2021: A New Word for A New Year

For those that have been reading my blog posts for a while, you will recall that I start every year off, not with a set of resolutions, but with a word of the year. I do not make resolutions because as soon as you miss the mark once, you have failed. I will go to the gym 3 times each week becomes the source of self-shaming, frustration, and guilt as soon as you do not make the mark (and I venture, that moment usually comes before the end of February.) Instead, I choose a word that becomes a perspective to set context for the different journeys I will take for the year…

An Open Invitation to Live in Horticultural Time

As we slide from spring to summer in this scary season of uncertainty, I find myself thinking a lot about Horticultural Time. As a society, we are very used to living by Clock Time: the agreed upon measurements that break up our days, our weeks, our months.

We know this is our third month of social isolation, we know we have to be at that Zoom meeting at 3pm, that on Monday it will be June, and that if we stay up past a certain hour it’ll make tomorrow morning tough. These are all important things to know. These are facts based on Clock Time.

I Really Don’t Need Your Help!

So often couples come to see me in great frustration because each partner thinks the other is trying to fix them or control them.  This behavior comes out in a variety of ways… often intended to be helpful or focused on making the relationship better.  However, it often results in anger and disconnect.  Partners report feeling misunderstood and begin to feel justified when their helping ways are questioned.  They say things like “If you would only listen to me…” and “I told you so…” and “Don’t feel that way baby….”

Identity Through Social Media

Several months ago, I had the privilege to visit one of my dearest friends in another city. Since we so rarely get to see one another, we tried to take a photo together, and I planned to put it on Facebook and Instagram. It took no fewer than 15 tries to get a good shot. Every time my eyes were open, hers were closed. When both of our eyes were open, I wasn’t smiling. In the next shot, she was distracted by someone to her left. Finally, we were both smiling, with our eyes open, and looking into the camera, but there was a huge group of tourists in the background, blocking the entire landmark we were standing in front of. Finally, we got a halfway decent picture with both of us and the landmark all in the picture.