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A belated by heartfelt Happy new Year to everyone!

I don’t typically subscribe to the new year = new beginnings thoughts. It’s a turn of a calendar page, really. We can set new beginnings for ourselves at any point, for any reason. I typically set new year intentions around my birthday for the next year of my life, but with the chaos, heartbreak, and uncertainty of the past calendar year, it seems as though January is as good a time as any to start with some new intentions.

And, hoo-boy, do I have a lot of new intentions I want to spend time with.

I want to meditate more, create more, write more, and read more. You can follow my reading journey at The StoryGraph, a better-than-Goodreads option for keeping track of reading goals, writing reviews, finding new books, and keeping track of your To-Be-Read list. (You can look me up by my username – OhSarahBea – and follow what I’m reading!)

Among the first books I read this year was Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. It has been sitting on my to be read list for a very long time, and fit perfectly with oh-so-many of my intentions for the new year.

Gilbert is a novelist who became an overnight superstar with her memoir Eat, Pray, Love. In this book she discusses the creative process, and the creative life in general. She encourages readers to jump in, trust yourself, and commit to the creative life – whatever that means for you.

So many of us resist moving forward towards our dreams or goals because we are fearful of not doing it “right” or good enough. Gilbert, in a beautiful, gentle, and wonderfully approachable way, challenges readers to get off their ass and do the work. Reading this work was like talking to your best friend who loves you dearly – so dearly that they won’t let you get out of the hard stuff.

I personally adore her writing, her full belief in magic and the even divine connection to creativity. Though this approach might not be for everyone, her conversational style and approachability may be enough to sway those who aren’t here for the woo-woo stuff.

If you, like me, are looking to cultivate a creative life, to manifest that work of art, that book, or that project that you’ve been dreaming about for all too long, I encourage you to give this work a try.

And! As an added bonus, Gilbert also created a podcast series titled Magic Lessons in which she helps those who faced difficulties along the creative path to overcome their challenges.

Here’s to cultivating more creativity in the coming months, and being open to opportunities for Big Magic to make a difference in our lives.

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