2023…let’s go!

Normally I’m in bed by 10 on New Year’s Eve and woken by the thud of the fireworks down on the beach at Mooloolaba. Last night though we had dinner out with friends visiting from Sydney and watched the fireworks from the beach at Cottontree and at midnight did the hugging, kissing, happy new year thing.

Still lying awake at 3am, overtired but unable to sleep, I got to thinking about what I want from this year and how to tie that into one word. I’d decided on my resolutions and goals (call them what you will) for 2023 earlier in December, but the word?

While a heap of c words had been floating through my brain, none of them seemed right. Words like commitment, consistency, challenge, courage. Words that describe qualities I need this year, but words that don’t fit well with me.

Then on Friday, I read that Vivienne Westwood had died.

You see, back in the 80s I was fascinated by art and fashion – and fashion as art. I sat in art galleries and just looked at paintings – really looked at them, and aside from music spent my money on Australian Vogue and English Vogue. I knew I’d never have the shape (or height) that could wear the clothes in the mags – and that didn’t worry me – it was the design and the colour and fabrics that interested me. The way a collection could tell a story. And Vivienne Westwood with the way she used textures and tartan and tweed – with an irreverent nod to historical influences – was an inspiration. It wasn’t just the design, but what she stood for and didn’t stand for.

You’ve got to invest in the world, you’ve got to read, you’ve got to go to art galleries, you’ve got to find out the names of plants. You’ve got to start to love the world and know about the whole genius of the human race. We’re amazing people.

Vivienne westwood

Years later I went to an exhibition of Westwood’s clothes – it must have been in the early 2000s – and was inspired all over again.

Westwood was a disruptor, and I don’t mean in terms of putting a finger up to society (something she certainly did), but in terms of her creativity, and as a teenager in suburban Sydney in the 1980s I secretly wanted to do the same but knew deep down I never would and would instead conform in all the ways I should.

It’s strange, but until reading about Westwood’s passing, I’d forgotten all of that, but just like that, at 3am this morning, it all came back. It also clarified my words for 2023:




It’s these three words that I want, no need, in my life this year.

I know it’s fashionable these days not to make resolutions or set goals, but I’ve always been one that needs to. Even if I don’t achieve everything, it’s more than what I would have done if left to my own devices. This year though, instead of thinking big, I’m thinking small… Inspired by Dr. Michael Mosley’s Just One Thing I’ll be making big life changes through a series of small changes.

How will that work? Each month I’ll be tackling one part of life and trying a new “just one thing” each week. Some changes might stick, some might not, but the whole point of this is to strip back the layers and complexity, simplify my life, tweak my habits, let colour back in, and manifest the change I want to be.

First up in January I’ll be challenging the biggie – my diet, my weight. The habits that have got me back here to be within 300g of the heaviest I’ve ever been, and the mindset that is keeping me there.

Naturally I’ll keep you posted…

Author: Jo

Author, baker, sunrise chaser

27 thoughts

  1. Love your attitude to 2023 Jo and I’ll be right there having your back and cheering you on. Like you I need goals even if I keep them to myself or share them. It’s not for everyone but we need to go what’s right for us don’t we? Happy New Year and may it be full of Change, Creativity and Colour and definitely no COVID!!! Love to you my friend. xx

  2. What an inspiring post to read on New Years Eve. We all need more courage, colour and creativity in our lives. I will also be here following your adventures and (loudly) cheering you on!

  3. First of all, congratulations on staying up to celebrate the new year! That was your first accomplishment in 2023. Also, congratulations for having enough of a buzz going to get your mind racing toward this post. Awesome!

    I love the quotes you shared from Ms. Westwood, but the first one says everything, doesn’t it? An awareness of life is one thing, but actually ‘investing’ in it is what brings about change. The second quote reminds me of a home economics teacher (you probably didn’t have that class in Australia), but anyway, she always told us to buy one thing of quality, instead of three things that would fall apart. It took a long time for that to sink in.

    Cheers to Change, Creativity, and Color in your life. Looking forward to following your journey.

  4. Those are fabulous words to help shape your year!! My boys and I spent several years doing a “52 brand new” challenge where we pushed ourselves to try 1 new thing each week some weeks it was something small like a new fruit or veggie and other weeks it was something big like a rope/adventure course. We had a lot of fun with it and I hope you do too chasing more color, change, and more creativity.

  5. You picked such great words (my favorite is Color… or Colour)! And, I love the philosophy of Just One Thing. I was first introduced to Dr. Mosley when I watched his health series back in 2012. That’s where I learned about Intermitted Fasting, which changed completely how I managed my weight. Anyway, I wasn’t aware of his new book and podcast, so thanks for the tip! I am really looking forward to following your journey in 2023!

    1. Thanks Janis. I really admire Dr Mosley (he breaks the science down into commonsense) but have never done the IF thing seriously. That will, however, be part of my plan this year.

      1. Me again! I listened to Daily Calm each morning, and around NYD, the narrator spoke of the differences between resolutions and intentions. It’s been a while but I know way back I would do the ‘lose weight, walk more’ for a few days and then lapse. “Fail”. Intentions however, have more of gentle, “that didn’t go well, but let’s pick ourselves up, and keep going.” Loved it. Thank you so much for returning to Wednesday’s Words and Pics Link Up in 2023. I look forward to continuing the blogging community connection this year. May your year go well. Denyse.

  6. Hi Jo – I can’t believe you saw in the new year (I was dead to the world by 10:30pm). I’m also impressed that you didn’t have your words until the very last minute (I thought I was doing well with coming up with mine in mid December!) I also see some synchonicity in what we both want – “to strip back the layers and complexity, simplify my life, tweak my habits, let colour back in” certainly resonated with me.

    Good on you for challenging yourself with a new thing each week – that’s way out of my league, but I’ll be following along with interest to see how you go – if anyone can do it, it’ll be you my friend! x

  7. Way to go Jo! I love your three C words – especially colour – and can’t wait to see how you tackle things along the way. If anyone can do it, it’s you! That first quote by Vivienne Westwood says it perfectly – what more do we need? I’ll be with you as a cheerleader and supporter in any way you need 🙂 xx

  8. Those are all some very inspiring words, and I can’t wait to hear what you do with them. Thanks for sharing about Vivienne Westwood, I love that first quote, I agree with everything!
    Good luck with your weight loss work also.

  9. I love that you used the word colour. What a great focus to have for the year. Here to us all having more colour in our lives – both physically and emotionally. I too am on a journey to try to work the mindest of my eating habits. IFingers crossed 2023 brings some insight for us both.

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