2021 has drawn to a close and reflection is a means of evaluating what went well and what we could have done better. As writers, authors and creatives, some of us may think about whether we have achieved as much as we set out to at the beginning of last year. Have we written enough? Did we stick to our weekly or monthly targets? Have we reached those milestones? Milestones could include finishing that novel, completing a poetry collection, or pitching to an agent or publisher. It could mean finishing those sketches that you started a while ago. No matter what you set out to do at the beginning of 2021, now is a good moment to sit down and look back on your journey.
How to beat the critical voices
It’s easy to get disheartened and feel self-critical when looking back, so it’s really important to also give yourself a pat on the back and acknowledge everything you have achieved. As long as you have made progress and taken care of your mental well-being, you should be proud. Here are some things you can do to beat those critical voices in your head:
- Making a list of all the things you have achieved is one way to focus on the positives and celebrate your wins. Instead of feeling bad about anything that fell behind, why not put in on a separate to-do-list. This will make sure you will stay motivated and focussed on what you want to do. And who doesn’t love ticking off things that have been done?
- Congratulate yourself and tell others what you have done. Saying it out loud will make it feel more real and others will celebrate you for your achievements
- Reward yourself for what you have achieved, no matter how little. It will form positive connections in your brain and you will feel more motivated to carry on.
Looking ahead to 2022
A new year is a good start to plan ahead and set new goals for the coming months. For many people it’s a fresh start they need and the motivation to get going after the break over Christmas. A new year promises new opportunities, it’s a new chance and with the days slowly becoming longer and lighter days ahead, many people are feeling more positive and productive. So it’s also a good time to think ahead and feel positive about 2022, no matter what 2021 looked like. You could ask yourself the following questions:
- What are the things you want to let go of?
- What have you planned and put on your bucket list for the New Year?
- How are you going to achieve it?
- Is it realistic regarding time, input, finances etc?
- Is there a backup plan in case things go wrong?
The more questions you ask yourself and try to give yourself honest and candid answers, the better prepared you are to start or to continue whatever project it is you set out to do.
Read about some tips and tricks in next week’s blog, some planning advice and incorporating me-time.