Thursday, January 6, 2011

Happy 2011!

photo by me

Hi there! It's been awhile. The holidays this year were incredibly hectic but also very, very fun, and now I'm working on settling into 2011 with a renewed sense of purpose and motivation. The new year, so far, has been defined by chaos and family crises, and as a result I've put off making a serious start on my resolutions--but isn't that kind of the thing about New Year's Resolutions? There's always going to be chaos, and inconvenience, and, well, life getting in the way of our attempts to be better. The real trick comes in learning to jump in and make changes regardless of the circumstances.

New Year's Resolutions 2011

1. Finish a draft of my novel and submit query letters to agents. Whoa, is this a scary one! But I've been working on a project for a while that I'm very excited about, and I think this might finally be the year that I jump into this whole "writer" thing with both feet first. (Also the year I think up some less tired metaphors to describe the creative process!)

2. Get serious about healthy eating and exercise. I'm a pretty healthy eater, but I'd like to eat vegan meals more frequently and learn to avoid dairy without feeling deprived. I'd also like to try my hardest to eat at least 7 servings of fruits and veggies per day, keep going to weekly yoga classes, and try to exercise at least a couple more times per week, preferably outdoors.

3. Get good hair and good skin. This is so shallow! But as long as I'm being honest, I may as well admit that I'm in seeeerious need of a good haircut. I cut my own bangs a while ago and, well, it's still a problem. I also need to find a new dermatologist! I haven't been for about two years and, guess what, people? Adult acne doesn't just go away on its own.

4. Start dressing like a grownup on a regular basis. To me, this means I can still dress creatively and colorfully--I'd just like to have fewer days where I revert to jeans, TOM's, and a Threadless t-shirt.

5. Spend less time online (dramatically less) and more time reading real books (dramatically more). Guys, this is so hard! I've already completely failed at it this week, due mostly to a newfound obsession with the show Friday Night Lights. (It's on Netflix instant watch! And yes, that does count as time online). Basically, I've really been noticing over the last few months that my existence has been so overtaken by electronic media--T.V., the internet, Google Reader and email on my smartphone--that I have a hard time clearing my mind, like, ever. This is really disturbing to me, and I hope to make a serious effort this year to curb my addiction to the gadgets that complicate my life.

6. Grow & expand my blog and handmade business. This may seem like it's at odds with the previous resolution, but I think it's really all about time management--learning to be able to get online, do the task I set out to do, and close my computer. I'm so excited to blog with more frequency and start a rotation of regular features. I'm working on Elsie's Blog Love e-course right now and it's really inspiring me to take blogging more seriously! I'm also pretty psyched to start sewing some new springtime aprons and accessories for my shop!

7. Keep in better touch with far-away friends. I have so many incredible friends--the only problem is, they're scattered all over the globe! Awesome when I want an excuse to go on a trip, but not so awesome when I realize that I haven't done as good of a job keeping in touch with everybody since college as I would have liked. I want to email more joke you-tube videos, set up more skype dates, and send more letters and birthday cards!

8. Be responsible about going to the doctor. I haven't been to the doctor in... um... awhile. I just really hate setting up appointments! But this is going to be the year that all changes!

9. Go on at least one date. This is hands-down the scariest and most difficult one on the list. I don't even know where to begin! Online dating terrifies me, and I'm too shy to meet guys in real-life! Suggestions?

10. Travel as much as possible and go on at least one adventure per month. Nothing helps me get perspective like getting away from it all, even if it's just for the day! I want to take trips to see my friends, trips with my family, and day-trips to see museums, go to gallery openings, and eat food more often!

11. Go back to school & move away from home. The wheels have been set in motion on this one... I'm waiting to hear back from several schools where I've applied to Master's degree programs in library and information science. Will I fulfill my childhood dream of becoming a librarian? Hopefully, this will be the year that I start working toward that goal!

12. Try to always focus on the positive and enjoy this phase of my life. I spend way too much time worrying about and planning for the future... I need to learn how to be more present! Yoga helps, simplifying my possessions and routines helps.

I know this seems like an ridiculously long list of goals, but my theory on New Year's Resolutions has always been "Go big or go home!" You'll never achieve anything if you don't make an insanely detailed list of goals first, right? I think some famous philosopher probably said that. Probably. (Resolution #13: Make fewer lists).

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