I'm not one for resolutions.


In the past, I've picked words to guide me through the year, to sum up my goals.

But this year, the year ahead feels sprawling. Too huge and unknown and exciting to slap a word or two on it.
Instead of picking a word or goal for the entire year, I'm picking a goal for each quarter (more about this in today's SparklePointer).

But for the whole year?
I'm repeating something from last year: allowing a theme to come to me.

The difference between a theme and resolutions?

Resolutions, goals, visions = action, grasping, finish lines

Themes are just there. They define a period time, whether we want them to or not.

For me, picking a theme means bringing awareness to something. To notice when I need it, to notice when I'm blessed with it.

And the best themes aren't picked. They picked me.

An example

In 2010, during an exercise with Havi, the word PEACE came to me.
And I was annoyed. I am not a person who seeks peace. I seek adventure and challenges and struggle.

Oh. Yeah.

That is why I needed peace.
For the rough times. For the struggles. For the challenges. For the adventures.

And 2010 brought me plenty of opportunities to look for peace, to find it unexpectedly, to cultivate peace in an unpeaceful time.

This year

Despite avoiding it, despite wanting something more sparkly or exciting, I got SAFETY.

Oh, blah. How boring!
And so expected after the recent unpleasantness.

But that's the word.

But what does it DO?

Knowing the word is like having a study guide. I know what I need to pay attention to, even though I have no idea what's coming.

To get a handle on it I start by writing about the qualities that SAFETY includes. What does it mean for ME?

And then, I just pay attention.

I notice the word.
I notice when I feel the feeling (or feel the distinct LACK of it).

In confusing, uncertain or hard times, I ask myself:

  • “How can I bring the qualities of Safety into this situation?”
  • “Where is Safety here?”
  • “What small thing can I do to make this feel more safe?”

This isn't about fear.

Or playing it safe.
Or avoiding risks.

This is about building a safe space, within myself, to act from.

To brunch with.
Like a comfy house in the Shire that you set out from to go on great adventures. Its presence (no matter how far away) comforts you on the cold nights.
Or, for a different geeky metaphor, it's a space station. It's DS9 and my adventures happen with the Away Team, who stays safe as long as they're in contact with the station.

Does your new year have a theme?

Better yet, does it have a geeky metaphor? Tell me about it in the comments!

8 Comments on Thematic

  1. Amy Crook
    January 4, 2011 at 9:06 pm (12 years ago)

    My year’s theme last year was “Better” and in may ways it was, so this year I decided on “Plenty” – plenty of money, of time and energy, chasing away the fear of scarcity with a feeling of plenty. I’m curious to see if I can make it unfold the way I hope!

  2. Anonymous
    January 4, 2011 at 9:18 pm (12 years ago)

    Oh, I love plenty! What’s great theme!

  3. Dryden
    January 7, 2011 at 7:50 pm (11 years ago)

    I’m still working on my theme, but I’ll let you know when I’ve got it.

  4. Ingrid Murnane
    January 8, 2011 at 3:57 pm (11 years ago)

    Oh, mine is ‘explore’ and there’s plenty of that that I want to do.