I finally got it right this holiday season, finding that fine line between enjoyment and overload, slowing down just enough to feel hopeful in the new year rather than drained. In the quiet spaces, I found myself thinking about the new year, perhaps not any differently than I do the rest of the year, but finally, with some sense of clarity.
I spent most of last year feeling exhausted, lots of ideas and intangibles floating around in my brain with no useful outlet or direction. Not only exhausted, but a little stuck, too. I sometimes tell friends who are going through transitions without a road map that it helps to just get comfortable with being uncomfortable. I had to take a lot of my own advice. But suddenly and yet slowly, I've found myself with moments of clarity. It always surprises me how straightforward the answers seem when they show up. I never understand the tortured path they take to get to me.
I finally realized that one of the most important things I can do for myself this year is separate my work from my home. I need space, space to thrive and grow, a place where color and creative abandon can reign, where piles of projects in process aren't guilt inducing. I need a home, a (relatively) serene space where I can unwind, not constantly distracted by the work on the dining room table calling my name. It seems so simple - and so complicated.
As quickly as I identified my needs, I was acutely aware of my fears. It struck me how often I operate from fear now, something I didn't have in my twenties. But I've been a freelancer for a long time, security isn't a byproduct of such career choices. As a result I've accepted less for myself, making do instead of thriving. It's funny how often we'll accept less than we need, all the while encouraging others to maximize their potential.
What will happen if I take a leap? My fear is that I will make a move to expand and the Universe will contract. But I also know that if I don't expand, the Universe will contract anyway. Catch-22. I may as well move toward the light.