My One Word Prayer for the New Year

Beauty in a Hard Place

My transition into 2011 was marked by a physical response I’ve recently come to know signifies energetic shifts, both within and around me.  It’s a response that has followed each of my journeys into creative process painting, the Point Zero Method.  Somewhat daunting and quite uncomfortable, I’m coming to trust it’s meaning and message. 

As I took some quiet time to move and clear the energies, to ponder the momentousness of this new year and its personal meaning, I recalled the practice of having a one word prayer or mantra for the year.  Introduced to me by my other “Halifax Sister,” and taken on a birthday, anniversary, beginning of the year or other auspicious occasion, one word is a simple, easy focus for orientation, contemplation, mindfulness and presence. 

I’ve chosen COURAGE.  Tender, loving, kind courage. 

However later in the day when I was catching up on some emails that led me to this YOUTUBE video , featuring “Little Grandmother” Keisha Crowther, I realized COURAGE had chosen me.  

I received further confirmation when I recalled Brene Brown’s TEDTALK on vulnerability in which she reminds us that courage is a heart word.  From her website “Ordinary Courage”:

“The root of the word courage is “cor” – the Latin word for heart.  In one of its earliest forms, the word courage literally had a very different definition than it does today.  Courage originally meant “To speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart.”  Over time, this definition has actually changed, and today, courage is synonymous with being heroic or performing brave deeds.

Heroics and bravery are important, but I think we’ve lost touch with the idea that speaking honestly and openly about who we are and about our experiences (good and bad) is the ultimate courage.  Heroics is often about putting your life on the line.  Ordinary courage is about putting your vulnerability on the line.  In today’s world, that’s pretty extraordinary.”

So COURAGE it is.  My one word prayer for the New Year.  What’s yours?

About Katharine Weinmann

living and leading with courage, clarity, compassion and creativity
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10 Responses to My One Word Prayer for the New Year

  1. Well, my mantra is “Make it Happen”, but my word would have to be “Believe”. Courage is a good word. I have courage. Too much some times. I worked at acquiring it. I gained a truckload of it facing some pretty ugly stuff – like we all do, in our lives. And, when you find it, it is always there. And with it comes confidence and self love. But, I think you have those two attributes already!
    I love my mantra and it is a constant work in progress. But, I don’t forget to work at it, either. After all, I choose the work!
    Happy Happy 2011!

    • Thank you so much, Valerie for sharing yours and your story of courage. Loved the delicious story and pix of your Solstice Dinnner….ahhh how I wished weather had been kinder. And yes, we are of hearty stock!

  2. Connie says:

    Compassion…. especially after watching Keisha Crowther. Katharine thank you for teaching me so much through your insightful messages (and attached websites). I truly look forward to each one and thank you also for sharing your beautiful pictures. Namaste. Connie

  3. Carolyn says:

    Grace: the power to do good for others and one’s self. Nuturing one’s life and soul,working at being in the now. Thinking of all those who have made significant impressions in my life. Manifesting soulful goodness.
    Happy New Year Katharine.

    • GRACE, lovely, Carolyn and too the meaning you attribute to it.
      In September I wrote about grace – Amazing Grace – and then received a thoughtful comment from one of our colleagues. She, too, had a heartful rendering of the word.
      Thank you for taking a moment to respond. My best wishes to you this year.

  4. Kerry-Ann says:

    Serenity: Latin is its origin and it has a beautiful meaning which is tranquil, calm and peaceful. The words composure, clearness and peacefulness have also been used to help describe the meaning. I am an emotional person by nature. I do not mean to supress my emotions as I believe that is a gift that allows me to be passionate and empathetic, which I believe are great strengths. I hope that serenity will help me undertake new challenges and face situations by looking ahead, finding solutions, and seeing the opportunities instead of worrying so much. Maybe it has something to do with the new yoga store I found. K

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