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2010 Word of the Year – DECIDE

So here’s the thing.

I’m the youngest of 5 kids and have a very laid back personality. Therefore, I never really had to make a decision. And admittedly, I didn’t want to. I wasn’t a person who was upset by their current circumstances, ever. I was more like water.

I flowed along letting the outside rules and forces change my direction or make my boundaries without any more thought than a river gives the mountains it flows between.

But in the last few years I’ve wanted to be more conscious than that.

Choosing the word DECIDE was scary for me. It stretched me.

When you choose a word of the year, it sneaks into the crevices of your mind and taps you on the shoulder when you least expect it. Sometimes you just want to flick it off your shoulder and tell it to go away. You crave the comfort you had before choosing this word.

But I couldn’t tell it to go away. I mean, I had decided it was my word! ☺

Here are a few of the lessons my word DECIDE taught me this year:

~ I made the decision in 2010 to leave a job I had loved for 7 years. It became clear that I only have so much time in my schedule. I wanted to dedicate my time to my family/friends, NANT and my clinical work. Once I saw it objectively, it was really that simple.

It taught me that over and over in our lives we have to let go of some things to make room for others. It’s how we grow.

~ I travel pretty often. This can become difficult for me, my family and my co-workers. I decided on a maximum number of times I wanted to travel for business/speaking in 2010. After years of traveling I know what kind of schedule feeds my energy and what kind sucks the life outa me!

I turned down many things. And the sky didn’t fall. AND I had an awesome year. I was thrilled to be everyplace I spoke, and at every conference I attended.

It was amazing to feel the space that was created inside me when I decided to say no with complete clarity and without guilt. I serve others better when I’m refreshed and where I want to be. I saw my decisions to say no as a step toward what I wanted.

~ I decided that 2011 was the year that NANT would host its First Annual Conference. I gave us ample time to plan it the way we envisioned it to be. We decided to meet all of our deadlines. And we have.

I learned that decisions have legs. They help move us forward.

~There are times when I don’t have a preference. That I am truly happy to engage in any of the options presented to me whether it’s what to have for dinner or how to spend Saturday night.

This is different from me saying, “I don’t care.” I’ve learned that when I’m tempted to say, “I don’t care,” that it’s more about me not wanting to think or engage. Or care. It’s an unconscious response. Sometimes it just means I need more sleep!

~ Every year I’ve felt torn about not being in my kids’ classrooms more often. So this year I pre-decided on several things I could and wanted to do for them at school instead of reacting to them as they occurred. I happily participated in ways that worked for us.

Deciding is not always an ‘all or none’ deal.

~ This year and this word taught me that BIG decisions are the product of a multitude of decisions. And therefore less scary when broken down piece by piece.

And that life is really about the pieces. The small moments when we decide, flourish, fail, love and let go.

Your life is a mosaic of your decisions.

The coolest thing of all is that you get to decide how to arrange the pieces of your mosaic. Light, dark, shadowy, brilliant. There’s such depth and purpose in you.

What will your word of the year be in 2011?

I’ll leave that decision up to you!

(To read Sue’s Word of the Year posts from 2008 and 2009 click on the links below to Christine Kane’s website.)