At the beginning of each year I choose a ‘word’ as my intention for the 365 days ahead. Sometimes it is a phrase, sometimes nothing more than a simple word that may receive nothing more than a passing glance to some, but for me it holds significance. My word for 2016 was Brave.
My life centred around the theme of stepping out, trying new things, finding my voice, and really embodying what it means to find strength and not be afraid to shine. Brave was what this past year needed. But being brave; with all its positives leaving me feeling accomplished, like I achieved personal growth and like I truly pushed my own limitations, often left me exhausted.
When I look back at all the things I wanted to accomplish this year, I am left with lists written in beautiful gold ink with barely any stroke marks of a job done passed through them… Goals of writing more, submitting pieces to be published, and more, are nothing but empty words on pages of 2016 hopes and dreams. I love to write. I want to do it more, always. But life gets in the way…
This past year my bravery was most strong during the days I struggled with trying my best and feeling like it’s never good enough for anyone, yet still showing up the next day and doing it all over again. My bravery was evident each day I took work home when days were drawn out and exhausting. Being brave had highlights- like finally becoming comfortable in the skin I’m in, being proud of what my body can do instead of disliking my non-modelesque proportions and tone. Bravery was in facing each day with a choice to be love instead of hate, to be kind instead of blunt, and to use discretion when being ‘over it’ was all I wanted to be.
This year I the intention I chose is what it appears I need more than anything else…
My instant-but-gone-in-24-hours social media feed showcases my obvious love of the hilarious side of balance; doing yoga, then eating donuts/cookies/cake/macarons. While this balance is deliciously sweet, my life craves a more internalized interpretation in order to sprout seeds of ideas and dreams into plants my newfound bravery from 2016 will water and help grow.
Balance, at this point, appears to be crucial for my existence.
I want to work, and have time to play.
I want to spend time with loved ones, and maintain time to myself for self care.
I want to run wild with dreams catching fire like sparklers at dusk, illuminating a forest of endless possibilities around me, then rise in the morning with clear paths lined with God-sized trees of shelter and safety and clarity.
Balance will make 2017 the best year yet.
After the many highs, but overall exhausting 2016, I’m ready for a more peaceful, focused, and enjoyable 2017.
I want more trips, more adventure, more yoga, more school, more dreams taking flight, more time to explore, and time to recover from injuries while working a schedule that works for the life I want to live.
I crave balance.
I will create balance.
I will work hard, love freely, and dance with all the fireflies of joy, and creativity, and God-infused passion to live a life I am truly pleased with. Bravery, a learned skill now embodied in how I live my life, will embrace balance to my life with outstretched arms, and I am looking forward to the year ahead.
What is your intention for 2017? I encourage you to set time aside to reflect on the year now passed and set an intention for 2017 with some practicals ways to live out that intention each and every day.