As the new year draws closer, I’ve heard about people choosing a word to represent the upcoming year. Typically, there is some reflection on the previous year of what you may have felt was lacking or looking to the upcoming year for something you may want more of in your life. You might hear things like family, simplicity, flow, release, patience, or confidence.
I’ve never done this activity before. Initially, I thought, “Wow – that’s a lot of pressure to choose a word that would be a theme for the entire year!” Then I remembered a few principles from one of my favorite humans, Kendra Adachi (aka, The Lazy Genius). Namely, “Live in the Season” and “Be Kind to Yourself” (for more information, check out Kendra’s book, The Lazy Genius Way). Keeping these two ideas in mind started to ease some of the pressure.
I can choose a word that fits me for now and know that I can change my mind and choose something else at any point throughout the year. I’m not locked into a particular time frame. I can also contemplate possibilities of something that recognizes not only where I’ve been but also where I’m headed. What word will feel kind to me?
You should also know that I’m a Libra and have difficulty making decisions. I like to thoroughly research and ruminate on something before finalizing an idea. This time around, however, the same word kept popping up in my head; and the more I sit with it, the more I feel that it fits at this point in my life.
That word is kaleidoscope.
Think back to that toy you may have seen as a child. There is something so wondrous about how it worked. This tiny little tube with some colorful glass pieces that made ever-changing shapes and patterns. As adults, we often forget those simpler times with simpler pleasures. Life happens. Expectations lead to disappointments. Those grand dreams we once had spiral into a sense of lack and feelings of failure for what we’ve yet to accomplish. Some days, you just feel broken and wonder why you can’t seem to get your $h!t together.
This. This is what led me to my word. What really struck me in choosing this word – kaleidoscope – for myself is the idea of taking things that are broken and turning them into something beautiful. I’m sure most of us have had those moments of feeling broken at one point or another. For me, even in those moments, I want something to get me out of that mindset, something hopeful. I know I’m meant for more. How can I take those pieces and rebuild this precious life to create something beautiful that brings joy to others?
So that is my hope. When I have those moments of doubt in the future, I will be reminded of the one word that stood out to me the most at this particular moment.
Pick up the pieces. Create the beauty. Spin the tube and know that although I will continue to change and evolve just like those patterns of colored glass, each time there will be wonder and beauty to share.