Thursday, 1 January 2015

New Year's Resolutions & Blogging in 2015

Happy New Year! For anyone out partying last night I hope you had a good time, and don't feel too worse for wear this morning. At this time of year, like many people I like to come up with some New Year's Resolutions to help me get what I want out of the year ahead. Also like many people I'm not overly good at sticking to them, but I'm going to give it a go anyway.
Photo by Trey Ratcliff

I read earlier this week some advice from an article in The Times newspaper about how to increase your chances of sticking to your new year resolutions. The advice was to sleep more and to pick just one resolution. Scientific studies have clearly shown that getting a decent amount of quality sleep each night improves your focus and resolve, allowing you greater willpower to do what you set out to do. Apparently 60% of people who slept well were still on course with their resolutions by the end of January, compared to 44% of those who didn't get a good night's sleep. The other bit of advice is to only choose one resolution, presumably as it is so much easier to only have one thing to focus on.

I am going to try and get plenty of sleep, but I'm not quite going to manage the second piece of advice. I am going to come close however, and choose just three goals, which are:

  1. To be less busy
  2. To read more
  3. To write more
How, you may ask, can you be less busy while doing more? Well I'm going to try to streamline a bit more, make the most of the time I have and focus on the things I really do want to do, leaving some of the other things aside. I always have too many interests and have a go at all sorts of different things, flitting from one to the other. By being more focused, I can do more of the things I really want to do.

Read more is fairly obvious, and if I'm a little less busy, I hopefully can make more time to read. As I mentioned in my last blog post, I read half the number of books in 2014 than I did in 2013, which given the sheer number and variety of books I really want to read, is something of a disappointment. On Goodreads I'm going to aim for 50 books again this year, which is what I read in 2013. Lets see how I get on...

Writing more is something I've had on my New Year Resolutions in many a year. This year though, I'm starting the year more resolved that this is something I want to focus on in 2015. I want to write regularly on my blog, so I am setting myself the realistic goal of a blog post a week on average which I think is very achievable. But there's lots more I want to write. In the last couple of months I've been exploring writing fiction again for the first time in a long, long time, and since the end of October I've written four short stories, which is four more than I managed in at least the five years previous. I'm under no illusions that they're any good, but its a start. So I'm hoping to write more fiction this year, and perhaps submit a few short stories to magazines and competitions if I think any are good enough. Beyond that, I'll see how it goes...