It’s taken me 48 years to learn that life doesn’t neatly fall into the boxes on a calendar. It flows around them.
Still, there is something about the cycles — and rituals — of time which are helpful and comforting. For me, one of these rituals is setting an intention for the year ahead.
The last time I did this was on January 4, 2016. Uncharacteristically, I skipped 2017. It was a crummy January, what can I say?
This year, I did take time to reflect. Sitting by the fire in my new apartment in Toronto, I looked back at the intentions I set two years ago, reflected on how those last two years went and thought about how I want want to show up in 2018.
The intentions I listed in my 2016 post were: be present; focus on gratitude and abundance; and love generously. While the last two years have included some of the hardest moments of my personal and professional life, these intentions hung there at the back of my mind, like unconscious guides. And, they helped.
They helped me move through a huge period of change, pushing Mozilla to become a stronger movement building organization — and moving on from my marriage.
Despite the hard parts of these changes, the last two years were amongst the most enriching and unlocking years I’ve had in a very long time. I have new and renewed friendships, including with my children. I feel good about where Mozilla is going as a champion of the open internet — and grateful to the team and community that has gathered to take things forward. And, whatever comes next, I feel on solid footing to keep exploring, playing and inventing with the people around me.
As I go into 2018, the three things I plan to focus on are:
- Be present, for my children, my friends, my colleagues, my lovers and myself.
- Create more, with words and images, with a hammer and a shovel, alone and with people who inspire me.
- Spend wisely, slowly and gracefully — use my time, money and social capital in ways that unlock something bigger for the world and the people around me.
As you may have noticed, ‘be present’ is a repeat from two years ago. I found it the hardest of the three intentions I set in 2016 — and the highest impact when I was able to pull it off. Paying attention to whether I’m present or not has helped me make better decisions, deepen friendships and work relationships, and right things that are going wrong. So, I’m going to keep going on this track
Which is actually a theme as I think about 2018: keep going and stay the course. The kind of changes that I’ve made in my life — and that I’ve helped lead at Mozilla — are not ones you want to make every day. Or even every decade. It’s time to stay to course, nurture the people and things around me and see what grows. Hopefully, these three intentions will help me along the way.
PS. The other thing that fell by the wayside in the last two years was my blogging and writing. Expect to see more here in 2018!