It’s the end of another year (a fabulous year) but I seem to be very tired.
Christmas happened last week in a three-day frenzy of shopping, cooking and celebrating (I tend to leave all my Christmas shopping to the last minute). I didn’t put up any decorations, so I didn’t have any to take down. I had a wonderful day with family and then it was over.
In the days since Christmas — six of them, count — I have mostly been slothing on the sofa with my kindle in front of the cricket. I’ve spent so many hours reading I’ve had to charge it twice (I think the battery is dying). With great effort, I’ve vacated the sofa (and the house) a few times since Christmas, but on the whole, I’ve been perfectly content to enter shutdown mode and hibernate.
I really needed to hibernate, it turns out.
If I had to describe 2014 in single words, I’d choose ‘intense’, ‘productive’, ‘happy’… I’ve really enjoyed the flexibility of self-employment, in particular the ability to schedule and prioritise time for my creative projects around paid contract work.
My focus has been on trying to write for at least a couple of hours every day — mostly in cafes, which gets me out of the house and helps me keep sane. Then I pack in the paid work (mostly at home) around it. On ‘paper’ it doesn’t seem like I was excessively busy throughout the year (for the most part), but I think the discipline and effort required to keep self-motivated and driven is easy to underestimate. It can get pretty intense trying to balance everything. And I think this is why I’m tired.
On the whole, though, I can definitely say I’m enjoying my life at the moment. I mean, how can one complain about spending a couple of hours most days in a cafe working on creative projects? People are envious!
There hasn’t been a great deal of change in my life over the past year — which is something of a novelty of late. I guess I was due for a year of consolidation after the big changes that happened in 2013.
I’m fairly happy with how my novel revision is evolving, although as usual it’s taking longer than I’d like. But at least I am continuing to work on it steadily and it will take as long as it takes. All I can do is keep going.
Although I didn’t really take a holiday, I managed to get down for several long weekends down to Phillip Island, which always recharges my batteries a bit.
SoulSong also continued to be a wonderful weekly timeout in 2014. This year I made even more new friends through singing and participated in a few soirees and workshops, all serving to develop my voice and gain even more enjoyment from making music with friends.
And I read books! Oh, yes, did I read books. After a few years of barely reading anything, I’ve regained the habit of reading most nights and I am so happy about this. I’ve blogged a lot about reading this year, and I’ll be writing separate posts to complete the cycle in the next few days.
At the beginning of 2014 I wrote:
As usual, I have a bunch of plans for this year, some involving creative endeavours, others not. Mostly they don’t involve introducing anything new (although one never knows, of course), but rather my focus will be on doing certain things better and making steady progress forward in others.
In fact, reading through that entire post about my 2014 outlook, I think I’ve stuck to my 2014 plan pretty well — right down to enjoying life and focusing on consolidation and achievement. How often does that happen!?
So how has your year been?
8 thoughts on “2014 in review ~ Mission accomplished!”
My year has been one of extremes, and I’m not to sorry to see the end of 2014. I do think spending a week on the couch with a kindle and cricket sounds pretty fabulous…
Happy New Year!
You have no idea how fabulous it’s been… I hope 2015 is not so extreme for you!
Happy New Year Ellen!
Hope you had a great night last night.
Looking forward to reading some of your work this year, hint hint 😉
Leif, I spent the evening hibernating with a book (after writing that post) – which I count as great! I think I needed it this year. As for reading my work… hmm. Unless I share it here, that’s a little unlikely, although one never knows. 🙂
I really enjoyed this post, Ellen, and can definitely relate to that end-of-year need to hibernate! What you say about doing your writing in cafes getting you out of the house and keeping you sane strikes a chord for me. I’m going to consider more of that for my own writing routine in 2015. Congrats on your year’s accomplishments and Happy 2015!
Happy new year, Jill – wishing you all the best for 2015 also. And, while my cafe writing habit does often seem a bit self indulgent, I can honestly say it helps me get the words on the page. I hope it works for you too.
Thanks for keeping me company here. 🙂
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We’ve just come back from hibernating by the beach for a while too. Not watching the cricket but we did see Wild Oats as a speck way out to sea on her way down the east coast of Tasmania – does that count for anything? I hope you have a great New Year Ellen
Happy new year to you too, Margaret! Hibernating at the beach sounds perfect. Must be nice to watch the yachts sail past.