Hi everyone, long time no chat?! If truth be told (in Uncle Brynn style, he’s been on my shoulder like a mentor since Christmas re-runs, I’ve no idea why!) I can’t really pin-point why I haven’t been here for a while, there’s several factors;
So, I’m rested-ish, feeling better-ish, but like everyone I know right now, have had a leisurely cautious tiptoe back into normal-C-word-life. And yes, I’m as sick of it as the rest of us!
BUT you didn’t come on here for a whinge-fest, so back to the positive!
Many of you will know, each year when I re-emerge from the tinsel, pine-needles, mulled wine and mountain of cheese and biscuits, I start off my year thinking about my Guiding Word. It’s become some-what of a tradition now with this being my 6th year of doing it.
I’m not going to go through the process, because you can find that in past posts here and also Susannah Conway does an excellent workbook which you can find here, if you’ve never done this practice before, but I will explain why I’ve settled on the word that I’ve chosen.
So, my Word of the Year is Re-Imagine, with supporting words – Question and Simplify. Originally, I had the word SHIFT, which after sitting with it for a while, felt too abrupt, like it was my mum telling me to move out of the way in her kitchen! Plus, I wanted more of a ‘thinking’ word.
I’m now starting the 4th year of my website, BLOG, and business, and it feels like the time is right for a refresh, and a keen look at the next step for The CCC. A lot of this is driven by the news at the end of last year that I’ve been chosen by Life After Cancer to be funded to train as a Coach, over the next 6 months, training with the Conscious Coaching and Training company, Noorworks.
I can’t tell you how much this means to me, it’s been a calling to do this for at least a couple of years now, ever since our WOW Accountability Membership was launched and has continued to grow over the last few years. So, this will become a large part of my focus over this year. I started on the training programme a few weeks ago and absolutely loved it. I couldn’t get enough of soaking up the knowledge of our very wise trainer Mahnaz! What a woman! So, I’m so excited to be involved in this, along with my fellow learners from all around the World. It feels like the beginning of a very special journey for me.
Once the course is finished (and during with the peer support group) I will then volunteer my time back to Life After Cancer, to the ex-cancer patients coming out of the end of treatment and wondering what on earth just happened to them. What a gift it will be to be able to support them to start to process what has happened, get stronger and thrive in their new life, post-cancer.
Because I will then be certified by the course too, I can then set up my own Coaching practice within my business, which will become another important additional element to the whole package of what I do, for both myself and the people I work with.
So, this is where Re-Imagine comes in in bucket loads! I get to Re-Imagine how I work and delve deeper into helping people, and by doing so, I will help my clients Re-Imagine their lives too.
For me, Guiding Words have to work really hard in order to give you the most support and motivation possible, so I like to stretch them across all areas of my life where possible.
This year is also the year we will move house, after 16 years of living in this one. Not only will the new house give us a new way of living, due to its location, but it also gives us the opportunity to strip back the ‘stuff’ in our house and create new systems, and simplify things.
This applies to work too, I want to work smarter not harder, and I know a lot of people use that phrase, but I know I could streamline things more, and plan my schedule better – hence the ‘Question and Simplify supporting words on how I do things and how to improve to make it easier all round in business and day-to-day life. It just requires some dedicated thought and time, working on things and ‘thinking’ rather than always ‘doing’ and being reactive, rather than proactive.
Part of Re-Imagining will also be about allowing myself to dream, something we talked about in the first coaching training sessions. I do feel like I do this a lot anyway, if anything I have to park the many ideas I have until I have capacity, but within the first part of the course, we were then challenged to think,;
‘And what would be even better than that?’
And so I want to think more long-term, something I’ve not always done, but as the children get older and need us less, there’s room to at least start thinking about life post being a parent-taxi!
Another element of Re-Imagine links to newness and excitement, something I’ve always sought to keep things fresh. I have a thirst for learning and discovery, and I need to make sure I nurture that to avoid feeling stuck or uninspired, and the Coaching course I’m doing it certainly helping with that (#mindblown on the first weekend!).
We have to go out there and seek new experiences, new sights, and sounds, tastes and the feel of different environments to get the triggers to spark new ideas.
I think with Covid, a lot of us have sought safety and comfort, to get us through this, but sadly it also leads to stale thinking and feeling a little lost, so we need to get back out there to see what’s new, and make fresh connections with other creatives, discuss ideas, and get our mojos back!
I’ve realised, after just one weekend coaching training, that I really enjoy and appreciate the deep conversations you can have with other humans in a connected space. Not only does it give you the opportunity to listen and learn from someone else experiences, but by having to voice your own opinion and thoughts, you gain so much clarity, and a deeper understanding of what you are truly passionate about, your values and beliefs, and how you relate to the world around you.
And that knowledge has brought me once again ‘back to the book!’. I started my none-fiction book in 2020, during the pandemic, when I was struggling with loss of memory due to chemo to finish the first draft of a novel I’d written. Plus, there was such an appetite and boom of people who wanted to start something creative to get them through the boredom of lockdown, and surprise surprise, more and more people then began to understand the joy of it.
I wanted to tap into this new societal enthusiasm for creative activities and tell my own creative journey story, right back from childhood, and then go on to explain the wellbeing benefits in detail and support new enthusiasts with practical tips and advice on where to start, and how to get the most out of the experience, much as I do on here.
As I recovered from finishing my treatment, I was hell bent on catching up on the year I’d missed out on, and so dived back into all my previous projects and more, but now I’m being called back to the book.
This always seems to happen at this time of year, but ultimately IT IS the dream that I’ve held onto for the longest, and I can picture this book, on the shelves of a local bookstore like ‘Read’ in Holmfirth or travelling the country to share it with people and talking about it, so quite simply, IT JUST NEEDS TO HAPPEN! (That’s me talking very loudly to myself btw!).
So, I also need to Re-Imagine that dream, because when I do, I can’t help but get giddy about it, so I know it’s a path I need to travel, and with a faster pace!
And on that note, I’m going to finish my Blog here, to create some time to begin re-reading it, to get back into where I paused!
I hope that by showing you how I’m using my Guiding Word, that it gives you a real, tangible example to try out this strategy for yourself, especially if you’ve never tried this before. It’s become such a valuable tool in my armour for the year, it’s always around to give me motivation and support when I need it most, and is great if you ever really struggle with a decision, to just come back to and ask yourself, does this align with my GW and my central values?
For new visitors to the Blog, who may have popped in for the first time from my social media accounts, thank you for coming along, and if you’d like to find out more about my creative projects, and access more resources, just follow the links below. And please suggest any creative topics you’d be interested in hearing more about. I’ve always wanted this to be a collaborative, learning experience for us all, including me!
And to everyone else, thanks for sticking with me and sorry it’s been a while! I have also set up a monthly newsletter now too, to keep up to date with what’s going on, which I mentioned in my last post here, if you’d like to read what topics the newsletter features, and sign up if you wish.
I’m also about to run an in-person workshop on discovering your Guiding Words and creating your 2022 Vision board, called Re-Imagine (see what I did there?!) at Unity Yard, Holmfirth, February 6th, 2-4pm, which I can’t wait to deliver, and you can find out more about that here.
Do let me know if you have chosen your guiding word yet, and the reasons for it, I love to hear my reader’s choices and stories behind them.
Until next time…
Take Care and enjoy easing into this New Year,
Juliet, The Curious Creative x
P.s Don’t forget to put your word/s somewhere easily visible so you can check in with them regularly, whether that me a piece of artwork, a Canva graphic on your phone, a photo that makes you think of the word, or all 3!…it really helps to make it consistently visible.