Struggling to Find Your New Year Enthusiasm? You’re Not Alone

I rock beginnings.

I really do. I’m not bragging here. It’s just a fact. I have always excelled at the start. The re-do. The reboot. The reinvention. The changing over of the page on the calendar.

Especially at two key times during the year, I feel a natural surge of energy, a burgeoning recommitment to old goals, a surging influx of new ones, and a tidal wave of enthusiasm for them all.

Those two times: late August/early September, and the beginning of a new year in January.

That surge of “whoot!” came on schedule last fall.

But today, the second day of January, a day on which I am traditionally busily planning and plotting out my strategy to rule the world in the coming twelve months, I am feeling nothing but the strong desire to go back to bed.

Am I depressed? I don’t think so. I don’t feel sad, I don’t feel unmotivated. I just feel a keen lack of that usual turbo charge.

Also, my back really hurts and it’s supercold out today, for the first time in weeks, and that always makes my fibro flare up a little bit.

So maybe that’s why I’m tempted to sweep this strange sensation of lack under the rug. To refuse to acknowledge it. To ignore it completely and just wait for it to go away.

But, see, I can’t. I’ve got this whole business thing to run. (Two businesses, actually, since last year I also launched a new blog called Pajama Productivity, aimed at helping creative workers and artists get their groove back and get back to creating stuff regularly, and I still do the whole WordPress/social media, copywriting, & marketing consulting gig digitally based here.)

And these businesses are in dire need of some serious CEO-level planning time and attention.

But since I usually tackle that project with the considerable assistance of that natural surge of energy and enthusiasm, which I now lack, I’m feeling somewhat adrift. The prospect of getting my ass in gear and engaging in that higher-level thinking and the initial push of activity which is all-important, if not critical, to getting a new project off the ground, is just daunting.

I don’t have any hard and fast answers here, so if this sounds painfully familiar to you, I’m truly sorry I can’t tell you exactly what will get you out of the funk we both find ourselves in.

I do have some ideas — that’s all they are, though, just ideas. I’m going to try them this week. I’ll let you know if they work, and how well, in a future post.

Here are the ideas I’ve come up with so far:

  • Better self-care: I’ve been sort of sloughing off on the self-care thing lately. Not sleeping as well or as much as I used to, not doing the daily yoga, skipping the longer warmer showers in favor of the quick in and out. These and a few dozen other little things make my pain manageable and simply make me feel better. So, it stands to reason, if I eliminate these blocks and feel better, maybe my mood and brain will perk up, too.
  • Going back to the purpose and the whys: Every major goal or project has behind it a huge “why” — the reason a change is necessary in our lives. Maybe going back to those whys, reviewing them, making sure they’re really as strong as they once seemed, adding more and better “why”s, getting clarity on my overall purpose in these endeavors — maybe that can trigger a better attitude.
  • Back to basics: The house isn’t a disaster — just a little on the messy side. I’m not eating crap — just a little less well than before. I haven’t made the bed in days. These little things do have an impact on mood and discipline, two things that need an immediate adjustment in my case.
  • Simplifying the List where possible: I started absolutely fresh with a brand-new Planner file (I use Circus Ponies Notebook for keeping track of all my to-dos and projects and goals). I deleted every single one of the 100+ “to-do”s on that list, because they’d been there for months, undone, and the world hadn’t ended in a fiery explosion of apocalyptic fireworks, so I figured I was safe. I have eight things on my list. And I’ve done four of them. EIGHT. And FOUR. This is mildly thrilling, I admit.

That last one — culling my List — produced an immediate sense of relief. And I’m finally starting to feel a little tingle of something that might be a precursor to the return of my usual enthusiasm and energy. I’ve got a long way to go, mind you, and I can’t go too fast or too hard because – duh – that also triggers a fibromyalgia flare-up.

But, hey, it’s a start. And I can get a little enthusiastic about that.


2 thoughts on “Struggling to Find Your New Year Enthusiasm? You’re Not Alone

  1. LaSandra

    Okay-clearly we are the same person. LOL!

    I googled “thriving in chronic pain” and found your blog today! LOL! This post is great. I am motivated during the same exact times of year (fall and Jan). I have also been struggling with a chronic pain condition that is musculoskeletal. Thought it might have been fibro, but the pain was too localized. So, they ruled it out.

    So, I have 4 kids under the age of 7 and have been wanting to get back to consulting and school and blogging etc, but my motivation has been lacking. I know pain has alot to do with it.

    Still, and thankfully I was able to get a “reboot” this year. I blogged about new goals and habits and I believe I am physically (and very slowly) getting better. That alone excites me.

    I love your writing and look forward to reading more!

    LaSandra recently posted..Wordless Wednesday ~ Girls Room Inspiration. What a doll!

    1. Annie Post author

      Whoot! I’m glad you found me. 😀 It’s sooooo frustrating when you don’t know what to call the crappy thing that’s making you hurt. Diagnosis might be the first step but dang, it’s such a big one and it can take so long to find out. I’m glad you found something useful here! I do hope you come back from time to time, and I’ll be checking in on you at your blog – good luck with the reboot, girlfriend!


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