What I most need to tell myself about 2016?
2016? What does that mean? A really big number. A new page on the calendar. Is that all?
2016 is an opportunity. Just as each morning we get a chance to open our eyes anew and make another go at living our best lives, so the turning of the year, the turning of the page, is an opportunity to wake up again to the fact that this is it! This is my (this is your) one wild and precious life, as Mary Oliver says in her poem “The Summer Day.”
2016 is a new year; a new succession of months and seasons and sunsets and sunrises. For me, each one is an invitation to discover what I stand for and why I’m here.
2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 … year by year I have been moving more deeply into my commitment to living a life rooted in knowing myself more deeply and encouraging others to do the same through dreams, writing, and mindfulness. These are the three doorways I know of that lead me on an inner adventure as wild and exciting as any mountain climb or round-the-world sea voyage.
As 2015 comes to a close I see my commitments to these practices manifesting in tangible ways, which I hope to continue to build on in 2016:
- DREAMS: My dream business, Third House Moon, in which I work with individuals and groups to help them become conscious of and connected with their nighttime dreams for inner growth and healing is taking off. I just returned from a week in the Bahamas where I taught about The Yoga of Dreams at Sivananda Yoga Retreat and Ashram, and in 2016 I will be unveiling plans to offer new opportunities to people who want to dive deeper into their understanding and knowledge of dreams and how to use them effectively to help promote health and healing on the personal and collective levels;
- WRITING: I continue to teach writing workshops, primarily these days to teen moms and low-income women and men in adult literacy settings. I also teach writing workshops in the wider community. This fall I had two opportunities to teach “Poetic Dream” workshops, in which we used our nighttime dreams to inspire our poetry, and I hope to be able to offer more workshops on writing in 2016. In the coming year I plan to nurture my own writing as well. (I’ve got a “Crown of Sonnets” in the works. Wish me luck!)
- MINDFULNESS: My book, “Joy in Every Moment: Mindful Exercises for Waking to the Wonders of Ordinary Life” was published last month, and in 2016 I plan to offer talks, workshops, and book signings about mindful approaches to creating a more joyful and meaningful life. Going around the country talking about Joy? Not a bad gig! (And there’s still room on my dance card if you want to bring me to your town for a workshop or event.)
So, what do I most need to tell myself about 2016? I need to tell myself that 2016 is just another morning; another ordinary extraordinary opportunity to open my eyes anew to the possibilities to be awake and aware, and to step into the world through the doorways of dreams, writing, and mindfulness.
And what about you? What are you going to #tellyourself about the coming year? Think carefully, because the words you chose lead you into the life you live. Why not make it extraordinary!