In my fantasy New Year’s Resolutions list (fantasy because I never made it), would probably appear, in no particular order, read more, write more, learn more. Drink less, eat less and worry less. You might also have found, help clean the house more, make less mess when ‘creating’ in the kitchen, and wash the car once in a while. Oh, and learn how to use Twitter properly. (I just thought of that one; it’s something that’s been bothering me.)
Missing from my fantasy list is ‘stop smoking’. I did that years ago. And not by resolving to do it either. Oh no. I tried once on New Year’s Day and failed rather too quickly afterwards. The trouble is, there’s just so much pressure surrounding the whole ‘resolution’ business. And it is a business; just look at all the flyers leaping energetically through the letter box encouraging you to join the gym, go to evening yoga/pilates/zumba (why anyone would want to be doing that rather than sipping a G&T at six o’clock remains a mystery to me). These people want to make money out of your perceived inadequacies. No, I just woke up one day (in April I think) and decided to stop smoking. It worked. No pressure you see. The fact is, I always intended to stop. By intending to do something you can say ‘my aim is to stop smoking/drink less/have more fun, but I shan’t need to beat myself up if I don’t achieve it’. If however you ‘resolve’ to do that same thing, you have rather more to reproach yourself for
when if you fail.
Therefore, on this basis, I would like to announce my list of ‘Intentions’ for the coming months.
1) Write more.
I intend to write more short stories and submit more of what I write to journals and competitions. Maybe I’ll even start work on the children’s novel that is occupying a large part of my subconscious.
2) Read more.
Certain people would say that this is impossible and that the dangerously unstable pile of books next to the bed will never be read or diminish (“well, someone must be adding more books to it”), but there is always space for more reading. For example, I now have a Kindle which far from filling me with dread horror simply says ‘you can now read in even more places than before and read things which you might not have bothered to before’. Hurrah!
3) Blog more.
I certainly intend to. As long as you intend to visit more often. Deal?
4) Look for inspiration more. *
I mean by this that I intend to be more aware and ‘look’ more. Inspiration for writing is everywhere, it’s just a matter of remembering, noting down and reviewing. This leads me to…
5) Use my writer’s journal properly.
I hereby intend to stop using my journal to scribble down phone numbers and start using it properly. I know I should be doing this and perhaps I will start. It will surely benefit my writing.
I think that is enough to aim for, don’t you?
So, forget resolutions and their inherent disappointment rate; join me and make a list of intentions. It’s much more relaxing and doesn’t involve any immediate deprivation or hard work. Isn’t that a friendlier way to start the year?
* My intention number four to look for more inspiration got off to a flying start the other day when I looked out of the window on my way back from the States. It was such an amazing sunrise, I decided to record it for use as inspiration at a later date. At least, I intend to use it. If I don’t, well, I still have a pretty picture to look at.
Happy New Year.