At the beginning of 2016, I decided to choose a word rather than make any resolutions. A word is something that you can quietly (or loudly) carry with you, no pressure to do one thing like a resolution, but can act as a guide through the things you do. Last year I chose the word COURAGE and looking back it has been incredibly powerful and has helped me with a range of things. From picking up the courage to finally see the doctor about my mental health, have the strength to put my beloved cat to sleep, see my daughter start school and do a presentation to over 100 people (something I would normally get stage fright from). Oh, and I’m learning to speak up for myself and starting to believe in myself too, a bit. The big things would have happened regardless with or without a word, but having COURAGE with me has made me look at things in a different angle, to walk in with my chin up a little higher and do things with a tiny bit more confidence. A word isn’t life changing, and after 2016, I am not a totally new person and I still fear failure (who doesn’t?) and am still terribly socially awkward and walk away from speaking to people thinking about how stupid I am, but there have been some positive changes in my life and attitudes and things I would normally run away from I now give them a go. Anyway, COURAGE will always be with me and I wanted a word this year that would sit side by side with it, something to continue the good work COURAGE has started.
So what did I choose? Well for a while, I thought GO was going to the word, then GROWTH, but neither felt quite right. Then there was another word which felt not as good as either as those, it felt too showy, but as I spoke it aloud to Dave while talking to him about my word, it very suddenly clicked and suddenly felt so comfortable that there couldn’t be another word. So, hello FLOURISH.
Flourish means a lot of things. For me, it combines go and grow. Invites me to step up a bit, shine more. There’s a few things happening this year that flourish I think can sit with well. I’m going to have to reapply for my job (!), we’re all very ready for a holiday and I think we quite fancy visiting somewhere where we’ve not been to. This is also the year where I’m going to be able be a bit more of myself as the kiddos are much less reliant on me in the evening. That means more evenings out and exploring London at night. Hooray! That should also mean the kids can be babysat and stay over at grandparents which means that Dave and I can get some quality time together. I want this blog to grow and flourish, it’s done quite well this past year and I’m very proud of it, but want to work on it more. There’s countless crafty projects I want to finish and start and learn. There’s my parenting that is in constant need of improvement. The garden needs some work on. I am fast approaching my forties and I need to look after myself more. I’m under doctor’s orders to practice mindfulness and cognitive behavioural therapy, so while I want to improve my mind, I also want to improve my body and eat a better diet, become stronger and fitter and look after my skin more with moisturiser (something I don’t normally do) and much more sunblock. I also need to be more active politically, Brexit and Trump have got me worried a lot about the future and I want to do something (although due to my job, technically I have to be politically neutral, so we’ll see what I can do)
So, lots of things to think about. Also reading that last paragraph it’s become very apparent this year is mostly about my need for self-care which would probably come as no surprise to people who know me, but I didn’t realise just how much I needed it! 2017, I’m ready for you. It won’t be all sunshine and rainbows, but it’s going to be quite a ride and I think with FLOURISH it’s going to be very interesting.