I’m sure you’ll all be very happy to know that I have indeed been writing since I last posted. The problem is that what I have written has mostly been unpolished scribblings of me sorting through small private problems – in a word, “unpublishable.” But I have decided that 2018 will be “The Writing Year” for me, because I love writing, and also because when I do it, I find I am a more focused, calmer person, and this allows me to be kinder and more patient with everyone around me. So, in an effort to just get on with it, I am abandoning originality and doing the same post everyone is doing – a list of my “resolutions.”
Let me preface this by saying that all of the things on this list are pieces of the larger goal of becoming “the woman I want to be.” When I think of her, the ideal Ann, I think of myself sitting in a café, in a white button-down shirt, with very clear skin, tapping away at my laptop – alternately thinking through and sorting out problems, and publishing other work in Vanity Fair. This Ann is happy, she is hydrated, she is kind and gentle and patient with people, she is smart and funny but polite, and she owns exactly the right clothes for every occasion and not one stitch extra; she is adventurous and she reads and writes constantly. She is, essentially, full of life, and totally alive. And so to that end, to become this lovely, lively version of myself, I have made these resolutions for 2018:
- Prioritize getting 8 hours of sleep (most nights)
- Submit essays somewhere
- Take care of your back
- Don’t buy any new clothes — you do not need them
- Use up the lipsticks, lip balms, lotions and potions you already have
- Get dressed for the day – you feel nicer when you look nice
- Possible solo trip?
- London in May
- Address work stress √
- Continue skincare routine
- Continue saying no to things that do not make you happy
- Continue swing dancing education
- Continue surfing
Overall, I want to continue getting rid of things that don’t make me happy, and continue doing things that do make me happy. In the last couple of months, I have done a social media purge and unfollowed people and deleted apps that either distract or deplete me. I have ruthlessly cleaned out my closet and gotten rid of all the clothes that I never wear or never want to wear (and I did make a little bit of money consigning them!). I want to get rid of all the little distractions that take away from what I really want to be doing – writing, reading, really living in the world and having technology-free evenings with friends and family.
Life is happening RIGHT NOW. I don’t want to look back on this year and realize I spent 20% of it on my phone, browsing the J. Crew website for clothes I don’t need, or looking at Facebook pages of people I haven’t spoken to in 5 years. I think the key to this is to give myself the time to sleep, to write, to stretch, so I can be a kinder, more patient person. And I want to do all of this wearing one of the three button-down shirts I just brought to the cleaners to get all crisped up. I can learn to iron in 2019.