Reflections: A Retrospective
“The retrospective glance is a relatively easy gesture for us to make.” George Crumb
HAPPY NEW YEAR! “Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year.” Ralph Waldo Emerson #happynewyear #happy2017
A Retrospective: CREATIVITY – Even though the idea of a retrospective often makes me feel like I’m attending a wake of sorts, it is a time to look back and reflect on what we accomplished. It is a time to share highlights and insights on our successes, failures, surprises and even missed opportunities. When I think of it from a blogger’s perspective, I am drawn, particularly, to what helped to shape and sustain our creative expressions for the year. 2016 was a tough year, and blogging provided a much needed creative outlet, consistency, and focus that helped me a lot. Because I had set an intention to not veer from my blogging efforts, and focused on the Motivation Mondays posts to encourage me, as well as others, I would have to pinpoint that as my most cherished blogging achievement for this year.
READ: Motivation Mondays: POSSESSIONS
Motivation Mondays: The Holiday Season
COMMUNITY: I participated in quite a number of blogging groups and social media sites, stayed on course with most of the Discover Challenges and Weekly Photo Challenge prompts, and garnered some great sponsorships. My commitment to these communities and sponsors, the generosity of my visitors, my silent and vocal readers, and the effort of my tireless Virtual Assistants made it all work. So mega thanks to ALL of YOU!
READ: Motivation Mondays: FRIENDSHIP
Motivation Mondays: UNITY
INSPIRATION: I find my greatest inspiration in nature, in finding great quotes and photos that complement a post, and in the stories people share about their lives; both their successes and struggles. The collages above are an ode to all of my Discover Challenge posts. I find inspiration in my children, my siblings and my friends as their insights often shape some of my posts. I love the written word and the challenges that writing haiku offer so, those are also channels of inspiration. When I sit to write a post, I always think about how my post will add a positive spark to another person’s day.
I look for pictures that remind me of the beautiful planet we inhabit, and I hope they will serve as some relief that juxtaposes all the terror and pain we see and experience in this world. I love flowers, sunrise and sunset. I love smiling faces and color; lots of color. I find winter to be a beautiful season to look at from the safety of a warm room with picture windows. Going outside is another story; especially in the snow. I tolerate winter but understand its charms. So these are some of the things that inspire my writings. What inspires yours?
READ: Motivation Mondays: ABUNDANCE
Motivation Mondays: WINNING
“It is a simple but sometimes forgotten truth that the greatest enemy to present joy and high hopes is the cultivation of retrospective bitterness.” Robert Menzies
NUMBERS: Numbers wise, I posted three times a week with a few extras tossed in for good measure and so my grand total is: 163 times. Yes, I’ve included this coming Friday which will be the last post for 2016. I posted 52 weeks of Motivation Monday posts and Weekly Photo Challenge prompts and loved every moment of it. With 23 Haiku, 28 Discover Challenge Posts, and several other extra posts, the year is ending on a stellar note for me. Would I have wanted to post more? Absolutely not. I think posting daily is not for me at all as I like to take some time to develop my posts and think them through.
Plus, it takes enormous effort to get all the social media promotional work together and do sponsored work and have a life…. you get the picture? I’m grateful for the work I already do and plan to tweak it a bit for 2017 but, not post more. Stats-wise, I’m glad that I’m now well over the 1 million mark and with 24K additional comments this year alone (21+K of them still in moderation), I’m glad that the effort is bearing fruit. One thing I won’t do in 2017 is hold all my comments in moderation. I promise to approve all of what I now have by January 7th. In the coming year, I will approve them a lot faster… sigh and thank you!
READ: Motivation Mondays: Women’s Equality Day #Quotes
Motivation Mondays: PREPARED
ASPIRATIONS: In terms of what I plan to accomplish in 2017, I have a number of creative ideas in the works and will explore them fully. I plan to connect more and attend events that will help my blog and business grow. Travel is still dear to my heart so that is on the list to pick it up again. I plan to do more of my own photography while enjoying the public domain gifts of photography on Pixabay and Wikipedia. I will create more collages with Pixlr Express, Pic Monkey and other photo editing tools out there.
Letting go of deep-seated fears is something all of us can relate to. I’m not talking about the surface fears but the ones we are not even aware of… I will fear less! I connected with a lovely lady who will help me shape this blog in a more dynamic and professional way, so I need to earn more in 2017 to meet all my blogging and personal goals. Since I’m now a business account on WordPress, I have access to tremendous tools that I will explore and use in 2017. Above all, my family, faith and friendships are key to who I am and they will continue to take center stage in my life: I will give more, read more, learn more, fear less, grow more … and stay grateful. What about you?
READ: Motivation Mondays: FEAR
Motivation Mondays: RELAXATION
This post was inspired by a Discover Challenge prompt: Retrospective — This week, Can you pull all the strands of your 2016 together before diving into the new year? We’re asking you to look back over your past years’ worth of blogging (or however much you have, if your blog is less than a year old). You can publish a roundup or best-of post, but I encourage you to push a little harder and find a way to build on or synthesize your best work of 2016: Here are some tips
Build on your most popular post, or the post you’re proudest of — if other people loved it and/or you’re proud of it, you probably have more to say!
Create a collage using images and text from your favorite or most popular posts.
Take the text of your ten most-read posts, and create a word cloud with it. Publish your word cloud in a post, and reflect on what it means and how you’d like to see it change by the end of 2017.
Review your most-viewed tags or categories, and publish a post that uses your five most popular. How can you bring these popular topics together into one narrative, or one photo, or one sketch?
Write a found poem using lines from your ten favorite posts.
If you don’t feel like returning to your work, try any of these ideas using the posts you found most compelling in 2016; look back over posts you’ve commented on or liked.
As we get ready for a new year, it’s always good to remember where we’ve been. To help other participants and new fans find your response in the Reader, tag your post #DiscoverWP. Not sure how to add a tag? Learn more.
Positive Motivation Tip: Stay focused on your own game and give it your best.