Growth

I love the “Word of the Year” idea.  My last post indicated I am not making any resolutions.  I have been thinking about what my “Word of the Year” would be, however.  Unlike specific resolutions, the idea of a “Word of the Year” seems a bit more broad, open-ended, adaptable to me.  After all, we’re talking about 12 full months!  I also liked when I read somewhere that you are allowed until January 31 to choose and change your word.  So I took my time in choosing my word.  I needed a word that would help me continue with what I started in 2014.  Around mid-month, I starting thinking about “Growth.”   A goal to keep growing in all the areas I am striving to improve might work, I thought!  I shared the idea of “Growth” with a few people so far, and I’ve gotten positive feedback.   I have joked with my kids, “It does not mean I want to get any bigger; I want to grow on the inside.”  It means I want to grow in lots of areas:  love, presence, awareness, gratitude, kindness, initiative, time management, self-care, and many other possible areas I am not thinking of at present.  I figure with “Growth,” there is always room for this list to grow!  So I am going with “Growth” in 2015. Today is also Day 260 of being alcohol-free.  In 40 Days (essentially equal to another Lent), I will be at Day 300.  That is part of how this alcohol-free journey started. Two years ago, I decided to give up wine for Lent – I made it about half way through.  Last year, I also decided to give up wine for Lent.  Again, I did not make it through, with lots of starts and stops throughout those 40 Days.  Finally, on May 12, 2014, three weeks after Easter, I had built my resolve and decided to go fully alcohol-free for 100 Days.  I joined Belle’s challenge and that worked!  I joined the 180 day Challenge, and then signed up for Team 365 after that.  And here I am at Day 260. My plan is to keep going, one day at a time.  I know now from personal experience, in addition to hearing this great advice early on, when you take one day a time, the days add up.  This year on Ash Wednesday (February 18), I could be at Day 282 (if I keep on going!).  On Easter, (April 5), I could be at Day 328 (if I keep on going!).  At that point, a year, 365 full days, would be in sight! But I am getting way ahead of myself. As I have also learned in the past 8 1/2 months, the days are going to pass whether I drink a glass of wine or not.  The world does not revolve around me.  And God is not going to grant me worry-free, stress-free days as a reward just because I stopped drinking.  In fact, I am going to have to deal with the worries and stress in other more mindful ways, without the escape of alcohol. Also, the thoughts do come sometimes.  “OK, after a year, you can stop this little exercise in will-power and go back to normal.”  No, I respond to myself.  Why is drinking so normal?  Who decided this?  And It seems like more than an exercise in will-power.  I am learning so much.  A gentler little voice sometimes tries to tell me, “After a year, it will be OK to have a glass of wine with friends every once in a while.  You can just continue to be alcohol-free at home.”  But so far, I have been able to push the voice away, and bring myself back to today. “I will not drink today. And, I will take one day a time.” Most times, when I don’t have these thoughts, I feel really good.  More often than not these days, I feel a peace inside of me, a warmth; I feel love and hope.  I also feel a motivation now to dig deeper and figure myself out more.  I feel a need in 2015 to learn more about myself.  So I will keep on going.  I will keep on growing.

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10 thoughts on “Growth

  1. Lovely and powerful word that is! I can certainly see how it affects me in so many ways. All of us can. I think growth is a marker on our journeys. without growth we get stagnant. Or we are moving backwards. So growth it is…and even when it’s slow to come, it’s still progress!

    Thanks for sharing
    Paul

    • It’s still early – plenty of time to choose a word! It has been good! I am glad I chose a word with lots of potential. Acceptance is a close second though – accepting myself and times that my growth is slow!

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