Jan 18, 2019

My 2019 Goals and What I Learned Last Year

    As some may remember, I'm not a fan of the winter season. Looking forward into 2019 is harder for me during the colder months because everything is harder for me at this time. Motivation is fleeting and the nicest thing I can do for myself is nap, which I have taken to doing more regularly than before in a trick twist of radical self-love, which is my theme for this winter.

My 2019 Goals and What I Learned Last Year photo
My kid with HonShiogama Station's newest carved stone statue: The Boar!

    Last winter was harder than it had to be, partially because I pushed myself to go out and be socially engaged with people who probably meant well but wound up triggering a serious depressive episode, the end of which I only barely escaped. All of this culminated in me choosing to invest more in my mental well being and less in other things like social engagements.

    I also learned that I was getting extremely poor sleep, significantly worse than I had previously assumed. A trip to my father's house in summer gave me the opportunity to sleep on an very comfortable mattress, and for the first three days, I couldn't get myself to sleep for more than 2-3 hours a night because that was the level of rem sleep I was conditioned to function with over the years of fighting with my Japanese mattress for 6 hours a night or less. When we returned to Japan, I immediately bought a mattress pad and it has been extremely helpful. If you know your sleep is off and your mental health is faltering, get a mattress pad.

My 2019 Goals and What I Learned Last Year photo
The front cover of my new schedule book. Chosen in the hopes of cheering myself up.

    This is one of the many ways I have been preparing for this season by trying to treat myself more kindly. That's what I am taking into 2019 with me. It doesn't matter how much I get done in a day if my brain kills me before 2020. It is far better to be a little bit lazier and a lot more alive.

    As usual, I don't have resolutions. I have goals instead. In addition to continuing to live, my goals for 2019 are:

1. Edit at least one of my NaNoWriMo novels and sell it.
Every November, I write a novel of 50,000 words or more. Every December, I save it to a hard drive and never look at it again. I am currently sitting on so many manuscripts of stories that could be something if only they were polished up and set loose upon the world. Since I have never had the time or energy to properly edit these beasts, they are currently only theoretically valuable. The selling portion of the goal is harder, as it depends on agents and editors and publishers looking at the same work and liking it enough to put it forward, but as long as the manuscript is out there, there is potential for it to find a home, unlike now.

2. Start a Crafting VLog

As an extension of a Patreon project I've been doing for a while, I plan to start a monthly crafting vlog in which I take a Japanese craft in a geeky direction or a geeky craft in a Japanese direction. Either way, I plan to upload the videos monthly, both as explanations and guides to the crafts involved and hopefully lacking in copyright infringement.

3. Clean My House

There is a mountain of clutter I have accumulated, waiting to find a better use or better home. This year, I make it a priority and really go to work on using, selling, trashing, or giving away the excess. This year, I get rid of the stuff.

4. Spend Better Time with my Kid. 
As a parent, I am sometimes not as awesome as I'd like to be. I want to make the most of these years with my little one, before she's an unruly teen.
My 2019 Goals and What I Learned Last Year photo
Us at this year's Dontosai festival and bonfire.



A working mom/writer/teacher, Jessica explores her surroundings in Miyagi-ken and Tohoku, enjoying the fun, quirky, and family friendly options the area has to offer.


  • helloalissa

    on Jan 19

    Yes, awesome goals. I wanna recommend a couple books for you (even though your goals don't include reading more): 1. Marie Kondo's The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up (or the Netflix show? or the manga version?) and 2. Jen Sincero's You are a Badass (The audio book is on Youtube and I'm recommending this to everyone.)

  • JTsuzuki

    on Jan 20

    @helloalissa Thanks for the recommendations. I'm actual going to write a bit on the KonMari method later, but I haven't fully investigated it yet. The other book sounds fascinating!