Action Replay + Gratitude List: 2019

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2019 has been the fastest year of my life, so far. It hasn't been a easy year, but it has been a good one for sure. 2019 was clearly split into two for me. Till June, my life was consumed with work. Day and night, it was work all the way. I was working on a complex project that needed all my time and effort since June 2018. Yes, it took me a year but I was finally done with it and I couldn't be more happier. It was successful and I received more than enough appreciations for it. In May, we moved into a place of our own. Once I was done with the critical project, I turned my attention towards our home. We did not want to rush into setting everything up at the same time, so we took our time we it. Every piece of furniture, every decor item, every tiny thing that was added to the house was chosen carefully and for a reason and purpose. It still is an on-going process, but, today we have a place that is a reflection of us in true sense.

My word of the year for 2019 was 'Simplify', I'm not the one to gloat, but I excelled at it! I normally am a hot-headed person, an in-built Leo trait, so I'm mostly hyper and alert all the time. This year, I learnt to let go and calm down. I simplified everything in hand and life seemed so easy after that. I realized that as much as I love to do everything, it is unrealistic! I needed to cut some slack and not feel the need to do everything around. This worked like magic. I became more calm, more relaxed and this gave me the time to pursue my passions and interests to my heart's content. Over-thinking was quickly out of the window and I let go of trivial things that did not matter. This simplified my life to a large extent. It was now only about my husband and I, our immediate families and our bunch of friends. A small but definitely happier circle.

December was a kind month. Work was just beginning to pile up and since I was on a break from reading, it gave me time to focus on other things. The #DecBookLove challenge on Instagram was a massive hit and I'm so happy with the traction we got. The #TBRChallenge2020 we've set up for the new year is looking good too. December was colder than expected in Bangalore and we spent a lot of nights tucked in watching something on Netflix. The year culminated beautifully as we brought in the new year with a bunch of our friends, first at a party and then at home. It was a peaceful transition into the new year.

2019 kept me on my toes by keeping me busy, but it was peaceful at the same time. Thanks to learning how to simplify life, I've made something that resembles lemonade with the lemons that life threw at me in 2019. There were highs and lows as usual, but the learnings that I got out of them were immense.

Here's what I'm thankful for in 2019:

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~ Work: I decided last year that I needed to take a step back from being a workaholic and focus on myself. I did that this year, and it did wonders to my productivity. While I still give work the importance it deserves, it is not at the cost of my own peace and sanity.

~ Ending Toxicity: I cut out a lot of toxic people from my life this year, including relatives. When people only try to gaslight you or use you to get their work done, you know that the time has come to let them go. It is not a gradual process, it needs to be done in a single shot. Once you value yourself above trash like them, it becomes easy to do it.

~ Friends: I have a bunch of people in my life who I am proud to call friends. These people have my back no matter what and just having them around makes life feel better.

~ Defeating Anxiety: Simplifying life made it easy to get a grip on my anxiety. The need to be in control, the need to do it all, left me for good. This also has a lot to do with the kind of people I'm surrounding myself with. I've come to realize that good vibes matter the most these days.

~ Health: Health took priority this year and since I started my fitness classes from this year, I've been in a good place both physically and mentally. The last few months of the year included a lot of celebrations and binge eating, but health held up beautifully! I still have a long way to go to get to my fitness goals, but the start has been really good.

~ Books: Books are such a huge part of my life that life feels meaningless without them. I read 31 books in 2019, one more than the target that I had set up. I've read a diverse of genres this year and some of the books I read were nothing short of exceptional. I plan to read 50 books in 2020 and I'm so looking forward to get started.

~ Writing: 96 posts this year! Wow, I'm amazed I found time for that. Looks like my multi-tasking skills are much better than I thought. 26 of these posts were written as part of the A to Z Challenge for April, where I spoke about 26 women of worth. It was something very close to my heart and I'm glad that it was appreciated well. I wrote about a plethora of topics this year, be it book reviews, not a movie reviews, or just something that I had to say. Blog hops like #WordlessWednsday and #ThursdayTreeLove helped me come up with some good content for the blog as well.

~ The Ignore Bucket: I have an ignore bucket in my mind and I keep tossing people into it as and when situations arise. The ending toxicity and defeating anxiety exists on this list mainly because of this. Some people, no matter how close they are you, do not deserve your mental space. I learnt that last year and continued to implement it this year. I'm a much a happier person today because of this.

~ Travel: We traveled quite a lot in 2019 and loved every bit of it. I also traveled to Goa with my girls this year and we had a blast. I normally do not like travelling without my husband, but I made an exception for my girls! I went back to Goa again with my husband a few months later. This year I also did my first trek in Triund, Dharamsala. What an experience it was! Dubai was the anniversary trip, followed by road trips to Wayanad, Pondicherry, Goa, Madurai and Coimbatore. There was more travel than we planned, but it was totally worth it.

~ Love: Come next week, Cal and I complete nine years of being together and in March we complete seven years of being married! As we brought in the new year, we realized that this was our ninth new year together and we felt so happy. Over the years, we have fallen more in love with each other and there is a sense of comfort in where we are today. Life has been so peaceful, having him by my side. We enable each other and are each other's critic as well. That helps us grow and become better people. We cook together, eat together, drink together, work-out together, travel together and do so many other "together" things and yet we never get bored of each other. Our conversations continue to go on and on and on. I had been in love before I met him, but with him I know what love is meant to be. I thank my stars day after day for being blessed with such a wonderful partner.

2019 was a beautiful and happy year for me. It taught me a lot and encouraged me more. I hope 2020 will also continue to be like that.

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Wishing you all a very happy and prosperous new year!

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Linking this post to Vidya's Gratitude Circle for this month.

18 comments:

  1. I am so happy for you. This post has a certain calm and acceptance of how things are. Wonderful for every milestone that you achieved. Every year, we learn, we evolve, we grow. That is the beauty of life, no? Wish you the very best in 2020.

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    1. Thank you so much, I'm even even my words are able to reflect my state of mind. It was a tough journey to get here.

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  2. You've had such a great 2019, S. Congratulations on the new home and making positive strides towards better health.

    2019 has been a mixed bag for me, but the tough parts have made me stronger and the rest has made me realize how truly blessed I am, inspite of the current/passing challenges.

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    1. Thank you, dear Shantala.

      I hope 2020 is wonderful for you.

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  3. You have had a busy and productive year! Wish you the same and more in 2020

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    1. Thank you, D. Wishing you a wonderful 2020 too.

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  4. Loved reading this post and a true reflection of how 2019 was for you. Your house is beautiful and with all the love, you have made a beautiful home. I loved it. This year we did not meet much but I am glad we met at your place which was lovely. I wish love, success and happiness to you both all the year round and beyond. Keep smiling and see you soon. <3

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    1. Thank you, Paro! I hope to see you more this year <3

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  5. That last bit was my absolute favourite Soumya. The love and togetherness you have can keep you afloat no matter what life throws at you. That said, the other things - simplifying life, getting rid of toxic people, making yourself a priority - they all make for a better quality of life. There's such maturity in your post. I'm so so glad you're in a good place. Also, let me thank you one more time for hosting the Dec Book Love challenge. Congratulations on meeting your goodreads target.
    Hope you have an equally amazing 2020.

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    1. Thank you, Tulika. Life teaches you the right things if you look at it closely, I've learnt that now.

      I'm so glad you are a part of both #DecBookLove and #TBRChallenge2020.

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  6. What a lovely post Soumya- loved reading about all the positive things in your life and how you have balanced out the negative with that. I pray and wish that 2020 continues on the same spate and brings you much abundance :-)

    Let this be the year that we finally get to meet each other! Love & HUgs

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    1. Thank you so much, darling! <3

      I really hope we meet in 2020.

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  7. Sounds like a fulfilling and fun year Soumya! I'm glad to hear you achieved so much and managed a sense of calm. Hope yo u have a wonderful 2020!

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    1. Thank you dear Sanch! Hope you have a great 2020 too <3

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  8. I love how you identified and simplfied your life. Getting rid of toxic peopel certainly is one of the most important things one can do for peace of mind. Hope you have a wonderful 2020.

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    1. Yes indeed. That was one of the highlights of my year.

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  9. awww just reading about you and Cal feels so good. Love the chemistry and dynamics you share with each other. You seem to have totally nailed your WOTY. Love your ignore bucket. It's a great way to lead a peaceful life :) Wish you many more travels this year.

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    1. Thank you, Raj! :D

      Wishing you a fabulous 2020 too.

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