I always knew that 2018 would be a difficult year. 2017 saw me get so many things in harmony that my progress in many areas was astounding. I knew it would never continue and 2018 would be about trying to make difficult choices when everything was pulling in different directions.
I ended 2017 a little burnt out. I’d worked extremely hard and achieved a lot, but nothing is ever perfect and there were frustrations. The novel kept going back and with each successive rewrite I could feel my confidence being chipped away. My fitness was good but I’d been ridiculously disciplined. My tournament success was good but I could feel my body groaning under the successive tournaments so that it showed in my performance and resulted in me basically crashing out of the latter parts of the league.
Looking back, I think 2018 was very much about deal with the things my own insecurities manifested. I’m not sure I was ever depressed… I’ve had a happy year in many, many ways… but I felt massively overwhelmed. Everything became a mental struggle. I let friendships slide, activities I enjoyed suddenly became a real effort, habits became roadblocks. If I ignored you in 2018, I’m sorry. There are many emails and messages I never replied to… not because I didn’t want to… but because I was too busy trying to figure out what was going on to have the spoons to explain it to someone.
The more I wanted to break out of this rut, the more frustrated and angry I became with myself. I’d pick myself up and create a plan of what I needed to do only to feel suddenly overwhelmed again.
What I DID do was keep things ticking along. I made it to tournaments but only by telling myself that I was just going there to compete and then just coming back home. I won medals. heck, I even got a silver place in the league I kept the habit of going to the gym and whilst I wasn’t training as much or being as strict with the diet… I’ve ended the year just needing to lose weight (rather than also have to gain strength and muscle). I played Pokemon Go as it was (mostly) mindless. I had a short story published. I was a shit friend.
In the end, what I did do was end up prioritising me over the expectations I (and others) put on me. I’d hoped that the Year of Priorities would have been about me making difficult choices of what to work on. Instead it became about clawing myself from under the weight of all the various priorities.
I’m still not 100% there but I’m making progress. I’ve started to get myself more organised, stop making everything a short term goal, stopped beating myself up when I don’t have time to get things done, started being a bit more selfish with my time, tried to enjoy things again instead of just chasing results.
2019 is going to be about me and my wellbeing. The Climb may return, but only when I’m ready. I’m going to engage with people again, but it’ll be slow. There are a lot of lessons to tell from the last year, but there’s plenty of time still yet to tell them.