In December 2014, I was considering what I wished for 2015 and out of the blue the words GRAND ADVENTURE came to mind. I made that my theme. When I wished someone happy birthday, I also wished them a year filled with grand adventures. I didn't personally travel anywhere exotic, but launched my first book and walked the new path of book marketing. I travelled more, spent more time developing friendships and introduced a new weekly column (actually twice a week for the first few months). I tried to say yes to new experiences as much as possible.
Now with 2015 coming to a close, I have been considering both what my new birthday wishes will be for everyone and what word(s) to embrace as my theme for 2016. When I was meditating one day, without hesitation the word CHERISH came to mind. I looked up the definition for more clarity as to how this word might guide my year and the first two caught my eye. For me, they apply when cherishing outwardly. The third I felt offered guidance when approaching my personal goals for 2016, but I think I will leave that for another article.
- Protect and care for (someone) lovingly.
- Hold (something) dear.
- Keep (a hope or ambition) in one's mind.
While my 2015 was for the most part very positive, there have been a few glitches that created emotional pain. Then there have been the problems of those I care for - a few family member with health problems, several people struggling finding steady jobs, some with financial worries, others with serious personal conflicts in their lives and the list goes on. My highly developed mothering hormones have been on overdrive and I have occasionally allowed my emotions to get entangled. The emotional weight has been draining, especially when I felt helpless to make a difference in their lives.
A guided meditation led by friend, fellow author and intuitive healer Sue Dumais gave me great clarity. She suggested I ask myself first if I was supposed to be helping - my heart, my intuition, would let me know. If I was meant to help, my heart would not only answer yes, but guide me as to what that meant. This advice hit the mark.
Most of us do not take a moment to step out of the situation to ask the question or listen to the answer. With the best, but misguided intentions, we jump in willy nilly. No wonder the stress builds. It just doesn't feel right for a reason. We need to trust those in our lives are on the journey they need to be on and that the mentors they need will be there at the right time.
When we are not meant to step in, we still have a role. That role is to cherish. Cherishing someone means you drop expectations as to what you think they should be doing. Cherishing means taking them just as they are and holding them dear. Cherishing means letting them know they are loved and valued just as they are with no strings attached. Nothing is asked for in return. It's so simple.
This is a point I've come to many times, but it's so easy to slip. Our ego gets bruised or our buttons pushed and those primal emotions take over. The hope is that each time I make this conscious decision to cherish those around me regardless of what they choose, it will be come easier.
So here is to 2016. May we all learn to cherish just a little better.