Well, it has been an interesting, odd and difficult year. Personally, 2016 was full of both wonderful life events and a lot of hard trials. I have come through it, and although I am perhaps not unscathed, I am feeling positive about the future. Yes, it has been a somewhat bleak year for me in many respects. I ran right into a swamp of fear and misgivings that I did not anticipate at all, and spent much of the middle of the year wondering if I was perhaps being very foolish about this whole writing thing. I got myself tangled up with fear in a very serious way. Worries about mistakes and failures ground me down into a place where I simply stopped writing for several months. This was quite serious for me. I haven’t stopped writing for more than a couple weeks for the last twenty-odd years. It got to a point where I wasn’t quite sure that I knew who I was any longer.
But I am feeling more my old self again. A bit of time away from work to regather my thoughts, and allow myself some stillness, has helped a lot, as did the support of people around me. I don’t now how the next year will pan out, but I have reached a point where I feel that I have accepted some things, and understood some things, and these things will be a help to me in the future.
So what is my advice to myself this year? Sometimes we have to take time to shore up the bricks of our own identities. Sometimes we need to actively, not passively, do some work on self-confidence. It is alright to like the things you like. It’s alright to be you. And you know what? It’s also alright sometimes to look at yourself, your work, life, family, whatever is valuable to you, and just feel good about it. Sometimes it is just fine to make a cup of tea, and sit, and watch the leaves of trees blowing in the wind outside, and just say to yourself, well, this is nice, isn’t it? I don’t think I’d rather be anywhere else than here, and here is just fine by me. Sometimes, we just need to give ourselves a break, in both senses of the word.