Three Things I’m Taking With Me Into 2023 (And Three Things I’m NOT)

It’s the newest new year I’ve ever had.

I’ve never been ENGAGED before, going into the new year.

It' 2023! And there are definitely some things that I want to bring with me into 2023, and some things that I DON'T. What's on YOUR list? #nye #newyear #2023 #edrecovery #recovery #faith #engaged #moving #mentalhealth #wellness

I’m in a new CITY, having just moved from Manhattan to Cincinnati, Ohio.

And I’ve never owned a house with another person before! (Especially one that I don’t live in!)

So all that to say, it is a VERY NEW, NEW YEAR for me!

Which has caused me to think: what is it that I want to bring with me in 2023? Not a resolution, per se, but rather, a focus to make this year the best it can possibly be.

I want to bring JOY with me into 2023.

There is a lot of stress that surrounds moving, planning a wedding, starting a new life in a new city, and frankly…commuting every day from my home with my fiancé, to sleep at my parent’s house 30 minutes away. That’s a lot of stress — sober stress…because I can’t even have a glass of wine since I have to drive across town at the end of the night!

So I want to make sure that I have a joyful spirit through it all. I want to take on challenges and snags in the road with grace and a lightheartedness that brings light to those around me, and points to the One who is the source of our joy.

I want to bring RESPECT into 2023.

Respect covers a lot of things. First and foremost, respect for my fiancé. I once heard it said that a man values respect more than love. And…well, the jury is out on that one. But I will say, that respect is the foundation of any healthy relationship.

And “living with” him (during waking hours, that is…) I want to actively look for ways to respect him. Whether that is finding ways to help out in the condo: bring down the recycling to the basement, keeping things tidy; whether that is having nutritious meals ready for him at lunch and dinner, whether that’s being quiet when he’s taking work calls upstairs. I want to find ways to respect him through my actions.

And also through my words: I want to communicate with him well: which means listening more than I talk…and I talk a lot. I want to really listen to understand. And also, to share my feelings, thoughts and concerns too, instead of bottling them up…which I am very skilled at…

And I want to respect him by making his transition to Cincinnati as best as it can be. Whether that is setting up double dates, or signing up for interesting classes, or finding a young adult group or couples’ Bible study at church…I want to create a beautiful life with him, and ease us into that process as best as I can. He has given so much to me by uprooting his life in New York (where he lived since birth) to move here — I want to help him make this city truly feel like home.

And also when it comes to respect, I want to continue to respect my recovery: Protect it, guard it, be diligent with it. The life I’m living now — which I never could have dreamed of during my anorexia — is only possible because of my recovery. And with the wedding coming up, there is a lot of pressure around body image, and I want to just guard my heart to be ready for that: and have an impenetrable fortress, solidifying the work that I’ve done these past 15 years.

I want to bring GRATITUDE with me into 2023.

Lastly, I want to bring a spirit of gratitude with me, every day in 2023. I truly feel God’s blessing pouring down — with an incredible man, with my health, with moving back to my hometown — and the face that it was my man’s idea to do so, because he knew it was my heart’s deepest desire. God is so good, and I want to never ever take that for granted.

Even just for waking up in the morning. I mean, my gosh, look at what happened this past Monday during the Bengals/Bills game. Life can change in an instant…and praise God that Hamlin is making progress and appears is going to be okay.

Gratitude. If you’re busy recognizing all the blessings God has bestowed upon you, you’ll be too busy to be down or in a bad mood.

As far as what I’m NOT bringing with me…

  1. Bottling up my emotions. – I really need to work on my healthy communication and not just saying that “I’m fine.”
  2. Unchecked spending. I really need to work on budgeting my finances. Owning a house is a huge financial expense, which means finding ways to “tighten the belt” in other areas.
  3. Negative self talk. This one I have gotten a lot better at, but I still can slip up from time to time. I’ve learned that a trigger for this is when I haven’t exercised in a while. So staying in balance: with nutrition, healthy movement, sleep, work and socializing — that is KEY!

So there you have it. What are some things that YOU want to bring with you into 2023?

It’s going to be a beautiful year, I just know it.

Grateful for YOU!

XOXO Caralyn

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20 responses to “Three Things I’m Taking With Me Into 2023 (And Three Things I’m NOT)”

  1. I want to make more of an effort to get out of my comfort zone. (I had something planned tomorrow night that is quite a bit out of my comfort zone, but that might fall through, and something I’ve already paid for might go to waste, because of circumstances beyond my control. Too early to tell, though. Having to change plans at the last minute is itself out of my comfort zone…

  2. I think it was the great Brennan Manning who wrote, “Long after mental brilliance is forgotten, long after human eloquence dissipates into the darkness of time, kindness will be remembered. Kindness is an undervalued grace. It displays the covenant love of God, expressed in His children. If nothing else, give kindness.” May you and your husband-to-be always be kind to one another. Happy New Year!

  3. What a wonderful thoughtful list of what to bring with you. Never lose the joy and respect that define you! My 2023 word is Ready. I am ready to bring into 2023 the love, joy, and peace that are mine … Gifts from God. I will leave behind the rushing, carelessness, and procrastination that never served me or my Maker well. God bless you, Caralyn. I know your year is destined to be filled with God’s affirmations for you and Steven. ❤️❤️

  4. This is such an inspiring list of what to carry-forward this year and what to leave behind. I especially related to your description of Respect. I wish more people had the mindfulness to treat others with respect, it would improve so much in the world.

  5. Thinking back a handful of years ago to when you would share how you missed Ohio so much, how you were praying for the right man, makes it even more exciting to see all that God has fulfilled in your life. I remember waiting with you, knowing God would bless you in his time!! So happy for you. 🥰 We’re all excited to get to see all your updates. A great year it will be, indeed!

  6. Hi Caralyn 🙂

    I will interpret your question as roughly: “What are your plans?” — Wow, thanks for asking! (LOL) 😀

    In December, I decided to try something I’ve only done in a very limited way “IRL”: to give a presentation in front of a lot of people. I can’t give any details here / now, but this would be a LOT (think at least hundreds, maybe thousands), and a very specific group that may be very receptive to my ideas … but since I just applied, I still need to wait for the answer.

    These days, I publish a lot of my “own” thinking @ Socio.BIZ (the blog) … so perhaps I will post updates there.

    🙂 Norbert

  7. I plan to bring your pumpkin bread pudding into 2023! Along with a couple of other new recipes. Being retired now, I have been enjoying exploring cooking desserts (and a few healthier main dishes).
    As for the jury being out on whether a man appreciates love or respect more, you need to check back to see if someone is rigging the jury! 😂
    While a man appreciates being loved, if you investigate for yourself, you will find that to a man, love from a woman is expressed as respect. She may love him to the moon and back, but if she does not express that as respect the rocket will fall into the ocean without ever getting out of orbit.
    In the same way, a woman values love more than respect, but if the love does not carry over into respect for her, she will not realize she is loved. He may respect her for her dedication, intelligence, strength, compassion, etc., but if he does not express that tenderly as love, she will still feel unloved.
    You may have already read it, but review again “Love and Respect” by Dr. Eggerichs.
    love and respect 😉, mingled with lots of prayers,

  8. All the best Caralyn with your wedding and new life. Happy New Year!
    May you and your fiance thrive in your new home/city environment – mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Thank you for sharing this post and for giving me food for thought regarding what it is I’d like to bring with me into this New Year, and what I wish to leave behind.

  9. Cincinnati is the cultural gemstone of the old Midwest. I enjoyed my years of college there and the occasional pilgrimage back.
    Blessings on your new life there and your impending marriage.

  10. Congratulations Caralyn! This is a start leading to the plans that God has for you. Plans of peace and not evil, to give you an expected end (Jere.29:11). Wishing you the best in 2023! God bless you and your family.

  11. Caralyn—I love your idea of bringing 3 things with you and leaving 3 things behind in tye new year. As a guy, for me respect is part of how I experience love—it’s hard to feel loved when you’re not respected (if that makes sense). Joy, respect, and gratitude are great things to usher into 2023. I also liked your list of things you’re not planning to take with you. Unchecked spending and negative self-talk are topics I can relate to myself. You’ve given me something to ponder. Anyways, love the post and great seeing you love your best life!

  12. This was great! I really appreciate your thoughts about joy, respect and gratitude, also, about communicating your thoughts, working on that, and they are inspiring to me.

    Joy, discipline and consistency, these are important for me this year.

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