It's just been an hour or so since 2017 closed out here on the west coast, but there's a sense of relief in the start of a fresh new year. In my neighborhood, we sent off a sky lantern full of what we hoped to bid farewell before midnight, and as the year turned, another full of wishes for the future. Hopes rose into the nearly full moon.
Things have been very quiet behind door number two. But something's stirring. Time to renew an old tradition: 30 tiny resolutions to kick off 2018. It's been a while, so instead of a month-long theme, we'll revisit some from past years along with some new challenges. Try as many as you like, and let me know what you find. I've a box of *treasures for 2 or 3 who complete the whole challenge.
1/1/18 challenge is another tradition: get out in nature today. If your landscape limits you, your yard or a city park might do, but if possible, get away from signage, electronics, noise and manufactured artifacts. Find somewhere with soil and trees, quiet and beauty. Minds work better there. Look around and notice, really notice.
There's all sorts of reasons to take respite in the natural world. At the most basic level, we're away from calls to the crazy busy-ness of modern life, or even just the pulls of laundry and sticky floors and the daily chores. We're invited to appreciate simple beauty, to quiet our souls and to breathe deep and easy.
Turn off incoming calls and emails for a while and see what you can hear when nobody is yakking at you. Send me a picture if you've a camera with you and see something wonderful: twitter or instagram at #door2challenge.
More on the benefits of being in nature from previous years:
See you tomorrow. Sweet dreams.
*treasures: your box may include art, found natural objects, a special goodwill find, a book, and/or whatever is interesting in that desk drawer I keep meaning to clean out. Just let me know daily you are taking the challenges-- through instagram, here in the comment section, or through the Jana Svoboda LCSW facebook page. Whoever hangs in there is likely to be a recipient if you connect regularly and send me your snail mail by the end of the month. And don't worry-- no email lists, marketing schemes, things to sell you. This is just community fun.