Embrace the struggle: every good story contains conflict

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We must let go of the life we have planned,
so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.
~ Joseph Campbell

Nearly 18 months ago, I embarked on a rite of passage: the admittance into “Club 50“—a new season I embraced with enthusiasm, positivity and sparkles. Oh, the places I’ll go, to coin a favorite Dr. Seuss book title. I began to plan this next half century, my hopes and dreams—my bucket list—with gusto and determination. Yet, here I am, a year and a half later, my bucket filled with these same goals, along with a few plot twists along the way: loss, disappointment, unrequited dreams. But, if we release our plans—or, at the very least, loosen the reins—perhaps, in turn, we invite opportunities to build character and deepen relationships through our struggles. In the process, we might even create space to dream a new dream. And to share that dream with others.

What plan(s) do you need to release?

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Exhale the old, inhale the new

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jan 1 2015

 

[Image credit: Danilo Rizzuti]

So far the best saying I’ve stumbled across that pertains to the New Year is: Exhale 2014, inhale 2015. I love the visual this invokes: Shed the old in order to fill up with the new. But I believe that in order to make room for more of the good stuff, it’s important to acknowledge the bad stuff and then let it go. Didn’t get everything crossed off your bucket list? Pare it down this year, make it more attainable. Loved and lost? Give thanks for those who made you feel alive. Ran head first into a few hiccups on your journey? Learn and continue to live. Each moment is an opportunity to love more, forgive more, appreciate more… be more. My personal focus for the New Year is balance—while at the same time doing more (of the above). And remember: Happiness is not a goal; it is a by-product (Eleanor Roosevelt). I’m ready.

What is one area you plan to focus on in the coming year?