That's my word for 2017.
I've tried out a few -- and this one fits. Therefore, it's the word I chose to concentrate on this year.
It's not a new concept. Being genuine is important to me. I see myself as someone you can count on, someone who tells the truth, someone who believes what I say and puts those words into practice. My goal is to be intentional and know the words I share are important - especially in my line of work.
Therefore I choose to be authentic -- true to my own personality, spirit, and character (definition from Merriam-Webster).
You might notice that it's been awhile since I've blogged. It was a hard year for me last year. Obstacles kept me away from my passions and forced me to look at things from different perspectives. I became more introspective and faced battles from within.
If I'm honest, I'm not sure I was the best "me" I could have been. Everything I had within me when to being the best teacher I could be (because it was my students only opportunity in their lives to have 8th grade English), being the best mom I could be (because I'm it for my own kids), and being a good wife (my husband deserves it). However, I'm not sure I was the best "me" for me. In many ways I just felt like I was surviving.
It was kind of like wearing a mask that covered me. On the outside I didn't look so different, but I was struggling on the inside facing "the beasts" that plagued me.
I don't regret last year. I don't lament my health issues. I don't wish it didn't happen. I don't think the obstacles were something to curse.
I see it as a time of growth. It was a time of honesty and reassessment. It was a time to look at what I was doing and decide if it was authentic - if it was genuine. Most importantly, I had to decide if it was true to me. Every experience helps to define the person you are.
Therefore 2017 is a year of being authentic.
I'm a better person for what I experienced in 2016.
I spent so much time convincing others that their words were valuable, that I forgot to see the value in my words. This year I pledge to find my way back to supporting that value.
My hope is that in 2018 I will say that I've accomplished some of the following:
* Finished writing my young adult novel (even if no one ever reads it, the story needs to be told).
* Inspired students to believe in themselves and prepare them for high school.
* Help my two oldest transition from high school to college.
* Reawaken my love of exploration.
I hope that I'm seen as authentic - the good and the bad - and someone who is worthy of trust.
Wishing you all a good new year. You'll be hearing from me.