Wow. What a strange year we’re entering into right now. This past year held the highest of highs (getting vaccinated, reuniting with family and friends, a new presidency in the United States) and the lowest of lows (COVID hospitalizations and deaths, more time in isolation, more injustices around the world). It was a year spent inside a bunch, anxious about COVID, and also a year where we moved from DC to New York City, celebrated friends getting married, and I made a lot of school and career strides. Whether personally or globally, it was a roller-coaster of a year.
As we enter 2022, I’m feeling weary and cautious about the state of the world, while also excited for this year because I’m getting married (!!!) to the absolute best woman, and I’ll get to spend time in Jerusalem. I’m also feeling grateful to be moving forward on my path to becoming a rabbi, and all of the learning and relationships that come with that special journey.
In past years, I’ve created resolutions, intentions, and questions for myself going into the new year (you can read them also on my blog). But with so much uncertainty, and some real quality reflection time this past summer, I don’t think I need resolutions or intentions this year as much reminders for myself. Reminders about all the things I’ve learned and experienced recently that can keep me centered throughout the year. So here are my reminders for 2022, with the hope that they support and challenge me (and maybe you too) toward a meaningful year in the middle of a bizarre and scary time in the world.
Slow & Steady
This isn’t about who “wins the race” though. It’s about moving through each day with intention and energy, and not bulldozing through life.
“No” Is Liberating
This past year, I improved my ability to say “no” to various opportunities. And doing that gave me time to focus on myself, my loved ones, and my journey.
Being > Doing
It’s more important, liberating, and meaningful to focus on the person I’m becoming than the things I’m doing.
An African phrase and symbol meaning “go back and get”. Having clarity for the present moment and the future requires understanding my past.
Do The Hard Thing
On a daily basis, I want to stop avoiding necessary things that I think will be difficult or take a long time, and just do them (they often end up taking like 5 minutes). On a bigger level, I want to be more confident speaking my truth, even when it feels hard.
I’m A Child of God
I love this phrasing from the theologian and civil rights leader Howard Thurman. It’s a powerful reminder that in the face of hatred, I can be brave and powerful – because I’m loved by God.
Those are some of my helpful, empowering reminders for 2022. Amidst some major feelings of anxiety about our world, I’m committing myself to creating and feeling more love, grace, liberation, and peace this year. Let’s do it, 2022.
P.S. The picture for this blog is from one of the many entrances to Rock Creek Park in DC. Every Shabbat, I would enter the woods on this path for some incredible reflection time. The picture itself is a lovely reminder of the importance of taking time for rest and reflection.