Happy New Year!
In the grand scheme of things, January 1st is just a day like any other — the trees and flowers and birds and bees and my cat don’t care that it’s a new year, after all. But we humans mark the passage of time.
To us, it’s a big deal.
And because we mark this moment every year, it’s like a sign post — a natural marker for us to use as we reflect back on the year that’s just passed, and look forward toward the one before us.
What went well? What went not so well? What do we want to create going forward? What do we want to change?
I’m big on self-awareness (remember: self-awareness + self-compassion = the key to everything good!), and there’s no shortage of downloadables to help you self-assess and plan. I’ve used the (free) Year Compass for a few years now.
Whatever your self-assessment tool, the goal is to help you become more aware, so you can figure out where to go next.
I’m still figuring that out.
I’m in an interesting place right now. It’s been almost nine years since I started my blog, and how things have changed!
I started blogging because I was completely lost. I was living what felt like the most non-creative life possible, as a ketubah artist who didn’t want to be a ketubah artist anymore — a professional artist who never made art except at the behest of my clients (of which there were very few, this being the recession and all).
I desperately wanted to live a creative life — “the life I really, really wanted” — and I started the blog because I needed to write to clarify my thinking.
Writing was my way of processing.
Then when commerce entered the picture, and writing started getting attached to business, I began doing less and less of it.
When I started the podcast, I practically stopped blogging altogether, and honestly, it was a relief.
Like my art, blogging had started off as a pressure relief valve — something I did purely for me — and it had evolved into a chain around my ankle — something I felt obliged to do for others.
I had to completely separate art from commerce in order to reclaim my joy in it (I now tell people I do art purely for my own enjoyment, no longer for clients). I think I have to figure out a way to do the same thing with writing.
Of course, since I also write for business purposes, that’s not quite so easy.
It’s a bit like recovering from my eating disorder way back when.
I was bulimic for about a decade in my teens and twenties, and having an eating disorder is a bit like having any other addiction… except that you can’t simply avoid the thing you’re addicted to, because we all need to eat to survive!
Alcoholics, smokers, and drug addicts can (at least theoretically) all avoid the substance they’re addicted to.
Not so with bulimics. We gotta eat.
So I had to learn to have a new relationship with food. And myself, actually. But that’s a subject for another article.
In this case, with writing, I think I want to create a way to establish writing for love vs. writing for business. Because I want to get back to writing for love.
The lines have been blurred up until now, and that’s led to me not writing for love at all. And avoiding writing for business, too. Which is not doing me much good.
So, my intention for 2019 is to gently come back to writing. A little bit every day. Just like my creative sandbox playtime, in which my intention is to make a crappy doodle every day, and any amount counts.
Not a big commitment, because those kinds of commitments tend to end in failure and bad feelings. So a tiny commitment. Like, for example, to write on an actual topic of some sort (as opposed to stream of consciousness brain dumps) every day, and any amount counts.
Ideal? Three journal pages or 1,000 words.
Totally acceptable? One journal page.
Still acceptable? A 3×5 card or a sentence.
Seriously. Something is better than nothing.
The goal is to get me started, and to hopefully get me back into a writing habit. I miss that.
Oh, and no, it’s not a New Year’s Resolution. It’s one of many changes I’m working on.
I may tell you about others I’ve got in the works, but this is enough for right now. My kitty (who tells me today is just another day) is hungry.
Happy New Year!