2018 WORD of the YEAR

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Happy New Year! It has become a tradition for me that, as we start another trip around the sun, I choose a word to guide me through the coming year. I started this back in 2015 with the word Emergent, and then Resilient in 2016.  Both proved to be prophetic. 2015 was the year that I really started coming into my own. I stopped trying to fit or judge myself by conventional standards and just let myself be. I kept my eyes and heart open and let the universe guide me. I was not led astray.

In 2016 I continued pushing forward, learning more about myself and continuing to shed layers of preconceived notions and insecurities that I had heaped upon myself.  I focused on developing and harnessing my creativity towards a goal.  I stayed the course and wrote a book.

The whirlwind that started in 2016, picked up speed at the beginning of 2017 with the launch of The Empire on January 6th, and continued gaining strength throughout most of the year with a brand new learning curve of  marketing campaigns, book signings and sales. Picking a word for 2017 got lost in that storm, but if I would have, I would say that the word Development would have defined the year.

This year, I will continue to use the words I’ve picked so far and add BALANCE. One of the challenges last year was finding a way to keep everything moving forward. I learned that writing a book is not necessarily the hardest part of being an author. As an indie published author, I also had to learn how to market and sell a book. That’s a whole new skillset and a continual learning process. I also found out that it can be very time consuming. Most of the time, it felt like I could only successfully focus on one aspect at a time – either writing or marketing.

Balance, throughout all parts of my life, will be my goal for 2018.

Wishing you a happy, balanced and successful year!

Dec 31

Happy New Year!

As I sit here in the last hours of 2016, I look back on a year that continued in the arc that was started in 2015.  I continued to nurture and grow my creativity. I finished my first novel, The Empire, that will be published next week, and had one of the happiest and fulfilling years ever. I feel really lucky. For me, 2016 was a fantastic year!

When I started thinking about my Word for 2017, it occurred to me that I’d forgotten what my 2016 word was. 2015 was Emergent, and it fit perfectly with the year I had in 2015 and really 2016. I’ve continued to learn and grow.  After searching this site and then my entire computer, I found a post I never published. My word for 2016 was RESILIENT and once again it proved to be prophetic. Being resilient has served me well this year, when I started to doubt myself and my path. Staying my course, believing in myself, giving myself the chance to find what makes me happy has paid off.

Below is my lost 2016 Word of the Year post.  Happy New Year! May 2017 bring you lots of love, laughter and happiness!!

My 2016 word of the year is RESILIENT  I picked this word for many reasons, as a reminder, a touchstone, a charm.  After the progress of my emergent year, a year that pushed me, stretched my creative and personal development and began the process of molding me and developing me creatively, and on other levels as well – all the change, progress and growth that I created for myself has in many ways strengthened me but has also left me tender and exposed. I am still emerging. That process will continue on for awhile I hope. I have learned so much about myself, about my creative process, about who I am and who I want to be, that I can’t see that journey, that lesson, ending anytime soon. I am still discovering who I am, where I’m going, what I want.

The word resilient will remind me to stand tough when I feel the sting of rejection, disapproval or doubt about what I am doing, what I am creating, what I am putting out there.

Feb 25

2015 – Emergent – A Year In Review

 

2015 was a very productive year for me, personally and creatively. The word “emergent” proved to be an accurate choice.  As I had promised myself, I kept my eyes and self open, and let the universe chart my course. I was not disappointed. There were challenges and lessons to be learned, and also a lot of wonderful adventures and opportunities. I pushed myself in directions that were not always comfortable, but usually fulfilling.

I don’t know if it makes sense or not, but I tried very hard to allow myself to just be. I made an effort to strip away the conceived ideas I’ve put upon myself,  or allowed others to put upon me over the years. I worked at sloughing off layers of self-doubt, self-imposed beliefs and conformance so that I could really see just me, and whatever raw potential there might be.

I am a work in progress.  Chipping away at the protective layers is a long process. They weren’t added quickly, and shedding them isn’t a quick task either. What I am learning is that the more I pull myself out of those layers and let go of them, the stronger and more confident I feel.  It’s not always easy or comfortable exposing your true, unguarded self to the world.  Fear and self-doubt always seem to be lurking right there in the shadows, but I have found that the reward of allowing my true self to be seen, even if it sometimes stings a bit, is worth it. It has given me the freedom and space to begin to explore who I am, what the world has to offer and what I have to offer the world.

In the midst of all this self-discovery, or perhaps because of it, my creative side has begun to flourish as well. 2015 was chock full of creative projects. Some are featured on this site as recipes, photo galleries and how-to posts. I’m also in the middle of writing a series of paranormal fiction books centered around a somewhat fictional small New England town. I also realized this year just how much I enjoy photography. I’m still a beginner, but I have loved the experience of exploring the world through the lens of a camera.  Some of what I’ve photographed is on this site, and some I post to Instagram – as @ByCLAlden.

I have emerged in other ways by pushing myself to live in the present, the here and now, not just waiting or planning for some future event. I have made a point to take time out from daily life to have some fun, whether it’s working on a fun project, taking a quick walk outside, meeting a friend for a drink, or by taking day trips to explore the world around my neighborhood.  I have also emerged back into the dating scene by dipping my toes back into the dating pool via online dating sites, but that’s a story for another post! 🙂

I’ll conclude this post by saying that I’m enjoying my new perspective of me, the world, and all that it offers. I’m not finished emerging yet. I’m not sure when I will be, and that’s okay.

 

 

Jan 05

2015 New Year, New Adventures

2015
New Year, New Adventures
 

Out with the old. I stalled and sputtered with this blog last year…I guess I just wasn’t ready.  2014 was a busy year. It was full of discovery, loss, heartache, joy, restoration, evolution and many creative adventures that have now begun to fill me up. I began pushing out all the negativity, stress, unhappiness, and soul sucking day to day living that had left me feeling like an empty shell. I struggled with finding a direction for this blog. I got too caught up in trying to structure and define it. The outcome of this blog last year is a good reflection of what my life has been like for a long time – trying to make my life fit into an acceptable format for public consumption, instead of focusing on creating a life I want.  That’s all in the past.

A bit battered, but still moving forward.


In with the new.


New adventures. 2015 will be about development. I’m not going to make hard and fast plans, or set a defined direction, because it seems that every time I do, I end up being redirected anyway. So one of my goals this year is to be more fluid. Accept what the universe has to offer. Flow like a river, adjusting my direction as obstacles arise; flowing over the ones I can, and around the ones I can’t. I’m not sure what my destination will be, and I’m okay with that. I’m learning to live and enjoy the present, taking each day as it comes. I’ve opened up my eyes, ears and heart to the universe, and set myself afloat. I’m looking forward to seeing how my river flows.