‘YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE EXTREME, JUST CONSISTENT.’2022 quote of the year.
I love the start of a new year.
In my mind, it’s a perfect reset. The morning I wake up on January first, it’s a brand new year, a brand new chapter; the moment I can start from scratch.
‘This year will be different,’ I always exclaim. ‘I’ll be more motivated, more productive, more inspired than last year.’ And while this hasn’t exactly rung true over the past few years, there’s at least been a little improvement.
I struggled a lot to maintain my motivation throughout 2021. There are probably tons of reasons why, but I knew it was important that I re-evaluated my working life to fix the issue in the future. If I want to be a full-time, published author I need to start working like one. So 2022 is really all about creating that routine and forging that mindset.
I always give myself a yearly theme- something I want to work on for the next twelve months, based on how I operated the year before. I self-reflect about what worked and what didn’t, where I want to improve and what I want to change for the future.
2019 was ‘The Year of Me.’
2020 was ‘Hindsight 2020.’
2021 was ‘Reset, Renew, Repeat.’
For 2022, my yearly theme is: CREATE. Routine / Morale / Stories
A bit of a mouthful, and not as fluid as previous years. But for me, it works.
I want to create routine. I don’t have one. I pretty much write whenever I feel like it, and most of the time, I don’t. So giving myself a routine and a schedule will help me maintain consistency with my writing and ensure I get other important things done as well.
I want to create morale. I am very much always down on myself about things I can’t control, especially those times I start comparing myself to others or when things just don’t seem to happen for me. I need to retain a confidence within myself and work on my self-esteem within social media.
I want to create stories. This isn’t a major change from any other year, but in 2022 I want to focus on the stories that I already have. The ones I still feel excited about after the first draft. I have querying plans, and they deserve my full attention to get them to where I want them to be.
I’ve also decided that in 2022, I am not going to have goals. The word is too strong, and I struggled with them this year. Instead, each month I’m going to have a set of things for me to ‘focus,’ on, and a ‘spotlight,’ which will be my main focus. That way, I’m not setting myself any expectations that I might not be able to fulfill if I’m unable to find the motivation. I don’t feel bad about not completing a ‘goal,’ because there are none.
Step two is to stop writing new projects. This was in fact a goal for 2021 which I promptly abandoned in order to write the entirety of my Middle Grade five book series. But this year, I mean it. I’m excited about the novels that I’ve already written and I’m excited to move forward with them. 2022 is all about rewriting and improving what I have instead of getting distracted with yet another shiny, new idea.
Step three is to think about consistency and routine. I tend to work in short bursts- writing lots for a few days, then nothing for the next week and repeat. But how much I’m working isn’t whats important, or at least it shouldn’t be. It doesn’t matter if I wrote 10,000 words in one day. What matters is a consistent output. I currently operate as such: spend a week not writing, get a sudden burst of energy, overwork the next few days because I spent so long not working, then suffer mild burnout and spend another week not working. By establishing a clear routine for life and writing, I’ll be able to stay motivated for longer stretches of time, steer off the burnout and maintain a consistent work flow.
What are your plans for 2022? Have you got anything excited planned for the new year?
Good thoughts and happy writing.