To My Kids at the Start of 2024

“Beginnings are scary, endings are usually sad, but it’s the middle that counts the most.” — Sandra Bullock from Hope Floats. 

Yes, I just quoted another rom com cause that’s what I do. You should have seen the pile of rom coms I watched over the holidays. 

I don’t know if they helped or hurt. But they did get me thinking about this past year. I blame The Notebook.

2023 was a refreshing and happy year for me. Actually, it was the best year I’ve had in over a decade. It was filled with the unexpected. So here are my takeaways that made that “middle part” of 2023 the greatest year in a decade…

What I Learned to Do…

❇️ Get Up Each and Every Day for You. Learn from yesterday. And those things that hurt you, let them go. Just get up and go.

❇️ Admit to Yourself What You Want. You don't have to tell anyone else. You can keep it to yourself. But you can quietly want it. And keep working for it.

❇️ Acknowledge Who and What You Love. Hold onto it. Love fearlessly. And sometimes love quietly. You are worth everyone and everything you love. Even those moments you think you aren't. You are.

❇️ Walk into Every Room with Confidence. Even if you have none. This sets the tone for that moment, and the people you are with.

❇️ Be Patient with Others. Be loving and kind.

❇️ Embrace Your Soft Spot. I’m afraid of mine; it makes me feel, and sometimes makes me cry. But I also realize this part makes me the most human than other aspects of me.

❇️ Be Yourself Even if You Feel Like You’re Risking Whether Others Will Like You. It’s not worth ever risking your quirky side. That’s the best part of you. Keep it. Embrace it. Love it about yourself. 

And What Not to Do…

❌ Depend on Anyone to Show You Your Worth. You are solely dependent on reminding yourself who you are. You are responsible for that. Your own self-worth is crucial in how you move about in the world.

❌ Let the Unkind or Heavy Words of Others Become Waves that Continue to Knock You Down. Detach immediately. Channel your energy into your personal growth. 

❌ Stay with People That Drag You Down. Get up and move. Just do something different. Seek those that lift you up and make you smile.

❌ Think You are Less than Others. Dismiss this toxic trait of comparing yourself to others. Only compete with who you were yesterday. Hold yourself accountable to be 1% better than yesterday. 

❌ Wait on Others. Their agenda is theirs, and theirs alone. It’s not wrong, it’s just theirs. It’s their road, their priorities, and some days you fit, others maybe not. Abandon the notion of waiting on others to dictate the course of your day.

❌ Hide in Your Shell. On the days that you are tempted, those are the days when you showcase yourself. Do the opposite of hiding.

❌ Feel Sorry for Yourself. I promise you there is someone who has more than you. There are also many more who have less than you. Appreciate what you have, and give to others as best you can, and hold yourself to that. 

For the Moments in 2024 When You Have Lost Yourself

🌟 Allow Yourself to Feel the Bottom. Be humble and brave enough to admit the parts you lost. 

🌟 Be Willing to Do Something About It. Look in the mirror and acknowledge the pieces that you need to change.

🌟 Start Working. Even if it means going in the back, burying your head, and beginning. You are braver in this moment than perhaps you will be at any other time.

🌟 When You Meet People that Make You Better, Listen. Even if your mouth runs because you are embarrassed, trying to cover your insecurities, just listen. 

🌟 Keep Going. Walk in each and every day. Some days you will see progress, others not. It can take days, weeks, months, sometimes even years. But you will feel the changes within you, even when others don’t. These are the times that will set you apart from others. 

Walking into 2024

I have loved and lost. Won and failed. Been the best, and lost it all. All at different times. 

But my genuine part of me is mine, and mine alone. The good, the bad, the deaf, the quirky, the one that spills, the one that burns— that is mine.

No one can take that from me. 

Find yours. Hold onto it proudly. There is no one like you.

Cheers to crafting 2024 into the best masterpiece of you.