Well January has arrived and along with it the pressure to get organized. I am a mom of 3, a wife, a dog owner, a housekeeper and of course a potter. You could say my plate is full and I am guessing yours is too. It's the way we live these days, even with effort to have wide margins and good self care. So sometimes the January call to clean up my act-get organized-be more productive feels heavy and unattainable.
As the year end drew near, I was anxious about this pressure. Wondering what changes I could make to be more efficient and productive, along with more patient and loving, all while of course smelling the roses and being ever grateful for my many blessings.
They say January has the highest depression rates. I wonder if this is why. It just all feels like a lot of work in order to become a "better" you.
On New Year's Day it clicked. The only resolutions I'm making are going to be life-giving, bucket filling, hot cuppa on a cold winter day sorta things.
My first goal is to "head out often". This means for me to head outside, walk briskly, breathe and exhale deeply. Take notice of my body and act when I need a tension break. This is my re-centering and as any potter knows... If the clay isn't centered, the pot will have difficulties from the get go. Interesting though that centering the clay in pottery is such a difficult and timely skill to master.
Another goal I will share is to work within a schedule. I am very much a do what I feel sorta person. It is hard for me to throw, if my heart isn't into it and when I am inspired it is hard for me to stay away. I know this is who I am and I'll need to be flexible, but I feel like a schedule will help me stay within how much time I can offer my craft at the moment. Seeing everyone's amazing work and work ethic on Instagram is so inspiring and often prompts me to work harder and be better. I'm hoping that a planned schedule will leave me with the knowledge I worked as hard as I could with the time given. I also hope this helps me be more goal oriented and that, for example when I sit down on a throwing day I know I'll be throwing 12 mugs, if that is the aim.
New beginnings are full of grace and hope! I hope as you start the New Year, that you have given yourself some love and life giving goals as well! I'll end with a quote that has inspired me.
"Creative living is stranger than the other, more worldly pursuit. The usual rules do not apply. In normal life, if you're good at something and you work hard at it, you will likely succeed. In creative endeavours, maybe not. Or maybe you will succeed for a spell and then never succeed again. You might be adored for a while then go out of fashion. For my own part, I decided early on to focus my devotion to the work above all. That would be how I measured my worth. I knew that conventional success would depend on three factors - talent, luck and discipline - and I knew that two of those three things would never be under my control. The only piece I had any control over was my discipline."
Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear