After what was a busy couple of weeks for us over the holidays, I'm finally taking some time today to think about the new year. I love this time of year...I love taking the time to reflect on life, on where I've been in the last year and where the next might lead.
I used to be a resolutions fanatic, but I gave that up some time ago. Three years ago, I created instead a list of intentions for the new year...thoughts about how I wanted to live my life more intentionally. I liked having those thoughts to guide me through the year instead of a harsh list of resolutions that left me feeling guilty when they so easily were broken.
That year, I also chose to use one word as my word for the year, a word to encompass all those things I wished to focus on. Appropriately enough, that year my word was intention. Living with intention. It was also the year I turned 40. I do not think the two things were unrelated.
Last year, I chose a new word for my year...balance. Looking back, I'm not sure I achieved balance in the way I'd intended it when I first chose that word. 2007 was a year of some amazing revelations for me...primarily, I realized how much I'd been living my life the way I thought other people wanted me to live it and not paying much attention to who I was and what was important to me. I spent a lot of time last year working though some periods of anger and resentment in certain areas. It was not easy, but it was good. I let go of a lot of the fears I had...fears of disapproval and judgment from those I love. Thus, I feel like I began to balance my life out on a grander scale...all those years of trying to fit into other people's expectations, now beginning to be balanced by fitting into the life that is truly my own. And thankfully, I feel free of most of those angry feelings I went through as I was re-discovering who I really am. It was a weird, unexpected process to go through, but I'm glad it happened. It's made me a better, happier person.
So, this year I've been trying to think of another word to capture that which I want to focus on for 2008. I've decided on deeper. Now that I feel like I have a renewed direction for my life, I want to explore it more deeply, continue to get to know myself as a woman in this stage of life and examine what that will mean as things continue to change. I don't want my passions and enthusiasm to stop at a superficial level but instead I want them to go deeper into both the big things in my life, as well as the little everyday things.
I think it is going to be a good year.