The new year was coming – not just a new year but a whole new decade in fact! (2020 is such a satisfying number with its repetition and flowing form. Try writing it with a brush pen!)

I’d planned a great programme for the journalling community: a new journalling kit with a new booklet: ‘Journalling with New Beginnings, setting a course for the next bit of life’. I’d produce it in a new easy-to-use format with lots of pictures, inspiring quotes and a variety of notes about how to approach your year intentionally without having to make lots of resolutions that then come back to bite you in February: moodboards, word for the year, focus on positivity, inspiration boards, and other lovely motivational things to put in a journal that will help you navigate the next bit of your life. It would be accompanied by videos, blogposts, a fabulous mixed media workshop plastered all over Facebook and Instagram, a fanfare of trumpets with bunting and party poppers…

It was going to be GREAT in a real Carpe Diem sort of way.  The kind of ‘great’ that gets you singing and dancing even when it’s not Friday. Lots of bang. No whimper.

Journalling With New Beginnings Title Page

And then Christmas happened.

The serene space from which I was planning to run this life-enhancing campaign turned overnight into a young people’s party-house with an overheated annex for cheery octogenarians. Between them all they were a stimulating bunch, always happy to chat the night away over a 3-course meal. My new role of mass-caterer and intimate partner to the dishwasher became all-consuming.

I hardly noticed the print deadline for the ‘New beginnings’ booklet or the need for all those social media posts. The videos were shelved, the email letter crawled its way onto the internet while the trumpeter was still recovering from Hogmanay. The workshop was hanging in the balance. Whimpers all round.

I was lamenting this sorry state of affairs with an awesome group of women that I belong to and berating myself for missing the moment.

“But that’s the whole point,” one of them said.

I looked blank.

“New beginnings happen throughout the year. They don’t have to be confined to the first of January!”

I do actually know this but like so many important things, it had become buried under the weight of the immediate. I even wrote about it in the intro to the booklet: ‘the new Year, a new term, a major loss or a new life beginning in one way or another’.

They all remind us to stop and take a long look at things. ‘Who am I? Who do I want to be? Where am I going and how do I get there?’ This new journalling kit with its notes and materials helps us to start the mapping process for some of these questions.


In actual fact, February with its long, dark days can be an even better time to hunker down and think about the future in a cosy corner with a warm drink in hand. If you’re looking for a fun way to think about your dreams, goals, plans and aims, creative journalling is a great way to do it. The focus is on creating a landscape that you love and want to live in. It’s so different from the resolutions approach that simply sets you up for failure.

You can order the kit from the shop and there are still spaces at the workshop this Saturday 11th January. Let me know asap if you would like to come. Find out more here.

More importantly, if you let the new year pass you by and think you’ve missed the opportunity, challenge that thought!

Come and join me for a New Beginning on Saturday 29th February.


Send me a or message if you’re up for it.

And Happy New Year!

Jane x

More Whimper than Bang

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