An Open Letter to 2016

As we ring in the new year, we can’t help but reflect on the past and think about our futures.  It is like closing one chapter in a book and opening another.  We think about what went right, what went wrong, what we completed, where we could do better, who we loved, who we lost, etc.  And I probably think about these things more than most, as I am a self-proclaimed analyzer – constantly seeking to understand and improve myself and my connection to others.  And then the inevitable resolution thoughts arise.  I’d like to eat less, exercise more, etc etc.  Last year I gave up on resolutions and decided to just pick one word to focus on for the year.  And for me it was “intention”.  I wanted to concentrate on not being pulled into the fray but rather define my part in it and choose whether or not I wanted to participate.  That really worked well for me, as I tend to get easily distracted and pulled off course.  I could come back to this simple word and recalibrate to my main purpose.  A friend of mine just posted this mantra and I love it:

Ditch the resolutions.  To resolve means to find a solution to a problem.  You are not a problem.  The way you showed up for your life the past year was necessary for your growth.  Now is a time to reflect.  To learn.  To create an intention, a positive call to shift, a spark of magic and manifestation rooted in self-love and backed with action.

As I look to 2016, I am contemplating how I want to move forward with p.s. bonjour, my home life, what I need to do to meet my hierarchy of needs, etc.  So my word for 2016 is going to be “balance”.  I will continue to build on living a life of intention for sure, and if I feel like I’m getting pulled into directions I don’t want, I will come back to the word, “balance”, and seek to restore those things that I’m missing.  I started this over the holidays – a time when people get so stressed they forget the reason for the season and end up missing out on the joy available to them.  For me that meant making lists of chores I needed to get done and then I made a “balance” or “fun” list – things that I knew I wanted to do to enjoy the season.  So, for example, if I had to go the grocery store then I also made time to stop and get a coffee and read a magazine.  Or if I had to do laundry and clean the house, then I also scheduled a massage.  What that meant was saying no to some things that I have done in the past.  I did still bake cookies but I chose to do less decorating, etc.  And guess what – it was perfect for me.  One of my favorite balance days was on Christmas Eve – we did last minute cleaning and cooking for guests coming Christmas Day but then took the afternoon and evening to go to the Monet exhibit at the Cleveland Museum of Art and out to dinner at L’albatros.  It felt decadent and rewarding to take that time to cultivate my connection with my husband.

So how do I achieve balance in 2016?  I’m revisiting the vision I have for work and life and then spend some time breaking down how to fit both into a rough 30-60-90 day plan.  I know from personal experience that too much detail will not be attainable for me and I’ll get discouraged.  But if I can focus on a high level theme, then everything rolling up to that will give me the confidence to move forward, and I can set shorter term goals and decide how to achieve them.  And what better way to move forward than with one of my favorite teachers, Maya Angelou…

Open your heart, fling your hopes high, set your dreams aloft, I am here to hold your hand.

Blessings to you and yours for a joy-filled 2016.

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