I never really been one to make New Year’s Resolutions. I don’t really know why, but I just never really did it. But this year, since dealing with a mental disorder that has completely changed so much in my life, I have so much to look forward to this year.

After talking to my therapist, she suggested that I create a vision board. Something that I will see first thing when I wake up to be reminded of the things I should look forward to. And there are quite a few. While some people might view my goals as simple or odd, when you have an anxiety disorder, one that leaves you home bound, simply walking a block would be a huge accomplishment. So with that being said, I wanted to share a few of my goals for the year ahead.

On my vision board, I seperated things into different categories. Relationships, Health & Wellness, Self Care, Work & Money, and Entertainment.

Since developing this mental disorder, I really isolated myself from everyone. Family included. So under relationships, I want to reconnect with my family and friends. They understand everything that I am going through and make sure to check in on me to make sure I am ok. This year I want to make the effort to reach out to them, even if it’s just to say hello. I want them to know that I am very grateful for their support and for always being there for me no matter what. The two friends that are left in my life could have walked away, but they decided to stick it through with me. And I am so grateful for that. I’d also like to somehow meet someone special, like a significant other but the thought of dating when you have a mental disorder just terrifies me, but it’s on my board anyway. You never know what can happen, I just will remain hopeful. lol

Health & Wellness: This one is huge for me being that my anxiety stems from the fear of health issues. My friend died from cancer which just set everything into motion for me. Since developing this disorder, I stopped working out because I had two of my worst panic attacks while working out. For a while I feared that something was wrong with my heart and doctors just wasn’t catching it on the EKG. I still have heart related anxieties though. This year I want to work on that. Slowly get back into being active. Even if it’s just walking for 30 minutes a day because sitting all day stressing about what-if isn’t doing me any good. In addition to getting back active, I want to eat better. Cut out processed sugars, eat more plant based and more often. I lost 20 pounds due to my mental illness and fear that everything I eat would cause high blood pressure or high cholesterol leading to heart issues. Boy was my anxiety so bad a year ago. So I want to work on that and be more conscious about what I put into my body and not starve myself while doing it.

Self Care: for self-care, I want to do things that I use to do that made me happy. Things that will make me feel good about myself and improve my mental health. Things like meditation, going to therapy, getting a haircut regularly, getting a massage, yoga and having a set sleep routine because, at the moment, it sucks. Anyone who has a mental disorder knows how important self-care is to get better so this year I’d like to make Selfcare a top priority.

Entertainment: As my mental health improves, I set goals for me that requires me to go more than just a few blocks away from my house. When I didn’t have this disorder just 3 years ago, me and my sister would go to Miami Fashion Week and Art Basel. We’d also just go hang out at the beach or the mall and talk all day long. This year I want to get back to that. I also would like to go see a movie, it’s been over 5 years since I went to the cinema. This year, I want to change that.

Work & Money:  Since I have panic disorder with agoraphobia, one can only imagine how difficult it is to work when you can barely even leave your house. Sure I can do some freelance work from home, but that too is very difficult when you can hardly focus when you are having palpitations or feelings of being on edge. However, I’d like to work on getting back to work. Maybe if I have something else to focus on, things would get a little better. It may take some time but I’d like to work on it. One of my goals was to start an art + design business. I always admire artist who work for themselves and have built a loyal community of supporters. Although I’m not the best at drawing or painting, it’s something I enjoy. I want to study graphic design and take maybe one or two courses to improve on my skill and hopefully start my own business.

These are just a few goals I have set for this year. Other goals like working on my self-confidence, being more fearless or living in the moment are also things to work on this year but I didn’t know what category to place them, so they are just in the center or my board. Needless to say, this year I have a lot to look forward to and work towards, and it definitely helps to have a visual to remind you.

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