More selkies, kelpies and goblins. Less cynics, naysayers and growing up.
So read one of my recent Instagram captions, a mission statement for wild, imaginative souls and one which encapsulates the spirit of my word for 2019: abundance.
2018 was my year of brave.
I decided to become the writer I always wanted to be. I gave myself permission to work on my novel, turning my back on traditional employment and all its false securities. I shared my writing and creativity in blog posts and Instagram captions, no matter how scared I felt. I began introducing myself to folk as a writer. I took creative risks and released a novelette. It was the year I finally found the courage to be myself. It paid off – I’ve made strides with my novel, found belonging in the online creative community and started making a wee bit of money from my writing.
Despite a year of brave I am still frightened. Something is holding me back from giving this dream my all.
Deep down a part of me believes that any success I had last year is either a fluke or too insignificant to matter. I struggle to believe I can bring about the success and fulfilment I desire. Especially on the days where writing feels like the hardest thing in the world, or a photoshoot goes awry. Maybe, I think to myself, I’m not cut out for this. Maybe I’m not prolific enough, not creative enough or naturally talented.
I struggle to even believe that I deserve what I want. I dwell on unfulfilled needs, forever living in the land of ‘someday’, ‘I wish’ and ‘if only.’ I believe that my situation is fixed, forgetting that everyone who ever dreamed stared at the same moon, the same stars.
I know that these fears come from a place of scarcity. For where there is lack there is hopelessness and fear. Self-doubt and shame. Smallness and anger.
So, my word for 2019 is abundance.
For me, this word goes deeper than being a prolific creative or financially successful writer. It is about self-belief. Last year I was brave but far from confident. By December 2019 I would like to be in a place where I am creating without fear. I want to fully appreciate the things I do have, instead of worrying about what I don’t. And it would be nice to feel like I am steering the ship, and that no matter which way the wind blows I’ll be able to weather the storm.
I have a few tools to help me.
In the first week of January I bought The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, as a step towards nurturing my creativity. I also plan to start writing in my diary again, which used to be a daily habit. I’ve never felt more in touch with my desires and fears than when releasing my subconscious onto the page. It also helps me pay attention to the little things – what makes me feel creatively alive? What inhibits me? What am I curious about?
Ironically, I think the key to abundance - to more - is less. What do I need less of in my life? What drains me? How can I be less self-interested and more of a ‘good fan’ to those creatives I admire and wish to support? What do I really want to spend time on?
These are the questions I am asking in 2019, hopefully by December I will have found some answers! And remember -
No matter what your age or your life path, whether making art is your career or your hobby or your dream, it is not too late or too egotistical or too selfish or too silly to work on your creativity.
~ Julia Cameron, The Artist’s Way
Do you have a word for 2019? What answers are you searching for?