Well, well, well… look at this, a new year! I have mixed feelings on new years. First, let me start by saying that, as my dad would say, it's better than the alternative… but I tend to find that January 1 comes with tons of hype and little payoff. Resolutions! Promises! New me! And then, come February, not much has changed. Sure, maybe I went to an extra yoga class or two, but enough to justify a monthly unlimited membership? Probably not. All of those goals carry a significant amount of emotional burden, too… overachiever perfectionist tendencies rear their ugly heads, then, when inevitably reality sets in and we realize that our loudly proclaimed resolutions maaaaaaybe weren't quite realistic, we beat ourselves up over these perceived failures. No? Just me?
This is not to say that I don't value goal setting, because I do. Goal setting is good, essential even. But maybe this year, instead of setting ENORMOUS goals-- I will write on my blog EVERYDAY! (we see how well that turned out last year)-- we set manageable, measurable goals, and pat ourselves on the back when we accomplish them. And those bite-sized goals can be benchmarks to achieving larger, overarching, life-defining GOALS. But if we only focus on achieving our GOALS-- those big, nebulous, hard-to-define-but-oh-so-essential-surely-we-will-die-if-we-don't-achieve-them-GOALS-- it is easy to lose track of our path. Personally, that's when I find myself feeling aimless and dissatisfied with my life but not able to put my finger exactly on why (again, just me?).
Allow to me illustrate: for the past several years, I've resolved on January 1 to write more regularly on the blog. A noble goal, yes? I love writing here, and I hope that you, dear Readers, enjoy reading my little missives. But after a while, rather than wanting to write, it felt like i SHOULD write, because, after all, I had resolved to do so. If I wrote 3 times a week, I could get my readership up, and that could lead to other opportunities that would allow me to blog and make things as my full time job and then I would be CREATIVELY AND FINANCIALLY FULFILLED… aka, the Holy Grail of any artistically inclined person. So when I didn't write three times a week-- because hello, I have a full time job with its own set of never-ending demands-- I felt like a failure. And the more I felt like a failure, the more I stayed away from writing. Major resolution fail, not mention that my larger goal-- to be creatively and financially fulfilled-- was definitely not being met.
So this year, rather than focus on the payoff, I'm going to focus on the steps. I still want to be creatively and financially fulfilled (who doesn't, am I right?). But I will focus on smaller, documentable steps towards doing so-- steps that can actually be measured, because it's not like I've got a big glass jar on the counter that says FULFILLMENT on it, and I can see how empty or full it is (that's a nice image though). I'll refrain from proclaiming those steps here, but I will certainly be sharing them with you along the way; the support you guys continue to show this little blog-- despite my aforementioned shortcomings-- never ceases to amaze me. I am truly grateful for each and every one of you who spend time here at the Punchbowl. And if you, dear Readers, have your own bite sized goals that you want support achieving, I'm here for you! Drop me an email, leave a comment, tag me on Instagram… let's make 2015 a good one, shall we?