I felt utmost relief but was now left with attending to things that I have had to leave unattended and this surprisingly, was becoming overwhelming as each day passed. It was not that I did not want to do anything but I realized I was getting paralysed with the feeling of not coming up to speed. And wrestling with that made me realize firstly, how easily one could become discouraged and resign to inactivity secondly, how commonly this occurs .I had to check deep within to address the issue and remembered that I once listened to an interview where a highly successful career lady was asked how she managed to maintain a work and home life balance without feeling guilty .
I would reiterate the wisdom she shared. According to her, it is not possible to give everything in our lives the same attention at all times . She made an illustration of seeing all she has to deal with in her home life and work life as several different boxes and at each time, she would be dealing with a particular box. What she emphasized was that at the end of the day, she may have had to spend more time with that box A but the next day, she would spend some time with Box B . She attended to the boxes as much as she possibly could without spending all the time with one box to the detriment of the others. She also spent as much time with a particular box that was necessary before moving on to the next.
In 2020, there were definitely some boxes in our lives that the pandemic did not afford us the opportunity to do anything about . Somehow we discovered that some of those boxes were extra luggage that we could conveniently do without, and they actually took the time we would have used to deal with some other boxes.
For me , 2020 brought to light some things that I was unnecessarily expending energy on and I learnt better and more effective ways to do some things and so in this year, I am seriously ensuring that I expend my energy rightly .As simple as this may sound, it is not always easy to follow through because as human beings, we are creatures of habit and may just do certain things in a particular way because this is how we have always done it .
So you may not have even written your New Year Resolutions or goals or plans yet and there is no rule that says ,it must all be ready by 1st of January or by the end of the first week of January . Neither is there a guarantee that being ready at these times, will ensure their completion, compliance and success .
Having learnt from 2020, what I am saying is that in this year, we need to expend our energy rightly without feeling guilty. Not everything will get the same attention every time and striking a balance actually means knowing when to move a box to the back of the pile and deal with another.This one thing at a time approach may require better resource allocation, employing the use of delegation as well as learning to prioritize .
At the beginning of every year,so many people write down resolutions but are unable to follow through because they are trying to make so many changes at. once It may be very tempting to want to do everything at once but the one step at a time approach is more effective and the results are usually longer lasting.