I have to say, on reflection, that 2014 was a phenomenal year. What I accomplished is rather incredible to me. Especially considering that I started the year with a pretty solid list of what I was aiming for and completed very little from that list.
Increased flexibility has been one of my accomplishments from this past year and I gotta say, I can't recommend it enough.
So with 2015 well and truly here I've been thinking about my expectations and goals for the next twelve months.
I aspire to live without expectations as far as hoping things will go a certain way or turn out according to some fixed idea in my head, but I do hold a strong expectation to work with my own mind, embrace all experience as an opportunity, and keep letting go over and over and over.
That being said I have a multitude of plans for 2015. As usual there is a lot of travel on my list, and a lot of art. Much discovery and adventure to be had and great opportunities for growth.
Quite late in 2014 I approached Elizabeth Mattis-Namgyel with a formal request to be her student and she accepted. On Boxing Day we spoke and began forming a plan of how to work together with so much distance between us (she lives in Colorado), including an opportunity for me to attend a retreat she'll be teaching at this summer.
Along with continuing and deepening my practice, tentative trips to various locations around the world and making more artwork, 2015 also marks the year of my 30th birthday.
I am incredibly excited to be thirty. I feel I have used my life extremely well up to this point. I regularly go through periods of feeling total and utter contentment with things just as they are, to the point that I genuinely feel I could die and that would be okay because I have so much appreciation for everything in my life.
More and more I'm finding that I'm able to embrace anything and everything that comes my way. I have learned the most about compassion, for myself and others, from the more difficult and painful periods so there really is no adventure (or misadventure) I've been on that I have not benefited from.
I'm aware that thirty is a pinnacle year for most people. To be honest, the greatest advantage I see from it is that, once a person reaches thirty, they seem to finally get credit for a lot of wisdom they may have developed in their twenties. It's almost like reaching thirty without a major disaster occurring means society views you through a default lens of credibility.
I, of course, am fully aware that being thirty does not make me any wiser or more worldly, but I aim to embrace the status it offers.
I'm a big fan of lists and they often grace my blog in various forms. The start of a new year is a wonderful excuse for a list and normally I'd jump all over it.
I'm discovering that 'normally' is generated from an idea I have of myself based on who I am or who I think others might think I am. While lists are fun and definitely have great advantages, they can also be restrictive. Last year I illustrated a beautiful list of yearly goals, as previously mentioned. I believe I completed three of the ten items on it.
This doesn't feel like a great loss to me, however, because my year was incredibly rich and full.
So if I am to set a list for 2015 it won't be a set of specific tasks to accomplish but rather aspirations and intentions I set daily anyway.
May I be open to opportunities.
May I create.
May I let go.
Everything is good for practice. Everything is workable.