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Another compilation and I’m almost caught up on the daily prompts. Much of this feels like I’m hashing over subjects I’ve already covered in recent times, albeit from another angle perhaps? Never mind… 🙂

5 minutes. Imagine you will completely lose your memory of 2010 in five minutes. Set an alarm for five minutes and capture the things you most want to remember about 2010.
~ December 15 prompt

  1. Hanging out with my little nieces – they’re about to turn 2 and 4 respectively and are just little firecracker personalities, each in their own way. Drawing or playing sandpit with them is one of my greatest pleasures. There’s an innocence and great joy that comes from spending time with them, and they are very much in my heart.
  2. Teaching my first yoga classnuff said!
  3. Regaining a sense of balance and finally kicking depression in the ass – things started coming good for me towards the end of last year. While 2010 hasn’t exactly been all roses and rainbows, I’m pleased to say I haven’t slithered back into that circuitous nightmare zone. Booyah!
  4. I’d want very much to remember that in 2011 I’ll be a third-time auntie. Before my sister and her family went overseas this year, I got one of my “messages” tipping me off about the email my sister would be sending me with the news. I’m pretty certain it’s a boy but I won’t know if I’m right for another couple of months. He’s due in June. 🙂
  5. Working out my plan for the next couple of years.
  6. The accompanying sense of clarity I gained as a result (see below).

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Appreciate. What’s the one thing you have come to appreciate most in the past year? How do you express gratitude for it?
~ December 14 prompt

Honestly – and this might sound odd – but I’ve come to appreciate everything I’ve learned about myself in the last five years. All of that stripped to the bone honesty and removal of delusion (like paint stripper on steroids) has been worth it. Not that I’m recommending that kind of descent into mental health degradation to anyone, understand.

But what if it wasn’t possible for me – with my pig-headed vibrancy and self-assured belief in several cultural fairy tales – to have learned my lessons any other way? Perhaps that’s not true, but then again… You could say I’ve come to terms with it all and I now understand why it was so hard for me to cope with what happened.

I was speaking to one of my yogini sisters last night – she was at the retreat I was meant to attend. As I’ve mentioned before, even when I’m not actually on the retreat myself I still reap the benefits. This time was no different, and it was interesting to corroborate my October/November experience of deep introspection and clarity with what actually happened for my fellow yogis.

Clarity – it’s what I’ve gained and appreciate the most. Understanding what truly matters to me and what doesn’t. Letting go of struggling so hard for things that just aren’t a natural way of living for me. Deeply getting in touch with who I am and what I want for my life, even if it doesn’t look anything like anyone else’s idea of a good time.

I mean, last week I was at one of those (Fucking December) Christmas engagement things. A whole bunch of people I used to work with back in 2008 (my last REALLY corporate job) were there. It was kind of like old-home week and actually great to see them all. I felt happy. Jubilant even, and absolutely no regrets over the purposeful deconstruction of my cushy little life of self-deception.

Over small-talk with a couple of ex-work mates, I explained my upcoming grand plan and here was one of the responses: Sounds great. I couldn’t do it myself, but if it makes you happy… I mean I don’t want to sound like a dick or anything, but I’m good with my life just the way it is (working 9-5 and paying off a mortgage).

Thing is, it DOES make me happy (and you don’t sound like a dick). At another point in my life, hearing those words might’ve made me feel less-than, and judged, which would’ve also made me feel like shit. But surrounded by people whose main focus is renovating their bathrooms, for the first time in ages I didn’t feel like some kind of fool for not having or wanting all the things they’re after. It ain’t my path, people!

I am clear – I want the simple life. And I’ll express my gratitude for this knowledge by doggedly pursuing my goals of getting out of the financial hole I’m in and picking up my gypsy trappings once again. And this time hopefully, I’ll be setting out for a life that encompasses my hippie/gypsy-self instead of denying her under buttoned-down corporate wear…

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Action. When it comes to aspirations, it’s not about ideas. It’s about making ideas happen. What’s your next step?
~ December 13 prompt

This hippie/gypsy/yogini girl here? She gotta acquire herself some serious skillz! Gotta get my sensible on, if you know what I’m saying.

A little more with the full disclosure: I’ve never been very good with the moolah. You could even call me financially irresponsible, if you like.

I can’t recall a single lesson on budgeting or money management at high school or from my parents. Regardless, my sister inherited their financial savvy and I did not. But whatever, right? I’ve picked up what I know about saving and budgeting on the streets. I’m all ghetto when it comes to my financial prowess!

That said, with my ghetto skillz I’ve extricated myself from under a mountain of debt in the last few years. But there’s more to go. I’m sure in 2011 I’ll be sharing with you some of how that mountain came about. Most of it wasn’t exciting, just stupidity and/or bad luck. Quite a bit of the latter, too!

I’ll be getting incredibly up close and personal with my spending habits, working out how to save money and maybe even make a little extra on the side. The goal: being debt-free by the end of 2011, baby!

I’m on it, okay?

~Svasti

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