Beyond

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Many in my family choose a word for the new year ahead to focus on or to consider over time. My word for 2018 is “Beyond.” It kept coming up during the last couple of months of 2017, so I could do nothing else but take note. It’s not like any other of my “year ahead” words, so I have spent some time just thinking about what it means to me now and what it could mean as I journey through this next year.

Being true to form, I looked it up. I just had to. It means . . .

to cross over;
to transition;
to go further/farther;
get to the other side.

I began to list the things in my life I would dearly love to move on from:

heartbreaks
painful memories
stress about aging
a general sadness
all kinds of fears

During this time of reflecting, I noticed something that wasn’t on the list—my impostor issues. I have been aware that recently, when I mention the impostor phenomenon, I refer to it as being in my past. Not that I have completely recovered from the effects of it, but I am now aware of how destructively and powerfully they have molded my life. Now I know that I can make a choice: give in to those oh-so-familiar feelings or recognize them for what they are and refuse to accept them as “just who I am.”

As I have written previously, those grooves in my brain—those valleys and mountaintops—can be leveled and remade. That’s where my word for the year comes into play. I am moving beyond where I have lived my whole life.

I am in transition. I am filling in the valleys with the tops of the mountains. And I am moving beyond the damage into a level playing field where I can replace the grooves of lies and the mountaintops of false expectations with truth and reality.

I am refusing to dwell on my insecurities, my inadequacies, or my inferiorities.
I am actively rejecting my fears about health and finances.
I am refusing to obsess over criticism, over comparisons.
I am refusing to stay in my perfectionism.
I am nipping in the bud those automatic responses that are negative and self-blaming.
I know that humankind has been given by their Creator three great powers:

The power to think. I am choosing to think differently . . . about the past and beyond the past.

The power to feel. I am choosing to face my feelings for what they are and not beat myself up about them. [I can recommend Marc Schelske’s The Wisdom of Your Heart on this topic.]

And the power to choose. I am choosing to move beyond where I have been into new territory—beyond the death of a vision . . . to life in the moment.

I encourage you, my readers, to consider what your word for the year might be, and then spend some time reflecting on how to take action on it. It’s a life-changing experience. If you find your word and want to share it, I’d love to be included in that.

Andrea