We are four+ months in to the year AFTER I did 100 New Things in 2017. 100 new things was a lot. At the end of the year, I was feeling like I needed a less ambitious goal for 2018. I wanted to go deeper instead of broader. I set a new goal to do 18 new things in 2018 that aligned with things I wanted more of in my life: Fun, Creativity, Connection, Nature, and Meaning. 18 was inspired by the Hebrew word Chai which represents life (and is made up of the the 10th and 8th letters of the Hebrew alphabet…hence 18) AND coincidentally it was 2018.
I basically came up with a bunch of marketing “spin” to convince myself that it was OK to back off a little bit and slow down my transformation in to a person who has a bigger life.
I soon regretted that decision. Without the motivation of a measured goal and the accountability of the internet, I slipped back in to my old routines of not doing a whole lot. I also happened to get more responsibilities at work which is my go-to excuse for not living life.
I am also such a literal person that I found myself not doing things if they did not meet any of the criteria. What’s the point of going to a yoga class if I have been to that studio before? Does sound meditation count as meaning? Should I bother? I debated changing the plan or the rules then talked myself out of that. I could self motivate to do MORE than 18 new things and I decide what counts as my 5 things. It’s my game. I get to choose the the hashtags. (I did add in a 6th category for things that do not meet any of the five criteria but they take me out of my comfort zone. But then I didn’t leave my comfort zone…at least not yet!)
I have actually done 12 new things so I am ahead of schedule on my much less ambitious goal. (Woo Hoo!) I have finally added these 12 things to 100 New Things Tab (which is now just called New Things). Looking back on the 12 now, they were not to shabby.
But my next adventure is about to unfold! I am stepping it way up, and going deep in all the five things!
In December last year (at 2017 new thing #96 Mama Gena’s Womanly Arts Experience ), I met a very cool woman named Sophia (also known as Lobsterbird). Sophia takes creative entrepreneurs on pilgrimages to help them find the work they are meant to do. This was obviously interesting to me because as you might be aware (if you have known me for more than 5 minutes or have read any of my blog) that I know I am meant to be doing more…but I don’t know exactly what! Sophia and I connected on Facebook and I loved her first book and podcast, but it did not occur to me to work with her myself. She is an artist, healer and coach who works with artists, healers, and coaches. I am not a creative entrepreneur. I am a business woman who sometimes blogs and sometimes colors in her adult coloring book (I am really good at that though!)
Apparently the universe had plans for us. Did I mention that Sophia is an energy healer (among many other things) and the universe talks to her? It might have tried to talk to me too, but I wasn’t listening, so it reached out to her. She said I kept coming up in her mind as she was planning her next pilgrimage. She remembered me mentioning that I am supposed to be doing MORE but I don’t know what. We met up in NYC at 2018 new thing #10 (a Marianne Williamson lecture on A Course in Miracles – which was pretty cool). We walked around Madison Square Park and chatted for about 20 minutes and I just knew this was something I had to do. It covered all 5 of the things I want to add more of in my life: #fun, #creativity, #connection, #meaning, and #nature (plus the #6 bonus of “out of my comfort zone”) so how could I NOT do it!! I had almost no information (pilgrimages are hard to explain I guess) but I also knew this would be an experience like no other and an opportunity I could not pass up.
So….this Thursday, I leave for the UK with 11 amazing women on a pilgrimage to find my life’s purpose. I do know a little bit more than I did then but not much! I know I will be traveling with some amazing artists and entrepreneurs and visiting magical places (Glastonbury, Dartmoor, and some other mystery locations that I think include Stonehenge). I will get my Akashic Records read (I had to Google that) and attend a workshop on writing, movement, and radical presence (details here).
The journey really began a month ago when we started pre-pilgrimage soul searching with “fun sheets”, a video course, weekly group calls, and even Skype Reiki (a new thing I have not counted yet!)
I won’t do a deep dive on the pre-work but I can tell you that three ideas for my “life purpose” have already been proposed and squashed. A couple of weeks ago, my head was here…“I feel a responsibility to save the world but I also resent that responsibility and want to tell everyone to fuck off so I can just go have fun”. Then I went out and bought magic notebooks and had a kale margarita and felt a lot better. Then I let go of the idea that I have to save the world. Whatever work I am put on this planet to do will be FUN!!!! It will make me feel joyful, inspired, and connected. And then, because I genuinely want to help people, that will happen. Not out of obligation, but out of inspiration. That’s where I am at now.
On Thursday, I leave for two weeks of fun, creativity, connection, nature, meaning, and magic that will take me outside of my comfort zone! Maybe I will come back a changed woman, or maybe I will come back the same woman who has had a really cool experience. What I do know, is that I will knock out 6 more new things and it will be time to “level up” the rest of 2018!
(Level Up happens to be the name of Sophia’s new book which is pretty cool and talks about her work and the women she led on her first pilgrimage earlier this year. If you are curious, check it out!)