I am not much for inspiration. I don’t like uplifting quotes. I hate motivational speakers. These days there’s enough to worry about day to day that I find much of what’s out there trite or cliched.
But when several of my friends (like Cheryl and Casey) began to announce their Word of the Year I gave it some thought. I like the idea of giving your year a theme instead of a resolution. The question was, did I have one word, however broad, that could cover the months that lay ahead? I felt like so much was undefined and unsure, so much was unsteady and uncertain, I couldn’t think of anything that really worked.
Calm? Well, yes, calm is good and it would be nice to have some, but it’s not really me.
Better? I felt like I needed to have my life set and in place before I could really worry about being better at anything.
Nothing stuck. I decided this just wasn’t the year for me to find a theme. I would just focus on getting through day by day.
But then my word found me.
When I wrote that post last week, I was throwing a lot of stuff out there that was difficult to say. I think most bloggers struggle to hit publish on that kind of post. But I also know those feelings are usually a sign that you’re just putting out something good. So I went with it. I went on Twitter and put up the link saying I wasn’t sure how well I was walking the line between stupid and gutsy… And then seeing that word “gutsy” I just felt a real ownership of it and it all came together.
So GUTSY is my word for this year. Not just about blog posts, but about everything. It was definitely how I felt about navigating the job search process these last couple weeks as I negotiated a couple different offers to try and make the best decision. Negotiating is not my forte. I took a negotiation class in law school. At our first project I came in with the lowest settlement of all the plaintiffs in the case, which I’d found to be more than fair. Yeah, I’m apparently too reasonable for that kind of work. So that took some guts and some confidence.
Watching so many people audition for Listen To Your Mother Boston let me see a lot of guts and take real pride in what we’ll be putting on stage.
Starting a new job, coming in confident and strong and ready to do the best I can.
And dating, of course. I’ve been waiting for a message from a guy. He said he’d message me when he got back from a trip for winter break… which ended over a week ago. So I messaged him. I tend to be willing to take the first step even though it leads to a decent amount of rejection–dating with kids is not for the faint of heart. But I didn’t want to wonder. I wanted to know if he was legitimately done with me or if it was just life getting in the way, as it so often does with me. So I messaged, he wrote back, and now we’re going out again. See? Gutsy pays off.
Mostly, I feel like it’s a “me” word. One that fits my personality but can still serve as a reminder to step up and do the thing that scares me. This time in my life is not one to be afraid. I’m building it from the ground up and I need to take ownership of it. Gutsy is who I want to be this year.