1 | One Week Down

2017 is still very much a newborn but, like a shamelessly pushy parent (Dina Lohan, perhaps – and if that isn’t the most dated reference you’ve heard in a long time I don’t know what to tell you), I’ve already pinned pretty high expectations on it and lined it up a gruelling schedule of self-improvement.

First of all, the boring admin-y bits. I’ve started a 2017 journal to record my passing thoughts and general mood swings. I’m also committing myself to a blog post per week – in theory, I’ll have documented 2017 in 52 posts by the end of it, although if the year takes a drastic turn and we enter 2018 feeling world-hungover there might be one or two posts missing, like a sodden, abused deck of cards from a pre-drinks the night before.

So, exciting thing number 1: I bought myself a new car! I sold my old, dangerously faulty runaround to a builder working on a house across from ours for £50 – he’s taking it for parts, apparently, although which parts I’m not sure. Hopefully the parts that weren’t mocked by the mechanics who did my MOT – which doesn’t really amount to many. More power to him. I’m eager to make more long-distance car journeys this year and maybe even conquer my fear of the motorway. Baby steps!

Exciting thing number 2: I booked a holiday! My friend Emily and I are going on a trip to explore Prague, Vienna and Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia. We fly out on Tuesday 7th Feb and back home again on Valentine’s Day (aw). As someone who hasn’t been the most adventurous with her travels for this, that and the other, I’m really pumped to go and explore some new places. Hopefully it kick starts a lot of trips and breaks in 2017!

Reading this back I realise I’m at danger of having peaked far, far too soon, but I’m happy to confront that down the line when it’s the end of summer and I’m inevitably on the verge of an existential crisis.

How has your new year been?

Emma x

What’s the word in 2017?

10549815_1574875919395470_1434243014_n

As much as I love hearing and reading about other people’s New Year’s resolutions, this year I’ve felt inclined to not set myself a range of goals to achieve. Expectations, a lot of unnecessary pressure, blah blah. So I haven’t. Instead, I’m doing something a little bit different.

2017, for me, will be focused around and structured towards a single ideal: that is, I want to reclaim the life I’m so eager to live. I want to reclaim what’s mine.

As you’re probably aware, the past couple of years haven’t been the most fruitful for me in terms of my own personal development. If I had to summarise my 2015 in a single word, that word would perhaps be ‘cancer’. ‘Death’, maybe. ‘Loss‘, overall, because in the process of losing my Dad I lost my ambition, my drive and the student lifestyle I loved so much. I lost my mind a bit.

2016 wasn’t much better. It was almost a consolation that 2016 seemed to carry a curse – with iconic celebrities calling it quits on the world, global and national politics taking a bizarre and frightening turn and terrorist attacks becoming too commonplace to be truly shocking – because the year’s events made my grief and mental health nosedive feel perfectly in moderation with the rest of the world. A bit of a safety blanket, you could say. My word of 2016 was definitely ‘adjustment‘, with plenty of first birthdays and anniversaries without Dad confronting us in a moody blue haze. Each brought with it a unique challenge, a family conflict, a feeling of emptiness. 2016 was a year of ‘helplessness‘.

Therefore, I’m designating a word to 2017 before it’s even really begun, and that word is ‘reclamation‘. I’m setting out to take back what the world has stripped me of, and I’m going to give it my best shot.

As nice as the optimistic promises of ‘eat less exercise more’, ‘8 hours’ sleep a night’ or ‘drink 2 litres of water per day’ seem on the surface, they’re not going to cut it for me in 2017.

Until next time,

Emma x