New Year, New You?

View of the Seine, Christmas Day 2020. ©Lisa Anselmo

“This is the first time we can really say hindsight is ‘2020’,” a friend posted on Facebook. In fact, last night, everyone talked about how glad they were to see the year go. Poor 2020. It kicked off with so much hope, as most new years do, and the number—2020—was so round and open. Perfectly symmetrical. It was filled with so many plans: travel, weddings, graduations. And then a teeny virus called Covid-19 kicked its butt, and ours.

But before you shake the dust of 2020 off your feet and walk on, I’d like you to do something: look back at the year and make a list of three good things that happened to you because of the pandemic—maybe it’s a new project or talent you discovered, a personal awakening or reawakening, a new perspective or realignment of values. Take a moment, clear out the noise of 2020 and reflect on the good. I wouldn’t be surprised if you have more than three things, and if you do, all the better. Make that list now. I’ll wait…

Done? Now read it over. What you have there are your goals for 2021. Did you learn to simplify your life, do with less? Keep it up. Did you change your lifestyle, diet, exercise regime? Well, don’t stop now. Did you learn a skill, start a new project, launch a small business? That’ll occupy you in 2021, for sure. Even if the good on your list are small things—making more quality time with family, having clearer priorities, a better understanding of your capabilities—these are your personal growth areas for this new year.

2020 packed a wallop, but it also brought gifts, as does any period of challenge. As you look ahead, see the gifts that came from what has passed, and carry them with you. Let them fortify you. Enrich you.

New year, new you. This was a common theme for advertorials my team created when I use to work in the magazine world. You’ve seen them: product showcase pages brought to you by brands you know. “New Year, New You” boasted the headline—the idea that the new year would bring a chance to start again, to be a better version of yourself. But I’m not suggesting you start again; I’m suggesting you keep doing what you started last year, and build upon it.

Don’t let the struggles of 2020 come to nothing. When things start to resume more normally, don’t slide back to your “normal”—old habits, old excuses. Keep seizing the day, cherishing what really matters, and persevering in the face of adversity. Use this year to fix the positive personal transformations of 2020 into your psyche and your life, permanently.

Wishing you a happier and healthier 2021. And for those of you who have not been able to come to Paris, I hope that will change in the New Year. XO Lisa

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One of my goals for 2021 (started in 2020) is to help other writers achieve their dreams. Do you have a book idea you can’t get off the ground? Or a manuscript sitting on your computer waiting to find its audience? Whether you’re a beginner, writing for pleasure, or looking to get published, join the Paris Writing Salon and get the support and community you need to get writing, get published, and get readers. Monthly membership comes with expert workshops, author talks, writing sessions, tools, community, and more. And tomorrow, we’ll help you set your intentions and finally get that book off the ground with our 2021 kick-off!

We will address 3 key areas:

👉THE WHAT: What to Stop, Start, and Keep Doing this Year—Gabrielle Luthy Based on project management methodologies, this session will help you identify what’s not working for you, what is, and what to try, to become a more confident and productive writer in 2021.

👉THE WHO: Creating Your Author Brand (No, It’s Not Too Soon)—Lisa Anselmo Whether self-publishing or pitching to an agent, who you are is as important as what you write. It is never too soon to create your digital & social presence, define your unique POV, and create your scope of influence. This session will help you uncover the (very marketable) who and why of you.

👉THE HOW: Visualizing the Writer’s Life You Want—Juliette Sobanet There is no more creative tool than a vision board for developing a potent, focused vision that you can turn into action. Gain a better understanding of your ideal reader, identify what success looks like to you, envision your book/blog/screenplay out in the world, all while having fun.

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3 responses to “New Year, New You?

  1. Happy New Year Lisa
    thank you for this refreshing post I dont like to make new years resolutions and beat myself up because I dont keep them. What I am going forward with is to keep building on creativity and a level of calm that I have gained this past year.. wishing you success


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