Happy New Year!
The last few weeks of any year for me are typically about reflecting, month by month on the year that just finished. I snatch any quiet moment I can during the holiday rush to write down my thoughts on what went well and what didn’t professionally and personally.
Then the first few weeks of the year are a mirror of those last two weeks, and I take time to think about what I want my year to look like. I ask myself questions like: How can I participate in successful, fulfilling activities that re-energize or inspire me? What are some activities that drain me?
What elements of my life need to be edited out? I make a deliberate effort to imagine where I want to be at the end of the year, to imagine what success feels like, and then I write it down. This is how I set my intentions for the year.
So it’s gone for six years now. 2022 brought to fruition a lot of seeds planted years ago doing these kinds of reflection and intention exercises. The path of my life has finally brought me here, to reflect upon the publishing of my first book as an author and illustrator.
This is no accident! It’s the course I set for myself, and worked toward year after year. It’s the learning and revising, and reflection all adding up. You too can set the course of your creative year, and I encourage you to take the time to reflect and set intentions for 2023.
Wishing you a super 2023!
Some favorite success-building creative activities:
Reflection journaling or sketching like The Year Compass (https://yearcompass.com/en/ - it's a free journaling tool).
Setting intentions and creating a plan for success
Choosing a word of the year for motivation or focus
Idea generation community activities like Tara Lazar’s Storystorm (https://taralazar.com/)
- Editing workshops or critique group meet-ups
- Accountability communities like 12x12 or Storyteller Academy or your local SCBWI conferences