This year, for 2014, my word is rhythm.
Before I get to why I chose that one though, I want to reflect on what 2013's word for a minute and why I loved it.
Open was a word that became so engrained in my live that it started naturally popping into my mind all the time, over and over again in all kinds of different situations. It often kept me grounded during life's twists and turns, and reminded me to be amenable to more options and possibilities than I might have otherwise been - especially when something wasn't quite going as I planned.
I also came to the conclusion that choosing to be open meant not always putting myself first and a willingness to be flexible. When you're open to many possibilities/choices/options, it forces you to look at things from others' points of view and be willing to go down a path that may not have been your first choice. In marriage, and other relationships, this comes up all. the. time. (Can I get an amen?) Choosing not to be closed off taught me many a lesson and also brought about opportunities I may not have considered. Being open is something that I plan to keep as a theme this year in addition to my new word.
So let's talk 2014's Word of the Year: rhythm. The main reason I chose it was because I want to start establishing more regular patterns in my everyday life. Rhythms imply regularity - constants that keep you grounded and that you can rely on when life decides to throw you the inevitable curveball. Life is unpredictable, but having established routines and patterns can help keep the peace in the midst of the crazy.
The patterns I want to establish are both surface-y and deep. Surface-level patterns include things like making time in my week to exercise regularly and having a sustainable laundry routine that's not frustrating, but the real, deeper-level pattern I want to establish is something I've found myself craving a ton recently - quiet time. Each day, preferably in the morning before I get wrapped up in the go-go-go that the day will bring, I want to set apart time to spend with God reading and praying, and journaling. Recently, I've gotten farther away from doing those things than I'd like to admit, and I find that it negatively affects me. My stress level is higher, I tend to be more selfish, and I just have this general sense of unease that permeates my life. Having regular time with God and taking time to process life is something I want to incorporate into the rhythm of my day.
Charlie and I have some big life changes coming up in 2014. I've vaguely referenced these on the blog, but haven't shared much about them, mainly because we weren't totally sure what they would be. Now we've got a bit more clarity about a major one, so I can share that we'll be moving to a new city in the middle of this year. Charlie's 99% sure he's going to be going to graduate school, so that means a move for us. We're still deciding which one he'll go to, but no matter what, a significant move means major life change, so I think you'll agree with me that establishing regular rhythms in my life now is really important before that huge change comes!
I'm excited about what's coming up over the next twelve months, and I'm looking forward to sharing more about the rhythms that I'm going to attempt to establish this year both big and small. There's so much more I could say about what this theme can/would/might look like in my life, but I think I'll stop here for now. :) Thanks for listening and for letting me have this space to be vulnerable today!
So, tell me, have you chosen a word of the year? What's it going to be and why did you choose it? Let's make this a conversation!