This year I’m participating in the idea of a word being a guide in life. And, that word is release. You may be familiar with Ali Edwards and her One Little Word project but if not, click over and read more about it.
I have followed along with Ali and others through the years about One Little Word, but never jumped in. But this year, I felt a pull to do so. The timing just seemed right for me to give it my attention and experience some personal growth. The same word just kept jumping out at me.
The past five years or so I’ve been more aware of myself and that I wasn’t really doing what I love. I woke up from being on a treadmill of owning a business, being in charge of a million things, and putting myself last. Plus, my daughter struggles with emotional challenges and my husband and I began a journey to learn and practice new parenting skills that better fit her needs. It’s been hard but it’s been worth it. However, I knew that in my effort to help her, I had become too close and trying to control everything. I was working double time to keep the balls in the air. I was getting worked up too often, taking everything personally, not sleeping, becoming more out of shape and unhealthy, and just spinning.
I needed to release.
I needed to stop worrying about things I couldn’t control. I needed to release fear, sadness, expectation and barriers. I found this quote that really spoke to me:
“Sometimes you don’t realize the weight of something you’ve been carrying until you feel the weight of its release.” -unknown
That pretty much kicked off my journey with this word.
The great thing about Ali’s class is that she has prompts and practice activities each month to make the word more real in your daily life. It makes you focus on the word and really engage it what it means.
Here’s how I’m keeping my word present each day.
We began by just exploring our word, contemplating its meaning and setting up goals for the year.
I even decided to remind myself at the end of the month what I actually did do towards these goals because I often don’t remember to celebrate my little wins.
In February we did practice on creating a habit. I focused mine on logging my food and keeping track of my movement. Physical weight and motivation for exercise has plagued me and I am on a journey to overcome that hurdle. The weight of shame is heavy.
This month we did vision boards. I found some nice images in magazines and created some smaller card elements for my binder with words, too. The process of making something pretty was a fun exploration to think on my word. March is also a big birthday month in our house with three of us celebrating our day. I added the number 58 in honor of my birthday – which happens to be today!
While this project has a scrapbooking component to it for me, the idea of having One Little Word in your life each year to explore and grow can be done by anyone in any way. I feel good having a reminder each day for how I can be a better me, and to put focus on something I know I need to pursue and change. It’s good to be mindful.