My Decade in Review Part 2: Releasing My Past

Even though it feels like I’m shouting into the dark right now, I’m going to finish this!

To recap, I’m doing Marie Forleo’s Decade In Review as part of my planning for 2020. This is a a bit bigger than a year in review (10x bigger, obvs), but I have a lot of mindset work to do and just looking at the last 12 months wasn’t gonna cut it.

If you’d like to see Part 1, head over here. It’s raw and personal, and this will be too.

Section 3: What I’m Willing to Let Go Of

Oof. This one hits especially hard right now. Remember that trailer I talked about before, that my parents and I gutted and I was so proud of? As of this week, it’ll be sold. Gone forever. Now, this is a good thing, but it’s also very painful for me to let go. It was my first non-rental place, the first place I could put color on the walls that wasn’t just rental-white, my daughter’s first home, and our landing place when our plans went sideways. Which they did, with alarming regularity. No matter how bad things got, we knew that we could always go back home.

On the left: how it looked when my parents and I got the trailer. On the right, after I got moved in. Not pictured: the horrible stench of soaked-in cat urine…

We can’t do that anymore.

I don’t know what to do with that. It’s terrifying, but also oddly freeing. We’ll be getting a little money from it which is badly needed right now, but we’ll have to plan carefully.

Maybe letting go of the backup plan will help us actually move forward.

Is that a thing? Could it be that knowing we always had a place to fall back on meant we didn’t try as hard to move forward, or make different decisions? Self-fulfilling prophecy or some such thing?

Old Projects & Goals

I love Marie’s analogy here. Old ideas, projects, and goals are like leftovers in your mental fridge… seemed really good at the time, kept meaning to get back to it, caused guilt every time you came across it again, and eventually molded. I also see it as a bunch of tabs open in your brain-browser, taking up your processing space and causing guilt where there shouldn’t be any.

I pride myself in being able to shift gears and rework plans that don’t pan out. Most of the time, that’s a good thing. When it comes to my own goals however, it turns into this scatterbrained mess that gets me nowhere. I went through most of the 2000s in college, tweaking my plans, then being devastated when they didn’t work out. Ever since then, I’ve been taking whatever job I could find, getting whatever new certification they required, moving on due to a variety of circumstances, and taking whatever job I could find again. It’s been a vicious cycle and each time, I get ideas for how that particular job could become this or that career move.

Those old ideas are plugging up my brain cache.

What I’m doing now as 2019 comes to a close and 2020 is on the horizon is sorting through those and deciding which ones I can actually accomplish and which ones just need to be put away. I’m pretty sure I should just sell my stash of beads from my jewelry-making days. However, the cross-stitch project I bought in 2006 and didn’t start until 2012 is almost done and I’m really proud of how it turned out. (To be fair, I work on it really hard for about 3 weeks, then put it away for at least a year… if I had any kind of routine with such things it would’ve been done years ago.)

Is it worth berating myself over how long it’s taking to finish? NO! Am I ever going to get into beading again? Probably not, at least not until we’re settled in a big enough house for me to have a dedicated craft desk. I don’t see that day coming anytime soon and I can always get new beads later.

I still have a bunch of ideas for music education resources I want to produce and sell. That one I’m hanging on to and some of that is already started. Those ideas still fire me up instead of nag at me, so I’m keeping those for now.


Most of this is pointed back at myself, blaming myself for things not working out the way I’d hoped. Some of it is pointed at loved ones (and former loved ones) that mean well, steering me the way they think looks best. I’ve forgiven old boyfriends, let go and forgiven toxic friends, and learned how to say no.

What I struggle with is forgiving myself. I’ve always held myself to “perfection” standards (see my previous post on this) and when the perfection didn’t happen, it had to be my fault somehow.

Breathe in: Progress is better than perfection. Breathe out: You are enough.

Limiting Beliefs & Old Stories

I am capable of making a better life for myself and my family. I’m not too old, or too young, or too inexperienced, or overqualified. I am exactly who I need to be, right now, and my skills are unique. Nobody else on the planet has the same skill set as me. By the same token, nobody else on the planet has the same skill set as you either! Yes, a lot of things have already been done, but not the way I would do it!

Remember, you are so much more powerful and capable than you give yourself credit for. 

Marie Forleo

I don’t 100% believe those things I just wrote yet. But, in the process, I actively ignored the disbelieving self-talk so that it couldn’t gain any traction. That’s progress for me, too. See? I’m not perfect, and THAT’S OKAY.

What’s Most Important to Let Go Of and Why?

I think the main theme here has been guilt. Guilt that I didn’t get such-and-such done, guilt about decisions that felt right at the time but weren’t great, guilt about getting in my own way.

I’m done with the guilt. I don’t have the energy to beat myself up anymore.