2018 - My Year of Unequivocal Trust
Last year tested me in almost every way possible. From pushing past my fears and taking big steps forward in my business, to dealing with several personal traumas, it was a difficult one to say the least. It had some of the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. Now that I'm on the other side of it, I can see all of these experiences as an amalgamation of the full human experience. Although last year was painful, it opened me up to receive an even greater kind of love, a deeper understanding of what I ultimately want, and a stronger connection to my True Self.
Over the holiday, I took plenty of time to rest—time to be with my thoughts and feelings and really dissect them to help me establish a comprehensive appreciation of how I want to show up in the world. Ever since I created my vision board in late October, I have been mulling over the idea of RESILIENCE as my word for 2018.
There's this beautiful On Being episode with Joan Halifax, an American Zen Buddhist teacher, and in this episode she talks about what many of us felt like we were dealing with last year with the onslaught of horrible news and human rights injustices—compassion fatigue—although she doesn't like that phrase. One thing that struck me most about what she said in this episode is that there are studies done of monks who have mastered 10,000+ hours of meditation.
"...they feel acutely, more acutely, an experience of another of suffering, but also, they let go of it much more quickly. It’s not like meditators are in this state of kind of numb equanimity. In fact, they feel the deep press of suffering, but it’s a much briefer impact on the neurosystem than the average individual, and that briefer impact means they let go of it much more quickly." - Joan Halifax
She goes on to talk about that resilience of bouncing back quickly after a traumatic event, and it struck me that I, too, want to be able to have that same buoyancy in my life. I don't want to continue to spend time in the throes of pain/worry/anxiety/suffering any more than I have to.
My intuition had my back because it never felt quite right, so I kept up the search and explored even deeper. After spending some time over the past week thinking and journaling about this, I realized that RESILIENCE wasn't my word after all.
I was approaching my word as a favorable reaction to the negative events that already have had happened to me. And after further introspection, it felt like if I chose this word, it was in anticipation of negative events yet to happen. And I don't want to carry around the weight of 'what-ifs' all year long.
Instead, what I realized is that in order for me to release expectations, in order for me to feel the joyous expansion of growth, in order for me to graciously accept and adapt to all that lies ahead on my path, I have to first TRUST.
- Trust the Universe.
- Trust my intuition.
- Trust the timing.
- Trust my voice.
- Trust my preparation.
- Trust that anything can happen.
- Trust that something even greater than what I could have dreamt, can happen.
- Trust that honest communication leads to healthy relationships.
- Trust that everyone is doing his/her best.
- Trust that I am building a solid foundation that will support me for years to come, feeding my soul, as well as setting the stage for a joyous, abundant, and happy life.
And to help remind me of my word on a daily basis, I selected 4 supporting words that bolster my own understanding of how I'll incorporate more TRUST into my life this year.
I will loosen the grip on what I think should happen, and allow things to flow in as they wish. I will have a general direction in which I'm heading, but if the journey is different than I had planned, or the final destination has altogether shifted, I won't resist—as long as it's encompassed by My Why, I'll embrace it. I will graciously receive all that comes my way (compliments, knowledge, friendships, money, gifts, support from others, love) so that the Universe knows that I believe in and am grateful for the infinite source of abundance it provides. I'll be over here, standing with my arms outstretched, eyes wide open, chin to the sky, and patiently waiting for all that 2018 has to offer, and I'd love for you to join me!
This goes back to what Joan was talking about above, and what I was most attracted to in the idea of resilience—not only is it the ability to let go, but also to do so quickly. I know that we all have to process things in our own way, and in our own time, but I also have a tendency to dwell on things people said (or didn't say) for far too long. I am ready to release any envy, resentment, or bitterness that may be lingering, and allow for more space for all the goodness I'm preparing myself to receive. By acknowledging that I have no control over other people's reactions, and by releasing myself from the expectations I place upon most facets of my life, I will allow myself to be pleasantly surprised by all the small miracles of the everyday.
In order to bring more trust into my world, I will find ways to strategically rest. If this break has taught me anything it's how utterly magical it is to take a few days to completely unplug. This year, instead of waiting until December to reflect on all that has happened, I'm building in Reflect, Plan & Celebrate days into my calendar. Once a month, I'm going to spend a bit of time reflecting on the past 30 days, making a few plans for the next 30, but mostly doing something so luxuriously restorative that I can infuse a bit of these casual end-of-year vibes throughout the year.
And when all else fails, and I'm down in the muck, barely trudging through, I will do my best to simply remember to breathe. If I can pull myself always from my thinking mind for a couple of minutes, and focus on the breath, I know that I can reduce my anxiety and come back to the situation with a fresh perspective. It really is a simple solution, but all to often, I stay stuck and try to push on through. This is the year of finding my truth and inner strength by taking those small moments for myself throughout the day.
As an overachiever, letting go of control is not something that comes easily for me. However, through my work with a therapist and an emotional wellness coach, with the support of a mastermind group and a tight-knit community of heart-centered female business owners, I feel like I am slowly coming around to making a real shift in my life. I'm heading into this year feeling sure-footed and ready to receive, as well as graciously, steadily grow—in whichever way the Universe decides is in greatest alignment.
This all may sound rather vague, and that's exactly the point. I have over-analyzed every inch of my life since I was 5 years old. I'm ready to shake things up and see what happens when I show up, do my best, and release the expectation around any particular outcome.
So here's to you, 2018. May you surprise and delight, and I will humbly be on the ride for whatever you throw my way because I know that everything is a lesson I must learn and a situation I must embrace to do this thing called life.
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