What Will it Be in 2023?

JoAnna Bennett

JoAnna Bennett, O’Brien Communications Group

January 5, 2023

In 2019, I began the practice of making myself a promise each year, as opposed to a resolution. You can read about my past promises in my blog post from last January:

Last year, my promise was to be more discerning with my time. The year was, from start to finish as most years are, a roller coaster ride. One of my highest moments on the 2022 roller coaster was a breathtaking trip to Italy. It was my first vacation overseas. It was the first childless week spent with my beloved. And we attended an opulent, yet intimate, four-day wedding. I met peaceful Italian people. I met the paternal side of my beau’s family. And I met fellow nuptial guests from all around the world. When I think back on all the wine, mozzarella, cappuccino, boat rides around the Venetian Lagoon, and warm greetings from strangers, I think of my promise. I was able to put my phone down. I was able to breath the air deeply. I was able to chew the food mindfully. I absorbed the culture fully. I was, without a doubt, discerning with the time I had.

As for the low points of this year’s roller coaster, I’d like to cite my latest foray in the court system. There is still an active trial pending, so I must remain tight-lipped on the specifics. But it’s been an emotional and financial burden, to say the least. But thinking back to my promise has tremendously helped me navigate the stormy waters. I must be discerning with my time. While I cannot eliminate the sometimes-sleepless nights or the panic that comes along with re-living trauma, I can remember that even the worst moments will pass. And by allowing those feelings to have a space of their own, I’m keeping them from overshadowing the many, more pleasurable aspects of my life.

2023 – What Will It Be?

This year, I promise to unapologetically advocate for others. I’ll serve my community by providing my skills and services to those in need. I’ll combine the knowledge I’ve gained over the years with the knowledge of others. I’ll use my voice to create more peace in the world. I’ll be brave when I’m afraid. I’ll be purposeful and resolute. I’ll play my part in making this world a better place. As Mahatma Gandhi said, “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” I’m ready to find myself more deeply and meaningfully than ever before. As Kute Blackson said, “Life… Use me.”

I’m ready.