Hello, bookish friends!
Boy, I don’t know about you, but 2017 was jam-packed for me. There were some days when it all felt overwhelming: the days when the sad news headlines just kept coming, or when family issues got so tangled up it was clear that we were going to have to Sit Down and Talk Things Out.
In the end, though, I feel like the year kept getting better as it went on, and I even learned a few things along the way. Partial credit goes to the resolutions I set for myself last year. And here they are—the simple things I focused on for 2017:
- Sunshine/fresh air
This was my basic ‘must have’ list for myself. At the end of 2016, I was still recovering from a really stressful job that I had left the year before. I needed to get back to basics, I told myself. What did an Emily need (or want) in order to feel good and grow?
Strength: I wanted to feel strong! Anything that moved my body and made me feel good counted as a check in this category. Walks. Yoga. Weights in the gym. Five pushups before bed. After a few weeks, I noticed I felt a little better physically, which helped my mood stay up, too.
Friendships: Long hours and longer commutes to work had really put a dent in my social life. I got a job closer to home, left work on time, and set notes for myself to contact old friends or try new things with new people. I’m naturally more introverted than anything, so this one was hard! But I think the social stretching was good for me, and I’ll try to keep it up in 2018, too 🙂
Sunshine/Fresh Air: My apartment at the beginning of 2017 was a dark nook with an almost basement-type vibe. To be blunt, it sucked. I added mirrors, lights, and plants to try to fix things, but when the time came to renew my lease, I ended up leaving for a new spot completely. Guys, my new apartment is SO MUCH BETTER. Now I have sunlight for reading or sketching, and I can take walks outside in a neighborhood that feels way safer. Yay!
Dogs: I’ve wanted a dog for a really long time, and my sister and I adopted a very large chocolate lab mix last year. Having a dog upped my cuddle-with-animals time, plus it made sure I got out to go on walks (strength!) in the great outdoors (fresh air! sunshine!) and sometimes even meet up with other people (friendships! aahhh!!). Life with a dog is basically 700 times better.
So overall I’d have to say the list of words above really helped me stay on track last year. If something didn’t make me feel stronger or contribute to time in the sun or cuddling with a friendly dog, then it wasn’t that important. Having a list of magic words was also a better guide for me than writing down a to-do type list. (Although I know that works better for some people.)
For 2018, I figure I’ll keep the words of 2017 (no need to drop what still works!), but I’ll add on a few more words for the new year. I’ve spent a long time making things in private (stories, sketches, etc.), but I think this is the time to finally go full out and share these things with the world. No more hiding—it’s time to be brave! For 2018, I’ll add:
- Make: sketching, adding to wordcounts, and beautifying spaces around me
- Share: reaching out to all of you to share things as they come together
- Level Up! Let’s make this year bigger, juicier, and more luscious than ever before!
Who’s with me? 🙂
Love and mantras,