Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Gifts of Imperfection...

"Yes, I am imperfect and vulnerable and sometimes afraid, but that doesn't change the truth that I am also brave and worthy of love and belonging."
-Brenè Brown, The Gifts of Imperfection

I'm a big Brenè Brown fan. Earlier this month I saw that she and Oprah were running a repeat of The Gifts of Imperfection e-course... the soul-searching/art-journaling/wholehearted-living theme seemed to fit right into the place where my head and heart lie at the moment. When I saw that the second lesson was called "Cultivating Authenticity" [my word for 2014 is "authentic"]... I was a goner. I forked over my credit card number and made plans to embrace my watercolors and Prismacolors for the next six weeks.

One of the DIG Deeper prompts this week encourages me to share my journal with a community of people who will keep me inspired. I can't promise that I'll share every page in this space, but here's at least the first week... I'm going to let the pages speak for themselves.

Permission slips // I give myself permission to...

Perfection pledge // I'm imperfect and I'm enough.

Courage is a heart word // Who has earned the right to hear my story?

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Authentic... my intentions

"How we spend our days is of course how we spend our life."
-Annie Dillard

The January prompt from Ali Edwards' One Little Word workshop encouraged me to list my intentions for the year.

This year I hope to...

Continue my healthy routines... increasing my fitness level // making healthy eating choices // limiting sodas // taking care of myself. I made great progress in this area in 2013 and hope to continue that momentum this year.

Explore how I want to grow professionally... I'm pretty sure that I won't be in my current position for the rest of my life. I find myself longing for a bit more creativity, a bit more autonomy, a bit more alignment with my passions. I have some ideas about "dream jobs," yet they all seem very distant from where I am today... after a year of mere survival (2010-11) and then a couple of years of sheer gratitude for having any job (2011-2013), I find myself ready to find out what my "dream job" might be and to start moving in that direction.

Focus on what really matters... uncluttering the house // buying quality and fair-trade // living fully in this moment // making intentional choices.

Strengthen relationships... connecting with Rob in a more loving and honest way that respects both of our needs // supporting Callie as much as I can through this season of change // corresponding with family members, like Dan and Mimi through monthly letters // reconnecting with old friends, like Ashley and Hillary // hosting another party or get-together for local friends.

Find a sustainable way to serve the community/church/world... I worry that the most obvious volunteer opportunities (soup kitchens, homeless shelters, etc.) won't be a good fit with my introverted personality (although I'm willing to be surprised!); however, I know that my design/planning skills could be a great asset for the right non-profit. The challenge is finding the time and energy to do something "extra."

Hope to get pregnant and experience motherhood...
But, be at peace if that (or anything else that I have planned) doesn't happen on my timeline... As it has been said, "the only constant thing is change." No matter what happens this year, there are guaranteed to be some instances of upheaval, unfamiliarity, and paradox, either by choice or circumstance. I hope that I am able to honor and even grieve those losses, but then lean into and embrace the unexpected changes.

Look for inspiration... Since I am yet not sure what exactly what I'm looking for this year, I want to embrace as many soul searching opportunities as I can. You can only hear answers if you're listening. I've bitten the bullet on Brene' Brown and Oprah's The Gifts of Imperfection e-course. I've also added several titles on my to-read list, hoping to gain insight from the perspectives of those who have gone before me. I'd also be open to some kind of life coaching/career counseling/mentoring/etc.

Follow my progress and be inspired.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

2014 One Little Word: Authentic

“The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”
-Frederick Buechner

I am choosing the word "authentic" to inspire my year. [I have chosen a guiding word for the past three years: 2011, 2012, 2013. Last year I also participated in Ali Edwards' One Little Word workshop, which was totally the highlight of my year... totally doing that again!]

My journey with the word "momentum" last year led me to the insight that there's never enough time, energy, money, or talent in my life to take on every project or to succeed in every endeavor. I want to be intentional about the ways I spend my days, so that my life best reflects my true self. Who am I... what do I want... how do I want to use my momentum?

In 2013 I desired to push myself past my comfort zones, but this year I want to spend time listening to what is already in my heart. I expect that my journey this year will be about finding what resonates with me in all aspects of my life. And, then living into that which makes my soul sing.

Follow my progress and be inspired.

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