Deliberate is defined as done consciously and intentionally.
I chose DELIBERATE as my word for 2022 because I wanted to be more in tune with the choices I was making and what I was saying yes to. It has become a it overused to say “boundaries” and I wanted a softer approach to how I began to create some space in my life. I opted to think of my choices as filling the margins rather than having boundaries around my time or myself. I knew that after my previous year of refining my life I was ready to take it to the next level with pausing before I said yes to anything, and also being very intentional with my communication.
Early in the year I decided to carve out Friday as my day to only choose things that led to life I was trying to create. Previously I had a tendency to say yes to everything and everyone except myself which led to me often feeling overwhelmed, exhausted and at times resentful.
I am amazed at how setting an intention, pausing before saying yes and acting with a more conscious approach to life has become now a lifestyle. Of all the years I have been choosing a single word (about 18), this one had the most evident change in several different areas of my life.
Of course one of the biggest changes to my life was choosing that one day a week to be fully aware of what I put into the margins of my day. However, there were subtle changes to my style of communicating with others, especially under emotional strain. I took the same principle of pausing before speaking and the results were a much more peaceful commutation style and way more listening happening. I found that by slowing down I was able to clearly communicate my feelings and needs without sounded ungrateful or demanding. This was across people and situations. It was really amazing to see the shift in my communication enhancing my relationships.
I also found that as I commuted twice a week, driving sometimes up to 300 miles, I was very deliberate on the road and it became a very calm, focused almost meditation. The results were that as I became more intentional of my own driving, I was far less reactive to other peoples. This created delightful drives to work and I entered into my job with a very peaceful state.
As I flip back through my planner for the year I smile as I see how many great things happened on Fridays. Some of the adventures included:
•picking up golf clubs again and doing surprisingly well!
•hiking in my old favorite spots and rediscovering some of my old trails.
•lingering coffee shop dates alone where I could write or think or simply enjoy my coffee.
•mastering a pull up and a chin up became a late in the year goal and I claimed it! So fun!
•reading books during the day instead of just before bed where I usually read only a sentence or two before my eyes became too heavy.
•crocheting a few easy hats for myself and others is a great happy hour at home pastime.
•miles and miles of walks filled each day but I was able to log longer ones on Fridays.
•developing a deeper yoga practice was important to me this year and I found having a little more time allowed me to linger a bit on my mat.
•cultivating an amazing garden has been a pleasure of mine for years and each year it gets better! Fridays were weeding days and it is so soulful.
•massages are so important for my wellness and I found Friday afternoons to be the prime time for getting one.
•strength training became a must-do habit and I could not be more thrilled. I am so much stronger and have successfully achieved a pull up! I will never not life weights again.
I am so proud of myself for making this word stick and for the essence of what it means to be deliberate and to have it become a habit. I am way more balanced and definitely happier. I intend to continue my deliberate Fridays into next year and beyond.
Did you choose a word for your year? How did it play out in your world?
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