In my million posts about the new year, I mentioned how I do a lot of reflection this time of year. Even though it’s an arbitrary start date (like people who say they will start something on Monday or when the next month starts), it still feels like a start or a clean break. There’s just something about a new year that makes me want to work on myself and see what I can improve upon.
I feel like I have done a lot of reflection and so many of the things I have done recently have been good things for me. I have very few regrets about what I’ve been doing lately and even the things I regret aren’t as bad as they have been in the past. But there are still things I know I could do better and that’s something that I’ve been thinking about this week.
I’ve been doing my happiness checklist for quite a while now. I find it a very valuable tool for me to use to make sure that I take time for myself each day to do at least one thing that makes me happy. There is never an expectation for me to do everything on the list (and I don’t think I’ve actually ever done that), but it’s good for me to check in with myself. And even on my worst days, it’s nice to remember that I have done some things that make me happy in a day. It doesn’t always make me feel better, but it does take the edge off of a really bad day.
I’ve made a few changes on my checklist since I started it, but I haven’t made a change on it recently. And as I have been filling out my checklists the past few days, I’ve been feeling like they aren’t necessarily the right things to have on there. They are things that make me happy, but either I do them every day and I don’t know if they should be on there or they are a bit too specific and I don’t get to do them as often as I’d like. And then there is one or two things on the list that I know should make me happy but they don’t necessarily do so. And I’ve been having weird guilt feelings about why I don’t feel happy when I know that they should.
So it is definitely time for me to work on redoing my happiness checklist. I need to take time and really think about things that do make me happy. And maybe I need to find new categories to have on there that combine a few things. For example, I had beauty stuff on the list originally but took it off because I didn’t do it often enough nor did I want to do it more often. And now I have watching movies on the list but sometimes I don’t want to watch a movie and I feel like I should at some point in a week to be able to check it off. I don’t know if doing a general category like “self-care” would be right to do on there, but there has to be a better way for me to categorize things.
I think the problem for me in the past is I felt like if I was going to make a change on the list that I have to do it immediately and move on. That’s a bit how it started when my therapist told me to do this. I felt like I needed to get it set up so I could start working on doing a check in every day. I didn’t think about it enough and that’s why I had to make changes early on. I also probably have the issue with feeling like once I set something up that it needs to stay that way and I am not as flexible as I feel like I am. That’s something I know I am working on and this is a great way for me to do just that.
As much as I’d love to have my new checklist set up tonight, I know that doing that is the wrong move. It is causing me a bit of anxiety to not know when it will be ready and I will start using that, but I need to sit in those feelings. I hear all the time that change only happens outside of your comfort zone and I know that keeping my checklist the way it is or setting up a new one immediately is the comfortable way. I need to be in the uncomfortable space now and hopefully that time will allow me to reflect and work on it and I will be better for it in the long run.