Linda Stamper Boyne: Intentions for a new Linda Year in the Vail Valley
Vail, CO, Colorado
I was having dinner with friends on New Year’s Day and the conversation naturally turned to the topic of New Year’s resolutions. Seems everyone has a little different take on them.
One friend lays out detailed goals with sub-goals, points of action and steps to reach each objective. Quite impressive; Tony Robbins would be so proud. Another friend runs on a school year calendar and said autumn is her time for re-evaluating and making new plans. By the time New Year’s rolls around, she’s well into achieving her aspirations.
In the course of the discussion, I realized I’m not a big fan of the New Year’s resolution, per se. I like the idea of it, but the word itself just sounds so definite, legally binding even.
“Therefore, be it resolved that Linda Boyne shall henceforth refrain from using the word ‘awesome’ in all contexts, both verbally and in written documents.” It just makes it too hard to follow through. I feel like it sets me up for failure.
I prefer to term it New Year’s intention. It’s a friendlier word, much more conducive to my personality and lifestyle. It says, “Hey, you know, this seems like a good idea. Let’s give it a shot.” There’s no retribution should I not completely follow through, no impending doom if I trip up. I intended to do it. I tried, and I will keep trying. It’s on the books and we’ll just work toward it.
January seems to be a natural time for change. A new year, a fresh calendar, a lot of changes on the date line of checks and other important documents (Scribble, scribble, it’s 2009, ’09, ’09. Must remember.).
My birthday is at the end of December, so the beginning of the new year and the beginning of a new Linda Year (LY) pretty much coincide. It’s always been a time of reflection and planning for me. I’m not one to dwell in the past, but I think we can learn a little something by looking at what worked and what didn’t. I’d hate to go through life making the same mistakes over and over, so looking back is the best way to move forward.
Personally, I’m not much of a risk taker. But sometimes making a big change and jumping out of my comfort zone is exactly what the doctor orders. So knowing that I was determined to forge new trails this LY, one of my friends gave me a book of “daily meditations” to “take me on the path to freeing my soul” written by “America’s most beloved inspirational writer.”
I have to interject at this point that I’m not really into mystic woo-wah, New Age anything, in case you couldn’t tell from the quotation marks around the phrases above. I’m far too practical a person for that. Even the words “meditation,” “soul,” “connecting with the universe” and “sacred journey” make me cringe. Usually the only journey I’d like to take is one to Miami with girlfriends for mojitos. But I think this book is different.
I read the passage dated January 1 and felt like America’s most beloved inspirational writer was talking to me, sitting there next to me, mojito in hand, preparing me for my “journey.” As I reread the “meditation,” I began deliberately replacing the cringe-inducing words with a more normal vernacular and the message really hit a chord with me.
It talked about how beginnings can be hard and scary, but they can also be exciting. The gist of it was to keep an open mind and don’t let the past hold you back because you never know what’s ahead. The beloved writer, however, put it this way: “Open yourself wide to all that the universe has to say… Go where your heart leads. Your soul knows the way.” Seriously? The universe speaks? And I have organs with leadership capabilities? Fabulous!
Several days into the book, I have resolved that my primary New Year’s intention is to keep up with my daily readings and see where it takes me. I have high hopes for ’09, or Ought Nine, as I like to call it.
It’s going to be an awesome year. (Damn it! I didn’t intend to use that word. Oh, well. Starting over now.)
Linda Stamper Boyne of Edwards writes weekly for the Vail Daily. She can be contacted through email@example.com