Grounded. That's what I want my 2017 to feel like.
No, I'm not talking teenagers in timeout.
For me, grounded means keeping in mind always who I am and whose I am.
Feeling glad and grateful for my personality, my extroverted introvert self, my loud laughter, my low maintenance beauty regimen, and even my foibles, the lessons I have to keep learning.
Taking comfort in who I belong to--God, family, friends.
Holding fast to the communities and relationships that embrace me with love and accountability--my marriage, my church, my coworkers, loved ones and kin who know me best.
When I think of living out 2017 in a grounded way, I also think about being present.
Not turning to my phone when I have a free moment, or a bored one.
Looking someone in the eye when I pass them rather than looking down. Or, gazing up at the sky and trees instead of at my feet.
Concentrating more on relationships built and grown face-to-face, or ear-to-ear, or pen-to-paper. Starting a conversation with a stranger.
Keeping "good secrets," as Rachel Held Evans says (#13 over here), and getting over the Fear Of Missing Out that our screen-oriented world has begun to ingrain.
Completing one task without a dozen other tabs open.
I mulled many other words for the year this weekend during my brainstorming.
Fearless, open, ally.
Seeking, listening, still.
Gospel ("Good News"), simple, light.
Centered, steadfast, stalwart.
And as I began to notice a pattern (see those last three), I finally settled on grounded.
Because in my mind, being grounded in who I am and whose I am will pave the way for me to strengthen the other words and concepts that I believe in.
My word for the year starts with me, but doesn't end with me. It's about centering myself, grounding myself, so that I can learn to better live with and serve others. I feel that "grounded," in one word, combines the concepts of presence and community. And that's what I want to convey, to myself and to the world.
By living an intentionally grounded year, I aim for my knowledge and love of myself and my communities to provide a strong foundation so that my courage, openness, compassion, and action toward others can grow. If I start from a point of grounding, of calm, then I hope I can respond strongly and positively to the unknown challenges and opportunities that will come through in 2017.
Grounded in who I am and whose I am, so that I may reach out to others. This year, that's always where I want to begin.
Haven't done this practice before? Head over to my friend Rosie's site, where I first learned about it, to hear what she has to say. And I'd love to know: What word are you claiming for 2017?
Happy New Year!