While I’m not one for New Year Resolutions, there IS something about a new year that feels like a fresh start, and calls me to reflect and look forward.
Perhaps it’s associated with the hanging of new calendars?! Despite using an online calendar, there’s something about a ‘real’ paper calendar with beautiful images that still draws me. The ones I’ve been using the last several years are created in her studio Life in Full Color by my friend Cara Brown – a gifted watercolour artist. If you’d like to have a peek, and perhaps order one for yourself, you can find her calendars here.
Cara’s Brave for Beauty calendar
hanging beside my bed …
There is, of course, no one right way to do the kind of reflection I’m talking about.
Last Monday evening, one lit by a supermoon – one that wise woman Clarissa Pinkola Estes called “the wolf moon, named after wolves howling to summon one another” – I saw a powerful post she’d written “for those with ears to hear, eyes to see”. I shared it on my Facebook page – if you have access to that, I hope you’ll have a look at the full post. She called it a Summons from La Loba.
In her inimitable style, dr. e howled a call to several themes that are powerfully resonant for me – including a call to holding a number of paradoxes. Some of my favourites – rest and create, gentleness and fierceness, the invitation to choose a goal that is both life-giving and life sparing, to collect our tendernesses and strengths. “Not one or the other. Both now.”
And after a wonder-full holiday period spent with family and friends in two countries I’d intended to take time as I’ve done in the past for a more formal New Year’s reflection. But, in my choice to be both life-giving and life sparing in where and how I engage my attention, the whole week passed without my having done so.
On Friday evening, we sat down for dinner with friends. Our hostess paused, looked around the group of us gathered, and said “Perhaps we can start by sharing one word that captures your intention for 2018.”
We went around the circle, each one sharing their word. In that moment as I felt into all that had been percolating in me over the first few days of 2018, the word that came to me was …
A L I V E N E S S
The next afternoon, I joined with another group of wise women in a workshop led by my friend Jane Russell. She called it a Noticing “Check-In”. In an easy and organic way, and within a kindred-spirited community, Life was presenting me with that space to pause I’d been looking for.
In one of the exercises, Jane invited us to notice a word or phrase we’d noticed emerging in our reflections, and offered a number of ways for us to reflect on this – inviting us to “BE easy about it……HAVE FUN!”
Perhaps not surprisingly, the word that called to me was ALIVENESS, and as I wrote the letters on the page, a series of words flowed out of me …
A – allow
L – life
I – in
V – voice/value
E – every
N – new
E – expression
S – sing
S – solos!
While I wasn’t quite prepared for the ‘Sing Solos’ bit, I could feel both the clear resonance, and the lightness of this. Here, right in front of me with EASE (another word I can tell will be big for me in 2018) were some next steps in the path to expressing greater ALIVENESS in my life!
So I’m wondering if you’d play along with me?
Is there a word that captures your intention for 2018?
And might there be a series of words that flow out from that as they did for me?
If this is something that feels resonant for you, I’d love to hear what happened!
One way you can share these with me and others in our community during our daytime, no cost, At Home with Maralyn & Friends call. We’ll gather again on our Maestro line at 1:00 pm ET this Tuesday, January 9. If you feel drawn, I’d love to hear your voice then. If this is your first time joining us, click here to register.
We’ll share and hear each other’s experiences. As always, we’ll stand for possibility, and will encourage one another in expressing ourselves in ways that are both true to us, and allow us to share our unique gifts in the world.
If you can’t make it to the call, maybe a quick note would work for you. You can click here to send me a note. Whatever way works best for you, it’ll be great to connect.