“New Year’s Day. A fresh start. A new chapter in life waiting to be written. . . . Today carve out a quiet interlude for yourself in which to dream, pen in hand. Only dreams give birth to change.” – Sarah Ban Breathnach
Lately I keep seeing articles and blog posts about preparing for 2016.
- Releasing 2015
- How to find your “One Word”
- Deriving a theme for 2016
- Making resolutions—or not
I’ve already derived my resolutions, and as usual, they are not much different than last year’s. I’ve decided not to beat myself up about this. It is good that I know what I want and that I keep trying.
I think this year my One Word will be “Create”. Because if I want my dream life, I need to create it. I need to create a sanctuary at home. I need to create a writer’s life—my writer’s life. I need to create written work. I need to create a more fit body so I can fully enjoy traveling with my husband.
To finish preparing for 2016, I asked myself, “What do I want to change in my life?” and “How will I do that?” Clues for answering this arose when I thought about recent experiences I’ve had and how they made me feel.
Early in December, my sister and I went on two holiday housewalks in one weekend. We enjoyed seeing beautiful houses all dressed up for the holidays, including the interiors. However, two days of this may have been too much, because I came home with house lust–a yearning to live in a bigger, custom home in a beautiful setting.
I could sit here and be envious, but it’s better to be inspired instead. After all, do I really want the indoor and outdoor maintenance needed for a home like that? Do I want to have to clean such a house or to pay someone to clean it?
Given the opportunity, I’d trade my house for one of these. But what I most like about them is the spaciousness. If I get rid of clutter, my house would feel serene and spacious, too. This is something I am inspired to work on in 2016.
Another thing I’ve noticed lately is that a couple of friends made derogatory remarks about women who are not employed. The remarks were said lightheartedly, not with malice, but I found them hurtful. I’m not employed for pay and such remarks are partly true about me—I’m not as productive as I could be.
And I’m guilty of occasionally making similar thoughtless remarks. A friend created a beautiful homemade Christmas card for my family, and I said, “She has too much time on her hands.”
Isn’t that true of me, with the time I spend on social media? With my collecting papers and constantly having to sort them and clear them out? These are timewasters I can cut back on this year. And the lovely woman who created those homemade cards is making art. By taking the time to create these cards, she is showing people she cares.
I am envious of another friend who has the ability to make her food look beautiful. This is a meal Rachell prepared for herself (skirt steak with black bean and avocado salad):
And this is a dessert she prepared for herself (poached pear):
These also are works of art—and Rachell cooks like this even when eating alone. I can learn from her to savor my food and “eat with the eyes” as she says, rather than to gobble my food. I can be inspired by her to create beauty in my home. I can learn from Rachell to treat myself with care.
We need to learn from each other without envy. Being envious indicates that we think we couldn’t do what the other person is doing. But if we want to badly enough and have confidence in ourselves, we can. We need to decide what we want. Let’s live our lives the way we want to while being inspired by others.
Happy New Year to you!
What are your feelings about recent happenings in your life? What would you like to change in the new year? How will you do that?