Word of 2021: EASE

From Jennifer Tankersley

Word for 2021: EASE

Each January I pick a word that sets an intention for the year to come. I give it a lot of thought and the word holds great meaning for me. When I first started my coaching business, my word was EXPERIMENT. I always had a plan and was very good at executing but I wanted to give myself space and time to learn and grow as a coach. Experiment gave me permission to not have it all figured out, to not become a version of a coach that others were telling me to become, but to take the time to find my voice and wisdom in this field. In 2019 my word was FIRSTS because, as a recovering perfectionist, being a beginner can be hard for me. I spent that year trying new things and pushing myself outside of my comfort zone. It helped me build the courage to put myself “out there” more – both personally and professionally. 2020, ironically, was my year of JOY, my year to invest in my own resilience through the vitality of joyful moments. This past year challenged that on many fronts but gifted me the awareness that my greatest joy is found in the simplest moments.

This year’s word EASE gently landed in my lap during a yoga meditation (in true form it EASED its way into my mind). 2021 is my year to lean into my purpose. Not in a grasping or gritty sort of way, but to trust in the work and effort that has brought me to now, to surrender to what I cannot control and to enjoy the beauty of being right where I am supposed to be. Last year’s JOY and 2019’s FIRSTS have prepared and resourced me to trust in myself and share what I am here to share.

Mary Oliver’s poem “May You Go Easy, To Be Filled with Light, and To Shine” captures the sentiment of 2021 for me.

When I am among the trees, especially the willows and the honey locust, equally the beech, the oaks and the pines, they give off such hints of gladness. I would almost say that they save me, and daily.

I am so distant from the hope of myself, in which I have goodness, and discernment, and never hurry through the world but walk slowly, and bow often.

Around me the trees stir in their leaves and call out, “Stay awhile.” The light flows from their branches.

And they call again, “It’s simple,” they say, “and you too have come into the world to do this, to go easy, to be filled with light, and to shine.”

What does #2021 hold in store for you?