Motivation logo

Change Is A Good Thing

by Jackie Barrows 10 months ago in goals

As Long As It's Toward Truth Leads to Personal Growth

What is unknown is just a beautiful mystery to be solved.

I can feel it deep within my gut; there is a visceral change on the horizon that may scare a number of people but is worth it in the end. To be wise is to embrace such change and move with it, for these things have needed to happen for quite some time now. In order for proper growth within one's self and within society to occur, certain old ways of being have to be either destroyed completely or re-molded into something brand new.

The year 2020 was just a barometer for what was to come and was meant to shake people awake to how things were going vs. how they ought to be going. It is meant as a mirror to be held up to everyone's face in an effort to confront certain behaviors and habits that have no other option than to change for the better. I would wager a lot of us have seen the unsavory shadow versions of ourselves within the last year that should give all of us pause, and cause us to contemplate how to become the best versions of ourselves instead of succumbing to how the world at large wants us to be.

The sparks of change that lead to a better world starts with you and I.

In order to give some inspiration as to how to become a better version of one's self, I'll start with myself and how I plan to improve mentally, physically, spiritually, financially, and emotionally not just for this year alone, but for the years to come.

1. I am going to make it a point to read the old classics more often.

Truth be told, I need to make reading books more of a habit once more, just as it was when I was a kid. The only reason I fell out of it was way back in highschool when my math and science classes became more demanding--sadly, I thought it meant I had to put reading, artwork, and other things I enjoy on hold until I could handle the workload of subjects in which I wasn't as strong.

I've been out of the world of school for some time now, and I am going to most certainly make it a point not just to read more, but to increase the quality of the books I read. Fortunately for me, I already have numerous classics at my disposal (books by Ayn Rand, the complete works of Aristotle, works by Fyodor Dostoevsky and Leo Tolstoy, and other collections and works), and will be seeking to not only read them, but to study them in terms of what makes them classics, and to eventually write book reviews on each one to post here on Vocal. That is my goal, at least.

The ultimate reason as to why I want to read and study the classics is because they are considered the classics for a reason, and I want to read these works in order to build my mind as well as improve my writing quality. I've already gotten started, and I am inspired just by how these authors of old utilize their words to convey such eloquent stories and messages. Because I am out of school, I can read all such works with a fresh mind, and without the bogging down of other classwork. Granted, I do have other concerns such as my two jobs as well as blog writing, but I want to use this as an excuse to read more often.

Book stores and libraries are a form of paradise for me.

2. I am going to build back up my traditional media art skills.

Since August of 2015, I have been a part of a wonderful entity known as R.A.W. Productions, and have been heavily involved in digital art, illustration, graphic design, and motion graphics work. However, that has left little time to keep my traditional media skills in painting and drawing as sharp as they ought to be.

My main points of inspiration come from layout designs for 2d animation works of the past and present, and I aim to make my skills in traditional media match that quality of work. Every time I see works like this and others, I am truly inspired to pick up a brush and come up with ideas of my own!

Layouts from Disney's animated Robin Hood

I pull inspiration from old classics such as Disney's Robin Hood...

Recognize this Looney Tunes background? well as from various Looney Tunes cartoons.

Lovely Brother Bear backgrounds!

More recent works such as Dreamwork's Brother Bear are awe-inspiring! I can't help but be mesmorized by how the landscape is captured and the colors are used. (I mean...look at those lovely pieces! How can you not be inspired by this??) I so badly want to work toward making art like this, and in order to do that, I have to put in the hours upon hours of work and frustration that comes with paintings that are failures in comparison, and never be content with a work that is a work in progress.

Knowing me, I will need to fight to stay focused on this goal, as with both reading and art, my focus was always disrupted by other demands life that were deemed in greater need of attention. Therefore I never felt I could relax and do the work I wanted to do. That has to change in order for me to improve mentally and emotionally. I have to allow myself the time to enjoy doing this kind of work for relaxation, as it is to my benefit just the same as it would be for anyone else. And that is what I shall do!

Gotta love these classics as well :)

3. I have to get my financial life under control.

This is imperative; something's gotta give with my financial health. I need to officially get out of all indebtedness in favor of having enough money to handle whatever lies ahead.

Now, I already have a number of things underway to help with all of that; I'm fortunate enough to have a job that allows me to work from home full-time, but in order to supplement that income (which isn't a whole lot), I'm taking on other income sources such as blogging and side-hustling in order to build up my income more in order to pay down all debts and handle other expenditures.

You'll probably see me enter into a lot more of these Vocal contests, as well as become more consistent overall in my writing work so that I may hopefully get paid what is so often advertised. I will also be likely exploring ways to make money creating artwork. I've even begun investing in crypto and other markets in order to grow money faster. In short, it's going to make my schedule crazy busy, but I'm going for it because I have no other choice.

It all boils down to three main points as far as why I need to make this happen this year, no excuses: 1) I have a sizable amount of credit card and student loan debt that needs to get resolved ASAP due to it weighing me and my life down, and 2) as an adult, I need my money freed up in order to live more like an adult--that is to say, in my own place, as opposed to continuing to live under my parents' roof, and 3) I need to be able to handle life on my own in general in circumstances that are good as well as not so good.

The ultimate point being, I've got to find a way to make this happen. My sanity depends on it.

4. I'm going to get my physical health in order.

This is not merely relegated to weight loss and being able to wear whatever I want, so much as it is being physically capable in every sense of the word to handle whatever life throws at me both in the literal and metaphorical senses. I think we all can tell by now this particular decade is going to be a doozy, don't you?

Long story short, luck favors the prepared.

In my case, it means I should probably aim to lose anywhere from 50-75 lbs in body fat, and get my endurance and muscle tone up. It means I may have to work out in ways I have the most difficulty wanting to do (running, for example, is not my favorite thing to do, but may just be my ticket to better health). I will have to find workout routines I can actually do in a given day either between calls at my job or after work, and make it a point to stick to them. I know; easier said than done, right? Eh, it's gotta be done.

I will also continue practicing fasting for better health mentally, physically, and spiritually, since it helps in all of those areas in everything from becoming more sharply focused, to disciplining the mind and body to operate on the proper amount of food each day instead of having too much, to helping insulin production stay strong and vital (I have a lot of diabetes in my family history--for me, this is crucial!).

Changes like this won't be easy, but will be rewarding, and like any person, I will have to remind myself that from time to time. Just keep on keepin' on.

Other than the weights and yoga mat, this is an accurate picture.

5. I will make an effort to practice journaling.

This is something I've been somewhat admiring when others make this a habit. Some people get rather creative with their journaling work or use it as a chance to keep their lives organized, and it's excellent to see! I will be adopting this habit for a number of reasons for myself.

I don't know yet exactly how I will journal, as I'm torn between making it super artistic vs. turning it into a means of organization and to-do lists. I may find a way to do both that is not strictly regimented. Or perhaps I'll have different journals for different things...who knows?

Example No. 1 of a lovely artistic journal.

Looks like an old English book :)
Subtle yet beautiful!
I like this!

The reason I want to incorporate this goes along with reading more often as well as creating more artwork--I need to mentally and spiritually break the long-standing habit of always thinking I don't have the time to spare to commit to such a habit. I actually do have the time, and just need to make it a priority for mental and spiritual health's sake.

These are just a few examples of ways I intend to change for the new year in order to make myself stronger as a person. I need to read, write, and make beautiful art not just in order to relax but to teach myself that no matter how much life throws in my face, I am allowed to relax and enjoy life too. I need to get my finances in order so I can better secure my freedom as an adult down the road, and I need to get healthy in order to handle anything and everything life could possibly throw at me. Now it's just a matter of putting it all into practice without giving up when times get tough.

Here's to a new year, and I hope you all have success at making yourselves stronger as well! May this year be one of good changes individually and collectively!

DISCLAIMER: All photos used in this article are downloaded from Pexels and Pinterest. I do not own any of these images.


Jackie Barrows

Jackie Barrows is an artist, a writer, and all around creative soul who enjoys bringing new ideas and stories to life. She wears many hats as a Graphic Designer, a blogger, and Lead Production Artist for R.A.W. Productions.

Receive stories by Jackie Barrows in your feed
Jackie Barrows
Read next: Why I Say YES to Everyone in September?

Find us on social media

Miscellaneous links

  • Explore
  • Contact
  • Privacy Policy
  • Terms of Use
  • Support

© 2021 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.