2019 is the year I tackle my anxiety, head on! Excited!!

I’ve always wanted to make things that made others happy, but I’ve always been worried that drawing attention to myself for things that Not Everyone cared about would be selfish. So, being the absolute brain genius I am, I decided that the best way to get around this was to make full-scale resolutions to get better at a large number of things. That way I could use those things as excuses to put stuff out there without feeling guilty about the possibility that I might be annoying to someone.

Because if I was good enough, nobody would be bugged by seeing me occasionally, right?

As a result, I didn’t want to put out anything except for polished and finished works–and my entire online identify basically became a “brand” where I couldn’t let any of the imperfect “me” leak out.

That wasn’t great. But this is the year I’m changing that!

Oh wow, how are you gonna do that??

Something I noticed doing all my resolutions: I actually took them very seriously, and could use them to conjure unholy amounts of willpower in places where I wouldn’t usually have it. I think of myself as a pretty lazy person usually, but when I have a long term focus like these resolutions, I am able to push myself extraordinarily far!

The potency of this mindset is what allowed me to formulate the idea to wield a resolution to bruteforce my way through my anxiety. So I effectively made my resolution to get organized to do the things I always wanted to, and to use the momentum to get over myself!

Basically, instead of linking my self-worth to my productivity; I’m riding it right through my hangups.

The best part? I only need to do it once per hangup! Because if I break through a barrier once, it gets easier to go through it again later! That means I have lasting and tangible progress, even if I peter out in a week–which is looking less and less likely because of the positive energy of making constant progress on several fronts simultaneously.

Okay, that’s pretty tight! But what does this organization actually look like?

One of the things I did late last year was look through all of my TODO lists, and old abandoned ideas that I still had some desire to do, and I shoved them all into a Trello board I’ve dubbed my “Life Kanban”.

My Life Kanban contains things like projects, as well as vague ideas, or even pieces of my game backlog. What’s important is that I have some interest in doing all of these things eventually, and they are now in a large tangible list.

Of course, a list this big would be pretty unwieldy, so I dragged the ideas that were most interesting to me into a second list, my “Shortlist”–and from there, I would decide to actually do things and put them into my “Backlog”.

A Life Kanban with the columns "Ideas", "Shortlist", "Backlog", and "In Progress" columns

If I ever run out of things in my backlog, I move more over from my shortlist, and if my shortlist ever gets too small, I can populate it again with things from my “Ideas” pile. Using this, I can organize my aspirations based on importance, and organize my new ideas without worrying that I’ll never get around to them.

So with my aspirations, no matter how minor, all in one place, I was set; and when the new year rolled around, I set a deadline for one of the cards.

That’s right–just one.

And when I post this, I’ll set another! And when I do that thing, I’ll set another!

Even if this isn’t particularly fast-paced, it’s a single focus–a thing I can focus on, and expel everything else from my mind. Those other things will be there when I get back, so I don’t need to be stressed out about them!

But if this isn’t a routine, how does one not forget to look at this kanban?

I have it synchronize with my Google Calendar, and I set up automatic reminders to harass me a day in advance of my deadlines. I also dedicated an entire screen of my phone to a Google Calendar widget so it can be both a reminder about my immediate plans–as well as one about my resolution in general.

I look at my phone a lot, so that’s gonna be a lot of reminders that I’m taking this year and making it my own!

So wish me luck!