The big review: packing for 2022

Nicole Walsh Author
3 min readJan 1, 2023


Originally published on my website, 17 Dec 2021

Some of us may be lucky enough to be heading away for the holiday season. Do you remember back when we USED to travel? Figuring out what we needed, what we will take, what we will leave behind. Cramming it all into a suitcase, cussing and re-packing? (Are you a folder, or a scruncher?). Playing Tetris in the driveway or garage, packing and repacking the vehicle to cram everything in?

As we skid through December, we are leaving 2021 behind and preparing to launch ourselves into 2022. Is anyone else putting thought into goals, plans and intentions for 2022? Is anyone else deciding what we should pack, and what we can leave behind?

This is my absolute favourite time of year. No matter how busy I get or how chaotic the stumble toward the end of the year becomes I always find time to reflect on the year we are leaving behind, on what worked well and what got stuck or wobbled.

You don’t need to be completely zen, meditating on a mountain top staring into a sunrise to reflect or set intentions (although this definitely helps — God I miss Woodford!). My best reflections happen when I am washing the dishes, stuck in traffic, or day-dreaming in the shower. A reflection or intention can come to you in a rush in a complete picture, or trickle past in fragments.

There are so many things I enjoyed about 2021, that I am so grateful and thankful for. I was blessed in so many areas. There are many routines, habits and choices that worked really well for me, which I plan to draw into 2022. There were a few yucky moments that I learned from, and will leave behind. These gave me new perspectives and understandings about myself and the world.

The world has changed so dramatically these past few years. We face things we could not have imagined four years ago. The flavour of life changed. Many of us have faced heart-breaking situations, times of stress and worry and tension. Some of us are still hilt-deep in heart-break, stress or worry.

It is easy to think “I just want 2022 to be different”. There are things we simply don’t have power over. There are other things we have complete power over.

What worked for you in your self-care and creative space in 2021? What will carry with you into 2022?

What things didn’t work? Will you leave those things behind? Do you have another habit or routine to replace a discarded one?

Taking a moment to reflect, be thankful and re-tell challenging experiences as opportunities for learning can ground us in a busy season. It empowers us to focus on what we do have control over, the small changes we can make to our day, week and month to bring us closer to feeling safe, happy, productive, healthy… or whatever our wish is for 2022.

This year the universe presented me with incredible opportunities to learn what works for me and what does not work for me in my creative space. I will be pulling forward most of what I did in 2021, tempered with learnings about myself and my world and my creative heart.

What are you packing to bring into 2022? What’s important and useful enough to bring with you?

What will you leave behind?



Nicole Walsh Author

Nicole writes short and novel length speculative fiction. She writes a weekly blog at: or