Sometimes happiness and creativity don’t come naturally. Well, maybe that’s not entirely true, maybe thats just what I’d like to believe. Maybe the reality is that they do come naturally, and maybe, we just have to work hard to make sure they don’t get buried under layers of lethargy and complacency. Regardless of what’s true, the point is, we can’t just lay around waiting for the things we want to just come to us. I know this, yet I still still around and wait over, and over, and over again. So the question becomes “how do I stop the cycle?” rather than “how do I get what I want.”

Every year January just ends up being another Monday. You know, that Monday that you’re finally going to start “xyz” and then forget about it or lose steam by wednesday. The same thing happens every January. This is finally the year I’m going to do “xyz!” Only to have forgotten or given up by mid February. So this year I’m taking a new approach. And not just because it’s January, this has been a long time coming, it’s just honestly easier to muster up the gusto when the world is abuzz with new year’s resolutions.

My problem is that I can’t visualize the big picture when I’m only looking at a few of the parts. I can see where I want to be a year from now, I can see that crystal clear, but when I’m working on the first steps to get there it feels like chasing my tail. I can’t start working on something I hope to achieve a year from now and stay focused, it’s just not how my brain works. I think that’s honestly one of the biggest lessons I’ve learn from grad school so far, I need to work on big goals in pieces or I just get terribly overwhelmed. I need to be able to see my end result or I simply flounder.

So Instead of coming up with new year’s resolutions that I will undoubtedly forget about in a few weeks, I’m just going to focus on January for right now. What I want to do in January is Earn.

Earn: to bring about or cause deservedly

I’ve done enough sitting around and waiting. I have to find some way to break the cycle and I think that adopting the mentality that I have to earn what I want will help me. Whether the happiness and creativity have to be worked for, or whether I just have to work to uncover them, the similarity here is that work has to be done.

Today I was sitting around waiting for motivation to hit. I was just feeling lazy a crappy (a theme lately) and I thought of my goal to earn. A better mood might have just struck me out of no where if I kept on sitting there, but it probably wasn’t going to happen. I begrudgingly threw on my shoes and went for a run. It wasn’t glamorous , but I made it a entire mile and I feel much better for it. I’m trying my best not to focus on the fact that a few months ago I could run well over 5 miles, no big deal, but instead I’m focusing on earning what I can now. I earned that mile today and I feel really good about it.

In January I’m going to work on earning a better mood and more consistent energy by working on the things I know make me feel good. Since I’m still a solid week away from being able to plan out my work and school schedule, I started by making a workout calendar for the month that gives me 3 different options each day. One simple task that will take less than 5 minutes, an at home workout, a gym workout, or a run. I like plans, but I also like options. This way I can ease into a consistent work out schedule, and earn the benefits, without burning out before the month is out (at least hopefully!).

And hey, if nothing else, even if I fall off the bandwagon and forget all about this in a month, at least I made today better!