woman wearing blue top near tree

This Is The Only Resolution I’m Making This Year

It was the day after the day after Christmas, and my sisters and I were piled into my car, heading back from a beautifully long and lazy week home with our small family. The car was silent , the music stuck in perpetual buffering down the cellular data-less roads of southern NH, and my sisters and I quiet from a mix of weekly reflections, Sunday blues, and slight car sickness from what they would call my “bad driving.”

But it was a pleasant silence, the kind that put me into a trance while I was driving down the curvy roads (very skillfully, if you ask me). The hum of everything around me fading away as I got lost in my thoughts of which Love Actually storyline is my favorite.

So when I heard my youngest sister’s voice pipe up from the backseat, half muffled by suitcases and Christmas loot, I did a double take. And then, I did a double take again when I registered what she actually said.

“Have you guys ever felt as though you’re just one step away from full form?”

What? is what I’m sure I said out loud, although any words I spoke were drowned out by laughter, my other sister and I finding both confusion and humor in her out-of-the-blue pondering.

“Not like figure-wise,” she quickly added, laughing along. “But I think that once I get my haircut again, I’ll be fully me.”

This time, I understood what she meant: being just one small, doable change away from feeling like the version of you that you’re most proud to present to both yourself and to the world. The version that you think of when you think of yourself at your happiest, that you want other people to think of when picturing all that you are. The one that allows you to put your best foot forward every day. The Amelia Mignonette Thermopolis Renaldo, Princess of Genovia to your Mia Thermopolis; the Charizard to your Charmander.

The most powerful version of yourself.

But I sat there in the driver seat, no longer in silence as their excited chatter continued on around me, and I came to the sad conclusion that my answer to her question was no. No, I haven’t.

Reaching Full Form

When I really think about it, I’ve never felt just one step away from being the most “me” version of myself. Two or three steps, maybe, but never right there. The closest I’ve come was the summer of 2019, when the bleach in my hair finally grew out to look like a purposeful ombre and I spent every free moment I had laying in the sun in a sports bra and shorts at the public park up the street from my apartment.

But those days have since passed (which my now healthy hair is much thankful for), and I feel today as though I’m more of a 100m dash away from becoming Full Form Me than anything within stepping, or even leaping, distance.

But that doesn’t mean the best version of myself is completely out of reach.

When I think of the Elle Woods version of myself, the Analee that has the self-confidence, determination, and wardrobe to do anything she sets her mind to, an image quickly materializes.

Full Form Me goes to bed before 11 p.m. regularly. Full Form Me drinks lemon water and stretches after workouts. She spends a little more time reading and a little less time mindlessly scrolling through her phone (but just as much time watching trash TV). She reorganizes her living room so that she feels more at home in her physical space. Her hair gets put up in clips and scrunchies, and her whole body gets lotioned after every shower.

Because these little things, and many others, are what make me feel more. The small steps I can take that, one after the other, will build me up into Full Form. Where I feel the most happy, confident, beautiful, and present, all within myself.

And it’s not even going to take the efforts of a starting block, the smallest spandex shorts, and a sprint to the end of the straightaway to get me there.

What is it going to take?

Putting a little more energy into myself.

On a daily basis, I give so much of my energy elsewhere: to work, relationships, planning for my future. And sure, I do focus a lot on myself as well — putting energy into my goals, my health, and even my appearance every once in a while.

But not much of that focus is intentionally fostering what I need right here and now, in any given moment. Not much of that is really taking care of myself, so that I have enough power in the reserve to grow into that fullest version of me.

When we give more to ourselves, we have more of ourselves to give.

I know that. But yet oftentimes, I don’t leave myself the time or energy to do it.

My 2021 Resolution

So my one goal for 2021?

Reaching Full Form.

Or at least getting as close as I can.

And I am going to do that by prioritizing those things that make me feel at home in myself. Starting with small things, like getting my hair professionally cut for the first time in a year so that my ponytail gives me that extra pep in my step again. Or pausing a slow-moving book halfway through so that I can dive into that title on my overflowing TBR shelf that has been screaming my name.

Some days working towards Full Form Me will take gathering up the energy to run two miles, and other days it’ll take a guilt-free afternoon binge watching {The And} videos on YouTube. But every day, I’ll be able to feel proud of myself for taking time for me, however that looks.

Because no matter how this year turns out — what highs and lows and new normals will come about — I can work every day to make myself happy. Whether or not I am inside, outside, hanging with friends and family, or spending time alone, I can do the little things that fill me up. The things that make me smile for myself.

And this time next year, when I look back at all that I have accomplished, I just know I’ll be so amazed at how far I’ve stepped.

I don’t have a half-birthday – there’s no November 31st!

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