Search
  • BJ

What 2021 is ALL About

Updated: Jan 16, 2021

I am a firm believer that in life we are supposed to learn and grow.

I need to feel fulfilled as a person, like I'm making an impact and doing meaningful things and improving as person in order to feel happy.


2020 made this easy at first.


For the first time in my short lifetime a wide group of people in our country were concerned about food security in the face of scarcity. For instance, in not being able to buy meat or eggs at the grocery store.


Local folks flocked to our business to reserve pork and lamb and it made me feel like this was our chance to finally make it as a business!

People were all of the sudden realizing things I have been combatting for years!


-Our food system is broken

-The food at the grocery store is gross

-Big businesses don't actually care about our communities and families


People finally saw the value of our products and what we do!


I felt enlivened that I could provide the quality food people were looking for right at their very own doorstep. They didn't need to go to store and risk exposure to the virus, they didn't need to buy tasteless and crappy food anymore. I felt so meaningful!


This was the case for a short time, but as soon as the grocery store was able to catch up again, people seemed to go right back to their normal habits.

This had me feeling discouraged. It was boom and bust!


Why was I so foolish as to hope for country-wide change so fast?

That's not reality.


But the spark of hope of that wide-spread realization has stayed lit in me and it has lead me to have certain personal goals and hopes for 2021.

For one It is my job to show people why what we do is important.

But more importantly, having Intention in our thoughts and actions is how we get to where we want to be, not just waiting on the right circumstances.


The right circumstances aren't just going to find us!

So, how do we become Intentional?

This is what I have been asking myself over and over in 2020.


Looking towards 2021, the idea of making new-years resolutions gives me a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach.


What is the point of making resolutions I won't follow through will past this summer?


In 2020 I made the following goals:

Limit my social media time to 30 minutes per day

No more taking jobs to help bail someone else out of their own circumstances

I would not be at my Phone's beck and call

I would get at least 7 hours of sleep a night

I would quit drinking coffee

I would limit my sugar intake

When it came time to set new goals for 2021, I looked back at my goals for 2020 and found myself thinking NONE of these things happened.


Yikes! What's the point of these things anyway?!


So I started a phase of introspection. And dug deep for weeks asking myself what I needed to change?


During this time A LOT of things HAPPENED to me. (Do you see a trend here, if not I'll explain in a second).


- I lost 40 piglets and a full-grown sow (they died for various reasons I'll cover in a later post)

-Raleigh (my first dog) disappeared

-My crew at the Plant was alternating going home for the Holidays and recovering from COVID (so I was working pretty long shifts/late nights)

-My horse got an ulcer on her eye that required treatment several times a day

-Customers were angry that I could not provide eggs for them to buy (our chickens almost completely stopped laying for the winter)

-I had a couple ewes unexpectedly dies and one I had to put down for a condition I had been trying to treat for months with no success


There were several other things I could list, but I'm going to stop here, you get the point.

I was UNDER my circumstances, and if you know me, you know I struggle with Seasonal Effective Disorder when the days get short.


The Winter solstice (the shortest day of the year) is December 21st. But days are pretty dang short all through October, November, December, January and February and it takes a toll on Melatonin cycles, hormone balance, and overall mood, to the point of depression. By now, I have learned to anticipate this, but it is still a challenge I work towards conquering every year.


So the downward spiral of thinking about all of the circumstances I was underneath- causing me so much unhappiness and lack of success was crippling!


I could, and still can feel the physical effects this downward spiraling had on my body.

Yuck!


But there came a turning point. I listen to a lot of podcasts about farming, business, environmentalism, homesteading, general agriculture, relationships, all kinds of stuff, but the most important ones I was listening to were the religious and mindset coaching ones.



I'm not for shoving my beliefs downs someone else's throat. What is important here is that these people were telling me in their podcasts that our viewpoint changes everything.


It isn't the circumstances that we need to change- we can't change these, and if we focus on how we can't change them all the time that isn't going to help either.

What we can change though is our thoughts, our opinions, the way we view the circumstances. And viewing circumstances as prime opportunities to learn is a way forward.


Have you been in this situation? In a negativity RUT and finding it impossible to get out?


Me too-obviously, and I couldn't help but wonder why.


Our brain naturally doesn't want to focus on live in a positive way- this is what makes it so HARD at first. Evolutionarily we are wired NOT to think positively, quite the opposite actually. We have adapted to think negatively, to be conscious of the challenges we face to ensure our own survival. There are even suggestions if you search S.A.D. that it is an adaptation to reduce our activity so we can make it through the winter on less food etc.


Huh!


It isn't just me who ended 2020 in that headspace either.


So many people set their hopes that 2021 would happen to them much better than 2020 happened to them. I heard so many people talking about what an awful year it was and how they thought that just because we were going to write a new number on our checks now everything would just get better from here on out.


Nah, I don't think so. Not unless we take it upon ourselves to intentionally make it so from within ourselves...


So with all this in mind, it serves no purpose in our relevant lives, when we don't really have to worry about depleting our winter stores, to dwell in negativity and depression. It is actually more advantages to plan daily efforts to combat this cycle.


Rather than think about how crummy 2020 was, awareness of our thoughts and the active decision to not allow negative thoughts to remain in our minds (because all that does is bog us down and manipulate our outlook and viewpoint on life for the worse) is what I need to work on.


Intentional positivity and awareness that we have the power to form our own thoughts and choose what we think about is a bright ray of hope for me.

I hope it is for you too, because no matter who or where or what you are in life- you can do this too!


This is what formed my goals for 2021.

Here they are:


- A daily written brain dump to show my thoughts to myself, analyze them and identify thoughts that aren't serving me.

- A daily gratitude/appreciation practice written or said out loud to myself (no guilt or self-shaming/belittling allowed here)

-I promise myself to work on a routine that minimizes screen time, especially at night when I need to sleep!

-Work towards health in eating, activity, sleeping, and drinking every day in some little way, but mostly through awareness and my thoughts about these components of my life, rather than self-shaming and criticism for lack of success.

-Overall Intention and Awareness of what I do and why.

-Make a conscious effort to be aware of my thoughts about my life, my actions, my self-worth. These are the motivating factors for my decisions and actions and I need to be fully aware of my thoughts and how they are affecting me, so I can practice control of my own thoughts.

Tell me what our thoughts are on this.


Do you have a gratitude practice?


How do you keep yourself accountable for your 2021 goals?

Until next time!

-BJ

90 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Often-times people don't want to think about the last day their food lived. I get it. It's heavy and it can leave us feeling guilty for sustaining ourselves as meat-eaters. AND it often-times leaves p