Word for the Year, 2015: Desire

I began late this year.

I usually begin giving serious thought to my Word for the Year somewhere between putting out my fall decorations (goal: mid-September) and Christmas. And often, a word is obvious for me. The word has frequently been a word that caused me to focus on moving through a particular struggle or one to help me further grasp a concept that I am integrating into my life/character.

Brene Brown has been the “BFF-I-Haven’t-Met-Yet” for a few years.
I wrote about her here and here.
Danielle Laporte may just be my new ethereal-BFF.

I love Danielle’s truthbombs. They are short, succinct and powerful. I pin them on my Pinterest Quotes board.  I retweet them on Twitter. And I print them and put them in places that I’ll see them over and over …
like my inspiration board beside my desk …. 

Danielle Laporte's #TruthBomb

on my fridge ….

Danielle Laporte's #TruthBomb
and even sitting on my microwave.

Danielle Laporte's #TruthBomb

This past year, I watched Danielle (via her blog) prepare for the release of a new book. With all the books on my “to read” list, I didn’t immediately think, “I HAVE to get this book!” But, when I happened upon it while shopping at EarthFare the week before Christmas, I flipped through the pages and stood there dumbfounded. Tears welled up in my eyes and I then knew what I wanted for Christmas.
The Desire Map.

And as I stood there, I also knew,
my word for next year will be

Have you heard this before?

“You will always be too much of something for someone. Be yourself anyway.” 

I have spent my entire adult life trying to tame my passions. But, I’ve come to realize that some of us will always be “too much” for some people. I know that I am too loud and too intense for some people. I dress too masculine for some and too odd for others. I am too busy or active for the slower, laid-back. I ask questions that are too personal or invasive. And I am too honest – I can make the truth a little less painful, but I just can’t intentionally lie.

But … this is the fabulous thing about this wonderful, fascinating world that we live in. There is space for all of us.  If we were all like me … or we were all like you, the world would have no variety … no interest … no great diversity.

It is a tragic thing to spend an entire lifetime trying to please the people around us by muffling our flamboyant spirit, calming our magnificent movement or stilling our fabulously loud voice IF that is who we are.  Likewise, if you are still, quiet and calm …. WHY try to be otherwise? It’s exhausting, isn’t it … to live cloaked and masked? 

Whether you are too much or not enough for those around you, you should still be true to yourself.

I’m learning that it takes a very strong sense of self to be who you are created to be.
I have not been strong … in part, because I have not known who I am.
I have lost that person.
I have doubted that person is acceptable … because I have believed people who thought I was too much. 

I am reminded of a comic strip that I have had for decades. It is discolored and spotted. It has spent a great amount on bulletin boards and under desk glass. And here …. years after I first saw it, I am finally realizing how I may very well have become “a conformist.”

Click over to see clearer image - Jules Feiffer Comic

” … and soon you couldn’t tell me from anybody else.”

Jules Feiffer Comic

My divorce began the process.
I no longer had to try to please someone else.
I could be free to be myself. Karen Freedom!
I could stop trying to figure out what would make someone else happy
and begin to figure out what might make me happy.

I now believe I am enough.
I am not too much or too little.
I am beautiful, strong and creative
and I am enough.

The concept of Danielle’s book is based on the fact that
we set our goals in hopes of receiving certain feelings.
The book is about identifying your desires
and then figuring out how to live in a way that fulfills those desires.

Looking for parallels in the spiritual physical world ....

In the physical world,
we jerk our hand away from the hot eye of the stove
when we accidentally make contact
because it is painful.
We do the same thing in our emotional (spiritual) world.
We react to pain. We also make decisions according to pleasure.
We want a certain car, house, relationship or toy
because we think it will make us feel a certain way.
You want a job or promotion, a pat on the back or acknowledgement
because you expect it will make you feel something specific.
Our lives are driven by emotions/feelings. 

In like fashion, we search for happiness or validation in many of our goals and activities.
What if …… we adjusted our goals from physical goals to emotional ones?
Danielle’s book helps you identify what you want to “feel”
and then helps you figure out how to reach emotional goals
so that you live a life more satisfied and emotionally healthy.

This makes so much sense to me … since I’ve lived for so many years
trying to figure out how to please others – and finding that end to be elusive.
If I please “him,” I’m not pleasing “her” …
and if I do what “she” thinks is right, “he” won’t like it.
It is a never-ending, exhausting cycle.
WHY don’t I figure out how to please myself by identifying what I really want
and how I want to FEEL?

To some, this may sound selfish. But, I dare say it feels like self-care and wisdom to me.

And in January, I am going to work my way through Danielle’s book
so that 2015 can be the year that I begin to live according to my desires
rather than living in chameleon fashion by trying to tame who I am
to please someone else.

My word for the year of 2015 is DESIRE.

Have you chosen a word for your year?

6 thoughts on “Word for the Year, 2015: Desire

  1. Karen,
    I have been reading your posts but never took the time to respond. This year I am also choosing a word in which I hope to enter twine in my daily life. I am choosing “Faith” because I have fallen far from having this in my life. I have been living from one day to the next hoping, but not having faith implanted as a contributing factor in believing that God would see me through the most difficult times. I need the strength to trust and the faith to believe if I place my trust in him, everything will work out as he had planned.
    This is hard for me who has always trusted people in my life who have always managed to let me down and hurt me deeply. Sometimes I think if I had only placed my faith in God alone, things would be different. BUT that would have meant letting go and I feared the outcome. The outcome I received was far from my dreams. Therefore, I am still broken from the heartache. I have built walls around me and my own fear of failure in another relationship keeps me from allowing what God may have in store for me. Tiday, I vow to place my faith in him and accept his will wholehearyefly. I will need prayer from others who believe.
    Thanks for giving me the strength to start this venture.


    1. Janie,
      I SO understand everything you shared … the fear, the need to have faith, the trust in those other than God … and the heartache.
      And the most beautiful line that you wrote was, ” I need the strength to trust and the faith to believe if I place my trust in him, everything will work out as he had planned.”
      He WANTS you to have that strength and trust and faith …. He wants that and so much more for us. But, boy is it a battle sometimes, isn’t it? You are right to trust Him and His plans. I love the saying that God isn’t interested in our daily happiness but in our ultimate holiness. Come what may, 2015 is arriving. Keep your eyes on Him and trust the journey. I’ll keep you in my prayers.


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