A couple years ago a colleague and I attended an amazing conference in San Diego. I was surprised at the many experiential activities we did with such a large crowd of 800 attendees. One was to sit across from another person and simply ask, What do you love? The other one would simply listen and acknowledge what we had shared. We did this with one another for 10 minutes. After this point, our partner reflected back on what they heard and together we shared what our intention for life. My partner reflected that I was very passionate about what I loved and that I seemed to have much compassion. So, I formed the intention: I live my life with passion and compassion. It was an activity that I invited Steve to do with me too when we returned. Oh, the joys of being married to a marital therapist!
I rewind quickly to the day of the summer I had quit driving - about 18 years ago. I really thought my life was over. I had two young children and didn't know how I was going to do it. I felt sorry for them and my husband. I felt no passion for anything in that moment. Steve shared his love and left for work. The kids were still in bed and I made a decision in that moment that I could be a happy mom for them. We could have a happy positive life. I could be a loving, supportive wife inspite of not being able to see. By the time they arose that morning, I had narrowed it down to I could be the best mom I could except for not being the carpool mom.
Steve called asking if I was okay, and I said yes, life is going to be just fine! I got my passion for life back that day.
What am I passionate about? Is what I am passionate about priorities that fit with our yoga mantra yesterday? Is my life aligned with if this were my last year?
I am passionate about: My family, My Faith , My Relationships, My Health - I desire to do all I can to remain healthy and active, My Profession - I am very blessed to have a career that allows me to practice my intention of living life with passion and compassion. In reflecting upon these areas and something in each area that I can improve upon a little bit, I find it is exciting to strive in an area that the passion is there.
I will start with My Faith. We are studying the New Testament this year. I will read each day so that I am prepared for the Sunday Lesson. Steve and I will attend one of the beautiful temples atleast once month.
My Family. They mean everything to me. However, I recognize from how excited Steve was that I cooked dinner last night, that incorporating cooking at least twice a week (can't think too big!) is on the list. UPDATE: As I was writing this, in the background our dinner BURNED! Apparently, still working on being passionate about cooking. As everyone else in our family is not nearby, I will get creative on connecting and making plans. (Flower fields in April to connect with Natalie is on the list.) I love, love when we talk by g-chat/video as a family. Those simple phone calls or an email are awesome to let someone know we are thinking of them. Meeting for basketball tournament games are in the plans for March for the boys.
My Health. Keep working on introducing new vegetables to my body :). Continue Yoga - my lifeline. Running. I am such a fan. I want to continue and incorporate this further into my routine. I dream to do a marathon. Are you up for it, Shannon? We are preparing for a 1/2 marathon, now. Cycling. Can we do 1600 this year, Steve? Yesterday as we were sweating in Yoga, I had tears of joy. When I first lost much of my vision, I wondered if I would be able to be active again. (I didn't know much at that time! Of course I can, but still feel such gratitude when I am.)
My Relationships. This beautiful dog is who I spend the most time with each day. I love and appreciate this relationship so very much. She brings so much joy and freedom into my life. We will celebrate our four-year anniversary this February. In January, we are inside much more - neither one of us love the cold. However, we will make sure we get in a good walk 3x per week. Also, I am going to do obedience with her more regularly. She responds well and is doing great when the doorbell rings she runs to her 'place' and waits for permission to greet. We'll try it out when you come to visit next, mom. That will be the true test, right.
I am fairly good at staying in touch with friends but again am going to make a further effort. Dinners at the house with friends is fun. This is when there is a little bit of passion for cooking when it becomes entertaining. That is fun! We will invite someone over once a month for dinner and I'll cook something new.
My Profession. Keeping it in balance. I can easily get consumed and spend 24/7 on a profession that I love. (Yes, I dream about ideas.) I am in a season of life where I need to work and also gratefully easily can do without children at home. My calendar is marked with time outs for the month of January already so that I have a healthy balance of work and also time to spend with my family and friends and blogging friends, right. I have many goals in this area and recognize as I put my priority in place to keep a balance the other goals will come to be. My mind is often brainstorming on new projects for my office. I am having some additional opportunities this year to make presentations about our office.
Amongst all this my top goal for January is to learn my new phone. It will actually help me in all of my passions. I generally call Steve when I am finished with my appointments for him to pick me up. The day I got my new phone, I said now, can you come at 6:30 even if I don't call you! I haven't figured out how to call out yet! I seem to get a mental block with a program that has speech with it! What's up with that? I was so touched to return home from church today and have eight new encouraging emails from people who are blind that are mentors for me. One said: Be kind to yourself and in time you will have it mastered. I am here for you.
Just sent my first voice text. There's hope!
What are you passionate about? It will be fun to see what new passions come along for me this year, too.