Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Bidding Farewell to 2014

Recently, I saw the term Sacred Subtraction on Facebook, but sadly I don’t remember who talked about it or who coined the phrase to begin with or I would give credit. I read it in passing, but it stuck and kept floating in my mind. Sacred Subtraction - what a great way to think about letting go of things that no longer serve us.

I find it so useful now that 2014 is coming to a close and I think about this past year and all the wonderful things that happened (none of which I would have subtracted in any way...).
With my dad in Lyon, France.
*Traveling to Germany, France and Spain, seeing Family, friends and exploring places new to both of us. We didn't expect this, but we totally fell in love with Spain! I would go there again in a heartbeat.
In beautiful Madrid, Spain!

Ah, the food! I'm not sure where this was, but much of our trips is centered around food! :) 
*My sister and her family coming to visit us for the first time. Not the first time for my sister, but it was for our brother-in-law and our nephews. We had so much fun together!!

*Camping in the Smoky Mountains and a quick trip to New Orleans.

*Spending the summer and fall painting and painting and finding my very own artistic voice. I just kept experimenting until I fell into this space that feels like it’s me. Such a happy place to be!

*Getting ready for my dad’s annual visit at the end of the year and our cruise together to the Caribbean. We had such a good time. We were joined by three other family members and just loved every minute of it. My favorite part was just sitting and watching the ocean. Most of cruising is totally lost on my - I’ve never been to a show, I don’t gamble, I don’t participate in the endless games that are going on. I simply love to feel the expanse of the wide ocean.
My dad and I in Savannah! 
Leaving Fort Lauderdale. 
Beautiful St. Lucia
At the fort on gorgeous St. Kitts
With my cousin leaving one of the islands
On the beautiful island of St. Lucia
Anchored near Half Moon Cay in the Bahamas
And that’s where I did my planning for 2015. I used Leonie Dawson’s awesome workbooks (click here if you want to check them out) both for life and my business. As I made plans for the next year, I also thought about what I need to not do or let go of from the previous year. Some things are just ready to be given up in order to make room for more.
Sacred Subtraction. With that thought swirling in my mind, I am weeding out books, art supplies, clothes and anything that I either don’t use at all and (and this is so important!) anything that makes me feel bad when I look at it. We all have that, don’t we? Books that seemed like a good idea, but in all honesty we’ll never read, clothes that are from a previous life and won’t ever suit us again, crafty projects that are unfinished, etc. I am looking at anything like that and either put it on my list of things I really want to do or I let go of them. The physical parting with these items also allows me to let go of whatever feeling was tied to them.
Sacred Subtraction. This doesn’t just apply to tangible items, but also (and probably more importantly so) to our habits, to our thoughts and to the emotions tied to those thoughts. With finding my very own voice, I am finding that I am letting go of a whole lot of self-image that really isn’t mine. Things I took on because I thought I “should.” Or I thought it might make others happy. Some of these thoughts have been with me for a very long time. It’s thrilling to let go of them and see what’s underneath.
And when you unearth the core of you that is really and only and uniquely you, then you are really able to allow your very own self to shine!

Here's to Sacred Subtraction and to a Shiny 2015!!

Happy New Year!! 

P.S. One of the words I want to let go of immediately is "should." I find it to be incredibly discouraging as you can never ever "should have done" anything. It's not possible. Words have power. That's why I'm kicking this one to the curb! Bye bye "should." You'll have to find somewhere else to hang out!


  1. Wonderful post, Silke! Thanks for sharing the idea of sacred subtraction with me. I think I'd like to hold onto that thought as the New Year unfolds. Wishing both of a us a shiny, inspired, and joy-filled year!

  2. Oh Silke, you truly are my Oh Beautiful One, inside and out. I long to be light again, but with this work of grief, I feel much is out of my control. Thank you for your beautiful words, thoughts, and mind.


  3. Liebe Silke,

    das ist eindrucksvoll und ausdrucksvoll.
    Ich freue mich darüber.

    Alles Liebe

  4. A very bright, shiny and sparkly 2015 to you, too, dear Silke!

  5. Silke, I really enjoyed this post and has given myself a lot to think about. We both know I've had quite the year due to my bad car accident. So many things left undone and life flipped upside down. I really like what you shared here and love the perspective of letting go of certain things, while holding on to others.

    Happy New Year! :)

  6. Amazing! Such an inspiring post. One that I'm going to read again because your words have resonated so clearly with me. :) I've had a mixed year of difficulties but also some very wonderful times too. Here's to a fantastic new 2015 for us all!
    Jess xx

  7. i've enjoyed this post thoroughly. to me, your art traveled to a whole new universe this year. i love what you are doing with your critters and your colors.

    you've arrived, silke. i think that's what it is.

    your kindness and gratitude and talent and hope will guide you from here. xoxo


  8. Sacred Subtraction, I like it. Thanks for sharing your life and art with us.