I’m making this public as it’s the first thing people ask now that we’re at the start of a new year.
So what’s in store for me in 2012? I have no idea.
I’m practicing letting go of plans, goals, outcomes, expectations - and especially control. I want to see what happens just by ‘going with the flow’.
I might, however, put some lifeguards on standby, just in case I need a lifeline if I get tossed around too much by the turbulent current. But that’s just a precautionary option.
On the surface, I may appear aimless, directionless and even lazy. Heck, sometimes I feel like I’m floundering.
Ever since my life fell apart and I lost my focus, I find it difficult to think about long-range plans, goals or commitments and can barely keep track of time.
I was therefore amused by an invitation I received yesterday for a Toastmasters club changeover meeting on 25 June.
I checked my diary out of curiosity and confirmed that it was almost SIX months away! I know that’s plenty of time to prepare a Toastmasters speech, but I work much better under pressing deadlines.
I also joked with another friend that I was exhausted just hearing about her extensive plans and dreams for 2012. I’m not knocking it – it’s great that she’s passionate about launching her new business and knows what she wants.
I’m simply not at that point.
In the meantime, I’m practicing enjoying the moment. That all is well; that I’m exactly where I need to be.
I’m also practicing listening more to my intuition and trusting that I'm being guided to the people and opportunities out there which are aligned with my life purpose.
Oh, I’ve also been thinking about this one for a while now: what’s my purpose?
I’ve narrowed it down to: being happy and doing whatever brings me joy. Well, that leaves the door open for unlimited possibilities!
What happened in 2011?
I've often reflected on the irony that I had lots of free time, but I was always busy; I appear to have done nothing, yet I’ve done lots of things.
One of my intentions was to step away from several committee roles and free up my time, which then allowed lots of other interesting – and unplanned - things to happen.
Here are some of the highlights:
1. I started The Goldilocks Trilogy blog in May after attending a blogging workshop.
2. I co-edited an 85,000 word novel manuscript, The Poisoned Chalice, which is being launched in March.
3. I’m editor of a bi-monthly district newsletter for Toastmasters.
4. I proofread a 90,000 word PhD thesis.
5. I was MC at a couple of local community events, one of which involved being Santa's little elf.
6. I’ve upgraded my Trainer qualifications.
Somewhere throughout the year I hope I’ve also smiled, laughed, been compassionate, honest and acted with kindness.
My most notable accomplishment, however, is that I’ve been living on the Sunshine Coast for almost three years now.
That’s remarkable given that for most of my life I’ve moved around every two years; and many of my old Sydney friends still ask where I’m heading next.
I don’t make New Year’s resolutions because:
(a) they imply I’m not happy with what I have/am/do;
(b) I don’t limit reflecting about my life only at the start of a new year.
Instead, I set my intentions on creating joy, peace, love, health, harmony and abundance in my life. Again, that leaves the door open for unlimited possibilities.
As another Christmas, New Year and birthday recede into the background, I’ve borrowed the following Buddhist meditation practice to guide me through the coming year:
1. May I be filled with loving kindness
2. May I be well
3. May I be peaceful and at ease
4. May I be happy
Four things on my bucket list
Of course, there are lots of things I still want to “do” in this lifetime, but I don’t have any timeframes around them or order of priority, although I’ve been thinking more about these ones lately:
1. Sail around the Greek islands for six months
2. Take a cruise to Antarctica
3. Go on a road trip around Australia
4. Design and build my own eco-friendly and sustainable home.
I’m putting them out there as potential possibilities. In the meantime, I’m focusing on one day at a time.
Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift which is why it’s called the present. - Anon
Being in the moment
There are plenty of emails and Facebook quotes circulating out there about letting go of the past and not focusing on the future. We’re meant to be present in each moment and take one day at a time. Easier said than done, right?
The challenge is: how can we stay focused and happy in the present, without worrying about bills, mortgages, five-year plans, terrorism, the world economy, radiation leaks from Japan’s nuclear power plant and if the world will actually end in 2012?
That’s a lot of negativity and fear out there.
I’m not ignoring what’s going on in the world, but I don’t buy into the fear or any conspiracy theories or Armageddon predictions.
I choose to focus on the joy and love in the world, bring it into my own life and share it out again.
Imagine the possibilities if we all spread a bit of that love, joy, peace, compassion, harmony and laughter with each other.
So who else is taking the plunge with me and going with the flow in 2012?
PS: It’s BYO life jacket (to keep your head above water) and EPIRB - Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (in case we have to send out a search party).