I have never been much for resolutions. Those sort of things never work out for me. They are too far-reaching with not enough roots to take hold. And who doesn't make pie-in-the-sky declarations for their year? They are just rarely attainable. And failure is no fun.
So when I read on Christine Kane's inspirational blog about how people were choosing words for the year to frame them and give them direction, I thought that sounded like something I could do.
I jumped right in and declared that my word for 2010 would be INSPIRE. And then I started reading about how people really spent time coming up with just the perfect word. I felt that I had jumped the gun. I mean, it is not any surprise that I seek to be inspired every day and I want to be an inspiration to others. And to recap my year, I think that I did just that:
- Initiated a monthly "Inspired by..." challenge from December 2009-May 2009
- Proposed my first ever gallery exhibit "Inspired by..." with the inspiration coming from the local artists at Gallery Q
- Opening of the "Inspired by..." exhibit August-September 2010
- Attended the Bead & Button show and took classes with Sherri Haab
- Tried new techniques, like etching and metal work and polymer clay, to help me grow my skills
- Sought out bead artisans to inspire me
- Started the groundwork for my first line of jewelry that will be unveiled in early 2011
- Wrote 158 blog posts and replied to hundreds of comments
- Doubled my followers to nearly 500
This was a tad harder to achieve. But being that I am more of a glass is half full kind of person, it was within my grasp, but not altogether easy.
UP could be many things...
…laugh it up
…step it up
…up and at ‘em
…make it up
…keep it up
…give it up
…live it up
I tried to live my life in a way that had me looking up rather than feeling down. Sometimes that was hard. There was discouragement and disappointment along the way. Not every piece I sent in to a magazine got published, but many of them did and that had me rising up. I didn't always find the situations I was involved in pleasant but that didn't stop me from laughing it up. There were times when I wasn't sure that I should keep doing this, but I kept it up and now I have a plan to hopefully propel me into the next phase, so giddy up might be very appropriate right now. This horse can't get me there fast enough.
In thinking about what I wanted to do this year, I have been re-reading all the great posts that people who read Christine Kane's blog have written. And along the way I found some tools that I thought would help me in choosing my word for 2011.
Christine Kane has a worksheet that you might want to download to guide you in selecting a word that works for you. We all know that writing things down is a sure way to get them done, so this worksheet might not be a bad idea. Click here to have Christine Kane's Word of the Year Discovery Tool sent to your email.
And I have also discovered a website called My One Word that can not only help you select a word, but lend you support throughout the year. I am not sure if they will continue this for 2011, but I found a lot of great support here and will go back and read some of the blog posts. The premise for My One Word is that resolutions don't work. They set you up as destined to fail because you focus on becoming a person you want to be rather than being open to the person that God wants you to be.
If you are interested in scrapbooking you might be persuaded to join Ali Edwards in her class One Little Word. I am considering it even though I am no scrapbooker (just a wannabe).
When you choose that one word, things start aligning right then and there. You will find that you have something guiding you. I have heard people who pick a word like FORGIVENESS and then find themselves faced with all manner of situations that warrant a true test to that word. It may seem like magic, but I am a believer that when you open yourself up to the Universe and ask for what you want, things start happening to bring that to you. However, you have to be open to the challenges you will receive with that, and it is not always going to be smooth sailing. It will be a test, but if you come prepared for that test and you persevere, you will succeed.
For me, my 2011 is all about breaking out of where I have been, but in order to do that I really need my one word: FOCUS.
I read somewhere that FOCUS = Follow One Course Until Successful. I really like that. I really need that. I don't know if I have expressed it here before, but I have a bad case of creative ADD. I cannot concentrate on one method, one material, one style. I feel like I am all over the map. I am not sure that I even have a style with my jewelry, or my clothes, or my horribly sparse lack of interior decorating. I have grandiose ideas and then get them half started or buy all the supplies and equipment to do them and then move on to the next thing.
This FOCUS will be a big challenge for me. Because this year I have cut back my daytime working hours to 4 days a week, so that I can FOCUS on growing my business in order to keep pulling back those daytime hours. But what I have found in this past month that was a dry run, is that I am not able to FOCUS and commit to those hours as sacred. I am hoping that if I can FOCUS, I will be able to bring my idea for my jewelry into clearer vision, pinpoint and agressively go after getting into several respected art shows and grow my online presence through a more directed action plan and enhanced emphasis on selling jewelry that people want online. I do already have a custom order pending for the dance studio for the spring and plans for a new streamlined booth display (hopefully the banners I ordered as the main draw will be in by Thursday which will give me one day to set them up and take a picture before the deadline for the first show I am attempting to get into). I am also trying to hone my skills and FOCUS on learning to draw with Jeannie's class starting soon (come on and join me!).
So that I can stay FOCUSed on this word, I decided that I would turn that word into art. I plan to make my word of the year into something that I can put up on my wall of my studio to inspire me to stay on track. In fact, I plan to add the words from 2010 up there as well. There could be ceramics or polymer clay or painting. Maybe paper mache or photography or mixed media collage. Wouldn't it be cool to look up on your wall and see a whole flock of words there to keep you motivated and to remind you of your past years' success? I think that will be a perfect inspiration for me.
Now let's just hope that I can FOCUS on one art medium so that I don't waste the whole year trying to find the 'perfect' one.
What is your word for the year ahead?
What one word is calling out to you, challenging you with a seed of truth that your life is lacking?
Can you see that one word shimmering before you right now?
Will you invite that word into your heart to ripen fully inside of you this year?
Will you be open to the ups and downs and ins and outs of where that word will lead you?
Enjoy the day!