Stacy-Ann Hayles

Web Designer for small businesses

State of the Union 2022

I’m notorious for my delinquency and procrastination, but even I must admit that publishing a State of the Union – aka my annual “year in review/new year plans” blog post – in March is pushing the boundaries a tad.

However, after the very eventful last few months – which I’ll get into below – I think you’ll understand not only why this post is so late in coming, but also why I consider this time to be the real “start” of my year, even though we’re already nearly 3 months in.

What Happened in 2021(ish)?

I Lost My Dad

For the past two years, since my dad had a stroke back in April 2020, taking care of him has been my central focus. Sadly, as last year went on, his health got progressively worse, which ultimately culminated in his passing on January 11, 2022.

While I am immensely saddened by the loss, I am also at peace. I got to spend a lot of time with my father, we enjoyed each other’s company and there were no words left unsaid. He died at home in bed – where we wanted to be – and I was by his side – where I wanted to be.

I Work for Notion Now

Notion became an even bigger part of my life this year. Not only did I start working with the most popular Notion course – Notion Mastery – helping to support their thriving community, but I also started working with Notion itself!

Yep, you read that right! Since August, I’ve been working as a consultant for Notion helping to launch and maintain the new template gallery. I pinch myself every time I say it out loud because I can’t believe it’s actually happening.

The best part about working with these two awesome teams is that it’s everything it’s cracked up to be. I get to work with brilliant, interesting and super supportive people who allow me freedom and autonomy and I just couldn’t be happier about it.

Back in Therapy

Towards the end of the year, the situation with dad began to take its toll on my mental health, so I decided to go back to therapy. I’ve only done therapy in brief stints before, but it never quite worked because I wasn’t always comfortable with the therapist, and at some point I realized I needed more than general therapy.

So I started seeing a clinical psychologist, who has been really instrumental in helping me through the past few difficult months. More on this below…

What’s planned for 2022?

New Environment

Well technically, this has already happened. After dad’s passing and thinking about what I wanted to do next, I realized I wanted to focus more on myself and getting healthy, and that I needed a fresh start in a new environment to do that.

So within the last few weeks, after handling dad’s affairs, I found my perfect place, signed the paperwork and moved in. Now, I’m not one to believe in fate, but it’s almost as if it were ordained for me. It checked all my boxes plus some, and it had been empty for months, but the owner only decided to list it literally days before I started looking. Kismet!

Getting Healthy

While losing weight is a big part of this, it’s not the only health goal I have this year. I’m starting by getting a full bill of health – doing all the tests, physicals and even a psychiatric evaluation to get a clear picture of where I am, then making a plan for where I need to be.

One of the best things about my new place is that it has a gym, a pool and a running trail – so I’m sure these will come in handy. I’ll also be continuing with therapy, and taking whatever corrective measures are recommended for my diet and lifestyle, etc. as they come.

Working Less

For as long as I’ve known myself, working more and making more money has always been a priority for me. This year, that changes.

Now that I’m in a better position financially, and I no longer have to worry about what the future holds for my dad and being able to cover any mounting expenses, I can take a step back and only do the work I really want to do – with limited hours – and spend the rest of my time focusing on getting healthy and rediscovering my passion for reading and other leisure activities.

The General Consensus

Overall, I would say I’m in a good place right now. Some days are harder than others – losing the person I was closest to has come with some very unique feelings and struggles that I had not anticipated – but for the most part, I’m doing okay. And most importantly, I’m able to look forward and plan ahead for what seems like a pretty happy future for me.

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