Welcome to 2019! As we look out on a fresh, new year full of untapped potential, we often find ourselves glancing backward at the year gone by. I will be the first to say quite proudly that my 2018 went remarkably well, and I plan to make my 2019 also a success by following a simple rule: Don’t settle for “good enough.” That’s it. That was my New Year’s Resolution last year, and that will be my New Year’s Resolution for years to come. It so simple, yet it’s effective.

Last year, I stopped accepting that the constant pain and I fatigue I was in and the extra weight I was carrying was “good enough.” I found a nutritionist who gave me the tools to help me lose more than 20 pounds, clear up the majority of my pain, and raise my energy levels. I haven’t felt this good in years.

Last year I was tired of being treated like everything I did as a teacher wasn’t “good enough.” So I quit my job and took on a new one. While it has been an adjustment with totally new curriculum and new set of expectations, I feel so much less stress at this new job. I am around people with similar personalities to me (shout-out to the introverts, yo!) and similar core beliefs who are supporting me on my journey of teaching.

Last year, I looked at my busy schedule and said to myself, “Hey, I can fit in a trip to Chicago to attend Ace Comic Con and meet one of my favorite actors.” I could’ve looked at my life and said, “Eh, it’s good enough the way it is. I don’t really need to meet Tom Hiddleston. Why upset the status quo?” But I didn’t let the fear of the unknown prevent me from doing something I’d never done before. I didn’t let excuses about work or finances stop me from hopping on a train and travelling to an unfamiliar city to get a picture with a celebrity.

And finally, for all of those following the blog, last year I stopped making excuses for why my writing career was on hold and actually finished my manuscript that has been incubating for over ten years, started a second manuscript, began writing fan-fiction again for fun, and created this blog. I stopped believing that my writing was only “good enough,” for myself and started believing it was “good enough,” for everyone.

I kissed “good enough,” goodbye. When you change your mindset from one of simply getting by with the minimum effort required to one of perseverance and excellence, you start to achieve impossible goals. Is it easy to change your mindset? No. We’re creatures of habit. We don’t like to upset our delicately balanced lives with new ideas and attitudes. But without change, we don’t grow. And if we don’t grow, we stagnate, and when we stagnate, we die.

So as you move forward in 2019, you could make a lot of really ambitious resolutions packed with the utmost details, such as: “I will lose 40 pounds by bathing suit season.” Or “I will get that promotion at work.” But the problem with resolutions like those is that we can’t always control the results. You may have every intention of losing that amount of weight, but maybe your body only manages to shed 25 pounds, and then you feel discouraged for not meeting your goal. Or you may be totally worthy of that promotion, but your boss may overlook you again.

What we can control, though, is our attitudes. You can take your “good enough,” attitude and chuck it in the rubbish bin. And then watch as your life takes on a different course, and things you never dreamed were possible become your reality. Welcome to 2019!

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