Here we are, at the end of January 2015 and I'm finally getting around to sharing my word for the year with you! But I wanted to share it nonetheless.
My word for 2015 is "Expand". When I reflect on this word, it's purpose for me is to expand outside of my comfort zone. To expand and push myself creatively & to not be held back by fear and the unknown. To take a leap...multiple leaps into directions that bring joy and excitement.
I started doing this towards the end of 2014. Taking creative leaps. I was so afraid to do it, even though it was beckoning my heart for many months. I think it's human nature to get into a comfort zone. To live a predictable life. A safe one. To keep living each day in a way you know you can manage it & contain it.
There usually are cycles in our lives where we desire to break out of our routine. To change things up. A daring haircut. A new color scheme for your home. Wallpaper. To heart matters like standing up to, and for, those you need to. Saying "no" without being sorry about it, and saying "yes" to things your heart truly wants but you're so scared to walk towards.
One of my absolute favorite movies is "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty". It truly spoke to me on so many levels, one of which I want to share with you today. Have you seen it?
Here's a quick synopsis to bring you up to speed: Walter lives a simple life. Comfortable. He's not a risk taker. He's been at his job for 16 years as the "Negative Asset Manager" at Life Magazine. A valuable negative from Sean O'Connel is missing and his job is at stake. So with the encouragement from both his zoned out daydreams to be noteworthy, and a girl he is head over heels for, he decides to take a baby step towards the unknown, and track down Sean who is on a freelance in Greenland....
So, after some pretty huge steps (getting into a plane with a drunk pilot, jumping out of the plane into the open waters & getting into a shark fight, reclaiming his old love by skateboarding down a windy mountain...you know...easy stuff), there's this scene where Walter ends up in Iceland and is finally hot on Sean's trail...at the time of a volcano eruption. Walter looks up and sees Sean standing on top of a biplane heading towards the erupting volcano. And I thought - wow, each of us have our own boxes we put ourselves in, don't we? Some of us larger ones than others...out of choice. Here Sean is, going into an erupting volcano, and there's Walter standing with both feet planted on the ground, who had a hard time even thinking of leaving the country. If you haven't seen it, the movie is really inspiring as it captures this small but powerful portion of his life, through how he decides to take steps each day out of his comfort zone, all the while experiencing a much richer and more adventurous life. He ends up a much truer version of himself.
So my question is - what is your box? What are the limits you've put on yourself for whatever reason? And since we control our own lives, why are we choosing to live small? How can we allow more growth and make our heart and soul that much bigger to fit more in it?
Many times we have a "why". Why we allow ourselves to stay small, not take the leap and stay where we are most comfortable. But to be honest, those "why's" are just handcuffs we choose put on ourselves. Excuses to keep us from our bigger fear of failure.
That, my friends, is something we need to face head on. To not hide from, dodge, or make excuses for. We need to dig down deep, figure out what is important to us - not what everyone else is doing - and go for it! Could you imagine what this world would look like if we all lived like this? Even just 25% more?
So, with my word "Expand" for 2015, I encourage all of us to figure out what's important to us alone, and chart out the baby steps we need to take to be actively moving in that direction. Some days will be baby steps and some days will be big leaps, but the important thing is that we are moving forward.
Here's to an amazing 2015!