Words and colors and planners, oh my!


If you’re anything like me, you’ve been dreaming, hoping, visioning and remembering as 2012 came to an end and the calender turned to 2013.

One of my practices is to choose a word as a touchstone or mantra for the new year. Last year the word Celebrate found me in the middle of savasana and became the energy I carried into 2012. In addition to throwing myself a 40th birthday bash, taking fun family vacations and some booty-shaking in the office, celebrating became a daily practice. As challenging as it was some days, it helped me continue the dance away from fear and lack, into a space of gratitude and growth.

Through the month of December I began to play with different words, feeling into a new choice. Play. Space. Joy. Listen. Breathe. All wonderful reminders of things I want more of in my life, but none of them felt like the word.

I also like to anchor my year with a color. 2011 was a brilliant orange, and 2012 turquoise. I wear it, I pay attention to it and somehow, it magically ties into the healing work I end up doing that year. As I closed my eyes to call up a new color for 2013, the word Create appeared in my mind’s eye.

It’s not the word I would have consciously chosen for myself but I couldn’t shake it. I didn’t want the pressure of having to actually create something tangible, of finally pulling out the paints or getting back to needle felting or (insert gaping hole here for the thing that can not yet be named). Intuition is like that sometimes. We don’t always want to hear what our souls have to say.

But it stuck. So here it is, written in the sand on New Year’s Day.

CreateBeach

And my color (click here and scroll down to see Bridget Pilloud’s intuitive reading – holy moly it’s gonna be quite the year!)
alanacranberrycherry

I’m feeling my way into this new year. I have big dreams but I’m learning to not attach to the way they come true. I’m playing with what it all means and I wanted to share a few tools I’m using to do so.

1. Leonie Dawson’s 2013 Create Your Incredible Year Workbook + Planner. I used this for the first time in 2012. It’s HUGE and requires a lot of natural resources (paper + ink) to print, and time to work through. If you’re someone who loves colored pens, oracle cards, and dreaming big, this is a wonderful work book. It takes me about a month to get through the parts that speak to me, but I know some women do it in a retreat-like weekend. It’s a fun way to get in touch with your creative, visionary self. This year she split the workbook into Life and Biz editions – use one or both!

2. Michelle Nickolaisen, aka Bombchelle’s Planner Bundle (2013 Plan Your Year Kit and Plan Your Week Toolkit). This is designed for entrepreneurs but I think it works well for life goals too, and it’s more streamlined than Leonie’s. So you’ll use less resources, it’ll take less time and you’ll still get a clear picture of your year, where you want to go and how you want to get there. She asks some fantastic clarity questions, quickly helps you determine what to keep and what to delegate (or let go of) and I love her weekly check-in prompts. You can work through the bundle in a dedicated afternoon, then fine-tune as you need to.

If you’re someone who – like me –  finds personal support and feedback helpful, she’s got a one-day workshop happening twice this month to help you get crystal clear. More details here.

3. Both the above kits have monthly and either daily or weekly planning tools. While both are great to have at my desk, I carry my planner with me so I find the 8.5 x 11 size unwieldy. Steve and I use iCal to coordinate our schedules, but for my personal calendar, I’m a huge fan of putting pen to paper. I used a Day Timer for years, then tried to downsize, which didn’t work.

Last year I went in search of something new and found the Planner Pad, which is perfect for my brain. Each two page spread gives you a week, with three important sections. At the top, there is space for different categories and you can brain dump everything that needs to get done that week. The next level down is day specific so you can start plugging the first level items in to particular days. The third level has hourly spots so you can continue to funnel your to-do’s into specific times. I love this planner and carry it with me almost everywhere. I know that using both technology and paper can be cumbersome but I have a huge resistance to going fully digital.

Whatever you choose to do with your year, I wish you ease, joy and dreams come true.
with love, gratitude + hope,
Alana

P.S. I’m retiring the DIY Version of the Picking  Up the Pieces Tele-Retreat with a Pay What You Can Sale! From Wednesday January 9th through midnight PST Sunday January 13th, you can name your price for this life-changing 5 week e-course. Click here for more details. 10% of proceeds will go to the Watch Her Thrive Project, supporting Women for Women, International.

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