I once read a really humorous book based on observations of the French. It said that the beginning of the year here is in September, when the kids restart the school year and the French have all come back from vacation. It struck me the first year I was here just how many businesses and shops completely shut their doors in August and take the month off. Bakeries, flower shops, estate agents and the like are all closed for a solid month. Forget about capitalism, vives les vacances! I always feel the rebirth at this time of the year. Easter has come and I have been given a blank canvas on which to live the best I can. My sins have been paid for and I must try to not lose focus on a period of time that was once defined by the amount of chocolate I could eat. Looking forward in April I can see a clear schedule. After the hecticity of March, that is quite a treat. There are plenty of other projects I could immerse myself in, but my first instinct is to think rather than jump right in. I guess I am allowing myself to ease off on my running, to have that extra slice of cheesecake, or to just laze on the sofa mindlessly thumbing through an old dog-eared John Grisham novel. I have the type of personality that drives me to achieve, as if the more I do the more I'll be recognised for it. It's kind of lame, actually. I would rather sit back and see what comes my way this year, instead of chasing after it.
There is currently a dangerous intersection on social media in the modern world to over-utilise Facebook, twitter, Instagram etc. for self-promotion and then wait on “likes” for validation. It determines the content we post and the ideas we have because the approval rating is so important. I don't think it something we can sustain. I have struggled a lot with this recently in “selling” my own story. My intentions have been pure because I know from experience that it has helped a few others. But at what point does one cross the over the line to shameless self-promotion? A season of not having to forcefully do that is definitely welcomed, too. It'll be nice see the opportunity to not do something as a plus, rather than an opportunity to fill my plate with more than I can handle.