It’s been a slow introduction to the New Year this morning. It seems staying up to celebrate the occasion makes for a poor start to your resolutions. I should have known, though. Staying up late has rarely felt worth the loss in energy, motivation, or focus the following day. I have a suspicion this may be the end of that tradition, or I’ll at least establish a new one: the New Year’s Eve Evening Naptime.

So, I’m giving myself a day to do only the bare minimum and just the basics. Hardly any of my resolutions this year require a dedicated daily practice and the ones that do I have marked off already. I got my 10 minutes of mediation and stretching in before sunrise, and today’s journal entry is complete. All I have left is to write for so many words and read for so many pages before the end of the day.

THe greatest excitement today will be getting to fill in the first page of my planner and preparing for the first weeks of the month by scheduling my time and working out my “to dos”. This analog system feels good and my hope that having everything written down in front of me and not on my phone I’ll have a little more focus and with just a little more focus over the next 365 days, I think I can get a lot done!

My specific resolutions aren’t quite done yet, but that’s okay. I’m taking a different approach this year. I’m letting this 2021 version of myself become rather than expecting her to emerge today fully formed and perfect. This 2021 version of me isn’t sure who she is or how best to express herself or move forward, so she’s taking the year slowly and I’m giving her permission not to know yet and to change her mind when she does work it out.

I don’t have to start everything today, and it’s probably best that I don’t. That’s the fastest way to feel overwhelmed and the surest way for me to fail. The new year has arrived but I I am not arriving, I am growing.

I made the mistake of binge-watching the new season of You on Netflix last night and ending up crawling into bed after 3:00 this morning. For the past few weeks I’ve been waking up as early as 5:00 AM adding at least 2 hours to my day in which to write or clean. Today I didn’t get up until 9:30 AM. I lost over 4 hours and gained absolutely nothing. So much for starting the new year off on a focused and productive note.

Still, the day isn’t over yet. There isn’t a lot sitting on my to-do list and with a little focus and a few cups of coffee I am sure I can check it all off no problem. I can take a nap if I feel sluggish and I can begin again tomorrow too.

Today I’m finishing up a few New Year’s blog posts here and then moving over to Submittable to search for pitching opportunities. I’d really like to try for 2 or 3 rejections this month though 8 or 9 would keep me on track for 100 before the end of the year. I also found this tweet from @writersofcolor with dozens of calls for pitches.

I started a spreadsheet to list the essay and article titles and topics I want to write and another sheet that lists all the dream publications I’ve always wanted to write for. Yes, this year everything is going down on paper, getting added the calendar, going into a spreadsheet, and being laid out in black and white to be brought forth into reality from.