January 1, 2018

2018: the year of balance

Happy New Year! I'm so ready to turn a leaf and say good-bye to the old and hello to the new. I know the world doesn't magically change at the stroke of midnight on New Year's Eve, but what can I say? I have a good feeling about 2018. That's a better attitude, and a better state of mind, than I've had the past few years, so cheers to that.

I have big dreams for 2018. I want to grow my writing and writing career. I want to explore new places. I want to be healthier and take better care of myself. I'll delve more into those goals and dreams on Thursday, but when I think about what I most want this year, it's balance. That's going to be my word of the year.

In 2016, I was struggling with having faith in myself and others, so I picked believe as my word. Last year, I felt like I'd made it through a storm and was barely hanging on. I needed to persevere.

Between my day job, writing career, and life, I often feel overwhelmed. While I have so many blessings and so much to be thankful for, I tend to overdo one area of my life and ignore the others. I go and do and move and push until I burn-out and crash. I imagine that won't ever completely change. (I'm definitely the type of person Netflix and binge-watching was created to appease.) It's possible obsessing and burning fast and bright might always be my MO. Still, I'd like to pursue my bouts of productivity, creativity, and leisure all without putting myself on a collision course. I'd like to move away from those extremes and absolutes and inch closer to the middle. To find balance.

I looked up the definition to make sure I'd chosen correctly. And while the noun and verb are comparable in meaning, I selected the verb as a reminder that this is a plan of action for my part on how I should guide myself through the year. It goes:

to keep or put (something) in a steady position so that it does not fall

That's me and my life. I need to keep myself in an upright and steady position so I don't fall. After years of struggling with anxiety and panic attacks that lead to bouts of depression, I recognize the importance of taking care of myself so I don't slip into one of my dark times.

There's a second definition for the verb, and it's equally important as a one-word mission statement for my year:

offset or compare the value of (one thing) with another

That's what I was talking about earlier--about making time to focus on all areas of my life and treat each one like it's as important as the other. Because each one matters.

With that word in mind, I've set goals and put plans into motion for the year. I'll share more about those on Thursday. Until then, here's a look at my new necklace from The Giving Keys, made especially as a reminder for myself through the year.

Do you have a word of the year? What's yours?

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