December is my favorite time of year, but this month has been different.  I'm struggling through a period of immense personal growth, physical and emotional.  It isn't easy, and finding the motivation to do anything has been a challenge.  I can't even seem to get "in the zone" to write.  I'm forcing myself today, even though this post might not be up to my standards, because I want to state an intention for the new year.

A friend of mine has a New Year's tradition.  Instead of making a resolution, he chooses one word to represent his intention for the coming year.  One word.  The idea immediately resonated with me.  It sounded easy, until I actually sat down to attempt it.  So many areas need attention, how could I narrow it down to just one? 

Focus definitely applied.  So did organization.  And peace, relax, forgive, etc etc.  I finally chose the word that kept popping up continually in my reiki sessions and meditation.  The word that I have struggled with all year, and probably for a lifetime.  The word that eludes me, causing me to miss the little things in life because I am so focused on the big things.  The word is present.

Present, not as in a gift, but present to this very moment.  The most challenging word I could pick to focus on, and the one with the greatest rate of return if I can manage it (No, when I manage it.)  The mind cannot be in two places at once, and I am missing considerable information in the present by allowing my mind to travel to a future date.  By focusing on the present, I am giving myself the gift of valuable insight for a future event.

Yesterday I realized what an enormous undertaking it would be for me to stay present.  I was having a combination reiki/massage session.  As I lay on the massage table, my monkey mind time traveled to exhaustion.  What time would I pick up my son, would I have time to prepare for our NYE party, when would I pack for work the next day, when was my appointment at the end of the month, what was I going to do about giving reiki in February.  Each time I found my mind wandering from the present, I gently nudged it back.  And within a few minutes it was off having another adventure in the future.

Staying present may be one of the hardest New Year's resolutions I have ever attempted.  Daily exercise or giving up chocolate seem easy compared to this.  It will take practice, but I know I can do it.  This is what I need, and I am listening.  May your New Year be filled with love, peace, prosperity, and a word just challenging enough to help you grow.

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