Every year I make a huge list of creative resolutions that I not only don’t follow through on but which actively hold me back from what I really want to do. This year I decided to do it differently.
This year, instead of making a To Do list for the year, I decided to make a Have Done list.
The rules are simple. No planning my creative projects. No boxing myself in. It’s all about curiosity, about play, about doing what I feel completely drawn to do in that moment, regardless of how I felt on December 31st, 2015. I am not even allowing myself the opportunity of setting up an outline for the list below (and it’s killing me). Not this year. This year it is all about emergence. Whatever happens, happens and I am just here to document it. This list will grow and change and organise and reorganise itself many times this year. That’s exactly how I want it.
Lastly, the things you will see on the following list are things I have done this year. Things that are done. Done, done. Not “I did it for a week and it felt great, but I got distracted by something else, but I promise I’ll get back to it” done. Really done. Truly done. Sealed with wax and sent off to the wild unknown done.
So without further ado, here are the things I have done this year:
Escape by Carolyn Jessop – Shit. What a story.
Hard Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami – Weird. Trippy, thought-provoking, magical. And weird. I love it.
A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami – I have a tattoo of a sheep on my foot. Maybe it’s a sign.
Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert – This book is a wonder; an absolute treasure trove of incredible wisdom and loving-but-firm reality checks. I adored it endlessly.
Scary Things Totally Worth Doing
- Lasik eye surgery
- Taking my first pole dancing class! It’s amazing though and totally worth the bruises.
- Camping on Jabal Shams – a sometimes-scary but always awe-inspiring experience. It’s my new happy place.
- Dubai – I survived another visa run, picked up my new laptop, invested in new dive gear and spent time with a lovely friend in her wonderfully homey home. I don’t like Dubai, but as far as visa runs go, it was pretty good.
- Sri Lanka – Had a fabulous time riding the colonial trains and walking through the tea country.
- Indonesia – Found some crazy new creatures in the ocean!
- America – back home for a much needed three weeks of relaxation, could best described as a The Great Brunch Tour of Salt Lake City.
- UK – a week long layover on my way back from America. Did some walking (lots of walking) and saw my friends and family. Could best be described as The Great Pork Restock.
- 30 Days to Better Lettering Course – I finished the courses, so that counts for one thing. If I finish the 30 day challenge, I will boast about that too. This course is really wonderful. It walks you through so many aspects of lettering! I know I will go back to it frequently.
- Made my first Photoshop and Illustrator (vector!) files with my illustrations. Woot! Lots to learn and many more attempts are needed, but it’s a start. (also not sure if those names are actually accurate…oh well).
- Lettering! – I was VERY lucky to win Amanda Arneill’s Let’s Start Lettering online course. It taught me loads about how to be better with pen and paper. I can now write all kinds of offensive phrases in beautiful script.
- Art Journaling – Dawn DeVries Sokol’s course on CreativeBug really unlocked some creative channels for me. I found myself creating pages I was really proud of and, more interestingly, surprised by. I learned to really let go of my plan and see where my pen, ink, paint, glue, receipts, bills, and beer stickers led me. Highly recommended.
- Diving! – Finished my Advanced and Rescue courses and am working on my Dive master.
- Learning How to Learn – a nice little course with tips about how your brain learns and remembers best. Some good tricks and ideas!
- Dive guiding – I’ve now guided about 20 dives and am feeling quite confident about it, at least on the sites I know well here.
- Teaching – I’ve taught several classes this year – from three students to fifteen – over a wide range of levels and abilities.