JAYANTHY'S FREE SPACE

I read. I admire. I love. I write. I laugh. I live! I love to think loud and the reflections of my mind are in my blog!

My Word of the Year 2020

When I chose Simplify in 2018 it did a lot of good for me. I took it a little ahead and still it helped me find the good in chaos. So, when I planned the word for 2019, I went to the edge and decided on Calm. Though my year was nowhere close to calm, I had to agree, amidst all the chaos (both internal and external), I made peace with what I cannot control and ended the year feeling better. 2019 was more about surviving it in reality than anything else.

During the last week of 2019, when I sat down to decide on a word for 2020, there was just one word that actually came to me. Unlike the first two years where I had to decide from many words, this year was different. During the middle of 2019, I really thought I’d choose Taking Responsibility as my word for 2020. However, by the end of the year, I knew there was something more necessary than that. It is communication. What good would taking responsibility do for me if I did not know how to Communicate.

Gone are the days when I could smile and give a welcome speech. I get the same feeling when it comes to addressing people. There were times I felt I belong to the hospitality team. It was easy to smile and address everyone I met. Now, it all feels like another world to me. Since it’s an important skill and an effective one at that I thought I will handle it this time. I have a small verse for my vision this year.

Sometimes when I talk,

I wonder if it’s really me,

Often Intense and angry,

Cruising on rage.

At times I think, I live in a vicious world. At most times, I believe it’s my thoughts and feelings that believe everyone and everything and then go a full round. Anyway, anger isn’t one of the traits that’ll help unless it’s the right kind of anger. So I’ve decided to work on it through a communication method I recently learned.

It’s easier to attack,

Easiest to be the victim,

But it takes courage to wait,

To heal and to give back.

I’m sure you’ve heard about the 5 Chairs Method by Louise Evans. After I decided my word, I began my first lesson, to know just one method that I can understand and follow. To hold myself accountable for everything I say. When I say something, I want to define the emotion, it could be anger, fear, being judgemental, shame, guilt, love or kindness. You’ll appreciate this method. It’s been two weeks and I’m tracking which chair I sit on everyday.

Isn’t self-love and self-care a part of my life, this year? Finally, what’s there to my life without ME?

When I hold you close,

And swirl you around,

I’m one with myself,

You are the gift I hold dear.

As much as I love to write about my dear husband and myself endearingly, this verse is about another love. Since my sister belongs to the family of Martial Arts, I was lucky enough to visit their institute often. I’ve often admired people swirling the Silambam stick. I would watch it with great wonder. Imagine what it would be like to figure out that I could actually swirl it on my own. I’m learning how to and I’ve never been happier. Fingers crossed, it still flies around sometimes, but I know I’d swirl it better than today within a year. I listened to an instructor saying that practicing swirling the stick everyday doesn’t just make us better at it, but it acts as a protective shield and keeps negativity at bay.

As I walk,

Amidst those pages,

I learn what I don’t know,

I realize the power of Imagination.

Many associate reading to being lonely. I tell them I feel better when I am alone then. Isn’t it true? It could look like a loner activity, but what some don’t realize is, it opens to a world of people I would love to live with. Through reading, I have learned to appreciate people in my life in a better way. I am also learning to question them in a reasonable way nowadays.

I have a small pact for books this year. I will write about it soon.

When I sit down for long,

It’s just to converse with you,

What will I do without you,

You keep me lucid.

Again, as much as this fits our relationship, this one is for my dearest blog and my morning pages diary. Writing keeps me sane, it is one of the best things I’d like to associate myself with always. You’d find me sitting down, typing madly on my phone. It’s mostly the only reason I wake up early😂 You’d find me writing a strom in a notebook, like I am answering questions from a question paper with a timer ON. Anyway, we all do these, don’t we?

The time has come,

For us to stay together,

It’s no more just a dream,

That we wake up to everyday.

This is the one for my relationship. Gone are the days where we put our needs on the back burner and gave our best for everyone. Nothing will change, we will still put our best foot forward, we will just put it together. Otherwise, the two precious verses (above) still holds good for our relationship.

My precious gift,

You brought back,

My lost courage,

And the smile I longed to see.

When it comes to describing my daughter, I cannot do it without a smile. At 2.6 years, she is a teacher to me in many ways. She loves to practice Kung Fu with her chithi(aunt) as much as she loves to help Ammama (grandmother)with her cooking. She holds the Silambam like an expert and she says she practices fast running just like her brother taught her. Did I tell you she already wants to take Joy, our let mongrel for a walk.

She is off to play school now and though I love to finish home chores before we pick her up, we surely miss her so much. A small person away at school for two hours felt like an army went to sleep. Such a lovely atmosphere it is when we have little ones around.

She talks like a bird sings. Though she showers me with unconditional love, my love often comes with conditions as a mother. Otherwise, my daughter is my world. She has brought warmth and sunshine back and it’s all shining bright. Her hugs and kisses make my day.

As I fold my hands and stare at her,

She knows it’s business,

If she doesn’t pick it up now,

My hand will speak.

Parenting is a different category. Love hugs, cuddles and kisses are there, but when it comes to business, I mean it. I’m not going to argue about beating or not beating a child here. To each her own. Have you heard of the saying,

Give a child his will and give a whelp his fill and neither will thrive.

Parenting is a tough job. There were occasions where she had to deal with my anger. However, I feel wrong about those, because most important of all is having a good environment for a child to grow. When grandparents or parents are setting wrong examples, even in basic habits, it’s not the child who is supposed to be punished.

Now, instead of lifting my hands to harm her, I’ve started to tickle her and put some sense into her to get her things done. Go back and read my verse again.😁

I’d like to handle mine well this year. I might have done a few things wrong, but it’s realizing it and changing it for the better that helps.

This is my 2020 plan for Communicate. More about my experience and experiments in the coming posts.

What’s your word and what’s your plan? I’d love to know.

Jayanthy Govindarajan

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Obsessivemom
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A small person away at school for two hours felt like an army went to sleep – this made me laugh. I’ve almost forgotten how much fun (and how exhausting) it can be to have a toddler at home.

I like your WOTY. Communication is the basis for most good relationships. I hope 2020 is wonderful for you.

Damyanti
Guest

Communication – open and frank – is so important.

Corinne Rodrigues
Guest

I hadn’t heard of the 5 chairs method, Jayanthy. Thank you for adding to my knowledge.
I really appreciated the authenticity of your post and the way you’ve interspersed prose with poetry!
Good communication involves so much more than talking and listening – love, respect, creating a space for the other …that it’s but natural to grow beyond just communicating well. Wishing you all you need to make 2020 a wonderful year for you and yours.

Modern Gypsy
Guest

I hadn’t heard of the 5 chairs method -going to read about it now. What a lovely WOTY and I love how you’ve mapped it out for yourself!

Soumya
Guest

Makes so much sense, the word and the reason behind it. Thankfully, this is an area I almost excel it. Good or bad, I just communicate it and get it done with. It is very important to let people know how you feel. You cannot pour from an empty cup. You need to be happy first. Communication is important for that.

I just chose my word of the year today. Go take a look 🙂

Rajlakshmi
Guest

Felt like I was listening to words straight from the heart… Being truthful with yourself and your emotions is a important. And your have so wonderfully laid out all your thoughts. Your daughter is such a sweetheart. I can imagine her being all joyful and chirpy when at home.
When my baby goes to sleep, I feel like an army went to sleep 😅
Wow, you swirl silambam stick! That is so cool. Hope I get to see you in action.

Ruchi Nasa
Guest

Communication is the key to everything. Loved your choice of words and how you are planning to improve. Hope 2020 brings out the best in you and for you.

Shilpa Garg
Guest

Love the 5 Chairs Methods that you have shared. It is a great way to monitor, regulate and question our attitudes and behaviours. Thanks for sharing about it. Communicate is a great word and here’s wishing that communicate meaningfully and effectively in all your relationships. Cheers!

Shilpa Garg
Guest

Love the 5 Chairs Methods that you have shared. It is a great way to monitor, regulate and question our attitudes and behaviours. Thanks for sharing about it. Communicate is a great word and here’s wishing that you communicate meaningfully and effectively in all your relationships. Cheers!

Roshan Radhakrishnan
Guest

I honestly didn’t know the 5 chairs method… Also this post inspires me. I haven’t had a word for the last two years but this being not just a new year but a new decade, I need to do something different.

Rachna Parmar
Guest

I agree with you Jayanthy. So much in life can be better with better communication. I like your WOTY and wish you all the best for 2020.

Anamika Agnihotri
Guest

Wading off anger and guilt is a long work-in-progress. Living with them everyday does not make life and relationships easy because it leads to the tendency of defensive reaction instead of response. It goes off little by little and as you have discovered it will go off with taking responsibility for yourself, first and foremost. I haven’t heard of the 5 chairs concept. I wish all the best with the word communication. P.S. -Remember you will shock the people around you with communicating your feelings about taking responsibility especially if they are not not used to it. Let it be.

Sunita Saldhana
Guest

Lovely post! I specially loved the verses!

Parul Thakur
Guest

I love your choice of the word. I think communication with self is so important and then the next step is out wards. I am sure this will help you. I loved what you wrote of lil champ.
I haven’t heard of the 5 chiars methods so I will get to it.
Here’s wishing you all the best with communication and sharing out loud. Remember that it’s important and it matters.

Suha Vijay
Guest

Your post is soo heart touching and as a Parent I agree 100% with you…Communicate and Communicate

shalzmojo
Guest

I havent heard about the 5 chair method and it sounds very interesting. Thank you for sharing this- have added it in the things to look up.

Love your WOTY – communication is a very important tool in all aspects of our lives and one we often tend to ignore.

All the best with your resolution to be able to communicate more and better this year.