Dear 2010. Or, Resolution Rejection Meets Personal Ad.

December 27, 2009

Last week I wrote a guest post for Christine Kane’s blog about my 2009 word of the year, which of course got me thinking about 2010. I’m a sucker for a fresh start. That clean, pure, fresh, supple (yes, supple!) feeling I get at the start of a brand-spanking new year. Ahhhh.

But I would also consider myself part of the resolution backlash. That whole self-mastery thing… it tends to backfire. So for anyone like me, with resistance to setting New Year’s resolutions, maybe choose a word instead – like an intentional theme for the year to come.

And to write up my 2010 word of the year, I’m borrowing the idea of an Itty Bitty Personal Ad. Although choosing one word to guide an Entire Year of My Life isn’t really all that itty bitty. Which means I get to be purposefully vague. Which means my word should probably be clarity. But, no.

I love the structure, and light-hearted irreverence of the personal ad. And I would like to get better at asking for things, and expressing what I want with some clarity. And I love the delicious irony that my word this year is kind of tangentially related to the sort of thing real personal ads are seeking.

So let’s do this.

2010 Word of the Year… Connection.
Related: Friendship, Family, Relationship, Community.

And I think the idea of this whole personal ad thing is to maybe start small. Not with something life-sized, like, oh, I don’t know, how I relate to myself, other people, the world around me. But, oh well, I have a whole year, right?

What I want:
More connection. Stronger, deeper relationships. And a sense of community. It sounds all warm and cozy and kind of jovial. I want to keep letting the right people in, and reach out to them, too.

My circle of old friends is so spread out. The friendships I’ve made lately feel so comfortable and nourishing. Our conversations and time together feels exciting and boisterous. I walk away feeling cheered and inspired. And it would be cool to actually see more of these people.

Or these kind of people. Because these particular lovely people are sprinkled all over the planet. Awesome for travel; highly inconvenient for weekend brunch.

Ways it could come:
I guess it’s normal that this is the hardest part, right? If we knew how to get there, we’d just go. So, brainstorming here…

I could say yes to invitations and opportunities just a tiny bit more often than I do now. And it could feel exciting and comfortable at the same time. Juicy and safe, gutsy and nonchalant.

Someone (or more than one someone even!) I already adore could move closer.

I could find new ways to connect with the people I love who live far away.

I could (now this is totally crazy and so I hesitate to even say it, but it is within the realm of possibility, so…) move again.

I could find ways to keep connecting with my online people.

I could will move to a living situation that’s dog Grover-friendly.

Some of my current relationships could shift, change, and grow. Or I could be willing to let them drop away to create open space.

I am so incredibly willing to be surprised.

My commitment:
Not to overcommit. I must still be carrying some remnants of the whole “Adhere to New Year’s Resolution as a Form of Self-Mastery” concept, because my brain keeps coming up with scary ideas like “say yes to every invitation” (NOOOOOOO…) and “reach out to one person a day” (ewwww).

To notice when connecting scares me, and to make space for it instead of forcing myself into something and then feeling too vulnerable or exposed.

To be willing to let go of the way I think it’s supposed to look or happen.

To look for the ways I’m already there. To live where my feet are planted right now.

I will try harder to keep in touch with people who live far away. Understatement alert: Sometimes I’m not the best at this. I will take it seriously.

So this personal ad is kind of purposely vague, because you know, I have a whole year. And because, yeah, I’m crap at expressing what I want. So hopefully I’ll keep tweaking and refining this ad during the year, and getting more specific, more descriptive, more elemental.

Are you doing any New Year reflection or intention? Or complete resolution rejection?

{ 5 trackbacks }

Twitted by LisaSonoraBeam
December 27, 2009 at 4:00 pm
uberVU - social comments
December 27, 2009 at 4:00 pm
Idea! Connection reflection. And bunnies.
January 2, 2010 at 9:08 am
This is me. And this is social media.
January 10, 2010 at 12:44 pm
I shouldn’t need help. But I’m allowed to want it.
January 21, 2010 at 7:46 am

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Victoria Brouhard December 27, 2009 at 12:38 pm

What a great word for 2010!

I so completely relate to everything you wrote about the current state of your connections and your desired state.

Can’t wait to see what unfolds for you Connection-wise this coming year.


elizabeth December 27, 2009 at 12:46 pm

Dang .. if I hadn’t already chosen my word, I would totally steal this one. I so relate to all of it. Except that connection does fit under Joy, so maybe all I need is the ad, not necessarily the word.

I can’t wait to see what the new year holds for you!

(I am a sucker for Mondays, the first of the month, and the first of the year. Remember that year that started on a Monday? I cannot even begin to tell you how excited I was. Oh, the potential that day held. 😉


pearl mattenson December 27, 2009 at 3:09 pm

Connection is great Briana- and I suppose it would not be so helpful to share that in my book it is a lifelong word- giving myself ample time you know?

I am currently waffling between 2 words for 2010 myself (sadly equally overwhelming but I guess I have to chunk it down)
1) intimacy
2) ease

Let’s raise a glass to our asking for what we want and need! And working toward getting it!


pam December 28, 2009 at 7:24 am

I am pretty much feeling the same thing… I need connection.
2007 was about freedom
2008 was about healing
2009 was about growth
and 2010 finds me ready to connect. The past 3 years (and the 10 years leading up to 2007) took so much out of me that I was internalized. I needed to leave my abusive relationship. Then I had to find a way to heal for myself and my children… and we had to find out wings and grow… and I see us having grown in a way that we are now ready to start reconnecting to those we lost touch with, to forge new relationships, to let go of past hurty relationships…
The “how this will happen” is the hardest for me too… I find resistance to a lot of things that I think of when I try to force myself into places where I could connect to others. I need to find a place, internally and externally, to reach out that still feels safe!

I hope the best for your connection in 2010


briana December 28, 2009 at 12:47 pm

@Victoria ~ I think all of this change of direction for us frees up space for a lovely circle of people. And your Freak Revolution post on picking your friends is so perfect for all of this connection stuff.

@Elizabeth ~ Joy is a fabulous word and connection is definitely something to be joyful about. And you gave me the idea for a connection-related VPA, so thank you! Now if only you lived closer… =)

@Pearl ~ I agree, connection is definitely a life-long priority… I guess it just feels right to put some extra focus there now. And here’s to intimacy and ease!

@Pam ~ I love the way you put that… and I hope you find that safe space and can reach out from there. I think (hope) that feeling ready means the “how” will take care of itself.


Nathalie Lussier December 29, 2009 at 11:43 am

I love the idea of connection as a word for the year. I have the same thing because a lot of my new friends are great, but they are spread all over the world. I have made a commitment to meet with like minded folks in person more often and that has helped a lot.

Yay for blisscovery and friendcovery! 😉


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