New year, new decade, but no new resolutions. I’m not big on resolutions. You could tell me I’m afraid of commitment, or too indecisive. I don’t care. I’d like instead to explore the directions I’d like to go this year. I’m a pantser when it comes to writing. Outlining, for me, is the quickest way to kill the spark of creativity. For me, writing is a process of discovering—once I’ve outlined a story, I’ve discovered where it’s going and that takes all of the fun out of writing. Instead, I like to think in terms of general goals and explore where those take me as I write. I’m looking at the new year in the same way; not in terms of resolutions, but in the general directions I’d like to go this year.
I have a lot to look forward to in the new year. The single biggest thing I’m looking forward to this year is continuing to foster our youngest and newest daughter. I have my own personal hopes about what direction I want this to take, but there are too many outside factors influencing where it will go. The best I can do, no matter what happens, is to continue learning how to be a better mom for her. I don’t mean that I don’t think I’m a good mom already—like most moms, I’m doing the best I can. But I don’t believe that anybody is ever done learning, in any area of their lives, including motherhood—especially with foster parenting. There’s no self-flagellation about that either. (Although some days, it does live up the saying I once heard that motherhood is the best way to develop feelings of inadequacy.) There is just so much we are still learning about brain science (and so much that is still a mystery about it), particularly in regard to how a child’s development is affected by early neglect and trauma, that there will always be more I can learn about being a better mother to my kids.
On the business side of life, I’m looking forward to blogging more regularly, and continuing to develop my business. I have some exciting long-term goals in mind, but haven’t decided on a time line for them yet. Those goals may not materialize this year, but I am looking forward to making progress toward them. Blogging regularly is part of that process. Following Laura Christianson’s advice about blogging, I’ve put together a loose editorial calendar for the next couple of months. It’s loose enough that I can make changes at the last minute if I want to, but structured enough to set self-imposed deadlines and keep me motivated.
In my creative life, I’ve got several areas I’d like to explore this year. I want to work the Artist’s Way program again this year. TAW (The Artist’s Way) is a program for re-connecting with your creativity. One of the basic tools of the program is Morning Pages: three pages of long-hand journal writing. I’ve found that when I’m in the practice of doing my Morning Pages every day, I’m more in touch with myself and more connected to my life. I got out of that habit in 2009 but have been making that a priority again recently and would like to follow through with the rest of TAW this year as well. I’d also like to bring music back into my life. Over the years, I’ve been involved with viola, piano, and choir; I miss having music in my life. Nobody could ever mistake me for a musician, but I do enjoy making music and would like to once again. Recently I’ve also gotten into the habit of writing bits and pieces of fiction again; I would like to continue mining this vein as well. Then there’s woodworking—my sweet husband bought me some woodworking tools so that I could make myself some bookcases for the books I keep accumulating. My mind has been bursting with ideas for projects I could make; everywhere I look, I see an opportunity to create something with my woodworking tools. So far, though, the only thing I’ve made is excuses. That’s another thing I’d like to change this year.
As for my health, I want to eat healthier and make myself more fit. I’m healthier now than I’ve been in years, and I love that—but I’d like to be more fit. Since moving to Wisconsin from California, I’ve become pretty fanatic about jogging. We have a beautiful trail near our home and when the weather is nice enough, I love to run and jog on it. When the weather isn’t nice enough, I put miles on my treadmill instead. Madison hosts the Iron Man Triathalon—I’m not crazy enough to go for that. Yet. But I would like to at least run a 5K in 2010, if not a mini-triathalon. I’d also like to eat healthier. Our family has been going to the Farmer’s Market lately and eating more organic, locally-grown food, particularly more fruits and vegetables. This is something I’d like to continue in 2010.
I have some other things I’d like to explore this year too, some of them too personal to share here. What about you? Where do you want your life to go in 2010? What are you looking forward to in this coming year? Share them here if you wish, or if you’ve blogged about them already (or are planning to), please share your link here. If you don’t want to share them, take some time to write them down for yourself. You don’t have to call them resolutions if you don’t want to. But writing them down can help you explore where you want to go with your life this year. Happy New Year, and enjoy exploring your life in 2010!