Dec 26, 2011

New Year resolutions

A quick google of 'new year writing resolutions' yielded the following: finish a novel, start a novel, publish an ebook, start a blog, post more regularly on a blog, read more, spend more time writing, submit writing....

Yawn. That's all great stuff but since those resolutions bounce around my head on a daily basis, they're not items I'll add to an annual list. Also,  those items are all about the writer and frankly, I'm getting a little sick of me.  So this year, my goals focus on others (and are in no particular order).

1. Pay attention to real life. My daily life is broken into two parts - writer-me in the morning, and teacher-me in the afternoon. Teacher-me constantly thinks about my students, how I can tailor lessons to fit their needs, noticing which child seems down/sad and thinking how to cheer them up. Those conversations - and the ones with my family and friends - pull me out of my writer-self, remind me to pay attention and not get sucked into my writer-me's head so much.

2. Write letters to our sponsorship kids. My family sponsors several children through World Vision. Each year we get letters from them telling us a tiny bit about their lives in Third World countries. Responding to them tends fall to the bottom of the to-do pile. This needs to change.

3. Hug my kids each day. In my experience, the older my children get, the less I touch them. Giving my almost-16 year-old son a hug requires advance stealth planning. But it's worth it. Soon they'll be gone and hugging them won't be as easy as chasing them through the house. :)

4. Give more away. Money and time - two of our most valuable commodities. I've pulled back a bit from volunteering this year after several year in a row. The break was nice but I'm ready to jump back in. And I'm upping my charitable giving goal by ten percent this year. Yeah, it's not a lot but it'll be a sacrifice nonetheless.

5. Be kind. At my school, we have several expectations of our students and this one is the first.  When I'm too focused on my own goals - if I'm running late or tired of waiting on someone else - my first reaction is to snap. At those times, it takes a huge effort to swallow my irritation. But it's necessary. I don't need to make someone else's bad day even worse with a careless comment. And I don't need to teach my kids that a snappish response is acceptable.

So what are your resolutions for 2012? Are you buying a gym membership, going on a big trip, changing jobs? What goals do you have that don't concern your writing life?

5 comments:

Cassie Mae said...

These are great resolutions! I'm going to try to spend more time in my real life this year too :)

Sarah Pearson said...

Some great goals here. It's good to be reminded that there's a world beyond writing :-)

Botanist said...

Good resolutions! I don't make resolutions, but a goal next year is to cycle more often to work. It's a long haul - an hour each way - so it takes planning and takes a lot out of me, but I've slacked off the last two years and my body can feel the difference.

Sarah B said...

I need the reminder to be kind as well. Seemed to work well over Christmas. :)

Lisa L. Regan said...

I really love number 5. My non-writing goals are pretty standard. Exercise more, spend more time with loved ones. Great post!