Sunday, January 1, 2023

New Year, New Resolution

I can't believe 2022 is over and 2023 has begun! If you're a regular reader of the blog, you may recall that I always make (and keep) New Year's Resolutions. In 2022, my New Year's Resolution was to do less. I needed a bit of a break after my intense 2021, plus I knew I'd be having a baby and wanted to make sure I enjoyed my time with him. The way another parent described it to me was, "The days/nights are long, but the months/years are short" and I thought that was some of the wisest insight I received for these early days of child-rearing. I wanted to soak up every minute I could with baby S and take time for myself without feeling overextended by other obligations.

I think I did a pretty good job of doing less in 2022. There were multiple temporary duty (TDY) opportunities at work involving extensive travel that I didn't go for, and there were other optional roles and projects I passed on because I knew I didn't want the extra commitment. I made a concerted effort to truly relax and reduce my stress levels with every vacation and holiday, and I took more leave on random days. I put less pressure on myself for my hobbies, so although I played video games, read, wrote, and did the things I enjoy I didn't set any specific goals for those things and didn't beat myself up when I went a long time without doing them.

One thing I haven't blogged about yet but might someday is that I also use a free productivity app that gamifies habits I want to build or maintain. It's called Habitica, and I find it very motivating. I have a party on a quest, and we fight monsters by building good habits, avoiding bad habits, and getting all of our daily responsibilities done. But if anyone in the party fails to do their dailies, for example, we all take damage from the monster. To keep my positive streak going and avoid letting my party down, I've been very diligent at the things I put on Habitica. But in keeping with my 2022 New Year's Resolution, I checked into the in-app tavern for the entire year, which disabled all the penalties we would have otherwise experienced from me skipping things on my to-do list. I broke pretty much all my streaks and missed plenty of things here and there, but it was a relief to give myself that space to be imperfect and rest from my usual grind. (As of today, I have checked out of the tavern so we'll see how this year goes in that regard.)

My new resolution for 2023 is to exercise, something I love but wasn't able to do much postpartum due to my long physical recovery. I'm ready to resume now, so I set a goal of exercising more days than not for the 365 days of 2023. I wanted to be as flexible as possible, so I didn't specify the exact type of exercise or time I need to work out each day. I'm excited to challenge myself with this resolution, try some new types of exercise, and to move more in a way that brings me joy and helps me stay healthy and active.

If you're reading this, I hope you had some fond memories of 2022 to reflect on and some things you're excited for in 2023. Cheers to another journey around the sun!

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