Ten days into the New Year so I feel justified to still say 'Happy New Year' to you and yours. Though if my insta-feed is anything to go by, I am sensing some people are getting just a little bit fed up and weary of the barrage of New Year's resolutions, fitness drives, spring clean quests or January-free missions (free of alcohol, sugar or lets face any fun whatsoever). If that's you - maybe stop here!
The spring clean issue ties in with the Chinese philosophy of having a big clear-out before the start of the Lunar New Year. With this in mind and after the excess of Christmas indulgence, I tackled my kids' playroom last weekend to streamline the toys/games they have amassed over the years but no longer play with. I subsequently discovered - and am now quite addicted to - Marie Kondo's Netflix series adaptation of her 'Spark Joy' book on how to better organise, clean up and tidy your life, finding 'joy' in the process and appreciation of what you have. Kondo is as sparky in nature as her book title and I highly recommend watching her journey into the homes of various American families who are so overwhelmed by their clutter that their daily lives are suffering.
The 'clear out and clear up' process is profoundly moving to most - our attachment to belongings is often tied up in memories or dreams and letting go is too hard for some. I am by nature, a 'hoarder' (one day I'll wear that again I'll say or that reminds me of ....) but I know other people who have no hesitation in saying goodbye to possessions of sentimental value or objects that have no longer have a place in their lives. The truth is that I would like to find a balance and this is what Kondo helps others to do - with their houses 'in order', streamlined, de-cluttered and tidy, each family seems to come away with a renewed sense of priority and enjoyment of life - as well as a new appreciation for what you have, rather than always hankering for what you don't have.
I have yet to implement a full Kondo-clear out - though I did rearrange one drawer to using her brilliant folding methods and it is refreshing to be able to 'see' everything at one glance - so I will pledge to make a good start on it before CNY. Read five take-away lessons learnt from Marie Kondo over here if any of this 'sparks' with you!
I have really enjoyed one of my favourite blogger's take on New Year's resolutions. Geneva, from @apairandaspare was pondering on her 'word for the year' and decided upon 'GROW'. Settling on a catch-all word seems much more realistic to me in terms of achievement and potential to fulfil a resolution - instead of a list of ten things that will be broken by February one.
So 'grow' or 'growth' is now also my mantra for 2019 :- by this I mean i) to grow my business and brand (be that customer base, design/photoshop skills, instagram followers, collections, network and profitability); ii) to grow my family - not by adding to it I hasten to add - but by nurturing and helping them to learn and grow as little humans; and iii) my growth as a person - absolutely not in the physical sense unless it is muscle growth- heck, I spent best part of two months back end of last year doing the F45 challenge and so physical mass is definitely an area where 'shrinkage' is the goal not accumulation. Growth on a personal level - I am a mother and a business women but probably 90% of the time I feel that I don't do either job to my fullest potential.
In summary, I will attempt to find a better balance - by getting up an hour earlier in the morning if needs be or by putting down my phone while focussing on the kids' reading rather than constantly juggling two things at once to the detriment of one or the other. By that tone, 'growth' and 'balance' across all aspects of my life are my resolutions for 2019. I'll take stock in a few months and see how it's panning out!
P.S. Need some help focussing on goals for 2019? Check out Geneva Vanderzeil's check list for helping you hone it down...