Got it! Intentions for a new year

Before we know it, another year is upon us. It seems like just a breath ago it was the beginning of 2017. Last year was a difficult one for many people. But I think we can say that about the start of any year. I am beginning this new year with a short list of intentions. I have a general list that I always think about and a more specific action-oriented one. Here they are.

A way of being

  • Be patient
  • Take time
  • Love each other
  • Spread joy wherever possible

My specific intentions for 2018

  • Understand what is important to accomplish for the year, month, week, and day
  • Focus: Do one thing at a time until it is done
  • Listen. Relationships and communication start here

Focus can be a problem for me. My teacher, James Koehler used to talk about this a lot when I was an apprentice in his studio. He would frequently tell me that learning to focus was the most useful skill for being an artist and a business owner. James had a fierce ability to decide what he was working on and then to do only that until it was finished. He wove a huge number of pieces in a year and he also had a busy teaching schedule. (Though I know that those of you who knew him at the end of his life will also point out that he may not have taken the best care of his health at that particular moment and died at 58 years of age... so a balance is important and self-care is primary.)

When I was an apprentice, I didn't really understand what James was talking about in terms of focus. I thought he was talking about the moment to moment focus of doing the weaving in the studio. Now I think he was talking more about priorities. 

Whether you own your own business or not, most of us have incredibly busy lives. In 2017 I struggled a lot with first knowing WHAT was important to focus on, but then once that became clearer, prioritizing the things that were important.

On any given day I have lots of ideas and many things I'd love to create. There are only so many hours in a day however and choosing what my priorities are has become essential. My choice for 2018 was not to teach any guild workshops or conferences. This is so that I have time to weave a commission and focus on two new online classes.

In December, Janet sent me this image of one of her tapestries. I thought it was a fantastic sentiment for the new year. "Got it!"

I also believe it is important to maintain this fabulous ability to laugh gently at ourselves. Janet had this to say about the piece:

. . . just my sense of humor laughing at myself thinking I have absorbed and digested directions and then finding out I’d better rethink a process. . . . The yarns are my own handspun because I like seeing them used in various projects. I tacked this up in the downstairs hallway next to the light switch opposite the thermostat because when company is here and everyone is going to bed at night, someone upstairs will say “did someone turn down the heat?”
....someone else will yell back saying “Got it”.....
— Janet Kovach, New Jersey, USA

Janet Kovach, "Got it!", tapestry

Consider weaving your own intention for 2018 this week. If you missed my New Year's intention video last week, you can see it on YouTube HERE.

Do you have New Year's thoughts to share with your fellow creators? Share them in the comments below.

We've got this thing, right?