The word for 2011

I’m choosing JOY this year.

I’m choosing to focus my energy on what brings JOY into my life.

I’m choosing to surround myself with my JOY people.

I’m choosing to build my business around what brings JOY to myself and others instead of just what makes the most strategic sense.

I’m choosing to bring more JOY into the way I parent my children.

I’m choosing to seek JOY in my marriage.

I’m choosing to extend JOY to the people I teach and mentor.

I’m choosing to let go of the things that get in the way of JOY.

I’m letting JOY be the filter through which I make decisions.

As I mentioned in my last post, this past year has had more than its fair share of heaviness and sadness and change. Indeed, all of those things have contributed to my continued growth and transformation. But at the end of the year, I realized that it had been a long, long time since I had done anything simply for the pure joy of it. It had been a long, long time since I’d remembered to embrace silliness.

So, this past month, I have been busy “embracing the silly“. I bought an elephant teapot and a pair of mis-matched socks. I’ve been watching a lot of silly movies and TV shows on Netflix. I haven’t read a single “smart book”, but have devoured several novels. I let you, my readers, help me name my elephant tea pot. I dove into some fun craft projects, and I got a very fun and silly winter hat from a sister-in-law who wanted to help me in my quest for silly.

In 2011, I want the shift to be more permanent. I’m ready to move forward through the heaviness of transformation into the joy of new beginnings. I’m ready to dance in the sunlight, to laugh out loud, to wear my silly mis-matched socks, to watch more silly movies, to catch snowflakes on my tongue, to dive headlong into work that brings me joy, and to teach classes that make me giddy with the anticipation of offering joy to my students.

In 2011, I choose JOY!

Sharing the Silly

In yesterday’s post, I shared how I need to stop being so serious all the time and bring back the silly. Well, it clearly resonated with people, because lots of you rallied around and shared your silly with me. On Facebook, Twitter, and in the comments, I got silly movie and book recommendations, links to silly Youtube clips (remember Elaine’s dance on Seinfeld?) and articles in The Onion, an invitation to meet a horse guaranteed to make me smile, an invitation to go on a road trip, and a host of other ideas.

Thanks! You all made my day! I think I was grinning until the minute my head hit the pillow.

Today I have to get some work done so that I can take some time off next week to hang out with a visiting friend (who is guaranteed to make me laugh repeatedly), so I don’t have as much time to waste on social media. But none-the-less, I wanted to keep the invitation open to SHARE YOUR SILLY! (Thanks to Barbara Winter for the idea for a new name for this month of silly.)

This morning, as I brewed tea in my new elephant teapot, I decided that the elephant needs a name. And so, for today’s Share your Silly, your task is to help me NAME MY ELEPHANT!

Leave a name in the comments of this post, and if I pick yours, I’ll send you something silly in the mail. I don’t know what it is yet, but I’ll find something!

By the way, if you’re new here, and you’re wondering what all this silly stuff is doing on a site that’s dedicated to something serious like leadership, well, haven’t you heard? In the new world of Sophia leadership, silly has EVERYTHING to do with being an effective leader!

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