Happy Black History Month, everybody! How are you all doing on your New Year’s resolutions?
If you read my last blog post, you’ll know that I’ve been directing my energy toward getting back to who I am. This past month, I’ve really just been focused on reframing my mindset and showing gratitude toward life when times get tough. For the most part, I’ve been pretty successful, but there is always work to be done. With this new perspective, however, today we’re talking about changes I want to make for the blog and I guess my “brand” moving forward.
I hope everyone had a safe and fun celebration (of any kind) last night. I am going to keep today’s post short as we’re already into the new year and there is not a huge point in focusing on the past. 2022 was a lot of things for me: difficult, lonely, overwhelming, beautiful, but most importantly, transformative. My year started in a way I could have never expected and the rest of the year followed in suit. Most of the year, the scale felt tipped on one side to the point where it was overwhelming for me and I couldn’t see in front of me, but then I made a choice. Followed by another choice and another choice and another choice until I could dig myself out of the hole and toward the light. I learned so much about my own resilience and how far I can be pushed before I have to push back. I experienced loss in more ways than one, but I experienced love in the most powerful ways as well. I learned how to sit in discomfort and what the meaning of gratitude is. I have memories I hope to forget one day alongside memories I hope I never forget. It sounds vague and a little cliché, I know, but 2022 was one of those years that was equally as memorable as it was forgettable (excluding very obvious things like all of my nieces being born).
I don’t feel like overall it was a bad year, but I haven’t felt so sure about good things heading my way in this new year since I declared 2019 The Year of Alexa. When I talked about the hardest part of living here in El Paso, it was that suddenly I didn’t have the ability to choose certain things that were always at my disposal before. With the way the last three months of 2022 went, I felt inspired and encouraged to make 2023 all about choices–choosing to be happy when things are bad, choosing the people I share things with, choosing things for my life without always considering how others will feel about it, choosing me again. I want to stop being so insecure about my choices and remind myself how smart I am, and have always been, when it comes to curating my life. When I created my 2022 visionboard, I should have known then that the year would be unpredictable because it was the first year in a long time where I had no concrete goals. However, as I look at my 2023 visionboard above–even with the limitations of what’s available in print magazines to fit my goals and themes–I see so many things that reflect different parts of me that I let fall by the wayside over the last couple of years.
I don’t know if it’s because it is the last year of my 20s or us waltzing into the 4th year of the pandemic, but I’m just ready to make my life more fulfilling. I owe it to myself. Cheers to 2023!!
Anybody else out there feeling completely ragged? I don’t know about y’all, but 2022 has taken a lot out of me. But I’m deciding that it’s time for me to take things back.
Last year, I was required to take a personality assessment at work called Clifton StrengthsFinder. While I don’t mind taking these assessments, I never really put much stock into them even when they are accurate. However, my company placed a major emphasis on this specific assessment which forced me to memorize and dissect my top five strengths (in order): Empathy, Discipline, Consistency, Individualization, Relator. One of the trending jokes last year was the “I’m an empath” phrase. I still find it absolutely hilarious, but as I’ve spent more time on my Clifton results and talked more about it in therapy, I’ve learned that I actually am an empath.
Welcome to my first travel post in two years! While I have done some traveling in the last two years, I haven’t written a true travel post since I went to New Orleans in 2020 right before lockdown. I also haven’t visited anywhere that warranted a full “write-up” except maybe my trip to Mexico City, but I had to forego writing about that to enjoy my first international trip out of lockdown last year. Today, however, I am so excited to write about my trip to Guanajuato, Mexico!
This was my first time visiting Guanajuato which is about a 4.5-hour drive or one-hour plane ride from Mexico City. It’s also about a 45-minute drive from the main airport in León, so be sure to consider that when it comes to budgeting. Guanajuato has a lot of nicknames, but it is primarily known as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and recognized for its neighboring town, San Miguel de Allende, and its Día de los Muertos festivities as depicted in Disney’s Coco. It is easily one of the most beautiful cities I have ever seen thus far. My trip was four days, but excluding the travel, it was a full 2.5 days of exploring. Let’s get started!