My word for 2015

As I mentioned in my New Year post earlier this week, I embarked on Susannah Conway’s “Find your Word for 2015” 5 day email class.

Each year I make resolutions and by February, I’m wandering what they even are. One of my resolutions every year for the last 10 years has been to lose weight and clearly that hasn’t happened. I think the only resolution I’ve kept for the last 5 years or so is to never live with regrets. To believe everything happens exactly as it is meant to and move on. This is of course not always easy and is a constant practice. Life can throw us some real curveballs and it sometimes takes me a little time to get my head around things. But ultimately I do and move on convincing myself there’s a bigger plan for me that I’m just not seeing yet.

So roll around 2015 and when I got wind of Susannah Conway’s “Word of 2015” it suited me just right. The idea behind it is to focus on the year ahead and what you’d like to achieve, what you see your perfect day as and how you want to feel. She sends you 5 emails that help you gather your thoughts and narrow down one word for the year ahead. As humans we’re constantly evolving and developing, learning and growing and what I loved about this practice was that she made it very clear that nothing is set in stone and so while I may find my word now, my word could actually change by March. This was reassuring because narrowing down to one word was no easy task.

My word actually came to me before I started the practice…it kept reverberating in my mind but I went through the 5 days to make sure it really was the word I wanted. And it turns out I wanted lots of words!! They included Focus, Conscious, Love, Abundant, Independence, Determination, Shakti, Kindness, Nourish, Healing, Freedom, Clarity and Commitment. In the end I narrowed it down to Conscious, Abundant, Determination, Shakti and Freedom. On day 3, she asked us to write down what each of the 5 words meant to us and what it really meant. I began to notice a pattern. All my words linked to me and finding my inner strength, my drive and also being more present.

Can you guess what my word is yet??

In the end I went with CONSCIOUS. When I reflected back on 2014 and looked forward to 2015, one of the things that kept popping into my mind was my inability to focus. While I am able to do many things, all in the name of multitasking of course, I realised that I’d rather do one thing well than many things half heartedly. I also realised that I spend a lot of time on my phone and catch myself saying to S “Just one minute” when he needs my attention. I most certainly do not want to be that mom with her head down all the time. No one’s Facebook status is more important that the time I spend with S. I’ve decided to remove the Facebook app from my phone and make my time with S a FB free zone. Let’s be honest, we’re addicts and while I know this won’t always be easy, it needs to be done.

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The other thing I realised was that I often sit down to write a blog post or read a blog post and half way through I’ll get up to go get something to eat or get a glass of water. Totally unnecessary! So my word CONSCIOUS is really a reminder for me to FOCUS, be more AWARE, be PRESENT and to really NOTICE all around me.

Here’s to living a more conscious 2015!! šŸ™‚ Do you have a word for 2015 or any new resolutions?

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RIP Nelson Mandela

As I was watching Nelson Mandela’s funeral today, a few things occurred to me. I’m sure he realised how important he was and how much he was loved and respected. I’ve always thought it’s really important to let a person know how you feel about them and the impact they have had on your life. Without trying to sound morbid, you never want it to be too late and regret not telling them.

The other thing that crossed my mind was that here is this amazing man who sacrificed so much of himself and his family for his country. I wondered, would he have been the man he was if he hadn’t gone to prison? He was of course always a man of courage and honour. He was jailed because he was fighting for the end of apartheid and the division of blacks and whites in South Africa. His reason for being put in jail was unjust in the first place. But was it 27 years in an African jail that spurred him on to go out there, become the first South African black president and make such a difference? Would he have been the accomplished man that he was if he hadn’t been through those 27 horrendous years? Does the end justify the means?

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So often when something we perceive as negative happens to us, we sit and brood on it. We feel sorry for ourselves, we whine and complain. We could of course be a lot worse off but we often don’t see that. It’s so easy to drown in a pool of self pity until we have someone reach down and help us out of it.

Here is a man who had 27 of his 95 years taken from him and he still made a difference. Even in his passing he is put on a pedestal and honoured. He didn’t let a 27 year speed bump stop him from achieving what he was destined to do. So today I say RIP Tata Madiba. I will remember you not just for the difference you made in the lives of millions of South Africans but for your sheer determination and will to let no obstacle stand in your way.

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Some of my favourite quotes by Mandela:

“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.”

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”

“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”