I don’t make New Year’s res­o­lu­tions, but I do take this qui­et time at the end of the year to reflect and acknowl­edge all the learn­ing, growth and stum­bles of the past year. 2019 has been a year of intense growth for me both per­son­al­ly and pro­fes­sion­al­ly. I came into this year as a woman com­plete­ly over­whelmed and lost in moth­er­hood. My 2nd child was 6 months old and I was obsti­nate­ly unwill­ing to rec­og­nize that I was strug­gling with post­par­tum depres­sion AND that it was not “mild” in any sense of the word.

And I’m end­ing the year in a com­plete­ly dif­fer­ent place. Some­how I’ve come out the oth­er side of this year more con­fi­dent and com­fort­able with who I am than ever before in my life. I’ve stretched myself fur­ther and thin­ner than I thought pos­si­ble. I have shat­tered long held beliefs about myself that I am unwill­ing to ever let creep back into my mind & being. It’s been a tru­ly trans­for­ma­tive year, and I’d like to share with you what I’ve learned.

1.      Surround Yourself with Good People AND Listen to Them

I have sur­round­ed myself with beau­ti­ful, kind, smart, impres­sive, love­ly peo­ple. The peo­ple I inter­act with on a reg­u­lar basis are peo­ple that I strive to be like. When you sur­round your­self with good peo­ple, you inevitably start see­ing more good in your­self. Each per­son in your life is a tiny mir­ror.

When we find those “good” peo­ple, they lift us up. They give us strength, they give us love, they give us their belief in us. The trick is we have to LISTEN and BELIEVE them. I’ve always believed peo­ple who cut me down; the ones who said I was too much of this or not enough of that, but I’ve nev­er let myself real­ly hear the good until recent­ly. As I look back on this year, this was the first step for me. I had to let the good in. I had no well of good to give myself, and I wasn’t going to be able to fill it up alone. I had to stop deflect­ing and let it in.

2.      Get Comfortable Feeling Like an Imposter

This may sound crazy, but at first let­ting all that good in felt almost phys­i­cal­ly painful. It was so easy for me to beat myself up and hold myself back. Let­ting in the good meant I then had to do some­thing with it. I had to actu­al­ly try, and this is where the tried and true “fake it until you make it” comes into play.

I am mov­ing into 2020 as the Pres­i­dent of Impact 100, the Chief Oper­at­ing Offi­cer of MACKEY, a per­son who does work­outs reg­u­lar­ly, a hap­py mom and a per­son who has cre­ative ener­gy. While all of these roles still feel a bit sur­re­al, they don’t feel daunt­ing. When I said yes to being Pres­i­dent of Impact 100 I lit­er­al­ly couldn’t believe the words came out of my mouth. I’ve spent the last year grap­pling with my self-doubt and anx­i­ety about it. When I said yes to becom­ing a health­i­er per­son I thought I’d prob­a­bly just fail again, but with each week and month I felt stronger and more capa­ble.

To move for­ward in life we have to be will­ing to be uncom­fort­able and man­age the waves of self-doubt and imposter syn­drome.

3.      Be a Baby

This may seem coun­ter­in­tu­itive, but to move from where we are to where we want to be we need to be baby like. We need to let go of what we “know”, under­stand that iter­a­tion and fail­ure is part of the process, and build a sys­tem for incre­men­tal changes that add up to huge leaps. Seri­ous­ly, we don’t give babies enough cred­it. They go from not being able to hold their head up to walk­ing with­in a year. If you want to trans­form your life, your work, or any­thing real­ly, ya got­ta become a baby.

4.      Find Your Anchors and Hold on Tight

Like any­thing, change gets eas­i­er the more you do it. As you become more com­fort­able with change and more adept to mov­ing through it, new and dif­fer­ent road­blocks come up. The way to over­come those road­blocks is to under­stand deeply what your anchor points are. Some call them val­ues, we use the word inten­tion at MACKEY, but I am a visu­al per­son, so I like to think of them as anchors. These are the things that hold me to the earth. For me it is authen­tic­i­ty, vul­ner­a­bil­i­ty, cre­ativ­i­ty and love. To explore your anchors you can check out Mack­ey McNeill’s man­i­fest work­book.

5.      YES is as POWERFUL as No

There are an infi­nite num­ber of pos­si­bil­i­ties out there and I HATE say­ing no. To me, it feels like I am clos­ing a door I can nev­er open again. So, I devel­oped my list of what I am a YES for.

In my life, I am a YES for my family’s hap­pi­ness, MACKEY’s growth & abil­i­ty to change the world, the suc­cess and advance­ment of Impact 100, and my devel­op­ment as a human & leader. By cre­at­ing a strong list of what I am a YES for I can fil­ter my oppor­tu­ni­ties and deci­sion points, but through a lens that feels more pos­i­tive and cre­ates more ener­gy.

6.      You are NEVER Done

Last­ly, you are nev­er done. As uncom­fort­able as it is to say this, I am proud of what I’ve accom­plished this year. BUT that doesn’t mean I don’t have to go back through all of these steps on a reg­u­lar basis. I am con­front­ed by my own beliefs, con­straints and lim­i­ta­tions dai­ly, and what I now know is this: if you are a human who has cho­sen a path of growth, being con­front­ed and chal­lenged is just part of the process.

And to con­clude, I’m going to throw in #7. BE GRATEFUL. Be grate­ful for it all, the good and the bad. Most impor­tant­ly though, be grate­ful for the peo­ple in your life and love the heck out of them.

Hap­py New Year every­one! SG