CHILL: New Year, Same Old New Me

When we rang in 2013 a year ago, I had a sense of foreboding that it would not be among my best. And it wasn’t. But there were personal victories as I learned to harness some of my lifelong weaknesses, making it one of my favorite years despite the lack of externally awesome summits.

I was at boot camp the other day and my instructor Robyn casually struck up a conversation about her “spirit animal.” I blew if off as some pagan metaphysical mumbo jumbo  but what she said next resounded with me. Her sensei asked her what her word was to define herself. She thought of all the things she is but her spiritual leader led her to the one word she was not and what she desperately needed to learn to be or do. Her word was REST.

The mere thought made her uncomfortable and that was the entire point. She already knew who she was but she needed to become so much more and that was how she could do it.

Robyn and I are a lot alike. I love this quote on Pinterest:

I thought of all the things I am. Happy. Ambitious. Adventurous. Fun-loving. Fierce.

Robyn continued, “It’s tough to come up with your own word so ask the person closest to you what your word should be.”

What would Jamie say? Immediately CHILL popped into my head. He is constantly streaming a barrage of “you need to chill out” and he’s right. Last year was such a powerful year because I really acknowledged some of the things I am not and slowly, deliberately started to make some necessary changes. Learning to chill is not something that comes easily to me. I lack patience, want responses now and am unsatisfied with procrastination and mediocrity.

Professionally, I’m at a crossroads. I have been blessed with some amazing opportunities while working from home and feel strongly I need to keep doing that while my kids are young. But some doors have been closed, I’ve shut a few of my own and I’m straining for a glimpse out of an open window. Should I continue on the same path or take another one entirely? Keep building or start over?

I don’t have the answers and the only impression I’ve received is “wait, it will come.”  So, that’s what I’ll do in 2014. Be hopeful. Be adventurous. Be happy. And learn to CHILL OUT.

Last year, I started on my path of healthier living–mentally, spiritually and physically. I’m learning it’s OK to take baths, curl up with a book and just do nothing sometimes. I’m learning to say “no,” to always put my family first and to be present by stepping away from my computer and turning off my phone. I am aspiring not to be overscheduled because an open, uncluttered and free mind allows for peace and revelation to flow. I am disheartened by so much around me, am often overwhelmed with fighting what feels like losing moral battles but I have resolved to be a force for good. I am practicing being kind instead of right. I am embracing fear for the professor that it is.

I am learning to let fear be my my cue. Any time I feel even a whisper of fear, I try recognize it as a teacher that shows up to instruct me in the areas where I am ready to grow the most.  Fear is energy that, when I allow it, can be harnessed and used to create powerful momentum to thrust my life forward into positive change (think of first learning to ride a bike!). So with my heart palpitating, my palms sweating and my eyes smiling, I welcome this new year.-Mindy Gledhill

Bottom line, I will chill as I learn not to focus on what I want to do but rather, focus on who I want to be.

And the rest will come.

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