I wish I could be a "blogger". Most of my life I remember wanting to be a writer when I grew up. I pictured myself as Jo March from Little Women (portrayed by Winona Ryder if you are more familiar with the movie than the book). It is one of all my all-time favorite stories and I think Jo was my spirit animal. She certainly wasn't a blogger, but if we were to modernize the story to present day, I imagine that is exactly what she would have been striving to become. I accepted a long time ago that I can't be a blogger (anytime soon, anyway), because I have too many other things I am supposed to be. Time just does not allow for it and when I find that I do have time to write, I more often than not find that I'm writing a bunch of jibberish without much meaning. Like, right now, for instance. ;-)

But, I am going somewhere with this! If it is only once or twice a year that I am able to post a blog, what better time than the start of a new year! I've spent a lot of 2017 in thought, despite the non-stop action that has been packed into 365 days. My baby turned 1, I had another baby, I sold my house, I ran a 1/2 marathon, I moved into a new house, and before I knew it; I have a teething 9-month old and my baby is going to be 2 in three days. I think all of those combined things almost force you to think a lot.  I've learned a lot about people in this chaotic year and I am still deciding whether I am better for it, or worse. I've experienced a lot of disappointment from people, but I will say there have been a few pleasant surprises scattered throughout that have certainly made up for the downfalls. I've learned that in general, people tend to be selfish (myself included). I wonder why we ever allowed social media to take over our lives in such a way that we encourage selfish people to be even more selfish and don't seem to acknowledge those who are struggling and could really benefit from such a platform. I also wonder why we have such a hard time portraying who we really are on social media versus what we think will get the most "likes", "views", and "hits". There are many things I see that I can't even bring myself to give a "thumbs up" because I can't stomach how fake the content presents itself. As an adolescent, popularity contests weren't really my thing. I wanted to be surrounded by realness because I'm not really good at handling drama. Low and behold, I found that at age 15, that doesn't really make you that popular and you don't really end up with that many friends. So here we are again, now I am age 33, and I think if I had to weigh it out, my "like" counts aren't really up to par with my fellow business owners, colleagues, etc. The problem is, I know how it works. It's marketing, and we are all marketing ourselves every single day whether we own a business or not. We are trying to give the world what they want to see. Here is the other part, most of the world doesn't care because they are too busy marketing their own lives. And when you own a business, like myself, it's a whole different ball of wax. I often defer from posting at all simply because I have neighboring businesses that copy my promotions, classes, clothing, and even photos. A double edged sword? Yes, on the daily; but such is life.

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When I opened Studio Poise, now almost 6 years ago, I opened it because I knew I taught a damn good class. It was me, doing what I loved and changing lives while I did it! Six years and two pregnancies later, I am getting back to my original groove, and I can confidently say that I give every last breath I have to each class I teach regardless of what my day looked like (and some of those days are very ugly). I do that because no matter how pretty my instagram posts may appear, they don't mean anything unless you come to class and love every second of it, plus reap the rewards of your hard work. Here is the thing about this business that has gotten misrepresented in the past couple of years: too much posting and much less doing. I don't want to videotape my clients for social media because I have to give them what they came for, and that is my full attention. I want the people who come to my classes to feel happy, to leave feeling better than when they walked in, and to, overtime, notice a difference in their overall being. I want them to walk taller, look forward,  strut confidently, and smile often. This has been the goal since day 1, and I have a hard time changing that in order to keep up on social media and what boutique fitness studios are "supposed" to look like. I had someone pull me aside before class the other day and say, "thank you". I asked why she was thanking me and she said, "for creating this place". It nearly brought me to tears. It has been a long time since I have heard those words with such sincerity and spontaneity. It wasn't a "like" on facebook or a retweet, a snapchat, or a this or a that. It was people being people - I just love that.

Back to wishes. 

In 2018, I hope that we all keep wishing. Not wishing for good bodies, or fancy pocketbooks, or to be able to take a pic of our latest headstand skill (even though we only go to yoga once/month). I wish for the people who hurt inside to find happiness; because we never know what people are going through and probably never will since we only post the good on social media. I wish for a better world to raise our children, because this one is scary. I wish for equality and I wish for people to be good. I still wish to be a writer like Jo March one day, because what good is a dream if we let it go? I wish for us all to find time to enjoy our lives while they are happening, instead of documenting them for the sake of a "like". Life is so short, and you can't take your iPhone with you, if you know what I mean. Most importantly, I wish for us all to have a place that does something special for our souls. Something that we can't explain, or even want to because it might ruin it. I wish for you all to have a better year than your last, even if it was your best ever, because there is always more and we are never done. I wish for us all to be people; the kind of people who move because we can and because we love it; the kind of people who make other people's days better instead of worse; the kind of people who fill Studio Poise everyday. I wish for you all to be them in 2018. 

Danielle RobackOwner