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New Year’s, New Goals

I love New Year’s. love the fresh start, I love setting goals, and I love this shared sense that we have about anything being possible this year. I am invigorated by a new year injecting a sense of possibility into the cold grey of January, and I’ve found a moment of communal reflection and goal-setting to be incredibly valuable.
At the beginning of 2014, I had just transferred to Western Michigan University, and I set goals of making friends, saving money, and getting in shape. Over the past year, I made many friends, reached a savings goal, and I am in better shape than I was a year ago.
In 2013, I set goals of getting an internship, and getting my nose pierced. That summer, I interned at Metropolis Magazine and got my nose pierced on my 20th birthday.
Because of this and previous successes, I’m a huge believer in goals, especially of the New Year’s resolution variety.
Sure, people fail on their New Year’s resolutions. However, without New Year’s, most of them would not have even tried to make a change.
New Year’s resolution failure can often be avoided by being mindful in setting achievable goals, making specific plans to achieve those goals, and celebrating milestones along the way.
This year, I’ve decided to learn to cook and write more. Right now, I’m capable of feeding myself competently, but not with imagination. I make pasta, I make chili and sandwiches, but I don’t branch out much. I want to learn how to cook a wider variety of foods. To do this, I got a cookbook and am trying to make things I’ve never cooked before.
In order to write more, I plan to set aside a few hours every Sunday to spend writing. I’ll work on personal stuff – writing for work doesn’t count. I’m not sure what I’ll be writing, but I think it’ll be a mix of creative nonfiction and fiction. I’ll share bits of what I’m working on here, and perhaps release some sort of zine at the end of the year.
I’ve also decided to spend the month of January without alcohol or caffeine. These aren’t permanent changes, just part of a temporary reset to see what my body feels like without those substances. I’ve been drinking caffeine semi-regularly since I was 16, and alcohol since I was 19, so I don’t exactly remember how I feel without them in my body.
We’re a week into the new year, and I’ve found going without caffeine to be pretty difficult. I can manage without coffee, but I find myself wanting tea or pop most days, in the afternoon. I’ve started drinking more herbal tea, but it’s not the same.
As for the blog, I suppose this is what people refer to as “pivoting.” I still love design, but it isn’t the main focus of my life right now. I’ll still write about design when something big happens, or when I find something that I get excited about, but I’m not tapped into a design community like I was in Grand Rapids.
Right now, I’m focused much more on writing, communications, small business, publishing, and on feminism.
Can all those things fit together into one blog?
I have no idea. Let’s find out.