Friday, January 2, 2015
Anxiety and my 2015 word of the year
January 1st is my favorite holiday. I love fresh starts. It's probably why I love the idea of back to school...new notebooks, new pens and pencils, new crayons...what's not to love? There is so much possibility.
And this year is no different. I have so much excitement and eagerness for all good things in 2015; but for the first time, or at least the first time that I notice, there's an energy field that is pushing in against my bubble.
I never would have labeled myself as someone with anxiety. I can recognize joy, fear, sadness, anger...whatever life throws; but over the last six months or so, I have noticed anxiety, manifested through shallow breaths, unexpected gasps for air, edginess, insomnia and a heightened sense of restlessness.
I find myself unable to make decisions, overwhelmed with choices, and projects left unfinished. My husband attributes my indecisiveness to my Gemini personality, but it feels like more.
I will be 44 this year, and perhaps, realizing my mortality for the first time. I am noticing that I don't have enough time to do everything I want to do. I don't feel like what I once thought my 40s would be like, but alas, I am almost 44. I am happier and more at peace than I have ever been, so this confounds me.
And this brings me to my word to 2015.
In past years, my word has come to me with relative ease. It served as a foundation for my resolutions and shaped my thinking and my choices for the year.
But this year? Too many choices.
So, in honoring where I am in this moment, I don't have one word, but more of a manifesto for my year.
In 2015, I will create.
I will create art in words and pictures.
I will create opportunities to learn, through travel, classes, books, and conversation.
I will create a strong, healthy body through my work at the gym and in my own kitchen.
I will create meals that nourish, using real food and the time it takes to prepare it.
I will create loving, deep, meaningful, stronger relationships with others and myself, protected from the sham of busyness. The greatest gift is time.
In 2015, I will push through challenges...with fitness, with work, in my thinking, with difficult people, with ideas that no longer work, and with excuses.
In 2015, I will finish what I start. I will apply my lesson planning process to my own projects. By the end of X, what will I be able to do/see, and how I will get there?
In 2015, I will trust the process. I will put plans into action and trust that it will work out the way it is supposed to, and if it doesn't, the plan needs to be revised. And if it still doesn't, I have to trust that things happen for a reason; that it may take a different path or the result may look different that how I originally intended it to look.
In 2015, I will breathe when I feel my anxiety rising. It will pass. Maybe it's time to seek out a yoga class.
In 2015, I will let it be. I will not let negative energy contaminate my life.
By honoring where my head is today, I acknowledge that I cannot narrow it down to one specific word.
As the year progresses, my thinking could sharpen and I can revise.
Every day is a new opportunity for a do-over. But for now, this is where I am.
And that's okay.