Well here we are, at the beginning of a brand new year. Can you believe that it's the first day of a new year?! I truly can't wrap my mind around it quite yet. Even as I packed up all of Christmas today, I kept thinking that someone must have hit the fast forward button because it seems as though it should still be July, not January. Of course 60 degree temps may be causing me to think that way too!
But I've been thinking about 2012 for quite some time now. I'm not sure why I felt that the beginning of one year seemed better than any other time to make some changes, but it just did. So I've been plotting over November and December, not about resolutions per se, but about what I really want to do with my life. Where I hope to be one year from now, or even one month from now.
Today, I wandered around my yard looking like the creature from the black lagoon...and I'm not exaggerating. I borrowed my son's ghillie suit (see the photo below) and I stealthily sat motionless waiting for birds to arrive so that I could take their picture. I think the sight of me in the suit may have been more scary than just lil ole me slinking around.
See what I mean?! I'm sure my neighbor thought that Sasquatch had moved in next door, but hey this was part of my grand plan, my new year, new me plan. In my plan, I would fool all living creatures who inhabit our yard, and I would then be able to take my wildlife photography to the next level, you know, like National Geographic level. I didn't say it was a good plan, but it was a plan!
What I discovered was that
a. Ghillie Suits kind of smell bad...like a mix of old fishing nets and kerosene.
b. All those little string things that make you look like a bush...they don't mix well with a tripod. In fact, they tend to get tangled up and it may or may not take you a lot of time getting them out of said tripod.
c. Birds are smarter than they look, so camouflage is really only good for animals with bad eyesight.
d. Even if you have on camouflage, the big honking camera spinning around on a tripod might just give you away.
So, back to my new year, new me plan, slightly amended to include some reality, ie. Nat Geo won't be knocking on my door anytime soon.
When I visited my friend Anna, who is an artist, yoga instructor, marketing genius, and all around great person, she told me that she was planning to focus on herself this year. Before the words were even completely formed and out of her mouth I said..."YES!, this is the year of ME too!"
So after a walk, and some more chatting about what our vision will be for 2012, she and I decided that it will not be the year of me...or her...but it will be the year of US. Us meaning, anyone who wants to move in the same direction. Women just like us, or my friend J, or anyone really who wants to focus on doing the things we love, finding new things to love, taping into our talents, and really going after the things we want.
Not "going after" things in a Filene's Basement bridal dress sale sort of way, but in a way that helps us to reach our goals. Because let's face it, when we are happy, satisfied, accomplished, well it overflows into every other aspect of our lives.
We are better people, mothers, children, siblings, workers, whatever, because happiness, calm, and focus are all contagious.
Now I haven't figured all of this out yet, but I do know a few things. I will focus on my photography in a way I haven't ever done before. Instead of taking pictures of things I think others might like, or processing them in ways I think might make them easier to sell, I will now create for me.
I will maybe even start a new blog, one that is more photography centered. One that will chronicle this new journey I'm embarking on. That may mean that this blog won't see as much action, though I can't imagine ever completely shutting it down because I still have a passion for design and decor, just not the same passion I used to have for such things.
I see this year of "US" as a chance to do what I want, be who I want. Like the photos above, it will be one filled with realism some days, and others where I will create my own vision of how I want things to look.
I plan to use this year to reach deep within, clean out the clutter, both literally and figuratively, and find what remains. And just like any good plan, I will remain flexible, open to possibilities, and ready to turn on a dime.
So who's with me?! Are you ready for the Year of US? You don't need a special membership card, or learn the secret handshake, as a matter of fact I suggest you keep it all to yourself so that others don't feel the need to give you any advice. Just go out there and do it, whatever it is, climb that mountain, pull those clothes off the stair stepper and get moving, get rid of the people (and stuff) that are holding you back from being who you want to be, need to be, and can be!
I won't be giving motivational speeches, nope, I plan to take my cues from Nike...and Just Do It!
Happy New Year!