anew: one little word 2022
I like the idea of anew because it isn’t a shiny-brand-new-throw-out-the-old-and-remake-everything, but rather it is a culmination of becoming; growing another layer on the broken|healed|rebuilt|scarred life that has been a beautiful mess, even the ugly parts. Anew feels like coming out of the miry pit and breathing fresh air, sucking in one big gulp of crisp and clean potential.
As I stand on the edge of 2022, I know I am beginning again. It is not the first time a new year has offered a new beginning. It is the first time I’ve been this version of me, looking out into the year with potential and wondering what kinds of commitments I ought to make in order to keep the agreement I’ve made to live anew in 2022.
I like to give gifts to my future self. It is this lens that I’m using to make commitments to 2022. I just listened to an episode of the new podcast, The Pursuit of Something. Ali Jafarian discussed the importance of taking thoughts and turning them into commitments. I jotted my own list of commitments.
And then I felt silly.
I asked Andy, “Do you think I’m an ambitious person?”
“Not really,” he said, and I felt slapped. There was silence and then he said, “You’re not cutthroat and you care more about people than making it to the top of something.”
His idea of ambition is different than my idea of ambition. “I have goals,” I said. “I’m not lazy,” I said.
“You’re the least lazy person I know,” he agreed. “You also love people more than you care about making things work out for yourself.”
“I made a list of commitments for the year,” I said. “When I looked at them, I felt a little silly.”
“Why would you feel silly?” he asked.
The silence lingered around us, a testament to my age and the comfort of being with the same person through an ugly and gnarled journey that somehow became beautiful. I’m beginning to wonder if the beauty is because we were always together on the other side of the path.
I feel silly because my list doesn’t seem important, but these are the promises that matter to me.
- Make a scrapbook page each week.
- Write weekly on my blog about something ordinary and small.
- Prepare and schedule all content for work three or more weeks in advance.
- Zero my inboxes every week.
- Write letters and put them in the mail.
- Be a runner by running 10 – 15 miles each week of the year.
- Visit 10 state parks with a friend before the end of the year.
- Take three trips to visit friends or family in different parts of the world.
- Knit gifts for people I like.
- Write a new book proposal. (Gulp.)
I didn’t add habits that I already have and love and plan to sustain to this list. These are new gifts I want to give myself in 2022.
Maybe they are a silly.
(Andy says these things are not silly.)
Maybe they are whimsical.
Maybe anew needs whimsy.
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