I spent yesterday cleaning -- and I don't mean just the surface layer kind of house cleaning. I cleaned cupboards, countertops, closets, and drawers. The kind of cleaning I don't do enough of because it creates an even bigger mess in the house as I move from one room, one floor or one cupboard to the next emptying, sorting, stacking, restacking, and discarding "crap".
So much built up junk, where does it even come from?
In the course of my cleaning I ran across the new year's resolutions I made last January. I had intentionally kept my list simple so that maybe for once in my life I wouldn't feel as though I failed when I only accomplished a small portion of it.
I only made only two resolutions last year and one was just a word, call it a year long intention, that I would apply to all areas of my life. (I'm thinking after my experience yesterday that you wouldn't know it by the state of my cupboards and closets) but my word was to SIMPLIFY.
And, I have, in so many areas of my life. I scaled back on my possessions, my commitments, my responsibilities, my worries, my expectations of myself and others, everything I could simplify about my life I attempted. In doing so I gained a sense of freedom, an internal calm "space" that made room for a whole lot of personal clarity. That clarity gave me the energy to tackle some things I secretly had been beating myself up about.
And all that led me to this week's question.
Question of the Week #48 / What Have You Done Differently This Past Year That You Are Proud Of?
I want you to reflect and focus on the things you managed to do differently this year, and not what you didn't get to. For some of us that isn't easy as I immediately feel the need to tell you the resolution I did not accomplish-- clearly I have some personal work yet to do there... (Resolution number two was to cook more and to create another recipe book --- and that is definitely not happening in 2013).
Personally what makes me so proud it completely overshadows any niggling thoughts about what I didn't get to... is my personal growth in the last year, specifically my spiritual growth.
So take a moment to reflect on what you are proud of so far this year about yourself and your own growth. Then realize you still have one more month of this year to go...there is still time to take a step or two forward---if you feel you need to. Finish the year with some pride in your heart for yourself, I promise it feels really good.
Here is what I have done differently in 2013 that I am most proud of.
- I faced my fear of failure and tried many things that pushed me out of my safe zone. Like substitute teaching where there were new, completely different and not well defined rules in every classroom I walked into. (Talk about leaping out of your comfort zone).
- I was able to take control of the mean voice inside and allow myself to make mistakes, change my mind, say "no" to other people's requests and ask for help, after first admitting that I had self inflicted wounds I needed to heal from.
- I gave up the worry that ate me up inside and in its place I was able to cultivate so much gratitude for everything around me, especially my connection to nature and trees and water, that I was able to reclaim my spiritual side.
- I stopped attempting to control my world and gave in to allowing it to happen. Thus experiencing for maybe the first time since I was a kid, the sense of living life with ease and joy, the sense of floating with the current instead of paddling against it.
My friends I encourage you to Reflect. Recharge. Begin anew if necessary, and reclaim your personal pride and power. Today is a new day filled with endless possibilities.