I am a list addict. I even have collections of old grocery lists from rowdy holiday meals and to-do lists before going on big trips. They still convey that balled-up feeling of happy-nervy-anticipation, and I love looking back on them. But for a new year, lists have never been my thing. Neither have resolutions. But this year, I’m craving a little forward-thinking about my life. So I dug deep into the middle school version of myself and decided to put a new spin on the cootie catcher.
I thought I’d just clip out some pretty, evocative images and paste them inside. But once I started looking through my stash of torn-out magazines, I realized I didn’t want the images to just be pretty. I wanted them to mean something, So I started to apply a little more discipline to the whole exercise. What if the four images could relate to four quadrants of my life, and somehow transmit how I want those areas of my life to feel? I warn you that this is about to get a little Oprah-esque, but dammit, I want to live my best life. So this is what emerged:
These little pictures are shorthand for what I want to keep pulling into my life: creativity; getting closer to owning a place (with a fruit tree!); savoring family and friends; and working toward a more cohesive and peaceful work life. There’s a lot more intent behind each of these miniature images, but that’s the abbreviated version.
I highly recommend the exercise. And just swish-swish-swishing the paper back and forth with your fingers feels like some kind of therapeutic mantra on its own. Onward, 2009!