Healing in a Kayak
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Word of 2024

My word for 2023 was honour. If you would like to read my blog about it click here: https://www.healinginakayak.com/uncategorized/word-of-2023/

How did this turn out for me? I would say fantastically well! Looking back now and reading what I wrote, I will definitely say that I stayed true to the intention I set last January. I honoured my physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual needs the majority of the time. This included prioritizing adequate sleep, choosing to rest even when there were things to be done, and making sure I took the time to connect with those I love. When I failed to do so I reflected on the experience and did better the next time.

I honoured my boundaries and didn’t allow myself to get sucked into drama that didn’t belong to me. As a result I was able to preserve my energy for the things that matter most to me – family and friends. Most importantly I honoured my authentic self. No more pretending to be something I am not. No pushing myself to do things that didn’t align with my needs and values. No making myself small so as not to be “too much”.

Because of this one seemingly little word – honour – my life is so much more peaceful and joyful. Whenever I consider doing something now I ask myself if it will allow me to honour my needs and my boundaries. If so, then the answer is a resounding yes! If not, then I speak my truth with kindness and compassion and walk away. This, my friends, is so damn liberating!

So I ask myself, what word resonates with me for 2024? What have I learned thus far from honouring myself and how can that manifest in a new word to carry forward? The answer is simplicity itself. No, like literally, SIMPLICITY. This is my word of 2024.

What became readily apparent in my year of honour is that the simple things give me the most joy. When things start to get complicated I become anxious and I can literally feel the energy drain from my body. I have finally come to accept this without judging myself for it. Some might consider me dull (I am, after all, sitting here under a warm blanket with a good book on New Year’s Eve) and I’m okay with that. Simplicity just makes my life so much more enjoyable.

What does this look like for me? On the daily it means things like keeping food preparation easy and quick. While I love dishes with complex flavours, I don’t love cooking them myself. I would rather get food from a restaurant once a year and truly savour it than try to save money by attempting to do it myself more often. When selecting new recipes to try if my brain is hurting before I’m halfway through the preparation instructions then I ditch it no matter how yummy it might sound.

Simplicity for me looks like saying no to things that mean rushing around or staying out late, even if the activity sounds like fun. It means keeping my home free of clutter and owning minimal stuff. It means saying no to anything involving band width I can’t spare, even if it’s for someone I care about.

If I hadn’t dedicated myself to an entire year of honouring my needs I would never have realized how much I value simplicity. Few things give me more joy than going for a walk in nature with someone I love. No need for an elaborate activity or fancy food when spending time together.

I look forward to discovering how many more ways I can make simplicity a way of life in the coming year. I can already hear my motto – “Keep it simple, stupid!” Well, minus the “stupid” because my self-compassion won’t let me call myself that anymore.

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