A New Year's Resolution: Be Kind ~ Jacquolyn McMurray


Tim Mossholder
For many, the new year prompts us to reflect on past years and strive to do better in the future. After much thought and reflection, my resolution for this year is to be kinder to myself and to others. 

Being kinder to myself includes scheduling time for restful activities. Susan May Warren refers to this as Sacred Rest. In her My Story Matters--My Brilliant Writing Planner, Warren recommends rating seven areas of rest: physical, emotional, creative, spiritual, social, sensory, and mental. My assessment ranked creative rest—rest that nurtures your creativity—as the most in need of attention. As a creative, I was surprised at the results, but now I know that I must schedule those activities that nurture my creativity. 

Here's what I plan to change to be kinder to myself:
    1) schedule time for a walk at least four times a week, 2) work on not feeling guilty when I take a day to do something creative, and 3) dismiss feeling selfish when taking time for self-care. That's a tall order, but I'm going to schedule these things on my calendar at the beginning of every week. I'm trying to be realistic here, so a stretch goal is to establish a morning routine that includes a daily affirmation/verse and maybe even a yoga routine. 

United Nations

What's my plan to be kind to others?  I started a list of things that cost nothing but time.

*  Every week, call or set up a video chat with someone I haven't talked to in a long time--the elders I know who are in long term care, friends, and family.  Although texting is a quick and easy way to communicate with others, it's not the same as hearing someone's voice.  

* Every month send out a physical card/note/letter to one of our family members/friends who are in long term care facilities. Don't you still enjoy receiving an actual card?

And a special list for our writing tribe:

*  Post/share other author’s releases and awards. Celebrate successes. We are in this together.

* Give thoughtful, constructive feedback to my writing partners through considerate language. We all have strengths and areas of growth, and a critique group can provide much needed support and encouragement. No matter where we are in our writing journey, we can benefit from the expertise of others. I know what it feels like to get flippant, nasty, remarks from a former writing partner. I hope I'm never that person.  

*  Write honest reviews, but think about how the review will be received. There is always something nice to say. :) Yes, we authors need thick skin, but I don't feel good about knocking down another author. If I can't comfortably rank a story at a 4 or 5, I'd rather not post a review. 

How will you be kind to yourself in 2021? How will you be kind to others?


  1. Reminds me of this article I read on the seven types of rest, https://ideas.ted.com/the-7-types-of-rest-that-every-person-needs/

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. Lexa - I am fascinated by the notion that there are different kinds of rest. I'll check out the article you recommended.

  3. I love all of these actions/goals and admire your decision to focus on kindness! Much needed all over!!!!

    1. It's so easy for me to fall into a negative mindset. I want to conscientiously make kindness my go-to response.



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