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A time for reflection January 2, 2013

Posted by thejinx in life, writing.
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Interestingly, when it comes to new year celebrations/traditions, I am if anything less cynical than I was when I was younger. No, one shouldn’t need a calendar turning to reflect on one’s behaviors or attitude or resolve to improve oneself, but it does provide a useful milestone for doing so.

There are a number of things I should resolve to do for 2013. The common personal goals of exercising and perhaps losing weight. Trying to do more art, or any of the other hobbies/outlets I enjoy. Trying to be a better mother.

There isn’t much I want to or will resolve to do this year, however. For one thing, my daughter’s growth has me constantly reevaluating my free time and my priorities, so it’s difficult to plan for very large or general self-improvements. That also means that I have been modifying my free time and how to use it, particularly in the last few months.

A consistent problem with me is procrastination. Not necessarily that I don’t want to do something, but working myself up to doing it is often more difficult than necessary. I recently rediscovered a quote that sums up both my problem and the solution for it: “To think too much about doing something is often its undoing.” This is usually what causes me to put off what I should be doing, such as editing my next novel.

I’ve tried to reduce distractions in an attempt to help me focus on what needs to be done, like blocking time-wasting websites from my computer. But there are always other distractions to be had, which is something I’ve discovered with the latest attempt.

And so, in the past couple weeks, I’ve come to the realization that it’s not about reducing one’s distractions, but to just force myself to sit down and work on what needs to be done. It’s not easy to do, especially with a task as subjective and full of potential failure as editing. Ultimately, however, it’s not as difficult as I make it out to be in my mind when I just sit down and do it. So, I’ve made some pretty good progress in just the last week or so of December, compared to the rest of the month, and it’s momentum I intend to build on.

Truthfully, I’ve gotten a number of aspects of my life where I want them to be right now. I’ve started getting back into the convention circuit and put more work into my business. I’m getting better – at intervals – at handling being a stay-at-home mom. I don’t watch TV anymore and often don’t even spend evenings watching DVDs or Netflix. I am able to make myself get work done on my own projects.

Certainly, there are things that could stand to be improved upon. I would like to be able to devote at least some time to my other hobbies, and the number of books I read last year was dismal. But overall, I am pretty content with where my life is right now. I don’t see the new year as a time to make changes so much as an opportunity to reflect on the past and keep myself on track. And at the moment, I’m feeling pretty hopeful about it.

Happy new year, everyone.

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