For a bit, I considered symbols and really started to come to like the symbol of a wolf: "Wolf is a symbol of guardianship, ritual, loyalty, and spirit. Wolf has the ability to make quick and firm emotional attachments, and often need to trust their own instincts. Thus they teach us to do the same, to trust our hearts and minds, and have control over our own lives (Pure Spirit)." Unfortunately, I think when we think of a wolf, we go all fairy tale. The wolf doesn't symbolize happily-ever-after. Instead, we've given it this identity of trickery and trouble. Wolf wouldn't work.
So I kept thinking and listening and hoping....
Here are my past words:
- Reach (2018)
- STRETCH (2017)
- Be Mindful (2016)
- Be Brave (2015 --- and my personal favorite)
- Discover (2014)
- Thank (2012)
This year, I knew I wanted a word that brought me calm. I wanted a word that fit both my personal and professional life. Each day after January 1st, I became more and more concerned that I might not ever find my word. I wanted something that helped me to be clear in my vision, to pause, to be intentional, to be okay with just being a space sometimes. I'm not sure where it hit me, but somehow the word "center" came to my attention. The more I tried it on, the more I liked it. It seemed to bring together so many words I had considered. Best of all, every time I reminded myself of the word it seemed to give me space to pause, reach inside, and be thoughtful about next steps/words/actions.
This year, I'll be working to stay centered, to be true to my core beliefs, find margin, and allow myself to just be sometimes. I just finished reading Almost Everything: Notes on Hope by Anne Lamott; I believe this is exactly what she is talking about. In her book she writes, "Contrary to my upbringing, the bigger, more real, and friendlier the world inside me becomes, the safer I feel in the outside world (p.172)." I think she's onto something. This year, I think I'll see if "center" can help guide me.