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  • Jennifer Swartley

Living with Intention in the New Year

How’s this New Year treating you so far? I know I’ve been thrown for some loops already just a few weeks in. As the world continues to swirl around me reminding me that I can't control what comes my way, I've returned to these 3 principles to keep me grounded and moving toward my goals.

  1. Focus on how you want to feel, not what you want to do - My word this year is EASE and it's a feeling I am cultivating in everything I do. I use it to guide my decisions and I've found that even the most difficult things can be met with ease when you're acting in true alignment with your wants, desires and unique gifts. Ease comes in the tiniest of choices, whether it’s sitting for a little bit longer in the morning with my cup of coffee to savor the quiet. Or saying no to a kids' activity that added more stress and logistics to our days. Or offloading a task at work that was taking me forever and wasn't really adding any value for my clients. YOUR TURN: So what’s your word? How are you looking to feel this year and what are 1-2 things you can do today to feel more of it in your life.

  2. Carve out more YOU time - We give so much time to our work and our families, that we’re often left with the scraps at the end of the day. It can feel daunting to take on anything more than a scroll on social media or a nap in front of the TV. I made a conscious decision to no longer give everyone else the prime time and to steal back some of those precious hours where I have energy and my mind is sharp. I’m reading Eve Rodsky’s new book “Find Your Unicorn Space” and plan to share more about that with all of you. But the gist is that carving out time for creative expression is essential for us to live fulfilled lives and yet so many of us aren’t making that time. Worse yet, we’ve totally disconnected from what lights us up so we wouldn't even know what to do if we made the time. No more! YOUR TURN: So take a few moments to start to dream about what you’d do with a few hours of uninterrupted time. What creative pursuits would you explore? What would it take to get that time for yourself? Is it a conversation with your partner? A favor asked of friends or family? Time you put on a movie for the kids (Encanto is a great one!) and shut your door?

  3. Be compassionate with yourself - If we’ve learned anything these last few years, it’s that life is full of uncertainty and we aren’t in control of the world around us. But what we are able to control is how we treat ourselves through it all. Like Adele says "Go eeeeeeasssyyyy on me..." Be gentle as you’re navigating whatever challenges are coming your way. The more grace you give yourself, the more likely you are to not act out of shame or guilt. You'll make better decisions that are aligned with what you need and keep you feeling your best. When I lie down at the end of the day I’ll often put my hand on my heart and just say “I’m doing the best I can.” YOUR TURN: Where can you soften just a little bit and give yourself more compassion? Close your eyes and remind yourself “You’re doing the best you can!”

I hope these help you as you’re navigating through the beginning of the year. And if you’re looking for additional support to live life more intentionally and to make time for yourself, don't hesitate to reach out. That’s the work I love to do!

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