I came across a site the other day whose mission is to help people reflect on the past year and throughout the month of December create (through one-word prompts) a ‘vibe’ for what you would like the New Year to be for you. I came across the site kind of late but no matter – there is no deadline or ‘must do’ start date. And that is what helped me decide on my word for next year – liberation. The act of setting free. That is how I have begun to feel this month - free and liberated – through the act of saying ‘No’.
To say ‘No’ is not an easy thing for me because I like to try anything and everything at least once. I also like to help people whether it’s through agreeing to buy something to help them in their sales quota, the bum on the corner wanting some money (and then immediately finds the nearest liquor store or bus heading toward the casinos – seriously we’ve seen them do this) or over booking on activities because I don’t want to disappoint others by not showing up for their thing. I then become stressed and overwhelmed by all I have to do and depressed because I don’t finish everything.
And when I have said no it’s very hard not to go back and say yes thinking I can squeeze this in or go ahead and buy that. However, when I say no and stick with it – I feel such a feeling of liberation. I guess because now I have my time back. Time to take care of my home, spend it with my family, read a book (which I haven’t done in forever) or just sit quietly with a glass of wine reflecting on the day.
A couple of weeks ago while planning the family Christmas dinner with my sisters I was able to say No to making 2 turkeys worth of tamales. That is a lot of tamales to be made and a whole day and evening of back breaking work. Plus there is no way we will be able to eat all of them. Although many friends and co-workers may be disappointed, they will not be receiving a gift of tamales this year from me. With one sister only committing to 4 hours of work there is no way we will get them all done at a decent hour. So it will only be 1 turkey this year and any leftovers we can divvy up. It will be more than plenty for the family (kids, husbands, in-laws). Just the other day my husband pulled out a Ziploc gallon bag full of last years tamales. Point made.
I have found that saying No is a lot like the weight battle – there will be times when I slip (like the other day when I said yes to something I shouldn’t have) but I will start every day with a more thoughtful end in mind to how and when I give of my time and efforts towards a liberating 2011!
What one word reflects your inspiration for next year?