Over the last few years I have given myself a word for the year. A friend of mine told me that they did this each year and so I thought it was worth a try. Two years ago the word was 'integrity'. Last year it was 'strength'. As I chose both of these words, I had a sense of what was in store for me in the year ahead and this somehow informed my choice of word. For 2014 and 2015, these words became very important to me and evolved into words that I clung to when I lost my sense of direction or became despondent.
At the beginning of 2016, I was reflecting on what my word for the coming year could be. Nothing sprung to mind immediately. I thought about some of the changes that were ahead and the challenges they could present, but still no word. And so, I started to ask myself some deeper, more personal questions about my own needs and areas of growth. And that is when the word appeared, almost out of the blue.
As I sat on our back deck, relaxed and content, I sensed a deep need to learn to cherish life. It is not a word that is commonly used in everyday language, but it appealed to me and stuck. I looked up it's definition; to treat with tenderness and affection; to nurture with care; to foster; to hold dear; to indulge; to encourage. The more I pondered on the word, the more I realised that I needed this word. I need to learn to cherish life's moments, rather than racing on to the next one. I need to cherish my family more, rather than taking them for granted. I need to cherish my own self and my calling in life. The list went on and on.
So, 'cherish' is the word for 2016. It is not so clear how this word will impact or what it may teach me, but I am open to allowing this word to be in my life throughout the year.