New Years Dive 2024

Welcome to 2024. First off: all the best for the new year. 

The January blog is my traditional New Years Dive blog. Due to personal circumstances I am only posting this now. Apologies for the delay if you were waiting. If you’re looking for a media analysis, please keep an eye on my home page. There will be an announcement there when I plan to publish a new blog.

If you’re not familiar with my New Years Dive, it’s the moment when I reflect on the previous year and look towards the new year with the help of my Year Theme. To better explain the concept of a Year Theme I created this page to help you better understand what a Year Theme is and how it can help you. In short:

A Year Theme is one word or a short sentence which denotes your goals of the year. For me, it is a tradition that I’ve implemented to make the best of said new year. It provides structure and empowers to make decisions which improve your life. It is important that a theme is positively formulated, so it helps to create a better situation in a specific area of your life. In other words, it should imply personal growth.

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2023 review: Gardening

Last year I set myself the goal to work in my personal garden. I wanted to analyse what I was doing and why. The goal was to remove things that didn’t work and have more time to improve the things I was doing. In short: increase focus by spending quality time evaluating my behaviour.

Looking back, 2023 was not about spending more time writing my own stuff. As with the years before, I wasn’t able to spend the time I wanted on my book and the short stories I had in my backlog. I know that I should’ve tended to these flowers, but they are already their own thing. Thus they needed less attention. Instead, my time was used by A: preparation for my vacation1 and B: writing a few pieces for a Dutch website. The first was necessary. The second one didn’t work out. Some seeds don’t bloom and that’s ok. Looking back, writing for another website is not completely in line with the long-term goals I have. Though it had the positive effect that it exposed the workload I put on myself at the time.

Positives of 2023:

  1. Because of the experience I had with writing for the other website, I decided to stop pushing myself for a blog each month. I simply lack the time and prefer to spend it on projects that are more fun to complete. 
  2. This decision also allowed me to both limit and enjoy my media consumption more. I can be even more precise about what I write and when.
  3. During my vacation I experienced my love of connecting with people over certain topics. It was a nice experience, and I would love to have more of these “heart connections” in the future.

2024: New opportunities

The start of the new year didn’t go as I expected. I only recently finished the photo book of my vacation, and there were some other things that required my attention in December which pushed back defining a Year Theme.‌ Formulating a Year Theme takes time and I needed a moment to breathe and to organise my thoughts on this topic. Something illustrated best by the following quote:

Sometimes you just need to focus on the present, take a deep breath and just be. Sometimes things can get so complicated that our mind can’t quite sort them out alone. But when you slow down and let yourself breathe, your spirit and your body can catch up with your mind and help out.
To know something truly and deeply you must know it with your head, hand and heart. Mind, body and spirit.

Queen Sarai – The Dragon Prince season 2 episode 9: Breathe

So, now we are here. My goal this year is that I want 2024 to be a year where my personal interests and wishes are more present. For myself and others. So I can grow and other people know which direction I want to grow. Thus my Year Theme of 2024 is Proclamation.

Explaining the Theme

A proclamation is “an official declaration issued by a person of authority to make certain announcements known2.

For me, this is a re-establishment of who I want to be as a person and what I want to do professionally. Since I notice that there is still a discrepancy between my Future and Current Self (as it should be), I want to take steps towards it. Steps that make it clear whom I want my Future Self to be.

I want this to result in: 

  1. Utilising my strengths at work more. My current job has me doing many different things within the confines of the job description. There is however a discrepancy between what I’m currently doing and what is possible. 
  2. Finished products which showcase my capabilities as a writer and worldbuilder.
  3. A personal coat of arms or images I can put on my carnaval jacket. It’s the time of the year and I really like the idea of visual representation.

To conclude

With a renewed focus on myself I want to spend more time doing things that give me energy instead of taking it away. With this Theme, I also want the world to see what I can do with the correct focus. Each day gives us an exciting possibility to continue growth as a person. And this year, I’m focusing on the work area of my life. Let’s make the most out of it!


1. See my December 2023 blog

2. Definitions of a proclamation: Dictionary and Wiki (since that gives a more clear explanation of it.
How to write an official proclamation.