So here it is – the end of 2018, almost. There isn’t really too much time left to scrabble in many last-minute achievements, so it’s time for The 2018 Reckoning.

This year was my fourth using The Desire Map technique and annual planners. Desire Mapping is a subtle but to me very useful method of thinking how you most want to feel, and then setting goals from that basis. So for example, if you think about how you want to feel once you land the job, or finish the dissertation, or move house or buy the dog…these feelings give you strong clues about what’s most important to you as a human. It also allows you to get creative about how to bring those feelings into now. These are called Core Desired Feelings.

My Core Desired Feelings

This is how my Core Desired Feelings have evolved over the years:

2015: Abundant, Creative, Focused, Free Joyous.

This was my first year Desire Mapping. I didn’t use my journal for work appointments, so it wasn’t quite “alive”. I started in March.

2016: Creative, Focused, Free, Joyous, Mindful.

This was my first full year Desire Mapping where I used the journal each and every day. On the left-hand column would go work appointments, on the right-hand column the to-dos for the day job. But the Core Desired Feelings always reminded me that my writerly ambitions always had space in my life, and weren’t forgotten.

2017: Congruent, Creative, Free, Joyous then Abundant, Congruent, Creative, Free, Joyous.

I figured half-way through the year that my finances needed a bit more of a kick, and that it was time to put Abundant back into the mix. During 2017, I did a Women in Leadership Circle with the fabulous Sue Rolinson. One of the many valuable things we did was create a Vision Statement for ourselves.Worth the course fee alone!! Mine is: 

I am a courageous, creative woman who compassionately disrupts the status quo.

2018: Abundantly Aligned, Courageously Creative, Joyously Free

After making that Vision Statement, I realised that Courage was missing, and I needed to add it! However, you’re encouraged to have no more than five Core Desired Feelings. With a bit of adjective/adverb collocation, I was able to sneak it in! Note that creative, joy and free are always, always there.

2018 Big wins

  • Having three overarching goals, with smaller steps clustered underneath
  • Getting my first novel manuscript ready enough for two competitions
  • Starting out the year at 75 kilos and finishing at 68, and incorporating the Five and Two/ Intermittent Fasting as just part of life
  • Putting together an awesome team at my workplace
  • Speaking at the March Stories from the Heart event

2018 Some important but not big wins

  • Sticking with the regular coaching
  • Reaching out for help with the manuscript, and getting it! So when I didn’t win either competition, I had somewhere to go next
  • Running Patient Experience Week events again, and adding in World Kindness Day events

Some areas for growth…

  • Weekly Artist Dates. They were not weekly, I think I did about three all year
  • I did not manage to manifest a Citizen’s Jury in 2018. I thought I was so close (I probably wasn’t) and was heartbroken when I realised it wasn’t going to happen.
  • Savings goals are still a work in progress. OK, so I am exactly where I started with one account, but $1,500 better off with another. So that’s something I suppose. And all debts are largely gone.

And now, for 2019…

I’m excited to be giving myself a mini-retreat to Nathaneal’s Rest to walk the labyrinth and think about 2019 Core Desired Feelings. I already have my juicy journal to get started with…

I hope that you have found some time in 2018 to think about what’s most important to you, and do the things that really light you up. And that you have fabulous stationery to help it all unfold! Happy New Year xxx


It’s that time again…

You know how Facebook does that thing, flashes up a memory that you can then share, or not… Last year’s Resolutions – or rather Intentions written in December 2015 showed up with the invitation to share. Of the four Intentions, none were actually reached, although much work was done towards them. I had no urge to press the “share” button.

But, it’s Reckoning time. So in my own time Facebook, I am sharing this image.

2016-intentionsSo I didn’t get to finalise the first draft of my novel, then called Without Consent, now titled Shakespeare Street, nor did I develop a flourishing author platform and due to lack of completed manuscript I did not get a book deal. I certainly did more media than last year and there was at least one blog that I felt hit the mark. But still. Awkward.

I said I would support myself through getting regular coaching (tick), keep meditation and doing yoga (tick, especially yoga), plan regular Artist Dates (some months better than others), nurture my relationships (tick), write, write, write (tick, but also lots of wasted time on Facebook, procrastinating etc.), actively seek media opportunities (tick).

So here’s what I did get up to in 2016:

  • Finished a Six Months to Write Your Novel course, completing about 75% of the Without Consent/ Shakespeare Street draft. And while I have now deemed that draft 0.1, followed on by somewhat chaotic draft 0.2, I showed up to that course. I learned. I realised that I really want to write literary fiction. You can read more about the ups and downs of the Novel Project here.
  • Managed to get an upgrade on the charitable status of the not for profit organisation I run, that frankly is a bit of a game changer.
  • Became a Desire Map Facilitator and ran a few courses with awesome women and shared around the goodness of Desire Mapping. (I have been a weekly devotee of Danielle La Porte’s Desire Mapping for two years now and can honestly say it has really changed my life.)
  • Got invited onto an inter-governmental committee in my state which means I can advocate beyond the health sector for the every day person who doesn’t get a say (and may I say, it was all in the Vision Book).
  • Attended a writing retreat in Delphi, Greece. (Also in the Vision Book). Coincidentally in Delphi learned about The Writer’s Studio which IS the right writing school for me. Did the pre-requisite Unlocking Creativity course and am now into a First Draft Novel course (hence the earlier drafts now deemed 0.1 and 0.2). It’s bliss.
  • Got myself an NLP Practitioner certificate.
  • Saw my daughter graduate from high school, psychically intact and on the road to whatever is next.
  • Became the household bread-winner, to keep on pushing out on those gender boundaries. A house-husband (especially a renovating one) is the Best Thing Ever.
  • Developed a regular yoga practice.

Most of which wasn’t even on the List. And I am trying to do two things at once – run a not for profit AND write my first novel. So, you know. Ease up.

This luscious Christmas holiday break I have spent some time doing the Marie Forleo Thang of reviewing my 2016 with these three questions:

  1. What’s one thing you did that you’re proud of?
  2. What’s one mistake you made and the lesson you learned?
  3. What’s one story you’re willing to let go of before the New Year?

And also looking at Danielle La Porte’s Five Questions for your Deeper End of Year Review:

  1. What didn’t work?
  2. What did work?
  3. What were the highlights?
  4. What does the new year look like if it’s full of what works?
  5. Bonus Q: What do your highlights say about you?

So now it’s time to declare my 2017 Intentions.

  • Not for profit – hang out with more clinicians rather than bureaucrats
  • Not for profit – ensure at least one project idea develops into a fully-formed service.
  • Creative life – finish the Novel First Draft course by September with a manuscript good to go
  • Creative life – re-institute regular Artist Dates
  • Both – Showing up online – blog at least monthly for my work as well as for my author website
  • Personal – Have at least one overseas holiday and other travel when I can

Over to you

Do you love this time of reflection and thought? Are you going to set yourself any Intentions/ Resolutions/ Grand Dares? Maybe 2016 was not your year. So many people I know have found it a testing and trying year both at the awful, train-wreck macro-level of Brexit and Trump, as well as personally.

If you want to have a try at Desire Mapping your 2017 with me, you have the chance to think about how your Goals/ Intentions/ Resolutions/ Grand Dares will make you feel. Those feelings are important. They show how you most want to feel and can be identified, named as your Core Desired Feelings. These feelings can become your compass for your year. If you want to go through this process with me, my course link is here. Or, you can discover more about Desire Mapping for yourself.

Here’s to a MUCH better 2017 xxxx