New Plans for a New Year

Every New Year’s I take a few moments to reflect on the last year and look ahead to the year to come.  I’ve learned to not set resolutions, because I find that setting a specific goal is too easily dismissed when I don’t do it.  For example, if I set a resolution to walk two miles a day, when I miss a several days in a row, I mentally mark it as an automatic failure and feel like I have to wait until the next year to try again.  Friends and family tell me that I should go easy on myself and start again right away, but the way we frame resolutions makes them feel like a binary pass/fail, as though they can’t tolerate the shades of “good enough” that applies to our lives.  From how I hear other people talk about their failed resolutions, I suspect I am not alone in this.

So instead of setting resolutions as I change my calendar, I try to find what things I did well in 2021 that I want to continue into 2022, and what things I can do without.  I have two for this year.

The first is to stop waiting.  As COVID took over the world in 2020, everything was put on hold.  Vacations were delayed (and then canceled), appointments rescheduled (and then canceled), and we collectively said, “when this passes, I’ll get back to…”.  It wasn’t until a co-worker wished me a happy 2022, or as he put it, “the 25th month of 2020,” that I realized my life has been on hold for two years.

I’m certainly not going to throw caution to the wind, I know that progress must be balanced with being safe and my obligation to care for the health of my community, but when I catch myself saying “after COVID…” I’m going to ask myself “Why after COVID?”  Is what I want to do something that can be done now, or under what conditions will I be willing to do it?  What am I waiting for?

I’m going to stop waiting to stretch my knitting skills.  I’ve been knitting throughout the last two years, but I haven’t challenged myself with a new-to-me technique, something to help me learn and improve my skills.  So, for 2022, I want to move forward and try new knitting techniques.  I haven’t done a lot of colorwork, so that’s definitely on my list, especially with retreat with Janine Bajus in the spring.  I’d also like to try Tunisian crochet because it can look so much like knitting.  What other things should I work on this year?  What are you interested in learning, or what haven’t you tried before?

The second thing I am going to embrace this year is knitting gnomes.  Lots of gnomes.