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New Year’s Eve 2020
I’ve been incredibly neurotic the past few days. I’m taking a bit of a weed break, and this lack of substance is forcing my introspection on a deeper level, and that generally causes me to go crazy. This isn’t to discount what I’ve been feeling, but I just want to put the whole thing into perspective. Yes, not smoking weed is forcing my anxieties to bubble back to the surface. I need this. As much as I hate it, it is a vital practice for me now. Not even a practice, but just an acknowledgement. Before, my consistent and unwavering intake was allowing me to gloss over my pain. Weed suppresses anxiety, and I was suppressing like a pro.
It’s the full moon. I don’t remember what intentions I set for the new moon, but here I am now. I am acknowledging my struggles. I am opening myself and my world to the newness of possibilities.
I have grown so much. My 2020 new year’s resolution was to get taller. I’m aware of the absurdity there, but I have. I’ve grown so much emotionally, and I’m so proud to see where I am as opposed to where I was. I started this year with a creative project and that set the tone for my work. I am so proud to see where I was then and where I am now and how much more comfortable I am with my work. I still feel self conscious, but I am miles further than I was. I had a whole ass gallery show, what the fuck? This year has brought me absolutely wonderful things, internally. It was a terrible year for the world, but individually, this year has provided me with so much introspection and growth that I am eternally thankful for and will continue to bring forth as time keeps on spinning. I know myself more and that’s been difficult, but it’s so exciting. I will continue to learn who I am and I will continue to heal myself. It’s a slow process and as short life is, I refuse to live within my body without growth. I refuse to remain stagnant in my position here, today.
There is no tomorrow, there is only today and I must stop planning my future. This is sort of a mixed bag. I can “plan” my future, but a future that’s planned is planning for a future that may never happen. Planning can only go so far, and the universe likes to spin circumstances into their most absurd. You can plan as much as you want, but there’s no guarantee in that plan. Planning can only go as far as you can see, and even then, your vision may be blurred. What I am trying to say is, thinking ahead never hurt anyone, but focusing entirely on that thought-out future will do nothing for you now other than bring you anxiety or transport you to a fantastical idealizations.
Speaking of, I think new year’s resolutions are idealized fantasies of a future that may or may not exist. They put too much focus on the outcome and not the process. They expect goals to be completed in impossible time, but maybe I’m just projecting. I suppose I hadn’t even thought about this before Salm brought it up, but I think it’s a fair point. Essentially, whatever works for you works for you. If new year’s resolutions allow you to set goals for yourself, by all means set those yearly goals. What I will say though, is that they expect too much too fast. They expect a complete turnaround in 12 months and that’s unrealistic. First of all, personal goals are something that must be consistently worked on in regularity. I think the whole joke around new year’s resolutions is that no one commits to them past march. That’s the problem. New year’s resolutions allow excuses in advancement because it’s not that serious. I don’t know anyone who’s actually succeeded in implementing their new year’s resolution within that year.
My new year’s resolution was to get taller and let me tell you how I accomplished that within 2020. I started doing yoga every day. This alone took me years of on and off practice to get into the habit, and desire to do it daily. Through yoga, I realized my posture was absolute shit and now I am consistently working to fix that. The other day I realized that I think my right leg is longer than my left because of how much I lean on my left leg. Now, I’m working on practicing to stand straight and tall, with elongated posture, and I’m trying to get my left leg to meet the floor with the right.
None of this could have possibly happened within one single year, and I think an incredibly apt point Salm made during our discussion was that behavior takes time to change, and that’s what new year’s resolutions don’t account for.
If they work for you, new year’s resolutions can be great for re-assessing and setting new goals for yourself to work on, but expecting those goals to be reached within the year is a bit preposterous. This expectation is what I think makes so many people stop in march. It takes 66 days to develop a habit, and it can take years to shift behavior. Once your body understands the routine it will want to work with or against it, but setting that up takes time, and I think that’s what can discourage people. Additionally, this is all coming from an American perspective so you may have a different perception of this yearly goal setting , and that’s the beauty of humanity and cultural differentiation is that everyone experiences things from varying lenses and to think that one way of life is the Proper Way is so colonialist it’s ridiculous.
Americans need instant gratification. When their long term goals aren’t met within three months, they’ll give up and forget about it until the end of the year comes around and they’ll get depressed that they never completed their goals. That, or once they’ve lost focus on it they’ll forget they even set the goal in the first place. It’s a set up for failure and I think that’s the toxicity of it.
As I said before, if the idea of new year’s resolutions helps you work through what you want to improve within yourself, by all means take the opportunity, but if you set them every year just to give up on them because you aren’t seeing immediate results, look deeper. Allow yourself the time to improve. Allow yourself the space to work on what you want to work on. Be kind to yourself if you’re struggling to get through it because it will be an uphill battle. There may be some days where it’s the easiest thing in the world to commit to, but there will be other days where it’s impossible to even get out of bed, and if that’s the case, allow yourself the time to rest and recover for your health. All things take energy and time and commitment, don’t expect anything, behavior especially, to completely shift within three months, or even a year. You can improve, you can change, you simply must allow yourself the opportunity, the space, and the kindness to do so.
As for smoking weed, I did last night. Two puffs after a long day’s work. I think I’m beginning to understand how I can deal with my substances in a healthy way. Blindboy (The Blindboy Podcast) and his perspective on life has really been helping me work through and realize a lot of things about my behavior, and for that, I’m very grateful for the Irishman.
Weed needs to be a reward for me, not a regularity. Weed is a little treat after a long day’s work, but I can’t have it be what I am looking forward to at the end of my day, because then it still has a hold on my life and my behavior.
I woke up today, after my beer and two puffs of the bubbler last night, and I felt guilty. I felt guilty, because I started to go into a spiral about, did I really deserve that? Should I really have done that? And so on… Point blank, it doesn’t matter whether or not I should have. The point is that I did, where do we go from here.
I slept through the night, and this was also a bit surprising. I haven’t been sleeping soundly since I’ve cut back, but that was to be expected. My whole life I’ve had awful trouble sleeping, the voices in my head just won’t stop talking sometimes and I can’t relax. In a state of sobriety it’s a surprise whenever I do fall asleep, because I’ll wake up a few times throughout the night, not even realizing I had fallen asleep, but there I am back up. Thankfully, I am able to go back in after these instances which is more than most can say, so I’m thankful for that.
I felt guilty and then I realized that was kind of absurd. I could feel guilty for breaking my goal of not smoking for a month, I could feel weak for this too, but I chose not to.
I work so hard and I enjoy doing it, but I need to give myself the space to chill the fuck out and have fun. That’s what last night was. I won’t feel guilty, because there’s no reason to hold myself back in that way. All I can do is move forward.
If I’m smoking I just need to quit my regularity, that’s where the toxicity comes in for me. I want to smoke once or twice a week. If I create regularity in it again my brain gets so fogged up that the intrusive voices aren’t as loud. I hate it, but I need them to be there so I have the opportunity to work through them. Avoiding them only allows them to continue to live inside of me and that’s not something I want to prolong. What I want is to hear them. I want to hear them and have the capacity to disagree with them consciously and wholeheartedly. I want to hear them and I want to find them and surround them with love because that’s all they really need. They’re so sad and lonely and lost and the only purpose they see is to bring me down with them. I will not be brought down again. I will dig and dig until I find them and I will give them the biggest hug and surround their negativity with love and allow myself to heal. Expulsion won’t do anything but leave another emptiness inside of myself. I want to heal and expulsion feels like a form of avoidance for me. I want to love myself and I will and it will be divinity.
Here are my new years resolutions
- To work on my posture and stand tall (get that leg on the ground!)
- To look inward in order to find true self esteem and confidence within myself
- To stop basing my self worth in other people’s perceptions of me and my work
- To be more forgiving of myself
- To stop projecting my insecurities onto others
- To stop thinking other people think the terrible thoughts I think about myself, and recognize that they are but a mirror of my own self doubt
- To see within myself and allow love and kindness into my heart
- To write for at least an hour everyday
I know I just said all that shit about the toxicity of new year’s resolutions, but I’m one of those people who can benefit from looking back on the year in order to see what I want to bring forward into the next. Regardless of your feelings on new year’s resolutions, I think it’s important for everyone to look back on this year, and those prior, and see what you want to bring forward into your life. What worked for you and what didn’t? This doesn’t have to be a “new years resolution,” but more of a self assessment and evaluation. If the pressure of new year’s resolutions are too much, don’t make that commitment, but allow yourself the opportunity to grow. Allow yourself to find the ways in which you, as an individual, are able to set goals and practice them for yourself, your own well being, and your personal improvement.
Whether you figure this out on new year’s eve, or tomorrow, or three months from now is irrelevant. All things take time and you must allow yourself the space to grow.