Back for 2020, The Survey resurfaces, kicking off a brand-new year of question-asking and storytelling, with a few realistic goals and pledges for the year ahead.
Naturally, the beginning of not only a fresh year but a shiny new decade, encourages a fair bit of self-reflection. It’s that point in the calendar where we spend time looking back over the highs and lows, as well as scheming how we can do things better in the coming months. Avoiding the usual sure-to-fail resolutions of more time in the gym and less time in the pub, we ask our latest gang to reveal the more personal promises they hope to stick to in 2020 and beyond.
Michael Hill – Drake’s Creative Director
New Year's resolutions typically err on the side of asceticism and self-denial, which is all well and good, but for 2020 I want to indulge a little more. Stay out a bit later and drink that extra martini. Try not to take things too seriously. Wear more colour and more texture. I suppose, to put it simply, I plan on taking a more bon vivant approach to life.
I sometimes think that this kind of attitude is the best antidote to the pervasive doom and gloom of the world, so with that in mind, I can think of no better philosophy to carry into the new decade.
Jason Jules - Writer
It's not a New Year’s resolution in the traditional sense, more like a corrective strategy. Don't get me wrong, I love social media. I love looking at other people's Instagram feeds and updating my own and all the conversations I have everyday with people I've not met - yet. I love seeing what old friends are up to, kids I've helped along the way that are now doing amazing, global stuff. And I love discovering new things - social media is a constant inspiration in that respect, too.
But. Even with all that, I plan to engage with social media a lot less this year. It's not that I think social media is bad, but it's just that social media is, um, social. It's really predicated on an external focus, on public dialogue and on the surface of things.
And what I've realised is that I miss the introspection that comes from reading a book or seeing a play or writing a long essay. I miss exploring an idea without the urge to share it. I miss seeing a painting without trying to decide whether I like it or not in 0.5 seconds flat.
So, next year I'm going to make a conscious effort to focus on quality rather than quantity, to spend less time on social media and more time reading, writing and creating stuff that will require more than 0.5 seconds of my attention, or anyone else's for that matter.
Leanne Cloudsdale - Writer
I've hit choc-bottom. Consuming bars of chocolate the size of Vince Clarke's Yazoo-era synthesizer has been my modus operandi almost every day of 2019, but now it really has to stop, because the only person winning here is my dentist. It's so hard tracing things back; trying to work through all the wrong turns in my life that brought me to this sorry state of affairs. I used to be the woman who arrived at meetings clasping a bag of almonds and sugar-free dried mango, but nowadays I shuffle into clients’ studios anxious about whether anyone saw me necking a family-sized bag of Cadbury's Buttons on the CCTV before I buzzed in.
Anyway. That was the old me. 2020 is the year of transformation and marks the start of a whole new regime – no more corner shop vices, I'm all about sustainable snacks. Don't get me wrong, I'm not heading down the neurotic 'no sugar' route – I don't hate life that much, but I am considering better ways to perk myself up during the inevitable mid-afternoon and late-night writing slumps than gobbling my own bodyweight in the brown stuff, looking like some starving feral cavewoman who happens upon the still-warm carcass of a dead antelope. I'm really doing this. January 1st marks the end of the Milky Way for me. I promise…
Terry Ellis – Buyer, Co-Founder, Fennica
My resolution for this new year is to build a small house on a Caribbean Island, persuade a Japanese family to adopt me so I can live semi-permanently in Tokyo, and to rent an apartment in the Shuri area of Naha Okinawa for weekend getaways. Yes, that is how deeply Brexit has affected me. Perhaps more doable is a resolution to become a full time Brixton flâneur. I’m partly there already. I live in Brixton and spend all my spare cash in two record shops there. I therefore resolve to spend more time drinking coffee at the bar of the Ritzy Cinema in Windrush Square. As to fitness, I’m a member of no gym, but I do own a stationary exercise bicycle. I resolve to use it other than as a coat hanger. I will drink less wine and eat fewer Jamaican patties, at least for breakfast.
Joking aside, these are things I’ve been doing - or trying to do - for the last thirty years. Along with trying to buy fewer but better clothes for myself, while simultaneously producing more and better clothing for the store. As I wear almost everything we produce, the latter resolution is irreconcilable. That’s life. In truth I just resolve to try to be a better, kinder, more forgiving version of myself... and to post less on Instagram.
Karlmond Tang - Stylist
I mean, what am I not trying to do for New Year’s resolutions. Stop working from bed. Stop working in a dressing gown, and realise that a coffee mug doesn’t make it any more “business.” Keep each work phone call on the actual agenda instead of going off on a tangent. Only work with clients who you value and in return value you. I suppose all of these are work-related, and that’s really the problem for most people – finding a work / life balance. I give away too much time trying to work around others and yes, I suppose this is totally the point of my job! But next year, all I want to do is forever go into an office with positivity.
Overall I had quite a good year, and this year I’d be extremely grateful for the same. So I suppose my main resolution is to just do what I did, but better.