Musings from the Moonroom

Thoughts on Art, Inspiration, Creativity and Spirit


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My 2010 Word of the Year: Soar. A Look Back

In January of last year, I chose the word SOAR as my word of the year. I chose this word because I considered it an extension of the word Momentum. Momentum was the word I almost chose. But SOAR seemed to fit me better. I liked the sound of SOARING through the year. You can read more about why I chose SOAR here.

The idea behind choosing a word for the year, as opposed to making resolutions, is that a particular word provides you with guidance all year along. I admit that sometimes I forget that. Maybe that isn’t a bad thing. If I beat myself over the head with my word of the year, I probably wouldn’t enjoy the process any more than I like making New Year’s resolutions. So I often choose my word, put it out to the Universe, and then let it go.

How did I embody the word SOAR during 2010?

I embarked on a long thought about goal and started teaching polymer clay mixed media classes. We celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary by visiting Italy. I had mixed media artwork (on canvas) published in two different books by Patti Digh. I was interviewed by our local newspaper and a local cable channel. I dove more into social networking by finally creating a Facebook personal page and a page for my art business. I also created an online studio on ArtFire.

Many of these events and other accomplishments happened rather effortlessly. For most of the year, I felt like I was soaring on thermals. Opportunities appeared and I accepted or let them go.

My full phrase for 2010 was SOAR with MOMENTUM into ABUNDANCE and have FAITH.

And in the last two months of the year, FAITH came into play. Big time.

First I received a surprising notice that one of my galleries wished to end their contract with me. The loss of a contract is not entirely new. I’ve ended them in the past and consignment shops have ended them with me. In this case, however, the loss caused me to question the value of my artwork and my self-worth as an artist. Would I be resigned to create production artwork forever?

Then came the health issues. At 47 I expect to be facing some changes as I move closer to a new phase in my biological life. However, what I did not expect was several doctor’s appointments, a biopsy, blood tests, unplanned weight loss, and an ultrasound. As a generally healthy person, to be confronted with a body in sudden revolt over a period of several weeks not only made me angry, I was scared, tired, and crying. I found myself delving deep into prayers and searching for faith in my self and my situation. Faith that I was well, that I would be well, and that all would be well.

The sketch below sums up all the feelings I experienced during those weeks.

As the year drew to a close, my health started to return to an acceptable level of normalcy. Answers were received and a solution to the situation was found. The experience caused me to think deeply about several areas of my life. This has put me on a new path for 2011 and influences the word I’m leaning toward to guide me in 2011.

In some ways SOAR in 2010 was a mixed blessing. Much like the hawks that I love to watch, SOAR carried me on the thermals of success but it also meant I had to dive deeply to find the source of myself.

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Word of the Year 2010-SOAR

At the end of last year, I posted my thoughts on my word of the year for 2009. At that time I mentioned having a list of potential words for 2010 yet none had struck a chord with me. The words on this list included: momentum, motivate/motivation, clarity, listen, courage, abundance, leap, expand, faith, and presence.

Over a few days I worked with Christine Kane’s Word of the Year Discovery Tool contemplating and answering the questions. I was drawn to the words momentum, faith, expand, and abundance yet none of them felt quite “right.” I thought more about the past year and what I felt was missing within me. What kept me from having a better year.

Momentum was the first word that came to mind last month when I began to think about my word for 2010. But that word also scared me. What if I chose that word and all hell broke loose with stuff coming at me from all directions? Was that the kind of momentum I was seeking? What if life came at me faster than I could handle and I found myself in overwhelm?

After answering a few questions in the Discovery Tool worksheet, I decided to sit quietly and meditate on this situation. Getting quiet and clear brought the word to me in an instant.

SOAR

That’s it! I want to SOAR in 2010.

Now where did that word come from? In some ways it is an extension of momentum. I think the reason momentum didn’t quite work for me was the word brought to mind moving very fast and then hitting a wall or gaining speed only to poop out. Momentum is hard to maintain. Sometimes you go really fast but don’t have anything to show for it.

Soar brought to mind the hawks I so admire; the hawks I often see soaring above the earth, moving gracefully on thermals. They show such strength, power, and freedom. And they look like they’re really enjoying themselves.

Having the word soar to guide me through this year gives me confidence and the ability to face fear and move beyond it. I think it actually moves me beyond expansion and momentum.

I look forward to seeing how this word will guide my year. So far it has brought me an accountability (goals) partner, a potential new consignment sales opportunity and the potential to have my artwork included in some soon-to-be-published books.

The word SOAR is written on my calendar along with this mantra: SOAR with Momentum into Abundance and have Faith.