Tomorrow is New Year’s Eve. This is a time to reflect on the past year, to remember with fondness the happy memories and to glean lessons from mistakes made – learning experiences to make the next year more prosperous and happy, beyond the cliche. It is also a time to look forward; to dream and write goals.
Stories of people who have recreated themselves abound, as do articles on ‘how to’ create yourself. These inspire me and ignite something in the core of who I am, as I feel like I am on this journey. I have often wished I could ask Oprah questions about the time in-between her rough background and her huge success. Life is internal. It transcends far beyond the outward circumstances. There is an inward identity shift that must take place. This inward shift sometimes requires greater work than aligning the outward circumstances of life.
Like when a rich man loses everything, yet isn’t shaken because the value is inside him. It isn’t just the money that made him rich, but the know-how and understanding of how to acquire it.
My goals include money but so, so much more. Optimisim. Achievement and success. Travel. Happy, rich relationships with interesting people. Learning. Ever-growing. Acquiring new skills, interests, experiences and stories. And of course, that my children would thrive and always know how deeply they are loved. That they would always dream big and know I will always be there for them and support their goals.
I read an article recently that resonated with me. It talked about re-writing your story – the story you tell yourself and others. I have written about this concept before; how the same circumstances can be told from two opposing perspectives and both be true. But I am in a very interesting stage in my life. I am at a stage where people who knew me years ago ask me “How did you do it? How did you recreate yourself from A to B?” (and I am always surprised at the way they describe B – the way they see me aligns more closely with who I want to be than how I see myself now) And then there are people who see me as I am, and assume this is the person I have always been. Then I have friends, very few but they exist, who see my uphill battle and are acquainted with the struggles I have faced / am facing on this journey to live the life I want to live and the be the person I want to be.
Recently I met somebody who made a huge impression on me. This person was very open and transparent and so I found myself in a very strange place. Wanting to be real and share who I am – but who am I? I shared some stories of my past self, in an effort to be real – but in reality, that isn’t who I am, though it’s part of my story. My inability to effectively communicate myself as ‘me’ opened my eyes to the fact that my story has changed. It is changing and has changed and yet I am still telling myself the old story, while working to become a new story. I may not be to the end of the book, I may not have conquered all the dragons and saved the princess (who happens to be myself in my own life’s fairy tale), or be living happily ever after… but I am living happily and the first page of the story is simply that. A page of my life. It’s time to recognise the story has evolved and to tell – both myself and others- my new story.
The circumstances might not be exactly as I want them just yet, but my identity has shifted. And that is my ultimate goal.
It’s funny how I love the stories of transformation; people who made something beautiful out of something ugly, tainted or difficult. Yet in my own life, I want to delete the ugly, tainted and difficult bits. Perhaps not realising that I am becoming my favourite type of story…
So, here’s to an unbelievable 2015! May you reach all your goals and may your dreams come true. Not only in circumstances but in your identity. Here’s to living and writing your very best story!