For me it certainly was a year of learning, growing, increasing, letting go, old & new, choices, separating, and connecting. In the year, 2012, I experienced much heartache, fought battles, encountered roadblocks and detours, faith was tested, the inevitable succumb of failure, trust was lost, and my glands cried many tears to fill a well. But, broken hearts were mended, battles were won (and still are), roads were created and paved and detours became an adventure, the testing of my faith created many jewels and gems, success was realised in numerous ways, trust is being restored, and tears always came with laughter. I grew, and I was stretched much more than I thought could be. Just when you think one couldn't possibly be stretched any further, God laughs and says "oh, you".
I learnt the value of having a mentor. I've always had a choice person(s) I felt comfortable with in sharing my deepest of the deepest, and innermost details. In the past year and half I've had the most wonderful mentor and friend a person could ever ask for! Who is this fabulous being I boast of? Her name is Idelette, Editor in Chief and advocate of SheLoves Magazine. She has helped me do things I never thought I'd do; see things I never thought I'd see; discover moles that I never thought of addressing and as a result, helped me bind up chains that had no right linking to me. Like you've heard me say before, when you sit on those couches in her living room, expect the boat to rock. You never leave her home as how you entered. She is truly the epitome of tender-hearted, caring, loving, warm, kind, generous, dignity, and strength. And at the same time she can be tough, harsh, straight to the point, dog-eat-dog. She is the Proverbs 31 woman. A true modern day heroine. The White version of Oprah (an analogy that was formed one night at at our SheLoves Life Group). Our South African Queen. You know when you just click with someone, and you see a large piece of yourself in them, like looking in the mirror? That is what Idelette is to me. There are pieces of her life - past, present, and future - that connect with me on so many levels. She is a blessing and a true God sent. I can't thank the Lord enough for her.
I was challenged to learn the word "No" over "Yes". And that it's actually, in fact, okay to use the word "no"! (Who knew?!). It's a tough one to learn for the like-to-pleasers and the fear-of-offending-anyone(ers). The moment I embraced the word and meant it when I said it, I felt liberated! I learnt the words "home", "alone", "self" and "enough". It's okay to stay at home every so often. Busy-body's, socialites, and the other have a terrible time understanding this one. For it means not going anywhere, and possibly risk missing out on having a good time, or the chance of not a soul contacting you - for days on end; sometimes weeks. And yes, it sucks, but it must* be done. These situations happen whether we like it or not. You'll get through it, life moves on and it's not the end of the world. Self; it's important to take care of yourself and it's okay to be selfish. However, be very aware of not 'becoming' selfish. They identify as parallels, but 'being' and 'becoming' can eventually cross paths and lead to a journey you were never meant to be apart of. The E word; It's okay and absolutely imperative to stand up for yourself and to know when enough is enough! People (and yourself for that matter) can abuse their privileges if allowed to go too far. If not addressed, the only one getting tormented and hurt is you. Seriously, in what bogus world is it okay for people to un-apologetically gossip or make fun of you on a non-stop level? It's not. Talk it out! Kindly let them know that a line has been crossed and they need to come back over. Here's the kicker, still love them either way! And if they don't get the hint, put your party dress on, apply your lipstick, and march on in those high heels. Rock on with yo bad self.
I learnt that leaning on the word "feeling" is NOT a negative thing! Feelings are a GOOD thing! Ah, ha! They can drive your desires, if you only allow yourself to tap into it. A great lesson learnt via one of my favourite people/women, Danielle La Porte, in her freshly released book, Desire Map (her previous book, The Fire Starter Sessions). "Knowing how you want to feel is the most potent form of clarity that you can have. Generating those feelings is the most powerfully creative thing you can do with your life." The driving notion to her topic is this very solid and valuable question, "what are your core desired feelings?" Meaning, instead of being stuck on fixed goals, create a life on how you want to feel in going after what you're going after. It's about creating a life affirming relationship with pursuit of what you want. "The privilege of a lifetime is creating a life on how you want to feel. That feels the way you want to feel." As humans, we always want more, crave more, strive for more. Wanting more is a devine distraction. We are ever wanting more and it gets us nowhere. So have strong, core desired feelings of how you want to feel when you wake up in the morning, go to work, speak with that person, look at your bank account, exercise, go on that date, end your day. Feelings are a positive thing, and I'm SO glad that someone finally* gets it! I've never been a goal setter. It simply never ever worked for me as it did for others. I am completely, 1000% driven by my feelings. It's how I've been built. It's who I am, and trying to form into something that I knew for certain I was not nor ever will be, was hurting me. Oh, how thankful I am for Danielle La Porte and her White Hot Truth.
*[To cliff-note this notion on 'feelings', I need to address that it's strictly and highly important that you understand how to keep them in a controlled manner. I do admit that feelings have a pro and con to it; just as everything else. It can be destructive to the individual who only* runs on their feelings. That action can create tidal waves, which eventually could turn into a tsunami. I suggest marrying feelings with logic and common sense. Truly then you'll step into the higher greatness that you are! I say this knowing that I am preaching to my own choir.]*
Each year I come up with a sentence to carry me through the year, and to be my guide. 2012's sentence was "The Year of Making Things Happen and Getting it Done!" Along with the statement, I choose my one word for the year. This too has the same purpose as the year's sentence. So, 2012 was for me the year of Breakthrough. This was so very clear to me while listening to a podcast on breakthrough by Danny Silk. The word literally leaped in me the moment he spoke it into being. It was life.
Breakthrough did not evolve into how I'd imagine it would at the start of 2012, however, I did have breakthrough in many areas. I learnt to look for the blessings, no matter how small or big they were, and I made a point to gather them to create a bouquet. Each day the bouquet looked different. And each day I trained myself to see its beauty. I may not have been successful in the journey at all times but, I was determined to "Make Things Happen and Get Them Done!" The year is nearing an end and I look back at tasks and dreams unaccomplished. While the perfectionist in me is not impressed, I am choosing to look at the areas where there are accomplishments. It's like an abstract painting, perfectly incomplete. There's colour, grey areas, shapes, strokes, blots, and splats. And when I step back to look at my unfinished, perfectly imperfect masterpiece, I see beauty.
I look forward to next year. And believe that I've found my one word to mark 2013. But on another day I shall reveal.
I have countless dreams and desires for the new year. I obviously am clueless as to how it will all turn out, but I live in hope for the tomorrow. What I do know, is that when I glance at the year, I see visions of the contents of the book 2013. One chapter I know for certain is the birth of my nephew or niece in May! [this child is already turning into the end of me. I'm an emotional mess every time I speak about him/her or see my sister. Whatever, deal with it :) This is going to be one stylish babe with me being its Aunty; tooting my own horn here ;)] Here's to a new year. I look forward to more adventures, hikes, road trips, events, weddings, and styling. Creating new friendships, while creating more memories in my already growing friendships. Connecting. Expanding. Shaping.