Happy New Year!
I hope that you have found the space in this new year to discern what you most need from 2018 and to begin to make decisions that support it. Perhaps you defined that need through a word for the year that could serve as litmus test for you as you make choices and create the year and experiences you most want to have. If so, I wanted to share my own journey to living my word in 2018 in hopes it might offer you support as you navigate your own experiences.
After spending plenty of time reflecting on 2017, I realized that what I most profoundly needed at this time in my life was deep nourishment. The last few years have left me physically and emotionally exhausted and leached my effervescence. My energy levels were really low though I would “mind over matter” my schedule anyways. In conducting my own end of year and new year reviews, I found that what I most needed at this moment was stillness, depth, clarity, and a sense of wellbeing. My word for the year? Nourishment.
To really understand how I might realize a sense of nourishment, the first thing I did was write a list of desires for 2018 and then I followed that by a list of intentions that took those desires and more directly stated them.
Desire- Craving actions derived from a surety in my bones.
Intention- Living with wholehearted energy across the spectrum of my life (for those of you who have been following my work for a while, one observation I had was that I was getting away from practicing my Wholehearted Continuum consistently).
Once I had my list of desires and intentions, I made a list of concrete actions that could offer me a profound sense of physical, emotional, and professional vitality. While some of those actions were longer term goals (finish a book proposal for example), some of them were behaviors that I wanted to be doing on a much more consistent basis so I created a daily habit tracker (just a simple grid with the habits I desired on the left and then columns for the days of the month down the right) so I could check them off as I practiced them. Some examples of habits that made the list: at least 7.5 hours of sleep, journaling, reading, movement, 8+ Fruits/Veggies, creating time margin (i.e. did I have some breathing room in my day or make decisions that will allow me breathing room in the future?), creating (art or writing), learning something, quality time with others (as opposed to profound productivity all the time). While about 16 habits were listed, my goal has been to check off at least 8 a day. My intention is to examine the list at the end of each month and then create the next month’s habit tracker based on what I’ve learned and am moving towards.
And though the year is still new, already I feel a profound sense of relief at the new (slower) pace I have set for 2018. I know I have said this before but the irony of being more present is that you have to show up (to/for) less (places/responsibilities) to show up more. While in some ways, my world is becoming smaller; it is beginning to feel more expansive and that feels like a profound relief.
So, if you are looking for ways to support living your word in 2018, here’s what I suggest:
- Write a list of your deep desires for 2018.
- Given those desires, pen a list of intentions to more concretely guide you.
- Shape those intentions into some concrete actions that would help you experience what it is you seek and consider creating a daily, weekly, and/or monthly tracker to keep an eye on how you are living your intentions. Remember everything can be edited; you don’t have to hold onto any ideas that don’t serve you.
- Use your word as a consistent litmus test. “Will this allow me to feel ___________ (nourished, in my case)?” can be a powerful guiding question as you move through your day and choices.
Wishing you a profound sense of nourishment and whatever else you seek in 2018.