This year, I am being more intentional about reflecting on my life and work. How else will I know if I’m making progress on the goals, dreams and opportunities I have for myself? I loved doing my annual review of 2011 (here are the questions I used for that), so now I’ve committed to doing a review of each month of the year as well.
Here, I present a brief review of the fourth month of 2012, starting with a word that captures the essence how I spent the month of April: HONESTY.
This is some of what I did last month, personally and professionally.
- I decided to stay in Charlottesville, VA for another month. So I’ll be here through mid-May, for sure. After that, I’ll be going to visit my Grama in Ohio for a bit. Then…?
- I did two paid speaking engagements: one virtual (webinar) and one at JMU in Virginia. As a result of my presentation at JMU, I got invited to present at another local college while I am here in the area. So that makes two paid gigs for May so far!
- I began teaching the third live run of the Blogging School, bringing the total number of students who’ve take the course to over 60! I’m not sure when the next live run will happen, as I am in the process of putting together some more advanced material to take folks through the entrepreneurship side of blogging more deeply. Sign up here to be the first to know about new Blogging School courses.
- I attended my first wine festival in Charlottesville (also known as Virginia’s wine country). I had a great time (a great tipsy time LOL) tasting local wines from 12 area wineries, as well as meeting the other four black women who were there (not even kidding – there were like four of us). So funny how we have a way of finding each other, especially when we are in the minority. My favorite wine, hands down, was the Horton Vineyards white chocolate dessert wine. Oh man, that was some good stuff! (The photo in this post is from my day at the wine festival.)
- I went to a meetup for work-from-home professionals where I met some cool business owners that I’ve been able to learn from and build with while I’m here. I feel less lonely now that I’ve found a few local people to add to my ”tribe” of fellow entrepreneurs. Shout out to Meetup.com!
- I spent quality time with my mom and aunt for their weekend birthday celebration. It’s been so interesting seeing their relationship evolve as they get older, especially as my respective relationships with them change and grow.
- I cooked quinoa and this time I actually enjoyed it LOL. I paid more attention to my protein and veggie intake. I drank more water. I relaxed at the park. I found the best Thai restaurant in Charlottesville. I worked from one of my favorite “offices” – the public library. I went to see “The Lucky One” and felt like a cougar for lusting after the very young (and very hot!) Zac Efron.
I chose the word HONESTY because in April, I felt like I was able to be honest with myself and others about my needs. I was reminded of how powerful it is to be 100% who you are, especially in personal relationships. The powerful part is that by being honest about who you are and what you need, you give others permission to do the same.
In my relationship with my sister, I was honest with myself about the fact that I cannot ”fix” what’s causing the chasm between us. As much as I want to be able to change her frame of mind right now, I have to remember that I am not responsible for her stuff. She is the only one who can choose to heal whatever is preventing her from participating fully in our relationship. Being honest about that gave me an immense feeling of relief. I no longer feel the burden of “making it work” between us on my shoulders.
In my relationship with the writer, I was honest about my feelings and needs. Unfortunately, his past relationship experiences left him skeptical about what’s possible with women. I very nearly fell into the emotional trap of wanting to “prove” to him that nice guys don’t always finish last. But that is not my role as a romantic partner, nor do I want it to be. Trying to help someone else move on and grow from past relationship disappointments is not a position I want to be in. I was honest with myself about needing a relationship filled with mutual support, not one-sided semi-therapy sessions. This gave me the clarity to end what would probably have become an emotionally unhealthy situation.
What I want to experience in May 2012 is the courage to proceed as the way opens for decisions I will soon have to make in my work and life. I want this to look like saying yes to new, messy opportunities and releasing attachment to the outcome of any particular path. I want to feel OK with being a “free spirit” (as two people have referred to me recently).
What ONE word would you use to describe your experience of April 2012? What do you want to experience in May 2012?
If you choose to answer this question as part of a review on your own blog, please go ahead and post the link in the comments so we can read it! I would love to hear how your year is progressing so far. For some additional inspiration, check out Glamazini’s review of April 2012: Momentum.
If you want to join the May 2012 edition of the 31 Days to Reset Your Life Challenge, you may still do so here. As soon as you sign up, you will receive the first assignment in the program! Or, you can just buy the workbook, which gives you all the exercises in one place, with worksheets so you can work at your own pace.
In case you missed them, here are all 15 posts I wrote on the blog last month. Thank you, as always, for reading and sharing.
- 4 Ways to Make Room for More Happiness in Your Life
- Join the 31 Days to Reset Your Life Challenge: May 2012 Edition
- How Much Money Should You Charge for Speaking?
- Eight Months, Four Rooms, One Nomadic Adventure (Photos)
- Have You Started Yet?
- Four Steps to Becoming a Professional Speaker
- 7 Strategies to Help You Stop Buying Things You Don’t Need
- Marketing Yourself Takes Courage: What I Didn’t Know in 2007
- The Happy Black Woman Playlist: 10 Songs to Inspire You to Be Your Best Self
- Whole: A Review of March 2012
- What I Learned from Being on Public TV: Don’t Forget Your Pantyhose
- My Dream Job is What I’m Doing Now
- There’s Nothing Sexy About Working for Yourself
- A Realistic Reason to Try Online Dating
- 3 Ways to Stay Open to Possibility in Your Love Life