Bring on 2015

Last week was emotional mayhem. I felt pretty much every emotion it’s possible to feel and felt it with a passion – grief, joy, anger, guilt, peace, creativity, frustration, gratitude, love, hate.
Seriously: you name it, I felt it.
I’m blaming the time of year. You know, as the year draws to a close we tend to reflect back on the year that’s been.
I feel that on the one hand I’ve achieved a lot, in my writing journey and in personal growth.
On the other hand, I feel I could’ve done more. There were friends I didn’t see much of, patience I didn’t show, and a serious lack of discipline.
Most of all though, I think I’m a little bit scared of who I’ve become. Like I said, I’ve achieved a lot of personal growth. I’m more ‘me’ than I ever have been. My art and my writing embody myself at a raw and honest level – and I’m sharing it with the world.
So world, you can look forward to more rawness and honesty and a little bit of madness.
Bring on 2015!

A short reflection on 2014

At the start of the year, my goals were to be healthier and happier. I intended to do this through daily habits: reading, writing, meditation and yoga.

While I am much happier and healthier, I didn’t stick to my daily habits. I’m actually okay with this, as I have sporadically been doing yoga and meditation, as well as walking to get my physical fitness back. This is definitely something I’ll be working on more in the new year – something I’ve begun to work on more in the last month, actually.

Technically, I’ve written and read everyday (well, close enough) but I’d like to get more fiction in next year.

My one word for 2014 was balance, and I’m happy with the balance I’ve achieved. This doesn’t mean equal parts work and play, but that I feel balanced, and my priorities are reflected in my choices, big and small.

Lucky Number One #ThinkKit

One.

I’m learning to focus on one thing at a time.

I’ve brought all the different parts of me under one umbrella, and I don’t feel so scattered anymore. My writing, my painting and my teaching are all about creativity and inspiration.

I will have one book published this year.

My one word for the year was balance – I believe I achieved this. Not in perfection, but in learning to prioritise the things that are important to me.

My one word for next year? Freedom.

What did I discover? #ThinkKit

Ooh, I discovered lots this year. I also rediscovered a few things. Here’s a list:

(I like lists)

  • Doctor Who
  • Shampoo-free hair care
  • Chamomile & spiced apple tea
  • Painting
  • Douglas Adams
  • New friends
  • Autonomy
  • Independent publishing
  • Blogging
  • Gaming
  • Neil Gaiman
  • Eragon
  • Neuroplasticity
  • Poetry
  • Being debt-free (except to my parents, which doesn’t count lol)
  • Twitter
  • Candles
  • Yoga

ThinkKit is a blog project, with daily prompts in December. Friends who are also doing this are Amanda Staley and Emma Lindhagen.

Mulligan #ThinkKit

This is a catch up post from Saturday – if I could hit the reset button on one thing this year, what would it be?

I really struggle with these kinds of posts because I believe that everything happens for a reason. Sure, there are things that I might want to change but then, would I have learnt what I needed to learn from it?

I made some decisions based on money, which I learnt should not be the priority in choice-making – no matter how bad things are. There’s no point having money if you’re not happy. Having said that, I don’t want to reset that because I may not have learnt that valuable lesson.

So again, I’m going to say there’s nothing I’d like to reset. Everything does happen for a reason.

ThinkKit is a blog project, with daily prompts in December. Friends who are also doing this are Amanda Staley and Emma Lindhagen.

Hi, I’m Shadow #ThinkKit

Today’s prompt is about somebody we’ve met this year.

Well, a very important somebody is my cat, Shadow. We took her in from the SPCA earlier this year, and she’s the one and only audience member when I play my guitar with much enthusiasm and much less talent.

I work for that audienceship though, as she’s pretty vocal when she wants something – you know, let me out, let me in, let me out again … let me in.

Most of all, she keeps me company when I’m home alone and keeps me from going completely crazy.

IMG_20141006_180439

Oh, I just can’t wait to be king(ess) #ThinkKit

Couldn’t help getting this guy stuck in my head:

lion king

The first thing that popped in to my head was next year, because while this year has been amazing in so many ways, it’s also been kinda hard. I know. Such is life. So, moving on.

What I’m looking forward to the most is FREEDOM. One reason I’m loving this career choice is that I have control over most parts of the writing and publishing process, which means I have freedom to do what I want with them. Perhaps that’s why I’m a little bit of a control freak – I just like the freedom (pretty sure my sister is scoffing at that one).

The other day, my mum said when I was about ten I told her I wanted to be a monk, “So I could get away from everything and just think!”

I also went through a phase of, quite seriously, wanting to become a gypsy / pirate. (I’m not quite out of that phase yet.)

I wanted to run away when I was like, six or something. I was prepared, even – I had a bag of underwear with me, and asked mum to open the door. (She didn’t).

Anyway, the point being, freedom has clearly been high on my list for some time now.

And if I can’t be a gypsy-pirate-monk, I suppose a writer-publisher-artist will do.

ThinkKit is a blog project, with daily prompts in December. Friends who are also doing this are Amanda Staley and Emma Lindhagen.

Work, Home and Play #ThinkKit

Today’s prompt asks ‘Work, home, and _____. Where was your third place this year?’

Cafes.

Plural, because I work in West / East / South / Central Auckland, so I visit cafes in all those parts. Plus, each place has its own benefits.

The Robert Harris in Westgate is one of my favourites. To be fair, there isn’t much competition, but they have the most delicious chicken pie there, and a good range of herbal teas. The staff are super friendly, and that really makes a difference. There’s never too much of a crowd, so I don’t feel guilty setting up shop for a couple of hours before work, chowing down on lunch and doing some journalling – or catching up on blog posts.

Another favourite is The Robin Cafe & Restaurant in Howick. Again, never too busy at the times I visit, and super, super friendly. Their breakfasts are divine (love getting the half-benedict with salmon…. nom, nom!) and their coffees are excellent, but what I love most is the artwork. There’s always a good range, and something interesting to consider whenever I go in.

My day is solitary. This is okay – good, even – but there’s only so much time one can spend in their own head before the twitches start and the over-analysis spirals down. Working in a cafe is a way to be around people – to feel their vibe, to be connected, and sometimes to people-watch – without having to really engage with them.

Besides, it means yumminess and someone else does the dishes. What more could I want?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

ThinkKit is a blog project, with daily prompts in December. Friends who are also doing this are Amanda Staley and Emma Lindhagen.