Happy New Year 2012!

No, that’s not a typo. Yesterday, I sat down with a friend to pencil some dates into each month of this calendar year and 2011 passed before our very eyes. Whoosh. Just like that, 2011, gone. Hello 2012.

Just now, I’ve been sending out a series of email invitations to a number of events in early February. And after hitting the ‘send’ button, I had this disconcerting sense of a pale grey fog out there in the ether, made up of anxiety, a touch of panic, a splash of overwhelmed. All wrapped up in expectations we have of ourselves and those we believe others have of us.

Has life always been this crazy? Is it simply that I’m getting older and it really does get ‘worse’ every year? Or are things becoming increasingly feverish? I suspect it’s the latter.

We’re constantly connected to information asking us to do something. To read, to think, to respond, to juggle – even if it’s just our attention. I skived off to a movie today (says she, still mostly on holiday) and the majority of people in the theatre were women over 65, at a guess. Women with one eye and ear on the screen, one eye on their iPhone and one ear on the friend sitting beside them.

It’s only the 5th of January, but even now, a part of me wants to shout out at the top of my lungs ‘Stop the clock!!!!’ Which is ironic given that my watch stopped the week before Christmas.

In these very first few days of January, I’ve found myself prefacing emails by saying ‘I hope you are at least a little rested’… I’ve a sense from talking with people and reading their comments in social media, that actually they’re not nearly as well rested as they’d like.

Almost everyone I talk with has made a New Years resolution to lead a more balanced life this year. The vast majority of people I know are counting the few days off over Christmas as the first holiday they’ve had for a year. And that leaves them beginning the year, batteries not recharged, already feeling faintly overwhelmed.

I don’t really have an answer to this Big Question of how to maintain a sense balance as we rush headlong into another year, all I can say is this…

To those of you out there who have recently been on the receiving end of an invitation from me. You can say no, you know.

To Christine, who I sat with on the verandah on Christmas Day eating raspberries and talking about how we should catch up more often this year, let’s do that… Coffee soon? A cooking demo at Elements?

To my yoga mat, I will endeavour to see you every day, even if it’s just for 10 minutes.

And to my watch, well, perhaps you can remain stopped just a little bit longer.