I have a new daily ledger, larger and far more inspiring than previous blank books I’ve used. The last day of 2018, rather than ruminate on what went on during the last year, I spent time writing lovely lists of what I want to focus on in 2019.
I’m not much for focus, but I am great at lists. I now have lists of art projects I want to do. Lists of musicians I want to host for house concerts. Lists of things I’d like to write, and as I prefaced in my tiny printing, to write with “flow first, data later.” Lists of ways I want to evolve, things I want to learn, pleasures I want to linger over.
But mostly I don’t want to make these lists into duty bound to-do lists. I want them to be about possibilities for eagerness and wonder.
And then I see I’ve already resolved to get past such lists. Back at the end of 2014 I posted a list of non-resolutions. I wrote,
Resolutions are traditionally meant to fix what we think is wrong with our lives, as if it’s necessary to hammer ourselves into someone society finds more attractive and more successful.
I say meh.
Seems to me the more significant challenges are to discover greater depths in ourselves and to cultivate more joy in our daily lives. Maybe we need to replace New Year’s resolutions with delight-enhancing non-resolutions.
I see I can’t argue with my non-resolutions from five years ago. I wanted more daydreaming, wanted to pursue whatever obscure things intrigued me, to relish sensory pleasure, to talk about my traumas as a stand-up comedian might, to adore every moment of the amazing mortal life I lead. (I’m enjoying at least eight of my 20 non-resolutions, so the trend is good. )
Still, I’m pretty excited about my new method of organization in a book that has daily writing prompts and pretty excited about the possibilities of this new year. PLEASE, let this be a year to bring in what has been in such short supply. Playfulness, awe, gratitude. The embrace of messy contradictions. A world where compassion and justice actually prevail. Arms open wide, I’m ready for you 2019.