TBI Survivor Blog Series 2020

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New Year, New You


New Year, New You

By Dhara Joshi

“Finding the joy in little victories is something that I truly learned how to do”

The arrival of the New Year seems to spark a sort of frenzied desire to create great change, through the use of lofty, and often unattainable goals. Why strive for the impossible, when small victories are much more tangible and can often lead you to the same result?

Finding the joy in little victories is something that I truly learned how to do throughout my accident journey. I learned to take pride in all of the little victories, instead of wishfully striving to achieve a “level of pre-injury perfection”.  There is no turning back time – all I can really do is look forward and set small achievable goals, all the while realizing, and making peace with the fact that there is no such thing as perfection.

That has definitely been a bitter pill to swallow for my “Type A”, high-achieving personality. What I found to be extremely helpful, was logging my small victories over time.  This was something that one of my rehab therapists in the hospital suggested I do.  She created a ‘Dhara’s Book of Awesomeness’, where we celebrated all of my progress. No feat was too small – whether it was noticing someone’s eye colour for the first time, or re-learning how to wipe my own a**, to standing for the first time in three months. Adding up each tiny victory allowed me to achieve bigger goals without any of the self-inflicted pressure or self doubt.

I was able to walk on my own, 4 months before anyone said that I would be able to stand, let alone walk – and this was made possible by the tiny victories. Before I knew it, I didn’t need a personal support worker anymore – again, made possible by the tiny victories. Even though there is still so much more of the world I am not seeing (because of my vision impairments), I can now process, and take in more than I have ever been able to and this was made possible by all of the tiny victories.

At the end of the day, that is what New Year’s resolutions, and in fact all life goals, should be about. Set yourself up for success with small, tangible goals, and before you know it, you will be farther than you ever imagined.  

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