Welcome to the second half of 2020.
At the start of every calendar year, I choose three words to guide my year and share those words here on the blog. You can read more about this here.
This year I didn’t do that.
I had words floating around in my mind for months, but I couldn’t seem to settle on the right three. So I dropped all thoughts around it and decided to defer it.
Maybe I wouldn’t do the three words thing this year.
I have a clear vision of what this year is about for me — expansion of myself and my capacity to hold space for others, and expansion of my business to embrace new models of how I serve.
Even with this clear direction, I’ve missed having three words to anchor me.
As I embarked on my mid-year review and reboot (which is still in progress), it seemed like a good time to reconsider and reintroduce this ritual.
Today, as we begin the second half of 2020, here are my three words.
Often when we are on a healing and growth path, it can feel like every step and every action is the thing we need to do to get to where we are going. The pursuit of happiness is a quest to align our circumstances with our blueprint for what life should look like; it is always on the other side of where we are.
Joy is different. Joy is intrinsic; it doesn’t require a given set of circumstances or conditions. Joy is not on the other side of this thing I’m doing now; it is to be found in the act of doing itself.
Joy can be a frame to evaluate actions and activities or as a lens through which to look at my actions and activities. I’m choosing to use it is as a lens.
Instead of will this give me joy? the invitation I am making to myself is to find the joy in this.
It’s a subtle shift with a big impact. Joy is not in the product, it is in the process.
How can I find joy even when it’s hard? Even when it feels like a slog. Even when I’m not seeing results. Even when my body hurts.
How can I find joy even if I think I’m doing it wrong? In the failures and frustrations and mistakes?
The chaos of 2020 is only ramping up. Joy feels like an essential quality to cultivate over the next 6 months.
One of the crucial lessons I’ve learned in the past couple of years is that the healing path and the path of personal growth is not about “fixing” what is “broken.” The idea that we need to fix something that is broken leaves us bouncing from one extreme to another, a game of ping-pong between polarities. This is not healing, it’s internal warfare.
The crux of healing is integration. Healing is about integrating all parts of ourselves: illuminating the shadow and bringing it into the light, so that we find wholeness within ourselves.
Integration is about mediating the polarities to find the middle way.
Integration is also a crucial part of the learning process — or any process of growth. It’s the part of the process we often overlook, because it happens at rest. Just like a good night’s sleep after a day of intense learning helps us absorb and integrate the information we received, we need to pause at times in our growth process to integrate our experiences so that we can embody what we’ve learned.
Integration is what allows us to live in integrity, where we act in alignment with our values.
Over the past few years I’ve been on an intense learning journey, through both trainings and personal experiences. I have a wealth of wisdom and knowledge from the practical to the esoteric. From how to cook without a kitchen to how to navigate the roller coaster of uncertainty. And I don’t share nearly enough.
It’s time to share more. I want to share more.
Too often, I’m reticent to share what I’m learning until I feel “complete” in my knowledge, or that the period of challenge is behind me. This reluctance is rooted in a belief that if I’m still caught up in a struggle people won’t take me seriously; they will think I’m unqualified to help them.
The truth is that when we share our struggles, we allow others to see that they are not alone. When I look for coaches and guides, I specifically look for people who are willing to share their challenges. It let’s me know that they get where I’m coming from.
What I have found is that the willingness to share brings people together.
I find joy in my pain when I can share my experiences with others as a way of service. Sharing the challenges and the lessons learned, helps me integrate the experience in myself, facilitating my own healing.
In this way, these three words create a virtuous cycle that will help me expand my capacity, my potential, my business, and my identity.
It’s never too late to hit reset on your year. Start where you are by choosing an anchor to guide you through.
What are your 3 words for 2020?