New Years Goals

By Eliza Gale

I was sitting in a crowded Atlanta Greyhound Station on New Year’s Eve, waiting for a bus to Dallas. The tired travelers at the station all smiled wearily when they heard the revelers cheer at midnight. As I boarded the bus, I wondered if I should bother to make new year’s resolutions. With all the uncertainty in the world, I knew that planning my future might be overly optimistic. I thought about the last two years. I wondered how I could change things in 2022. 

 What I Learned About Myself in 2021

I am more of a survivor than I thought. I began the year with a bang when I broke my wrist. It was pretty severe, and it required several months of physical therapy. The exercises were painful, and I did not seem to be making any progress. I had to push through the pain to eventually get my wrist working again.

In both 2020 and 2021, I learned that I waste a lot of time worrying about things that don’t matter. I also discovered that I care what other people think. I found myself Googling people I didn’t like in the hopes of finding some dirt. In some cases, I was not disappointed. In other cases, I found that my former nemeses had succeeded at something, and it made me feel worse.

I learned that when I’m really honest, I like communicating with people through social media more than I do in real life. I have always been one of those people who takes ten minutes to think of a witty comeback. Facebook allows me to do this, and I come across as smarter and faster than I am in real life. My Facebook friends think I am quick-witted…. if they only knew.

I read more than I did before the pandemic. I had forgotten what a joy it could be to envision characters and stories in my mind instead of seeing them on film. It made me want to tell my own stories again. I have started working on a book and hope to be done with it in 2022. 

What I Want to Release in 2022

Like most everyone in the world, I want to release my mask and throw it right into the fire this year. I also want to release the anger I have at people who are not worth the time I spend thinking about them. I used to work in call centers and I have had some really horribly unprofessional bosses.

I can’t say I can forgive the looksists, racist, homophobic, and ignorant things that my former bosses have said. I can’t forgive the companies for which I worked for promoting people with no qualifications, education, or sense. I can try to concentrate on things I can do something about.

Rejecting distractions, like watching the same videos over and over again, and getting engaged in petty arguments on Facebook, is a priority. I have allowed myself to become involved in disagreements on social media with people for whom I have no respect. I would be more productive if I didn’t care if someone I have never met before doesn’t understand my humor or humor itself.  

 I cut my internet time in half in January. I hope I can keep it up. 

What I Want to Welcome in 2022

Although I have never stopped writing, I have not submitted anything for years. Fear of the feeling a rejection letter will bring has stopped me from sending my work to publishers in the past. I want to get over that fear in the coming year. 

 In college, I was involved with various animal rights causes. I gave up because every time a successful piece of legislation passed, it would eventually get overturned. It broke my heart every time, and I don’t want to feel that way again. I know the animals are worth it and I will just have to get over my bullshit and do everything I can for them. 

I began the month by rejoining a few animal rights groups and participating in a letter-writing campaign. Activities have been limited because of COVID, but in January, I started to reeducate myself on the issues. 

I have lived the life of a cyber nomad for two years now, and I have come to meet many displaced people. Some people end up homeless as a result of unstable employment and overpriced housing. There are a lot of people who live on the edge of homelessness, staying in motels and Airbnbs. I have gotten pretty good at on-the-road survival and avoiding disaster. 

I would like to go to homeless shelters and teach the survival skills that I have learned as a cyber nomad. I know tricks for keeping yourself housed if you are a freelancer or if you live on the road for some other reason.

In January, I made an outline for the cyber nomad class I would like to teach, and I plan to start calling homeless shelters in the next month. I would also like to start a blog about the practicalities of living on the road as well. 

What May Hold Me Back 

Finding the time to do all I want to do might be a problem. As a freelancer, I have to take jobs when I can get them. Some days, I have a copious amount of work to do, and other days I have almost nothing. It can be hard to make plans. 

I have been enthused about projects in the past, only to discover that no one was interested in them. Teaching classes in a homeless shelter might be hard to schedule and it may be even harder to convince the people who run them to let me do it. 

There is an infrastructure based around the very poor. Homeless shelters get money for the people they help. They get money from the government for providing temporary housing. They also try to get people Section 8 money. Certain apartment buildings know that they will always get rent money when they take Section 8. Hence, businesses benefit from poverty. They rely on a certain segment of the population not being able to take care of themselves. They may not like me teaching the homeless how to be independent.

I realize my efforts may fail, but it has to be better than doing nothing. If things don’t work out, there is always 2023. 

Published by mindsetofathlete

I am a mental health professional in love with art, of various expressions. My career focuses on understanding health and fitness, acknowledging when a person has become unbalanced in their obligations, and determining the best customized approach for helping clients recover and heal. In my spare time, I enjoy reading, participating in outdoor activities, and exploring cuisines and cultural elements of my environment.

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