Yes, I know it’s February.
But January is not the time to make New Year’s Resolutions in Australia. The air smells like barbeque and beer, the kids are home for summer, and the days slide away one after the other in a blur of beaches, pool and 40-degree (celsius!) heat.
No, January is not the perfect time to make New Year’s Resolutions.
Nor has it, for me, been a particularly good month to write. Now, I’m sure the best, most dedicated writers would just push on through all the distractions and carve out time to craft words, but this year, I just couldn’t manage it. Instead, I spent time with friends, with family, with my kids. I ate. I drank. I made merry (and I’ve got the spare tyre to prove it!) BUT, I refuse to feel guilty (about the break or the feasting – that’s my first resolution – no more guilt!).
Taking a break from writing now and then gives you a chance to see the forest for the trees. I haven’t written in January, but I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about writing. And I don’t mean I’ve been thinking ‘gee, I should be writing’, instead I’ve been thinking about:
– What I’ve written,
– What I’ve finished,
– What I haven’t finished,
– Which projects I want to work on this year, and
– Which projects can be put aside.
The results of that introspection have steered this year in a different direction (but that’s a whole different post).
A break, a space, a gap – has also given me time to put ALL my priorities on the table, not just writing priorities. So, I guess I shouldn’t call them New Year’s Resolutions at all. Instead, I’ll just call them Resolutions.
So, what are my Resolutions for 2018?
I love this quote from Robert Louis Stevenson:
‘Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds that you plant.’
So my resolutions this year are small, quiet things. Tiny seeds, rather than grand, sweeping plans. Whispers, not shouts. Write every day, eat more vegetables (this should be on everyone’s list!), be present, listen (to myself and others), be kind (to myself and others), enjoy the sunshine, move my body, grow things, appreciate the journey instead of rushing hurly-burly towards the goal.
Those are my seeds. What are yours?