As we finish up the first week of the new year, my mind is flowing with ideas and plans for things I want to make happen. At times it feels overwhelming because there are so many possibilities, but I’m ready to take on this year with as much focus and clarity as possible (and a lot less endless scrolling – who’s with me?).

 

Part of my plan to stay focused comes from the word I’ve chosen to guide me through the year: connection. I want to use this word as motivation, inspiration, and clarity to help me make intentional and mindful decisions.

Connection is a topic that’s meaningful for many of us. Whether it’s connecting more deeply with yourself, making time for self-care, or simply connecting with others, wanting to feel connected in life seems to be an important focus for this year.

Today, I want to share what connection means to me and why I chose this word for 2018. If you want to create more meaningful connections in your life, I’m hoping this post will give you insight and inspiration to make it happen.

Why I Chose Connection As My Theme

Originally, my word for 2018 was community. To me, community means a group of people who come together, usually around one thing that they have in common. Of course, feeling a sense of community is so important and it’s something I want to work on this year.

However, I took a step back and thought about what made the community appealing to me in the first place. It turns out that what I really want is to feel connected with people in a deep, meaningful way. I want to have those connections with people that make me go ‘yes, this person gets me!’.

When I look back on all of the meaningful things that have happened in 2017, they all involve other people. Sometimes I think I can get by in life just doing my own thing and never asking for help. Or being my typical introverted self and not making the effort to go out and meet up with people.

But really, connection is where the good stuff happens. Our relationships with others encourage growth, insight, and new ways of thinking.

This is also a time where I want to connect with myself more and do things to help me stay grounded. This could be simple things like journaling for self-reflection and emotional processing, making more of a priority to exercise and eat well, and continuing to explore how I want to live my life and not get caught up with what other people are doing.

The Four Elements Of Connection

Once I decided that connection was truly what I wanted to focus on this year, I figured I should define what connection means to me (otherwise it would just be an abstract term that I’d thrown out there). I broke down my word of the year into four different categories which essentially sum up what connection means to me. Here are those categories:

Community

The first word for me is community, which means feeling included and including others. It also means meeting new people, getting involved in groups both online and offline, and feeling like I can contribute to something that doesn’t revolve around me.

Conversation

I also chose the word conversation because I want to have meaningful, deep, beyond the surface level and inspiring new conversations this year. That means stepping out of my comfort zone and finding people who I can have those conversations with. I also want to make sure that I’m taking care of the relationships I already have in my life by staying in touch and being a good friend.

Compassion

Another element of connection is compassion. To me, compassion means being less judgmental, more open-minded, and more supportive and encouraging towards myself and others. Sometimes I judge others before I really know them, and I judge myself for my weaknesses, so I want to be kinder and more compassionate in this area of my life.

Contemplation

I also chose the word contemplation, which I’m using to mean reflecting often and finding time to be with myself. Whether that’s through journaling, reading, meditating, or taking long walks, I want to spend time with myself and not feel the need to jump on social media or distract myself with unnecessary tasks. I want to continue learning about myself, getting to know my strengths, and spending time doing what I love daily.

P.S. I didn’t mean for all of these words to start with the letter C, but I actually love that it turned out that way. #AlliterationNerd.

How To Feel Connected In Life

These are a few of the things that I am doing to connect more with myself and others this year. If you’re also on a journey to feel more connected to your purpose, to yourself, and to others, I encourage you to think about these four elements and how you can make them happen in your life too:

  1. Community: How can you build or find more community in your life?
  2. Conversation: How can you enhance communication and conversation?
  3. Compassion: How can you be more compassionate towards yourself and others?
  4. Contemplation: How can you make time for contemplation and quiet moments alone?

What helps you feel connected in life?

Please leave a comment below and share what you are focusing on this year!

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