After much deliberation, I've decided on my keyword for 2014 - a word representing the theme I choose for the coming year, that embodies the spirit with which I will approach my circumstances and decisions.
That word, friends, is humility.
One of the many lessons I took away from last year (and not only last year) is that in order to learn, you have to be open to knowledge, and you cannot be open to knowledge until you admit that you don't know. I've spent a lot of time focused on what I know, what experiences I've had, why I am good enough to do this or be that. That's not a bad way to be, for sure. No one will ever accuse me of lacking confidence.
But this year, I'm focusing on where I can do better. That includes making more of an effort to learn about things that interest me, listening to and valuing the opinions of others, and seeking out advice when I have problems (not something I ever do, at the moment). It involves not only acknowledging but accepting the limits on my time, money and mental resources and rolling with that, instead of always trying to make every minute/nickel/shred of sanity count for way more than it should.
It also means that, instead of a long and extensive list of S.M.A.R.T. goals for the new year, I humbly propose the following new objectives for 2014:
1. Finish my MBA. It's about damn time.
2. Achieve my Competent Communicator certification in Toastmasters.
3. Two blog posts per month.
4. Run two half marathons. I really hope one of those is the Run Through Redlands.
5. PR in one distance - either the half marathon, 10K or 5K. My 5K PR is 36:09 and was set way back when I first started running, so if all else fails, I can beat that in my sleep (.... not the most humble of statements, but true nonetheless).
And that's it. No "I'm going to read 'x' number of books," or "I will visit 'x' number of new places." I'm shooting for a few things that really matter to me, and the rest of the time, I will just be doing my best as a wife, mother, employee, and friend. I have a great many things I want to do in this life, and if some of those happen this year, that would be fantastic. If not, that's okay too. The humility to embrace life as it comes is a gift I am giving myself this year. I, too, am worthy of grace.