Category Archives: One Little Word

Hits, Misses and a New Word for 2016

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As I sit here the house is quiet except for the sound of the refrigerator motor humming.  I love mornings like this.  The quiet calm before the house awakens with immediate energy.

I am happy to finally have a chance to quietly reflect on my personal accomplishments from 2015:

  • The birth of Soul-Positive
  • Creating the  #taggedbykindness Project
  • The discovery of a new creative outlet through mixed media art
  •  Experiencing new artistic techniques
  • Welcoming vulnerability through open sharing of my creative endeavors
  • Embracing new adventures
  • Choosing positive self acceptance on a more regular basis
  • Letting go of perfection and embracing imperfection

Along with accomplishments comes the acknowledgment of tasks left undone.  In order to continue moving forward and keeping the momentum of personal growth – I looked at these tasks and reflected also on why they are still on my to do list:

  • Regular blog posts (missed this mark big time)
  • Setting up an Etsy shop
  • More physical activity
  • Completing prompts and online classes in a timely manner if at all
  • Reading more books
  • Controlling every situation (will always be a work in progress)

I know now after careful reflection that I need to work on my time management skills.  I need to refine my skills in the area of clarifying goals.  I need to confront fear head on and ask myself “what are you so afraid of?” And most importantly I need to give myself permission to fail and then dust myself off and rise again.

I’m looking forward to 2016.  The start of a new year gives me the kick in the pants I need to set new goals and put a plan of action into place.

As many of you know I have been a part of the One Little Word (OLW) Community for a few years now.  OLW is a year long monthly prompt driven workshop created by Ali Edwards.  You can learn more about this project here.

In 2015 my word was “Momentum”.  This was a wonderful choice and it really gave me a positive outlook into what I wanted to accomplish this past year.

For 2016 I have chosen the word “Step”.  I am looking forward to the many aspects of what “step” has in store for me.  My goal is to step up when faced with hard truths and tough decisions. Step up to more self acceptance and self care.  Step back from relationships that do not enhance my own personal growth.  Step back and listen instead of always needing to be heard.  Step out physically for walks, hikes, kayaking and bicycling to clear my mind, bring me inner peace and bring me back to center.

I hope you take a moment before the stroke of midnight and pat yourself on the back for showing up in 2015, fighting the hard fights and embracing all the good and even some of the ugly.  Thank you for being a part of my journey this year.  Wishing you all the very best that 2016 has to offer and more!

xoxo

 

Following Through

Forward Momentum

The sixth month mark of 2015 is almost here.  Way back in December of 2014 when I was declaring 2015 the Year of Positivity I wasn’t sure just how things would pan out.  You see I have plenty of ideas and a whole bunch of “I’m gonnas…” but seldom do I have a strong follow through.  I tend to get all hopped up on an idea for a few weeks – maybe do a little research, pencil some notes and then quietly let the idea climb into the back seat never to really hear from it again but only to give it a quick glance through the rear view mirror.

My chosen word for 2015 is “Momentum”.  Hand on heart this word has changed me in 2015.  I still have a ton of ideas floating around my head but guess what?  I have been following through on many of my ideas and slowly seeing my dreams become a reality.  The best part about all of this is that it’s not nearly as difficult as I thought it would be.  I’m still able to get all my other responsibilities done.  I still cook, clean, take care of my family and run my household.  But I also take the time I need for myself and work towards accomplishing my own set of personal goals.

How do I do this?  Well – first I have an ongoing handwritten list of things that I’d like to accomplish not just for this day, week, or month but for the actual year.  My list is grouped by the following ‘Goal Categories’ – Emotional, Physical, and Creative.  I keep this list posted on my refrigerator as a constant reminder of what I am working towards.   As most of you know I am a part of a year long workshop called “One Little Word” created by Ali Edwards.  The idea for breaking my list into these parts came directly from Ali and her prompts the beginning of each year.

An earlier version of my goal setting list

An earlier version of my goal setting list

This list holds me accountable.  By keeping my list and essentially my word ‘Momentum” so visible I am continually reminded what is important in my life.  I add to my list and check off items that I have accomplished.  The physical act of crossing out an item is a win for me. I like that satisfaction and sense of accomplishment.  I like adding new things to my list.  This keeps my momentum up and encourages me to keep going.

Now with that being said – does life sometimes get in the way?  Of course.  I have days and weeks where I am just completely swamped with other obligations and maybe cannot work on my goals as much as I would like to.  However, instead of making my goals take a back seat completely and letting life take control – I take the time I need, even if it’s only 15 minutes of quietly sitting on my bed, to reflect about my goals and how to make them achievable.

I will steal 30 minutes to complete an art journal page.  I will take the hour to write a blog post.  I will bring a notebook with me while I am out and jot down ideas that are floating around my head.  Small consistent steps are the key to my success.  That bears repeating – small consistent steps are the key to my success.  Being mindful of how life is trying to take control – this is what keeps me moving forward and in a positive direction.

These first six months of 2015 have been full of accomplishments and learning experiences.  I am looking forward to the next six months where I can achieve more of the goals that I’ve set for myself while moving forward with a positive mindset.  I have no doubt that you can achieve the same.  Set your goals, write your list and watch how small steps can ignite a fire within yourself to keep putting one foot in front of the other and heading straight toward your goals.

Keep it Positive!

 

One Little Word and Connection…It’s a Beautiful Thing.

“Connection is the energy that is created between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued – when they can give and receive without judgment.” ~Brene Brown, PHD, LMSW

I discovered the One Little Word online course created by Ali Edwards back in 2011.  In the memory preservation community Ali Edwards is a pioneer.  I remember Ali from years ago when I first began scrapbooking.  It was a blessing to reconnect with Ali via the One Little Word (OLW) course.

OLW is a year long prompt based course.  To describe this class in simple terms is difficult.  The basic concept is to choose a word (or often let the word choose you) and focus on that word for the entire year.  Through gentle guidance from Ali and her monthly prompts you will invite new experiences, emotions and light into your life while also making decisions on what’s not working and needs to be changed.  Talk about feeling the feels….this is it folks.

This course has been so much more for me.  First let’s discuss Ali.  Although we have never met in person she has a way of making you feel like you’ve been friends for years.  She is so genuine.  Her videos have such a down to earth vibe that you literally cannot wait until the next month.  She is your biggest cheerleader and a constant presence in the private Facebook Group.

Ah…the Facebook Group.  This is where a ton of connection magic happens.  Like                 Brene’ Brown’s quote states  “…give and receive without judgment.”  This group is the most supportive, positive bunch of ladies I have ever had the privilege to associate with.  I have never been surrounded by so many women who seriously just want you to succeed.  Having a bad day?  Someone will post a quote that you can surely relate to.  There are over 2500 members to this private group.  If you have a question, post it – you’ll have 25 answers in less then an hour.

Last year I had the pleasure of organizing a snail mail pen pal group.  We had over 200 ladies paired up to share the process of their OLW journeys.  I made wonderful connections with many of these ladies.  They were so happy to share themselves with each other through letters and small packages.

In addition to pen pals many of us follow each other on Instagram.  I have met amazing new friends through OLW and Instagram.  Many of these women are just like me – moms, wives, sisters, friends – but they are so open and willing to help you achieve your goals – it’s absolutely mind blowing.  Many of us joke that if we could just live in the OLW community how much easier life would be.  There is an ease to being brave, open and vulnerable in this environment of positivity.  The funny thing is that you take those vulnerabilities and you bring them back to your “real” life and you are braver.  You are fearless in achieving your goals because how can you fail with over 2500 ladies in your corner.

Snow Heart

Here’s the kicker…this community would not exist if Ali Edwards decided to keep her OLW project to herself.  She could have just chose her word each year and kept it to herself.  But she didn’t.  She was brave.  She was vulnerable.  She connected with women just like her.  And most important….she shared herself with all of us.  I will be forever grateful for this course.  It has truly changed my life for the better.  My heart has opened wider.  I am brave with a big ole’ capital B.  I’ve welcomed new friends from all over the world into my life.  But the best part of all is that I am a better me. I feel the feels on the daily.  I am strong in spirit and my soul is happy.

Connection is one of the most vital aspects to not only surviving but thriving in the sea of life’s ups and downs.  It is so very important to share and be open to one another.  I hope you feel a connection here at Soul-Positive.  I’m rooting for you!  I’m in your corner.

xoxo