Monday Minute: 2018's Focus Word - Momentum

I'm not really the kind of person to set up a New Year's Resolution, partly because I think one huge overarching goal is ridiculously close to impossible, and partly because since I already think it's impossible, I can never seem to follow through on it. I mean sure, I could set this big one goal to be obsessed over, like weight loss or making more money for my family or whatever - but since I fell in love with Jenna Moreci's Quarterly Goals lists in 2016 and then started doing my own in 2017, I think it's more fitting that I choose a theme for the new year instead.

Luckily for me, this worked well in 2017 - which is nice not only because I liked having that one-word concept to keep in mind throughout the year, but also because it gives me a way to start every year with the kind of focus an old-school resolution might offer without feeling doomed to failure.

Last year's word was warrior, and I feel like I lived up to it well. The late winter and most of spring were dominated by coaching my girls through their confusion as their dad filtered somewhat randomly in and out of their lives. They struggled, and watching them go through that was hard for me as their mother. But with the "warrior" concept in mind, I coached my daughters carefully, trying to teach them inner strength and emotional independence while avoiding anything that could be called "badmouthing."

I taught my children to think of life as a highway (not because I'm clever, but because the analogy works, song notwithstanding), and each person as a car driving on that highway. I taught them to think of themselves as driving along on their own path, destination yet unknown, and to remember that each other person - their daddy included - is also a person driving to their own unknown destination, giving life the best they have in the moment.

I taught them to remember that sometimes we drive well - and other times we cut people off, we drive too fast or too slow as compared to the cars around us, or we take a wrong turn that must now be corrected at the cost of our time and energy. I also taught them that it's okay sometimes for a car you've been travelling with for a while to turn off in another direction, and that while sometimes it is a permanent separation of paths, it doesn't have to be and isn't always.

As this issue continued to be a problem throughout the year, I gave my best to coaching my kids - and in late fall, finally had to set Eden up for therapy.

The warrior mindset was something I held onto through the summer as well, when the girls were out of school and busier (and needier) than ever. I had been working hard behind the scenes to set up routines for us and to plan for ways to keep the kids entertained as the summer wore on and I struggled to keep my need for personal time balanced with the new lack of available "me time." We went to the park, we hung out at home, we made friends with our neighbor. It was a good summer - but it was good for me because I stayed focused on the warrior I wanted to be in 2017, willing and able to keep fighting, keep trying, keep moving, keep setting goals and finding ways to attain them.

I dealt with typical single mom stuff too - frustration and overwhelm at the lack of a partner to share the load, loneliness as the woman in me suffered the lack of romantic interaction, financial strain, familial issues, the challenges of dealing with difficult people gracefully (or as gracefully as possible, anyway) etc.

But now as we begin a new year, I'm changing focus - I fought my battles last year, making slow but steady headway in the various aspects of my life, and while I am proud of the struggles I overcame in the last year, this year I want to focus more on moving forward, growing and learning as I continue to build ...


This year, I'm obviously writing my way through my second BLOGuary (blogging every day except Sundays in January - and with a little company this year, too!), but I also have big plans for my fiction writing in 2018. I ended 2017 with an every-third-day blogging schedule, which I loved because it kept me blogging, gave me an outlet, and also helped me maintain a variety of content that balanced the seriousness of my mental health and self-empowerment focus with the fun lifestyle topics I so love. There was one problem though - the fact that third-day blogging left little time in my life for other writing.

I post two poems, a podcast, and a fiction chapter every month for my Patreon subscribers, and most of that content will eventually become books available on the major markets ... but I missed fiction in 2017, and sadly, I just didn't have time to write more than I did. There simply wasn't a place to fit it in - but I'm planning to change that in 2018 with a slight adjustment to my blogging schedule. Moving forward into the rest of 2018 (after BLOGuary, of course), I'll be posting here every fourth day instead; I hope this will allow me to keep growing my blog and the community of readers here, while also allowing time for me to rebuild and nurture my presence in the fiction world as well.

I'm hoping to see a continuation of the positive changes I worked so hard to form in my life in 2017, and boosted growth toward goals that have yet been too fragile for me to share. I will be sharing most of my goals for this first quarter of 2018 tomorrow though, so make sure you come back to see a little more of how I plan to take last year's warrior spirit and turn it into the kind of momentum that'll drive my family straight into what I hope will be the happiest, most successful year yet.

(PSST: Don't forget, this month I've got some great company along for the BLOGuary ride! David from The Single Dad's Guide To Life is also sharing his perspective on books, parenting, goals, food, and so much more during this month - and I'm thrilled to be partnering with a blogger who has such a perfect mix of funny and serious. Check out his post on Momentum and how he's using this word to drive 2018 forward here.)

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  1. I totally agree with you about the goals. I've had people ask me what my goal weight is? My answer is one that is less than I am now as long as I'm making positive progress I'm happy. The minute I start to stress on a number is when things turn negative

    1. Yeah I can't live my life that way either - there's so much more to it than numbers!


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