Tuesday, December 17, 2013

25 Questions to Ask Yourself Before 2014: Part Two

And so we are at Day Two of this exercise.  Today, I'm answering questions 11-20 from Chelsea's list.  If you want to link up, or check out her answers to today's questions, head over to her blog at Life is a Sunset.  In the alternative, I'd invite you to just think about or journal your own answers if you're so inclined.

Let's jump in:

11. When did I feel most creatively inspired?  This year for me, it has been when I'm blogging.  As a little girl, I used to love reading and writing stories.  And then somewhere along the line, I began to think of these as trivial pursuits and abandoned them.  I am SO glad I finally decided to stop thinking of all the reasons I couldn't start writing again, and couldn't start a blog, and finally just DID it.  There's that thing about taking action, any kind of action, again!  A funny thing happened now that I am writing - the creative fire within me has been re-lit and some of my other passions from long ago have started to surface as well. I used to be into drawing, painting and crafting when I was younger and lately I have been fantasizing about signing up for an art class.  2014 get ready...

12. What projects have I completed?  (1) Starting this blog.  (2) Training for and racing 2 more half marathons this year - one in which I PR'ed!  (3) Setting the groundwork for a new career. 

13. How have I procrastinated?  Honestly, I have probably procrastinated the least this year than I ever have in my life before!  This year was all about action for me, in so many different realms.  Traditionally, I tend to hold off on making decisions out of FEAR - fear that I will make the "wrong" choice. And do you know what usually happens then?  I wait too long and the outcome is decided for me and without my input, which generally leads to unhappiness.  I've finally seen that making a choice even when you are afraid of not being "right", is far better than sitting back and doing nothing.

14. In what ways can I re-structure my time?  Come 2014, I'm going to have a lot more on my plate and many more commitments, and I can already see it's going to be difficult to fit everything I need/want into a day.  That being said, I know I need to take care of myself and schedule my workouts, blogging, studying and other 'me' time activities, or my mental and physical health will suffer. 

15. How have I allowed fear of failure to hold me back?  This is a big lesson I learned this year.  And another reason I rarely take chances and hold off on making decisions.  I believe this fear of failure is what kept me in a job that was so misaligned with who I am for so long. I was afraid of stepping outside my comfort zone, but this year I was forced to do that, and what a blessing that has been!

16. Where has self-doubt taken over?  I doubt myself a lot, even today.  I'm better than I was a few years ago, or even last year, however I still have much to work here.  I often let outside voices influence me and my decisions too much, instead of listening to my own inner voice to guide me. When I was in a dark place a few years ago, and decided to run my first half marathon, I really doubted that I could do it.  Even as I increased my mileage and I could see that I was actually running, 10, 11, 12 miles - more than I had ever run before - still I doubted myself!  Now you can see how deep seated this is. I had actual physical proof and I was indeed performing the said task, yet still I doubted!  So, I've come a long way since then, and I credit running as the catalyst that set off this self-work and helped me to become so much more emotionally and mentally strong and confident.

17. When have I felt the most alive?  Wow, are these questions getting more difficult or is it just me?! There have been many moments this year when I have been so, so grateful to be alive.  And that is saying a lot, because a few years ago, I felt like there was no life left in me.  Some of the moments that stand out this year:  Being present in the hospital when my best friend delivered her first child; Every time my niece or nephew takes my hand, or calls out to me, "Jilly", in their tiny little voices; My PR in the half marathon in my hometown.  Those are just a few things/moments that I will never forget.

18. How have I taught others to respect me?  By finally realizing and proving through some key accomplishments this year, that I know what's best for me.  I think I first had to convince myself of that.  Once I stopped looking outside for answers, I think others started to see me as a more confident, strong and capable person.

19. How can I improve my relationships?  Many of my friendships and family relationships have grown stronger this year.  After working on myself, I was finally able to communicate more openly with those close to me.  For 2014, I hope to improve my outlook and openness to a romantic relationship.  That 3 month stint on Match.com this summer was an attempt but there's more to be done on the partner relationship front, that's for sure :) 

20. Have I been unfair to anyone? In the past, I believe I have and I am working on forgiving myself for those mistakes.

Wow.  These questions are becoming more difficult, more intimate, and pretty emotionally draining! I feel like I'm baring myself here, but I'm glad to be getting things out.  The only way to start anew is to put it all out there.  Part Three tomorrow.  Until then friends... 

What about you?  Did you find the second set of questions to be more probing?


  1. You are so awesome, you've come so far!!! Love you cigan!!! And thanks for mentioning us in number 17, i'm so thankful you were there, everything is better when you're there!!!!!

    1. Oh Lesle you are too kind to me always! Now don't make me cry here on my blog! Love you too but I'm sure you know that, you are my sister soulmate!