I don’t believe in New Year’s Resolutions. I think that if you want to create a “new you” or try something different, why do you need a new date to allow you to do it? If you want something, don’t wait until a new year ticks over. So, my not-New Year’s Resolution is to remain inspired, follow my dreams and don’t let other people interfere.
I’m generally a pretty easily-inspired person. I like to read and listen to cool music. I know that I am not the only one who can say that I have my not so inspired days. And I’m just like, “Oh My God, being a journalist is impossible”, or I’m like “who even wants to go to college today”. I hate those days just as much as they hate me. Over the last few weeks, I have gathered a few of my own personal tactics to remain inspired for (hopefully) the entire year.
I hope all of my readers are inspired too, but if you’re not, this is what has kept me happy through January and hopefully the rest of the 11 months (and the 12 months after that).
1. Making a book wall.
The photos above are in my bedroom. It took me approximately three weeks to create my feature wall (not everyone shares the same love I do for books, but this can work for absolutely everyone, I guarantee it). I went to my grandfather’s house and collected some old books that were collecting dust downstairs (I only needed 3 or 4 books). I began the gut-wrenching experience that was ripping the pages out. As the pages tore, so did my word-loving heart. Although, I’m excited to see the end product of my room. The pages are all from different books and I tried to keep it random so that I can read through them, you know, for inspiration. My favourite page is number 400 and it is from Virginia Andrew’s Petals on the Wind. There’s nothing overly special about it. It’s the part in the story where their family house burns to the ground and a few main characters get lost in the fire. But it’s such a well-written page.
My favourite part of books is the dedications in the front. They’re all some kind of personal, inside joke. I love that nobody but the author and one person knows the joke behind it. So I stuck those on my door, too. This reminds me every morning that people can achieve their wants in life with the help of others.
2. Wearing my cat shirt.
My best friend just came home after spending three weeks in the United States and bought me a t-shirt with a cat on it. I like to consider it my blogging shirt, because I only read, listen to, and wear inspirational things when I write. And, let’s be honest, who wouldn’t want a cat shirt that looks like this when they blog.
3. Listening to the right music.
If I feel the need to remain relaxed and collected, I tend not to listen to hard core bangers.I have recently found a much more effective tool. The self-titled Angus and Julia Stone album is my official writing playlist. No heavy beats, but not totally acoustic either. It’s just right for keeping cool and inspired during a chill session. So is The Fault in Our Stars album (not just because it’s based on John Green’s book, either (okay, that’s half the reason)). Featuring Ed Sheeran and Birdy, it’s bound to be utterly brilliant. Both albums keep me going through the day and night.
4. Reading books (surprise).
I spend all of my spare and not-so-spare time with my head in a book. I read no matter what my mood, but I enjoy reading when my day is going not as well as I planned it to be. Getting my head caught up in someone else’s story is the best way for me to zone out of my own for a while. I do have a top 5 list of my favourite books to get lost in to share with you (none of them are books about how to be inspired, I promise). Except for this one that I got for Christmas. Love Your Life by Dominique Bertolucci is a small book with quotes, mantras and advice on how to remain positive. I like to carry it in my bag because if I’m feeling a bit on the down side, I open it to a random page and just read for a few minutes (it helps, I swear). But here is my list of things to read for inspiration or just because:
1. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
2. Anne Frank’s Diary (autobiography)
3. A Visual Journey by Ed Sheeran and Phillip Butah
4. Humans of New York by Brandon Stanton
5. If I Stay by Gayle Foreman
5. Sitting outside.
Ah, saving the easiest for last. Despite the rain, the sun, the wind or the house-sized bricks of hail that fall from the sky, I like to sit outside (under cover if there is hail that big) and just sit. Whether it’s with a book in my hand or I scroll through my Instagram feed, sitting outside and getting some fresh oxygen from the trees around you is one of my favourite ways to inspire myself. It gives me time to think about what I want, how I’m going to get it and what to do when I get hold of it. There are so many people who can tell you that your dream is impossible. It used to bother me greatly when people told me I wasn’t capable of being what I wanted to be. It took me a solid few months to understand that as one human being, you cannot please everybody with your choices. Sitting in the rain or in the burning sun, it gives you time to think about how much you aspire to your dreams and to keep those close to you who share in your inspiration.
This is my plan on how to keep myself inspired for the year. I hope I can inspire some of you, too.