My 2022 year in review (and what are you saying yes to?)
Summer and Fall really flew by. I feel like I blinked and it was over. The new year is right around the corner.
This year, some pretty big things happened. I challenged myself to slow down and say YES to rest, pleasure, joy, and things that light me up, with a group of friends.
Today, I’m sharing all the pretty and gritty details of my spring and summer of YES.
In the last six months, I said YES to:
- Trips with Eric to New York, Alaska, and Georgia.
- A week of rest and time off before we help my mom’s celebration of life.
- Meeting my business mastermind friends in Evansville and Savannah
- A Jura coffee machine (MAJOR upgrade and housewarming gift)
- A move to Omaha (planned for another city and not until 2023)
- A new offer in my business (Main Character Closet™)
It didn’t seem like a lot at the time, but when I write it down, I said YES to so many things.
But this is not a brag list. This is a “but if-I’m-being-honest” list.
Sometimes when I see people share stuff like this, I think “wow, what a great life they must have,” but the reality is that they’re probably sharing the highlights and not the low. When you say YES to something, you are saying NO to something else. And sometimes that yes comes with work and a cost.
So, here is honestly what I thought and felt about saying YES to all the things:
The Omaha Move: It’s too much work and I’m too tired to move. I wasn’t prepared to make an offer on a house, have an offer on our house the next day and pack/move/close in 7 weeks. It was a lot. We also planned to move to the West Coast to be more in-between both families, but we decided being in driving distance of Eric’s mom would be a good idea. As I type this, there are still boxes to be unpacked, but at least my office is clean!
Finding a new doctor, a new dentist, getting utilities set up…I was not looking forward to this. I cried a handful of times from frustration (like when we couldn’t find any movers to come to North Platte, so we had to rent and load two U-Hauls ourselves and go back and forth to Omaha)…or when the U-Haul AC broke and I had three hot cats in carriers on my lap and about had a full crying meltdown. But we did it. We’re moved.
The Jura: Eric and I work from home. We have a regular boring coffee pot. We decided to price out a coffee/espresso machine since we don’t really go out for coffee. Eric found something that was amazing. We went to Williams Sonoma and tried it out. I was cheap and didn’t want to buy it. Seriously, I felt like it was too big a splurge. I am so glad Eric talked me into it. They last forever and I have suddenly turned into a coffee snob after years of drinking Folgers. Funny the things we have money hangups about…also don’t judge me about the Folgers.
My new program, Main Character Closet™: This was a big one for me, and something I’ve been sitting on (aka ignoring) for a while. I’ve been helping people with their clothes and personal style forever. For free. Most people don’t know that I went to school for fashion design and switched to graphic design because I hate sewing.
As a designer, I “dressed” brands for 20 years, helping them communicate what they wanted to say to their customers visually. I love color, patterns, texture, and how personal style can build confidence and allow for creative expression. LOVE IT!
So I said YES to creating a one-on-on, VIP day over Zoom. I’m so excited to help people find their style, audit their closets and learn how to turn their random items into finished outfits. I’m launching a beta (at a 50% off beta founders price) next week, but you can see a sneak peek of the program if you CLICK HERE.
Saying yes to all the things meant I had to say no to others.
Here’s what I said NO to:
Going back to school this semester: I went full-time for two and have a 4.0. It was too much. The point was joy and fun. But the first semester was a wreck. Eric broke his foot and had two surgeries. It was too much. The second semester, my mom passed away. I flew back and forth to Alaska and with the time difference, my sleep was a wreck. I gained weight and I’m still trying to get my insomnia back on track. My hair started falling out. School stopped being fun but I didn’t feel like I could back out once I started the semester in January. I should have said no then, but I said no now. Nobody is perfect, but we figure it out, right?
Planning my mom’s celebration of life: I couldn’t be in Alaska the month before the celebration, having been there already so much. Since my local AK family was there, I let them handle the details. I put together the arrangements when she passed in December, for our immediate family to celebrate her, but let my other family members who had the time and were already in Alaska plan the summer celebration. This was hard because as the oldest daughter, I felt it was my responsibility. But there were people with more time who could fully arrange it, while I would have struggled and likely missed some things. So I (gratefully) let them.
A road trip to the Pacific Northwest: We planned a month-long road trip from Spokane to Medford to visit places we hoped to move. When we decided to move closer to Eric’s parents and picked Omaha, we cancelled the trip. I was disappointed because the last time we had this trip was with my mom, so I was looking forward to revisiting places we visited together in 2017. But we can go again in the future. And since it was all refundable, we decided to save that money for our trip to Ireland in May of 2023.
So this was my summer of both YES and NO. Sometimes restful, and sometimes stressful.
I share these truths because I’m nothing if not transparent.
We – women especially – need to support each other. There are women who will try to lift you up with them and there are women who will climb you like stairs to lift themselves up. If you’re living your truth, your life by example, there are women who will judge you and smile to your face while they talk behind your back and try to break you down. The sister wound is real.
Sharing the highlight reels without disclosing the low lights, to me, isn’t genuine. I find that it makes other women feel like their life is missing something, that a certain level of happiness isn’t for them, or that pleasure and joy are always easy to find and feel.
Sure, sometimes our lives ARE missing something and these highlight reels shine a light on our desire/envy/jealousy. But there are a lot of regular moments and days between the highlight reel “YES” moments.
While you might not be able to fill your days with these big YES moments, you can upgrade these regular moments to feel just as good.
As a coach, I have reconfigured my life to fill my regular, real-life days with main character moments.
I find them in using one of my favorite handmade coffee mugs, that I collect when I travel, and savoring my morning coffee. I’m not sitting in silence in for 30 minutes sipping my coffee, meditating. That’s not me. But I take 5 and just enjoy my coffee and take a minute before I’m scrolling my emails for the day.
Another main character moment for me is sitting on the couch in the evening reading a good book, even if it’s just 15-20 minutes, surrounded by cat babies.
I sit at the table and enjoy eating my lunch and remember the years I sat at my desk at work just shoveling it into my mouth while I read emails.
I use the good lotion. I take a bath with epsom salt. I put fun outfits together and wear clothes I love, even though they’re casual and functional since I work from home. I go for a walk. I meal prep and listen to my favorite podcasts or audiobooks.
Main character moments are about adding more pleasure, fun and joy to your everyday, real life. It’s about upgrading your daily experiences, not just tapping into happiness a few times a year when you have a paid vacation…or on the weekend with a bottle of wine. And you don’t need a million dollars to do it.
Showing up like the main character in your life is not about being a selfish narcissist. If you’re still reading this, I can almost guarantee you’re quite the opposite. It’s about knowing that when your cup is full, you are your best self.
When you’re your best self, that joy you feel overflows to your spouse, your kids, your friends, your family.
By saying YES you are an example to others that it is possible for them to say YES to themselves, too. And what it’s okay to say NO to.
Once you start saying yes to yourself in little ways every day, you’ll start training yourself to believe what I do: That joy is your birthright and anything is possible for you.
It’s from this place that we can make big moves because they don’t feel as big or impossible anymore.
What are you saying YES to?
What do you want to say YES to in the new year?
How can you add more main character moments to your day?
I’d love for you to reply in the comments and let me know.
If you read to the end, thanks for sticking around for this unusually long blog post.
Sending you high-fives, main character energy vibes, and permission to say YES to yourself because joy is your birthright,
P.S. I help you say YES to yourself in the new year and create your main character life in my DIY vision and goal-setting online course, The 48-Hour Planning Retreat™.
In one weekend, it will change your damn life! And it’s only $497 (WHAT?!). To learn about it and enroll today, CLICK HERE.