Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering, ‘It will be happier.’
– Alfred, Lord Tennyson
The promise of a new year is quite irresistible. To make the most of this opportunity for a fresh start in scrapbooking and in life, it’s worth the time invested to reflect on the year gone by.
Instead of simply heading into a new year with high hopes of greater diligence and consistentcy, I recommend a brief-but-thoughtful examination of your approach to this hobby. An intentional look at the past twelve months of memory keeping offers powerful and transformative insight for planning another year of creativity.
Here are the questions I recommend asking:
1. In the past 12 months, which scrapbooking activities felt easy to start, maintain, or complete?
We all have felt that glee of a project or a particular format that comes together with little fuss or headache. The thing is, this natural creative inclination will vary from person to person. What’s easy for your best buddy in scrapbooking may drive you bonkers.
Identifying what works well will help you introduce more of that easy-breezy feeling, often by just doing more of that activity or seeing how to do more things like it! You have permission to scrapbook in the style, format, or approach that is consistently fun and fulfilling.
2. Which activities did you procrastinate on, feel challenged by, or have difficulty finishing?
Sometimes hurdles can offer a boost of enthusiasm and up-level your creative bottom line, but what I see more often is the opposite. If you feel like you’re fighting an uphill battle every time you scrapbook, there’s probably an opportunity to tweak or simplify the experience.
Today’s world is busier than ever, but there are also more options than ever for capturing your memories. If one approach isn’t working well for you, there’s almost always an alternative that could finally give you the ease you’ve been seeking.
3. What commonalities can you identify between the activities you listed under either question above?
If you’re someone who dabbles in different formats and creative approaches to memory keeping, you may find that some offer a more seamless experience than others. This is especially the case when those formats intersect with expectations about how often or how much you need to scrapbook. Style may also play a role.
Additionally, your approach to storytelling may be a thread of commonality between what works (or what doesn’t work). Both your ease and enthusiasm about a particular scrapbooking project can be impacted by you connect with particular stories. Like with format or style, this relationship with a story’s depth is unique to you.
Together these observations are a point of beginning. They offer clues to a simpler, more streamlined future and thus, a happier new year.
Free End-of-Year Reflection Printable
If you would like to work through this exercise on paper, please follow the link below to download a printable version.
I believe that journaling by hand, even briefly, offers significant added-value over alternatives. The thoughtfulness and patience that is required to put pen to paper creates an important window for deeper insight and potential lightbulb moments.