Just Keep Swimming or the Year of Small Wins

January is a month of resolutions and promises to yourself to be a better person, to do better things, and to otherwise make the new year count in ways the year before did not. For me, 2015 was filled with unexpected ups and downs. My word for the year was “Intention”, and I intended to make 2015 the best year of my life to date.

Just keep swimming. That's my theme for 2016. It's a year of celebrating the small wins in life.

The problem with that is that I don’t control the universe. I have no power over external forces. All I can do is decided how to play the cards I’m dealt. Not surprising to you but an awkward discovery for me. What I learned from my ‘Year of Intentionality’ can be boiled down to this: You can’t measure your life in accomplishments or checked boxes. Even with the best of intentions, you may not have the year you planned.

Just keep swimming. That's my theme for 2016. It's a year of celebrating the small wins in life.

I’m kind of over the word of the year trend. While focusing on one word seems to motivate and empower buy adderall usa some people, it left me feeling empty and a bit of a failure. Of course, maybe I just chose the wrong word…

Just keep swimming. That's my theme for 2016. It's a year of celebrating the small wins in life.

So, I’m struggling how to define my goals for 2016. I want to be grateful for what I have and hopeful for tomorrow. I want to flourish this year and grow as a person. But, how do I define these things? I have no answer. I just know you have to keep going.

Just keep swimming. That's my theme for 2016. It's a year of celebrating the small wins in life.

This is the year of small wins, of making progress toward my goals, of celebrating the victories in life – even the small ones. This is my “Just keep swimming year”. I don’t know what I’m doing, but I have to keep doing things in order to find the right path. This may not be the best year ever, but it can still be a very good year. Just keep swimming.


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  1. So true. I am terrible at resolutions and even worse at following through. I think just keep swimming is a great motto. Enjoy what comes your way, nab and build opportunities where they arise and most importantly enjoy the swim when you can.
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  2. I like that, no, actually I love that! I totally understand where you’re coming from. I went over my “words”- I picked seven last year- and thought I did good, but I could’ve done better. This year I jumped on the word bandwagon and I’m trying to commit to my word: flourish.
    However, by me choosing my “word” I kind of found a loophole, because with a word like flourish you can have so many possibilities.
    Growth is good. Celebrating our accomplishments no matter how big or small is AWESOME, we should do it more.
    I look forward to being in you’re school and swimming along with you this year. 🙂
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  3. We’re all too hard on ourselves. It looks to me like you’re doing well. You’re healthy, in the prime of your life, and doing good things. Take pride in that. When you’re my age, you’ll look back on this time and say “Damn, I had it good! I wish I appreciated how cute I was, how nice my friends were and how everything was sweet.”
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  4. True, you can have as many goals as you want but you just can’t control everything that happens in life. And therefore it’s okay to not meet certain goals and have certain things not go as planned. But yeah, you should always have intentions. We all need a purpose, something to work towards.
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  5. I think “Just Keep Swimming” is perfect! I can relate to the feeling of being a little over the word of the year thing… I definitely felt that way last year. The first year I did it, it was such a powerful experience… and the second year, I just didn’t really feel it. I didn’t want to pick a word, one eventually emerged…. but it wasn’t the powerful transformative experience that I’d had with it the first year. I’m feeling a lot more optimistic about the word I chose being at the forefront this year, though.
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  6. I didn’t even know the word of the year thing existed until I started doing Listers Gotta List and one of the upcoming prompts is about your word of the year. I’m thinking of skipping that one. This month’s prompts are a little too focused on goals/resolutions/change for the new year for me so I’ve been going back and using old prompts when I don’t want to use the current ones. LGL started last April but this is my first month so I have plenty to choose from. And I’m hoping next month’s prompts are better or I might have to decide this isn’t the project for me.
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  7. I’m not into the word of the year trend either, although I did it for the first time this year and the process was interesting. Who knows if I’ll stick with my word though! I like your mantra- I hope your swimming takes you great places in 2016!
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  8. Hmmm…. I ‘ve never been al that into new year’s resolutions (though, to be fair, January feels like the middle of the year to me since I work in Education. We are half way through the school year, so it feels like an awkward time to “start anew”), but I like goals and like you have struggled with some shifts. I think in ones early 20s a lot of milestones happen and a lot of deadlines and measurable goals happen- you are in school, or starting a job and many people are in relationships. You are in essence getting to that next stage of life. But post-college, out int he “real world” I think something big that happens is that life is no longer measured in quite that same way. Not that anyone stagnates, but hopefully one is finding a rhythm for one’s life.

    I dunno, I used to make a list of 101 things to do in 1001 days (about 2.5 years), but never finished and this last one was the worst, because I got a different job and many of the items just no longer seemed relevant. Still searching for the method of goal-setting that seems to resonant with me, I guess. Good luck as you do too and, well, I think less pressure and just focussing on living life sounds lovely too!
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