First, write a summary of your 2017 so far in 100 words. Not 2017 politics or what you read on Facebook, but your personal and professional life in 2017. High level. Short. And, this time, factual.
Now: circle or bold one word that feels like something you would be delighted to bring into or increase in 2018.
Write about this, with the rest of your words and time today:
What is the spirit of this word? What is the flavor or direction of the energy that sparks in you around this word and what it represents? How does it feel in your body? In your heart? What do you love about how it makes you feel?
What about the spirit or energy of this word do you want to bring into 2018?
And what will that look like? What will you do more of or less of? Who will you spend your time with? What will you learn or adventure into? What will you think about and do for fun?
2017 has been an amazing year. I traveled outside the country for the first time and took a cruise. I had a new grand baby. I got a more in touch with myself emotionally and spiritually. I engaged in more learning through reading and listening to books. I have connected more with other people and developed relationships with people who greatly enrich my life. I have continued to use my training, skills and talents to help others both through a career I love and volunteering in my community. I have drawn closer to God and let Him shine more through my life.
Engaged, that is the word that encompasses the Spirit of 2017 and what I would like to continue to carry into this next year. Being engaged makes me feel alive, full of joy, at peace, and challenged all at the same time. It makes feel connected and useful. When I am engaged there is an energy that permits so much growth and creativity in the moment that any feelings of weariness and doubt fade.
I want to engage in living life in 2018, moving towards the goals and dreams I have instead of just allowing life to pass me by. In order to do this I need to engage in defining what I want and then focus on taking steps towards those goals. I have to be willing to step back from things that do not draw me closer to those goals. I have to risk engaging with new people and stepping out of where I am comfortable to pursue the higher calling of my dreams. I want to open myself up to people and perspective through books, seminars, trainings and other medias to help me grow and learn new things.
I want to be engaged with my husband during our time together, intentionally growing closer and pursuing life together. I want to focus on the quality of out time together, not just seek the quantity that may leave both of us drained. I want to engage with my children when we are talking or together. I want to both pour into their lives and draw from the energy, creativity and passion they each have. I want to engage in life with them. I want to engage with my grandchildren. I don’t want them to just come to Mimi’s house to have dinner or spend the night. I want to engage in our time together, connect with them where they are and create lasting memories and traditions.
I want to engage in traveling. I want to see the world in person, and engage with the people in different communities and cultures. I want to see the world through the lives of others and open myself up to learning new things. I am already looking at the next place to go. I want to experience the world around me, not just afar but locally too.
I want to engage with my emotions. This has been a several year journey, but I want to integrate my emotions with who I truly am. I want to feel free to express emotions and be vulnerable, not with everyone, but with anyone I need to. I want to be able to identify emotions, learn from them, and release them. I want others to feel comfortable sharing their emotions and know that while I will not take them on, I am empathetic to where they are.
I want to engage in connecting more with others. I don’t just want to know someone’s name, I want to take the time to get to really know others. I want to develop deeper friendships with those that I have in my life, people who I have kept at arm’s length for whatever reasons. I want to learn more about the people who I am doing life with. I want to make new connections with people who I am supposed to help on their journey or who are supposed to help me on mine.
I want to continue to engage in growth in my career. I want to know that I am doing what I am supposed to be doing, where I am suppose to be doing it, and to the best that I can be doing it. I want to continue to help others – both personally and professionally in their own growth. I want to expand my influence, and yet be more focused in that influence.
Most of all I want to engage more with God. I want my life to reflect the grace and mercy that He has shown to me. I want to walk out the love that He has given to me. I want to be His hands and feet in the world around me. I want others to be drawn to Him by my passion and His presence in me. I want to know Him more and I want to know that I am known by Him more. I want to hear His voice above anyone else. I want all that He has for me, and to be all that He created me to be in the year to come.
Engage, it is such a broad word. Yet it really does encompass the spirit of 2017 and where I want to continue to bring focus in 2018. I want to engage in ever area of my life so that I can live life to the fullest. I don’t want 2018 to just slip by like another year, I want it to be focused and I want to engage in every part of life through it.
This post is prompted by Tara-Nicholle Nelson’s 30 Day Writing Challenge for Conscious Leaders.