A very wise, very dear friend of mine posted this morning that she chose #oneword to help direct her intent for the new year and I immediately fell in love with this idea. Not only because her reasoning and insight was so powerful, but also because I’ve never much bought into New Year’s resolutions. I’ve always been the kind of person who continually tries to work on things (often to my detriment, but I’m working on that, too! ;P). I don’t know if I do this because I enjoy challenges, because I’m stubborn, or what, but having a chronic illness ties into this mentality even more because every day is, essentially, a new resolution. I'm always weighing what I can and can't do. What I would like to accomplish vs. what I is even possible. And, generally, my daily goals are usually the same as they've always been (with variations like "managing to put on real pants" vs. "completing a marathon" depending on how I feel).
As one could imagine though, always trying to better yourself can be exhausting, unhealthy, and counteractive. (Only took me 12+ years of eating disorders and chronic fatigue/dysautonomia to teach me that! Like I said – stubborn.) Lately, within the past few years, I've been trying my best to live by “balance” and “acceptance”. In fact, they’ve become little mantras for me without even realizing it I think, and have been immeasurable in their ability to draw me out of old patterns and back into the present moment in my daily life and mind. As well as related to my chronic illness by balancing pushing myself and working toward those daily resolutions with accepting my limitations (still SO HARD FOR ME AAAH!).
So, just as my beautiful friend has chosen to “embrace” this one word concept, I decided to also. (Thank you, Favorite! <3)
With that, I dove into reading and hearing about other peoples’ words and their reasonings for them. They were all magnificent and perfect in their own right and I felt like, with each “oneword”, every person gifted me something about themselves I would never have known otherwise. I, however, had yet to come up with mine. Patience, maybe? But that ship sailed a long time ago (and I’ve accepted that. (SeewhatIdidthere?!)). Bravery? Hmmm, good – but doesn’t quiet feel right. Vulnerability? Oh god, that one scares me, so no.
And then I stopped myself – if it scares me then maybe that is exactly the one I need.
So I mulled this over between dog-snores and dog-farts and decided on a variation of vulnerability:
And all of the sudden, all the concepts started pouring out:
First it started with being honest and putting my writing out there. I mean – out there out there. Telling people I’m doing it and owning it even if it makes me feel kind of pukey to do so, especially allowing strangers and people I know to read it (and I still can’t figure out which one of these is more terrifying to me)!
Then it moved to being honest with others. Saying what I need, saying what I think, saying what I feel. And not in the round-about way I’ve built myself up to doing after years of practice. Now I need to do it with that final leap – with to-the-point-words and sentences ending in big, fat periods.
Which drifted to being honest as to why that scares me so much. In being honest in all my fears and honest in my vulnerabilities. And being honest in why feeling vulnerable scares the everliving shit out of me. I mean, I’ve tried to dabble in it (Vulnerability: The Gateway Fear). In fact, just the other day I texted someone – actually initiated a conversation to talk about how I was feeling and needing help – and I got a reaction that didn’t suit me. So I shut down. “Oh, they don’t really care to know and I’m already uncomfortable and feeling vulnerable so at least I tried.” I said to myself, and that was that. But why not take the next step? Why not say, "Hey, I was trying to open up just then and I need more from you."? That way I know I gave my honest self to the situation. And if it still doesn't pan out like I need, then I have to walk away and accept it.
I need to be careful in honesty, yes. Not just spout everything off to everyone. I need to be conscionable and learn the balance within this just like I have worked for balance in so many different things. But I also need to be forthcoming so people know when I do say something important, I really mean it.
Which finally led to being honest with myself. When my Dysautonomia or fibromyalgia is too much and I can't walk the dogs or do all the things. Or, conversely, being honest when I really can push myself and just don't want to. And always examining the honesty in, and of, my intentions – in writing, in interacting, in everything.
And then I thought, “Man… I should’ve chosen another word.”
Anyway, I will continue to mull over this for a while. I do think it could be especially powerful for those of us who are in #edrecovery, though, as we tend to focus on specifics, black and white things, etc. Whereas a single world can encompass a lot, be very broad and forgiving, and force us to move more freely in our expectations or ourselves and our worlds.
What do you think? What would your #oneword/intent be?
Honestly, I want to know.