One Word 365

winter solstice

It’s December 21st. The winter solstice. The longest night of the year. You know what that means? Come tomorrow, the darkest days are behind us.

The darkest days are behind us.... for now. See, the realist in me is compelled to qualify that statement. For now. Because, as we all know, eventually the darkest days are ahead of us again.

Even still... This day, this night, this winter solstice — it echoes my word for 2018... It’s a word I have fought hard against for years. It’s a dangerous word — one I’d prefer to hide from than chase after. A word that stands in defiant opposition to my realism. A word I have long hated...

Hope.

Just thinking about it makes me cringe and scrunch up my face and feel sick to my stomach. Hope chooses to embrace the “darkest days are behind us” moment even while knowing it won’t last forever. Hope raises its glass on the longest night of the year and smiles for the longer days on the horizon. Hope sees my “for now” and raises it with a “and that’s enough”.

And so, with tears in my eyes, a lump in my throat, and butterflies in my chest, I raise my glass. To brighter days, to shorter shadows, to present-moment joys, and to frighteningly beautiful hope... Salute!

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tabula rasa

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The pessimist in me (or as I prefer to call it, the realist) struggles to see a new year as a fresh start. Because really, the only thing that makes January 1st remarkably different than December 31st is that it lies on a new calendar. It's just another day.

But the longing-to-hope part of me acknowledges the new beginnings that come with a new year. I can see the tabula rasa — the blank slate — of a new calendar. It's a blatant opportunity to leave yesterday's baggage behind and move forward with a clean start.

And yet I find myself instinctively clinging to baggage like a flotation device.

Baggage like my deeply-rooted feelings of shame, rejection, and not-enough-ness. Baggage like my insecurities and fears—of failure, of abandonment, of not measuring up.

I cling to them like my life depends on it—when in actuality they're not life preservers, but deadweights that keep me fighting to stay afloat.

So I close my eyes tight and repeat over and over: I am enough.

And with each whisper, my fingers ever-so-slightly start to loosen their death grip.

A new year. A new day. A new moment. Tabula rasa.

I am enough.

one word 365

The challenge is simple: Scrap the long list of resolutions you want to make this year (even though you know you really won't keep them) and instead, pick just one word.

There is so much clarity in the simplicity of one word.

It narrows down all your big life-change plans into one single thing. It paints a picture for your future — a clear vision you can take steps toward. It focuses you more on the journey than a to-do list, because that's where character is built.

One word that will serve as a compass for your actions, decisions, and priorities. All year long.

One word. 365 days.

Deep-down heart change can be found in a single word.

What's yours?

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