The clock just struck midnight, and it is now officially the last day of 2017. In the past, I took the last days of the year to meditate and think about the future directions. This year, however, I’m doing something different. I’ve been thinking about what I’ve learned and how I’ve changed in the last twelve months.
My father retired this year, and I’ve been spending a lot of time helping him get adjusted. On top of that, I’ve taken my artistic interests more seriously, and spent more time working on my creative projects. 2017 was a year of action. Whether it’s spiritual principles, artistic ideas or life skills, I’ve put them all to the test. To my delight, things have worked out much better than I expected. I noticed that I’m much better at handling tight schedules. I handled my frustrations and anxiety differently than before. Of course there were still many moments that I wish I could do over. But overall, I feel like I’ve truly grown in so many areas, and that is a wonderful thought to end the year with.
Here are some of my 2017 highlights and recommendations:
Movie recommendation of 2017: Doctor Strange
Yes, I’ve also watched both Star Wars movies this year. Although Rogue One came close, Doctor Strange is the movie that I’d consider owning and re-watching. (And it’s not because I’m a Cumberbatch fan. 😉 ) The artist side of me loved the visual effects and the cinematography in the movie. And the theologian side of me loved how the story explored the concept of time, space, and metaphysics/supernatural. Along with the superb acting from the gifted cast, this movie is on my all time favorites list.
Book recommendation of 2017: It’s Never Too Late to Begin Again: Discovering Creativity and Meaning at Midlife and Beyond by Julia Cameron with Emma Lively.
I discovered this book a short while after my father retired. I’ve learned a lot before from Julia Cameron’s books on building creativity, and thought it would be a fun project for me and my father to work on together. It turned out to be an eye opening experience for both of us. Julia Cameron is a wonderful writer, and addresses many of the challenges that retired people experience when they go through such a drastic life transition. In the book, she offers many practical advice and exercises to help the retirees discover their own path for the next season. We’re only half way through the book, but it has been a wonderful experience for both of us.
I also joined Instagram this year mainly to find an artist community. I’ve been so inpired and challenged by the artists around the world and the beauty they create. I felt both intimidated and encouraged when I shared my own journey in the midst of all these talented folks. My Instagram account is @imagochele if you’re interested.
The one area I feel like I’ve neglected in 2017 is my reading. My reading list and book collections have been growing out of control. Going into 2018, I’d like to spend more time reading theology and philosophy. Hopefully, as I work through my own reading projects, I’ll be able to share more of these rare gems here.
Happy new year, and see you in 2018!