Every year, I sit down to consider where I’ve been, and where I’d like to go. Call them resolutions, goals, or reflections on trying to do a little better in a new year. I’m fond of New Years because it acts like a reset button, and gives us a chance to consider our lives.
Most humans aren’t wired to do this kind of work unless from some unforeseen circumstance. New Years helps us to consider our input and output and where we’re doing well, and falling on our faces.
But here’s a warning: I find most resolutions are too general and typically fade away by February. If you say, I want to lose weight, write more, or eat healthier this is too vague. You need specifics and a plan to get there.
Name your weight loss. Give an ideal weight and timeframe. Want to write more words? Set a daily word count and timeframe for hitting a certain amount this year. You get it.
And here is another thing about resolutions. I don’t give a rip about hitting specific numbers and goals. That’s not interesting. What I care about with these specific goals each year is long term growth and health. The point isn’t losing 15 pounds, the point is to become the kind of person who chooses healthy food and not pork rinds. If I’m a writer, or want to be a writer, I want to become someone who writes consistently. The output numbers are just measurable check points to see if I’m doing the work.
So, I’m going to share my Creator Resolution for the New Year. I found during the last couple of years in the Plague my consumption of media has skyrocketed, and my output and “making” and “creating” to be abysmal. I have other goals, but my purposes here are to share a simple idea to get my creative juices flowing in 2022.
Here’s what popped in my head:
Everyday I will work on my 3 P’s.
I will post something on my blog daily. That could be an essay, quote, something I made like a piece of art, tee shirt design, or helpful link. But I’d also like to expand the idea of “posting” as not just a reflection on a blog.
How can I “post” things in the world for good? Do the generous thing, the helpful thing, and perhaps the loving thing? How can I help someone, give to something, or serve others for the common good? I want to consume less, and create, and give more.
Post for the good.
Second, I will take a photo everyday. Not always post one, but I’ll take one and share an occasional one. That might seem like a weird one, but here’s why. Taking photos is about paying attention. Not selfies, mind you. I’m thinking more about the red robin in the yard. The fresh snowfall. Interesting street art, or interesting people.
Photography is about paying attention.
This second creator resolution is about paying attention to the world around me. Not about building skills in photography. I’m not concerned with the technical skills of the craft. I want to pay attention to the people I love, the God I worship, and the beauty and grace all around us.
Taking photos and capturing our surroundings helps us to see, and reminds us to look up. I’m going to pay more attention in 2022.
I’ve found myself in the last couple of years consuming more poetry and trying my hand at some terrible ones. But poetry is another one of those paying attention exercises. Poetry is about staring at the ordinary and finding words to express it in new and fresh ways. Poetry can also be form of prayer.
I’m not sure I’ll post a piece of poetry everyday, but I’ll shoot for one per week. They will not all be good, and most will be horrible. But I’m willing to share, so I can get better, but also learn how to see again.
These Creator Resolutions are mine, not yours. You can use them for inspiration, or say this is a waste of time. My point in sharing these resolutions in public are to hold myself accountable, and to have others do the same. It’s also more simple than that:
I want 2022 to be about making things, doing the generous thing, and making my corner of the world better. I can add to the noise, to the venom, or add more grace and love. I want to pay attention to the good world god made and use the gifts God has given to bring joy to others.
Maybe that sounds pretentious, or self serving, but I’m hoping it’s not. It’s easier to be angry, selfish, and mad at everything and everyone, when we sit and stare at the news and social media and our screens.
I’d rather make stuff and find joy in the making, do the generous thing, and perhaps bring a little joy and help to others. Consumption is easy, and doesn’t take much imagination. So is anger. I’m praying God will give me eyes to see this New Year for my good, and the good of others.