My 3 Words for 2020

For the second year in a row, I’ve followed Chris Brogan’s lead in picking 3 Words on which to focus. This year, I went with Maitri, Web, and Unlimited, by which I mean:

Maitri

For Hanumas, Theresa gave me The Pocket Pema Chödrön where I read:

This complete acceptance of ourselves as we are is called maitri, or unconditional friendliness, a simple direct relationship with the way we are.

As is true for so many of us, I have piles more patience and understanding for others than for myself and until I develop more maitri for myself, that’s always going to limit, well, everything – everything I have to put into my life, to give to my clients, to share with Theresa and everyone else I love.

Web

I have many very generous people in my life and yet I have one friend in particular who unintentionally showed me several times in 2019 how much I resist accepting that generosity or, as I like to put it when talking with clients, how much I resist leaning into the inevitable web of interconnectivity.

Intellectually, I’m 100% solid on the fact that we do nothing in this life alone. Even if we lock the door to the bathroom behind us, we’re in there with thousands of people when you tally up everyone involved in manufacturing and supplying the fixtures, toilet paper, soap and towels, and then there’s the running water, sewage management, and so on. If we can’t do that simple thing alone, we sure can’t create our biggest, baddest life without leaning into the whole web.

Bonus: Opportunity comes in the form of other people and that web connects everyone to everyone, Kevin Bacon style.

Unlimited

This one might be slightly less straightforward than you might think. In Conscious Loving, Kathlyn and Gay Hendricks describe an Upper Limits problem. The idea is that we all have a subconscious upper limit to the pleasure we’re willing to experience and when we hit that limit, a subconscious mechanism kicks into play that reduces our pleasure. You might imagine a wonderful date night with your partner followed the next day by a goofy argument about a dirty glass on the counter.

The Upper Limit is determined by all of the same stuff that creates and riles our gremlins and I believe the resolution to both is the same: Noticing the discomfort, bringing curiosity to it, learning what we can, and nurturing the tar out of ourselves along the way.