Happy 2011!

For the last few years, I’ve tried to pick a word to focus on in the coming year. Setting an intention seems less stressful to me than resolutions. 2009’s was PATIENCE, and 2010’s was RELEASE. I’m a girl who smooths things over and wants to make sure everyone’s happy. This year I started to worry more about whether I was happy. I got a tattoo and dyed pink streaks in my hair without worrying about what everyone might think. I started to accept that I can’t give 110% to every aspect of my life–that sometimes, the dishes and laundry will totally pile up and I’ll eat microwaved soup when I’m writing and Steve’s in rehearsals. I hired a maid service before our Christmas party. I said no to invitations that weren’t an absolute yes. I stopped beating myself up for taking anti-anxiety meds. I left a concert where I was miserable. I donated DNF books that just weren’t for me. And, you know, I wanted a book deal this year, and Garolass didn’t sell, and I ate a lot of cookies and/or cheese fries when I was sad, and sometimes I felt like a failure about those things. But I’ve let go of that, too.

Little things, but they add up to a happier me.

My word for 2011 is NOURISH.

According to Merriam-Webster, nourish means to:
1. nurture
2. to promote the growth of
3 a: to furnish or sustain with nutriment: feed  b: maintain, support

Some habits I’d like to adopt, accordingly:

In the writing category: Write more. There’s no doubt that it’s the #1 thing that nourishes me. I’ve been flitting between ideas since I finished Thrice. Both my critique partners have assured me that it’s ok to flounder for a little while after you finish a love-book, but I’m ready to settle down. Whatever happens with Thrice when it goes on submission in February, I’d like to write and revise another book in 2011. I also made some amazing writer-friends in 2010, including the aforementioned critique partners, and my agent sisters Caroline and Robin. I want to be a fantastic source of support for all of them–and all of you who are reading this. I want to support and promote your dreams, just like you do mine. And I’m going to NY SCBWI and on two awesome retreats this winter, and I can’t wait to meet more writers.

In the physical category:
More yoga. I always feel amazing after class, mentally and physically. Be more mindful of what I eat. Less convenient, quick, shadow-comfort food. More water and tea, less soda. Walk more, take the bus less. The usual. I know what I need to do. How many times have I written about this? But this is the year it’s going to happen.

In the "other" category:
Journal more. Host more game and wine nights because I love my friends and they don’t care if my house is dusty. See at least one concert or play a month that’s not written by my husband. Read 100 books again. Send more handwritten cards to say hi and thank you.

What about you? What are your intentions for 2011?

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