Lots of my friends and favorite bloggers have been doing as the fabulous Ali Edwards does and choosing one single word to lead them into 2010. I love everything about this idea. I certainly like it better than New Years resolutions. But I won't be choosing a word. Here's why.
2009 was the year I fulfilled two big, crazy dreams. I became a yoga teacher and I wrote my book. A few weeks ago I finally sent query letters and sample chapters out to potential agents and publishers. A few months back I realised I was never going to finish the book while I was working at Oxfam. I was just a little bit too passionate about that job to make the time I needed to get any writing done. Well, I was a bit too passionate and Oxfam was a bit too INSANELY busy. Either way, I quit my job in the middle of a recession and devoted myself to teaching yoga and writing.
I didn't have a word for 2009. I just had my wild dreams. Yoga and a book. I've always been good at wild dreams. I'm good at coming up with them and I'm pretty good at the follow-through that it takes to make them happen. I can be very determined once I set my mind on something. There are some Afghan warlords and other people who've been the subject of my one-woman human rights campaigns who can vouch for that.
2009 was a year of being afraid (that I wouldn't be good enough, that I couldn't do it) and doing it anyway. It was a year of uncovering the solid base that can and will hold me even if I do 'fail', if the leaps of faith I'm taking lead me somewhere other that where I thought I wanted to be. In retrospect I decided that the word for my 2009 was courage.
I have plenty of big dreams for 2010. I dream that my book will be published and that Oprah will tell everyone to read it, you know, as an antidote to all the books that tell us Afghanistan is a f$#ked up mess that has no redeeming features. I dream about being paid to go back to Afghanistan and Gaza and East Timor to take photos of the people I met there, the bravest people I've ever met anywhere, and to help them tell their stories to the world. I dream about helping people like you uncover your superpower and then unfurling it upon an unsuspecting world to do more good than you've ever dreamed of. I dream about finding more ways to help people like you help people like Faezeh make their dreams come true.
I have plenty of big dreams. That has never been a problem for me. I have no idea where it came from, this ability to dream with such unbounded audacity, but I'm grateful for it.
I also have my own approach to my dreams. I'm not much for annual plans, strategic plans, New Year's resolutions. They all leave me a bit cold. I like to plant my wild dreams like seeds. Then I tend the soil. I weed out anything nasty, anything that could strangle a budding dream or steal it's sunshine. I do everything I can to give those dreams the best damn garden they could ask for and then I trust them to grow and blossom when the climate is just right.
This New Year I've got some big dreams planted. So I'll be starting my year by tending my garden. One way that I do that is to start my year with a 30 day yoga practice. I'll be starting on 15 January, which is the first new moon of 2010. I've planned a special practice, which will bring more of what is lacking into my life and which will balance out that which is abundant.
There is still lots of time to join me. I'd love to have your company for the journey. I can't offer you the customised 'Exactly what you need' option any more, those places have all been snapped up, but I can give you 'Just what you need'. Alternatively, you may already know what you need, in which case just join us for the journey. If you have some big dreams planted, then come tend the garden with me. We'll create space for them to grow and make sure they are taking root in fertile and nurturing soil.
PS: If you think you'd like some help finding those wild dream seeds to plant, then I can highly recommend Mondo Beyondo, Andrea and Jen's e-course in dreaming big. The next course starts on 11 January and registrations are still open. Go, plant some seeds and then join me to tend the soil.