Happy New Year!
The holidays are behind us (they flew by in a flash per usual!) and we have landed squarely in a new year. It will be February before I stop writing 2017 on everything! Historically I have been the type to go from the frenzy and excitement of Thanksgiving & Christmas straight to being ready for spring and all the energy that comes with spring loveliness. I bypass winter altogether. Any emotions I experience for winter are tied directly to Christmas and once that season ends, I’m done with it. Kind of a rip off for old man winter huh? As I have gotten older however, I have shifted in these feelings. Winter seems to be stepping up in my life with more solid footing as a season not just defined by Christmas and I have to admit, I am loving it. I know that New Years brings a rush of excitement with it, feelings of renewal and resolutions. If there were ever a new year that ushered in such feeling of new beginnings it was this year with the first day of the year landing on a Monday. New year, new week, new goals, new energy etc etc. It’s kind of a blank slate feeling right? Like hitting the reset button, shed the old, make room for the new. I really love that feeling and wish it could be bottled and carried throughout the year.
A Guiding Word
I have always chosen a word at the beginning of each new year, well not always, I began doing this in 2010. The word is meant to be a guiding word- so if you could boil down all of your intentions for the new year into one word, distill it into a short statement, what would it be? In the past I’ve used focused, mindfulness, self care and a few others as my guiding words. In fact, focus has been a guiding word for me more than once – no doubt an effort to not take on too many things and perhaps practice saying “no” occasionally. This year by guiding word is hope. As I began in early December reflecting on my year and giving thought to what I would like to accomplish in the new year, hope is the word that I kept circling back to. I love the word hope, it feels so open ended, there is so much potential there and it’s a feeling of optimism for me. I’ve set some goals for myself for 2018 but again, as I get older (it’s true, wisdom does come with age) I’m less willing to be overly ambitious with my goals and more interested in knowing my intentions, knowing what really matters to me, being honest about my time and how I choose to use my time and even more so, careful with how I spend my energy, reserving it for the people and the projects in my life that make my heart feel…well, hopeful.
So, as I settle into this winter season, I am doing so with prayer and quiet intention. As the weather has become so very cold, I’m embracing the time we all spend indoors, enjoying cups of cocoa and many, many fires in the fireplace. I’m loving the conversations, the laughter, the company of my people. I’m grateful to old man winter for the cold weather that brings a real hush to it all, that gently imposes a retreat to the indoors, a hibernation of sorts. Unlike years past, I’m not rushing into the new year barreling past winter with all of my goals and determination, I’m opting for an easing into this new year, staying grounded in the moments as they unfold and filled with hope by what will transpire.