Over the holidays, I took some time to complete my Reflection Journal with my wife Jess. We tackled the sections over the course of a few days, regrouping every so often to share our answers with each other.
My favorite part of the process was going through the first few pages, where we wrote down the highlights and lowlights from each of the past 12 months.
It's my favorite part because I have a notoriously bad memory. By reviewing my journal, calendar, and photos month-by-month, I’m able to remember what happened over the past year and think about how those experiences have impacted me.
One thing that stuck out to me while doing this exercise was the unexpected joy that came from a new hobby I picked up this year.
On May 27, I bought a skateboard. I know exactly what day it was because that was also the day Mike's daughter Mala was born. The same day that my brother entered parenthood, I reached back to my childhood — I remember my parents laughing at the symbolism :-).
I told a few friends that I wanted to pick up skateboarding again after some 20ish years off the board. Some got excited about the idea and told their friends. Before I knew it, we had brought together a small group of 30+ year olds with shiny new skateboards, relearning how to ride and practicing tricks. If the weather was nice or someone had the day off, we would message the group and whoever could join would.
Throughout the year, I’d write about my skateboarding sessions in my journal. And looking back, I can tell from the energy in those posts — and the sheer quantity of them — what a big role skateboarding played in my life.
When I shared this realization with Jess, we tried to break down exactly what it was about skating that made it so enjoyable and fulfilling.
- It was pursuing something outside of my comfort-zone (that delicious combination of fear and courage).
- I felt empowered by the encouragement and support from new friends.
- I was able to deepen some of my relationships.
- I was doing something that challenged me mentally and physically.
- I felt that I was making progress towards a new skill and could clearly see the results of my effort.
I also realized that I wasn’t just feeling joy while skating, but that the energy spilled over into other areas of my life. The days I went skating became the days I had the most energy, I felt the most creative, and I felt the most alive.
With this insight in mind, Jess and I are prioritizing “play” as we set our goals and intentions for 2019. For me, this means more skating, but also being open to other unexpected hobbies. For Jess, it’s making time for creative outlets like writing and weaving.
What are your intentions and goals for the year ahead?
Start the day feeling grounded and inspired with our 30 day Reflections series.
Join thousands of people who have received the 30-day Reflections email series and enjoyed a daily moment to reflect, smile, and think about a life lived mindfully.
Free. Unsubscribe anytime.
“I’m in the midst of big life transitions at the moment, chasing book deals, relocating, taking risks, carving out a life that feels honest, so your emails have been a perfectly timed source of inspiration and reassurance.” Jo in London, Great Britain
"Love the emails! They are a great reset or what I would call mindful chiropractic adjustment to approaching the day. Thank you!" Laurie in Albuquerque, New Mexico
"I love the emails. They give me a new perspective and things to think about and apply in my life." Monica in Johannesburg, South Africa
"It's food for the soul and sets my spiritual compass in the right direction." Farahdiva Samsul in Assam, India
"Absolutely LOVE the daily emails. One of the only email subscriptions I read daily. Keep them coming!!" Adriana in New York, New York
"The emails are thought-provoking and uplifting. A little pause from the crazy happenings of modern life. A quick chance to reflect, smile, and think about a life lived mindfully." Pharan in Queensland, Australia
"I have thoroughly enjoyed the Mindfully Mailed series. Daily I await this little nugget of goodness to hit my inbox each day." Tambria in Shreveport, Louisiana
Welcome to Holstee
Our monthly membership helps conscious people (like you!) live a more meaningful life through actionable guide, inspiring art, thought-provoking content and a like-minded community.BECOME A MEMBER
This article is part of our series on the theme of Intention.EXPLORE Intention
Distilled from our Manifesto, positive psychology, the science of mindfulness, and ancient philosophic studies we have identified twelve themes core to living both fully and mindfully. We mapped these twelve themes to each of the twelve months in a year. Together with our community we explore one each month.VIEW OUR THEMES