Jan 24, 2018

Take the pressure down

 Look, I don’t want to come across all bah humbug (especially after Stefanie and Clare's gorgeous posts earlier in the week), but I’ve made a decision. This year—2018—is my year for:

* No New Year Resolutions
* No Word of the Year
* No Goodreads Challenge,
* No saying yes to things when I really want to say no.

Doesn’t mean I haven’t enjoyed hearing what others have chosen for their word of the year.

Doesn’t mean I’m not cheering others on with their reading goals.

Doesn’t mean I hope everyone’s New Year resolutions have already fallen by the wayside. No sirree. I hope everyone is on track with those (or as on track with them as they want to be).

I started the year off thinking I’d do the same as in 2017—have some goals (both professional and personal) to work towards. Decide on a word of the year. Look forward to reaching my target reading goal. But here’s the sad truth—I can’t remember what my Word for the Year last year was. As for the Goodreads challenge, I was five books short. Which certainly doesn’t matter in the big scheme of things. But the fact I didn’t reach my target still left me feeling a bit flat.

And when it came to setting a new Goodreads challenge and to fix on a Word for the Year, I basically slumped to the floor, my brain a melted mass of: ‘Please, no more!
There’s no secret as to why I’m feeling this way. :-) I have to submit my PhD in three months. And my next book is due on my editor’s desk two months after that. So I’ve made an executive decision—I don’t need any additional targets or goals this year. I have enough to keep me busy.

Oh, with the exception, perhaps, of one additional target—to try and get down to the beach a couple of afternoons a week for a swim or a walk. It’s hard to feel pressured when you’re floating on your back and staring up at a blue, blue sky, right? :-)

Who else is refraining from resolutions and challenges this year? I can’t for a minute believe I’m the only one. :-)


  1. Hi Michelle

    Good on you, you are under enough pressure to get that PHD done and then the new book, I don't make new years resolutions but I have promised myself that I will declutter this house this year (or at least make a start) and I always set myself a reading goal and am happy to do that, that is all that I do.
    Getting to the beach a couple of times a week awesome I wish I could.
    Way to go

    Have Fun


    1. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I make myself get down to the beach (some afternoons I just want to crash), but I know I'll enjoy it once I'm down there.:-)

      I think having a year long goal like decluttering is an excellent plan, Helen. It lets you take your time with it, rather than feeling rushed. :-)

      P.S. I'm looking forward to seeing what your reading total is at the end of the year! :-D

  2. Hugs Michelle - nothing worse than feeling pressure!
    I did set a GR goal this year but reduced it from my lofty expectations of last year :-) And I have been going well with my no biting of nails.
    But I'm writing a single title as well as a novella and moving house in the next 5 weeks so I suspect the pressure will start to build exponentially :-/
    Those fingernails might not make it to March!

    1. Amy, you're not going to have time to bite your nails! Also, you're moving to the tropics and the beach (happy, happy sighs!) and that sounds utterly glamorous and sophisticated... so you're going to need those nails as you hold a mojito in one hand and toast that horizon. :-) Good luck with it all!

      P.S. A LoveCat's writing retreat at yours, perhaps, later in the year? ;-)

  3. Yeah I think you have enough to keep you busy :) Good luck with the PhD and the next book!

    1. Thanks, Kerrie!
      There's that saying: How do you eat an elephant?
      Answer: One bit at a time.
      But there are days when that elephant looks so BIG! ;-)

  4. I guess, in a way, the study is the goal, Lyn...hence, the feeling that one is already doing enough, perhaps? And, yes, I'll still track my reading via GR, just not setting a target goal for the year. :-)

  5. You’ve got a lot happening, wishing you all the best with it. And, I hear you, I don’t have resolutions or a Word of the Year either, although I quite like the concept behind WOTY. Instead, I have ongoing projects that keep me on purpose and I journal about these on a daily basis, quite often just after sunrise, on the beach. This keeps me going in the direction I want, and I’ll drop a project or add another if the desire takes me. I feel the fluidity of this approach, rather than the rigidity I often feel with SMART goal setting (or the guilt associated with not fulfilling resolutions that weren’t aligned with my values and beliefs in the first place) brings more joy into my life, but it’s very much a personal thing.

    1. I think finding the approach that works best for you and what you want to achieve -- and embracing that approach is key, Jillian. And it certainly sounds as if you've worked out the best method for you! :-)

      Also, journaling on the beach at sunrise sounds divine. Just saying. ;-)