It was the week of New Year’s Eve, 2015. Another year was approaching and while I knew it was only the ticking of the clock, the flipping of a calendar page, this one felt a little more… something. I wasn’t sure what it was, but it was something. And I wanted to choose the sort of something.
Friends had been posting “their word for 2016” all over Facebook and every time I saw such a post, I would roll my eyes and mumble, “Lemmings.” Then, I felt a nudge to look into why I was behaving such a way and, lo and behold, I discovered a sense of… *gasp!* what’s this? … jealousy and judgment!
Jealousy is an indication that I’ve lost track of myself and I’m too focused on others. It is an indication that I am comparing myself, looking at what they have and what I do not. It is the quickest way out of my divinity and into ego where I become an ugly, harsh person who scowls, scoffs, and mocks those who are doing/being what I wish I was myself.
Jealousy separates me from “them” and is a perfect way to keep my heart hidden; that is the sneaky aspect of this Green Monster. If I am holding myself away from others, they cannot get to me and my heart cannot get hurt again. Thing is, my heart is getting hurt and I am the perpetrator.
So, I set out to change my focus. I decided I would give this “word for the year” project a try; I hadn’t done it before, but all the “cool kids” (notice the judgment) seemed to think it was super, so maybe I ought to give it a go. I sat down and as part of my personal New Year’s Ritual, I played a word game with myself. Because I am a Wordy Wordsmith, word games delight me! And while I imagined (still being in judgment, mind you) that my “enlightened” friends were meditating and muscle testing their way into their word, I played a game.
I started with the qualities I wanted to experience in 2016. My list had these attributes on it:
From there, I unleashed my imagination and followed these words into the infinite space beyond them. What did the words really mean to me? What did I really want to embody of these attributes? For several days, I allowed this ritual to ebb and flow. When I felt inspired to write down a word, I wrote you. I used a thesaurus and followed word after word into their synonyms to verify that the word actually was in alignment with me. I kept at it like a dog at a bone, gnawing at it and enjoying every tasty lick.
This was the result:
“Well, Angie,” I said as I looked at the lengthy list, a project that had covered several hours of several days (no one has ever been able to successfully call me an underachiever when it comes to writing… hahaha). “This is a long list. Now what?”
Without boring you any further with my process, the word “Enchanting” came to me after a couple more hours of playing and studying the list. “Enchanting” encompassed everything I wanted to experience, everything I wanted to create and I felt so curious about how I was going to embody this.
Because I am a visual learner, in addition to being a writer, I knew it would be most beneficial if I involved those gifts and I chose to record my enchanting experience through images and words, which I then post on my Facebook wall in an album entitled, quite aptly, 2016 Enchanting. Each of the images below are accompanied with words, which remind me just how beautiful and enchanting my life is and how much of my life is a blessing to be grateful for.
Fast forward today… Friday, February 12. It is 42 days since I started this process. At first, I was all gung-ho, noticing many enchanting things and posting about it. In the first 30 days, I experienced enchanting in 101 different ways. 12 days into February and I’ve only noticed it 12 times and that hasn’t even been once a day because some days, I’ve noticed several enchanting things.
I was thinking about that as I stood in the shower this morning. I know New Year’s Resolutions have a tendency to wane about three days into the process, but I could feel there was something happening for me that I needed to bring to the surface. I stared at the psychedelic pattern of light and dark at play on the shower curtain and I allowed that mesmerizing effect to drop me into my metaphysical knowing, to see if I could uncover what was happening.
As soon as I did, I heard this: Angie, January was a brainstorming event. You got all the obvious ideas out of the way. Now, you get to focus on everything beneath that. You get to begin searching for old ways of being grateful that need to be turned into new. You need to choose to Love it all again and expand on that Love. Now you get to experience ALL of it… the unusual and the mundane and do so with Love. How can you bring more Love into this Enchanting year?
I popped back into my physical body, turned my face to the steaming water and received the feeling of that water pinging against my skin. It’s something that delights me, but I had stopped noticing it. I recognized how much I love that pattern on the curtain. I had never actually brought awareness to how much I play with it while I shower.
Suddenly, my focus deepened and I got to see old things in new ways. I got to see old patterns of behavior in a new light. I got to witness my choices as if I were making them for the first time. And, suddenly, because I shifted out of “stuck in sameness” thinking and viewing of my life, I began to see all the magic and the beauty that is in my life, even in the sameness. I got to get beneath the brainstorming of the obvious and begin unearthing the genius concepts!
Life is a choice in every single moment. No matter what it is – a job, a marriage, a long-term partnership, an entrepreneurial endeavor, a friendship, a living arrangement – all of it can become stagnant and become “stuck in sameness.” That point of view is a choice, my friend, and it is yours to change or keep. When we choose to look at life as an adventure, when we choose to continue to look for the new even in the old, we can begin to uncover and unleash magic and miracles.
Love is a state of being and if you want to live a life you love, then life asks of you to look at it through eyes of Love and see the new that is always there.