I’m taking the One Little Word class by Ali Edwards at Big Picture Classes. It’s a year-round class and you can start anytime. Every month on the 1st you receive your prompt challenge for the month. A group of class participants are using their blogs to share their thoughts on the month’s topic. To see all my posts listed, go to the top menu bar under “Documenting Life” and click on One Little Word.
It is summer!!! June is about to make its exit. Right now, as I type I’m listening to the whistling and popping of fireworks off in the distance. July 1st is Canada Day. People must be eager to celebrate as this is the second night I’ve been listening to fireworks.
Personally, I’ve had a lot to celebrate this past month. Summer is finally here! My parents came for a quick visit in the midst of their road trip with friends. My daughter finished her first year of school. I’m a guest instructor at Tiffany Tillman’s new scrapbooking website called Scrapaneers, which opens August 5th. My lesson is part of the class All Star Techniques. Last, but not least, I had a fabulous weekend with my family, being tourists in our own city, and visiting the beach.
When I first saw the challenge for June’s One Little Word, I was stumped. I had not a thought in my head. This past month, I found it very challenging to think. Bit of a brain fog really. I’ve had various tasks to do and couldn’t do them because I can’t focus or concentrate. PRO-BLEM! I even tried the task a few times over the month. Nope, wasn’t going to happen. Tonight, I will answer these questions. NOW. In a blog post. You with me?
So, here is my mid-year reflection…
This process has been ENGAGING.
SURPRISINGLY, I did a lot of soul searching as a result of choosing to have “one little word”. My word is Authentic. I wanted to find how that word has meaning for me. I wasn’t always thinking about whether I was being authentic. I am pretty good at being me. It was more that I was trying to find ways to BECOME the version of ME I want to be. I project a certain image of myself to the world. I convince myself that I am that person. Honestly, I am not always that person but I want to be. At this point, I’m authentically flawed… that’s my new starting point.
I’m PROUD that I am trying. In this process, I’ve discovered that the way to become more authentic is to be mindful. In a way I have two little words. Mindful is the word I must actively practice and Authentic is the guaranteed result of that practice.
I have ENJOYED how the word Authentic has given me a new way to look at the world. I like control. If you’ve read my other posts, you know I have a problem with “shoulds” (Things SHOULD be this way. Things SHOULD be that way). I want the world to run in a peaceful, organized, responsible, and safe way. I get angry and depressed when I don’t get my way. I can’t control the world and trying to diminishes the joy in my life. Joy is abundant in my life and I dull it with my worries and fears. Through choosing the word Authentic and attempting to become more mindful, I’ve discovered I can control the world after all. If I can control my thoughts, and I have a way to cope with uncertainty, I can be happier. I can attempt to make peace with all that saddens and frightens me in the world.
I have ENJOYED the creative process of making a vision board and choosing actions for the year. I have ENJOYED delving deeper into myself and making something creative with those thoughts. I have ENJOYED blogging about each month and reading the experiences of others.
All of this has been CHALLENGING. The toughest part of this process has been changing old patterns of behaviour. I’m trying not to be too hard on myself. It’s a process and it will take a long time. For example, I might be disappointed in myself when I lose my temper or feel overwhelmed. The positive is that I now know I have other options. I hear that little voice in my head telling me I can calm down, that my anger or fear is a choice. I can take a deep breath and refocus my energy. I sometimes tell that little voice where to go, and allow myself to get angry anyway but I know that with practice that little voice will become louder, and I will become more disciplined with my choices and actions.
By the END OF THE YEAR, I’d like to feel I am stronger. I can be bit of an interesting character. I think sometimes I try to hide it. Weird as it may sound, I’m conflicted with feeling both ashamed and proud of being who I am. Insecure, I guess. I need to care less about how others perceive me, and maybe get over myself. Funny how being more “mindful” of myself might actually help me be less self-involved. Who would have thought?
So, that’s the big recap on 6 months of Authentic one-little-wording. Thanks for joining me! See you next month!
If you need to start at the beginning, please go to Lee’s blog.
Oh and I’ll take this moment to mention a contest… forgive me for the blatant plug 🙂