Word(s) of the Year + 2018 Reflections

January 3, 2019

Yesterday I spent some time reflecting on these questions:

What has been working for me in the past year in all aspects (i.e. – personal, school, photography) of my life?

What has not been working for me in the past year in all aspects of my life?

What do I hope to change in 2019?

What do I hope to let go of in 2019?

What do I hope to gain in 2019?

During my time working through these questions I recognized some themes throughout my answers. I tend to play small. I tend to doubt what I am capable of. I am my biggest road block.

I’ve made myself small to accommodate other’s ideas of what they think I should be. I’ve been trying to accommodate people’s idea of what they think a scientist should look like. What they think a photographer should look like. What they think a daughter and friend should look like. What they think I need to do to ‘make it’. I could continue on, but I think you have the idea! And it’s exhausting to say the least. This way of living has left me feeling drained and like I’m pleasing everyone else, but not me.

Has anyone else faced these challenges?

So as 2019 approached and as I’ve been journaling and thinking about what I want 2019 to look like I realized I need to break down some barriers and stop playing small. And I started to think of “growth”, especially in the context of a pilgrimage.

You see, a pilgrimage is not a round trip. You begin a pilgrimage at one point and end at another. You don’t go back and retrace or relive your steps. Each moment is lived and let go. And this is exactly what I want to do. I want to grow. I want to take a journey this year. I want to live, grow, and learn without reliving my steps. Life is not a round trip and I don’t want to spend any more time looking back at the things that didn’t work or the things that didn’t feel right.

So the perfect year to center my 2019 around is “Growth”. I want more “Growth” in my life and I want my growth this year to look like a pilgrimage.

  • I want to grow in my role as a scientist and accomplish some huge milestones in my academic career. I want to gain some much needed confidence in my roles as a scientist. Last year I felt my lowest of lows in my academic life due to some major shifts and negative encounters, but I want to stop reliving this and not look back. Again, in a pilgrimage you begin at one point and end at another. I want to end at a higher point this year.
  • I want to grow and strengthen my relationships with my circle people. I want to foster connection with my closest people that lift me and bring life, support, encouragement, and love into my life.
  • I want to grow as an artist and push myself to new limits. I want to do the things that fill up my cup and keep my head down to focus on things that tell the story of my legacy.
  • I want to grow deeper in the boundaries I set for myself and others and allow good boundaries to keep better structure in my life. I want to not put other’s agendas before my own and remember to accomplish the things that are on my agenda.
  • I want to grow as a daughter and niece and support my family through times of hardship. I want to be present for my family more this year and not put them on the back-burner. I want to take more time to visit them and spend quality time with them.
  • I want to grow as a photographer and push myself to improve and master new skills. You can never stop growing and learning.
  • I want to grow into my own skin and be happy with the choices I’ve made and live a purposeful life that I have planned. I want to grow in confidence that I can be myself – a multi passionate person without being ashamed that I am not doing enough or that my life doesn’t look like what other’s expect of me. Does that even make sense?!?! I hope so!

So, here’s to my year of Growth and Pilgrimage! It’s going to be great!

What’s your word for 2019 and why? I’d love to know!

{2 | 2019}