12 Jan 2016

Two Thousand And Sixteen: “Moderation”

Happy New Year.

It feels fabulous to be back and thinking about this year ahead; I am excited and I have a feeling it will be a wonderful year.

Over the holidays I like to think about the year ahead and try and find a word to sum up my dreams, my goals, my aspirations and all the big and small things I wish to accomplish. My words have included those like, “saying no”, “saying yes”, “taking time” and “contentment”; this year my word is “moderation”.

monet's water lilies, vickiarcher.commonet's water lilies, vickiarcher.com


Do you think that sounds dull and un-inspired? I did um and argh over “moderation” but quickly came to the conclusion that it is a very, very good word.

I can be a little extreme in many ways; not in sports for that would do me a whole load of good.

By extreme I mean to push too hard and too far. I mean that all too frequently I neglect what would be a more moderate approach because I have a crush or obsession that is taking over my concentration. In this case I think of moderation as a set of brakes, a slowing down and a pause, certainly not anything remotely derogatory.

Moderate should not be confused with mediocre.

We never want mediocre, that’s a bad “M” word. Moderate is the way I want to see behaviour; I have come to understand that life does not have to be all or nothing and sometimes there is a middle road. Grey can be friendly and helpful even; all black or all white can be too restricting. Being moderate can mean greater flexibility in all areas of life.

Moderation will mean more time to soak in the beauty of our world, to nourish friendships and to enjoy thinking time. A one-speed throttle does tend to deter moments of reflection and quiet time.  I am confident that a move towards moderation will foster contemplation and balance.

“Balance” would be an alternative word for moderation. I feel we all seek balance in our lives more and more and the more we seek the harder it is to find. Balance was once a natural state, the way in which most of us lived, today I fear we have lost sight of the benefits or perhaps we don’t even register the loss.

Oftentimes we start the year with unrealistic expectations and challenges that can only see us fail. Hopefully taking a more moderate approach will mean that our victories are more attainable and therefore that much sweeter.

monet's water lilies, vickiarcher.commonet's water lilies, vickiarcher.com


We would all like to be fitter, leaner, smarter and wiser and any one or more of those emotive words that spin the New Year’s rah-rah. What I am trying to do this year is find an approach that will endure, not only throughout January. Yes I will watch my diet and I will exercise more and work hard to do my very best but in a moderate way. I want to forge patterns of behaviour that will stand me in good stead permanently.

2016, my year of moderation is a tall order. Moderation is not my middle name and quite out of character. Think of all those expressions, “run full speed ahead”, “burn the candle at both ends” and “never stop till you drop”.  That sounds like me.  It will be a tough one, but I am going to try.

To be continued… xv

images Claude Monet

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In This Post:



Anita Rivera

I think the beauty of growing and collecting the years is to LEARN that moderation IS indeed a good thing. I learned quickly this past Monday on my first day back in the classroom that moderation is also a HEALTHY way to live, to REACT. I had a medical emergency in class, right there in front of the students. I was well enough to wait a few hours to get to a clinic, and though what I experienced was unrelated to my fears, I did fear that I had a stroke. I quickly realized that I need to react in more moderate ways, nothing extreme that can literally blow a gasket! So yes, moderation in reactions to unpleasant situations is a mark of maturity and an open attitude to LEARN. Oh, do we learn…


I do hope you are ok Anita? There is nothing worst than imagining the worst… and we all do… whenever anything goes wrong it is our default position.
I need to apply moderation in these areas too.. we can easily blow things out of proportion… I have done that many times :)


sorry, something went wrong in my first reply….
to be content with less is difficult and we always want more and be inclined to go over our limit….
“I want happiness” said a man to Buddha. Release “I”, it’s your ego than release “want” it’s desire,
what’s left is your Happiness…
sounds very tough for me but moderation is for sure a good beginning (and an other resolution we wanted to avoid.) Crazy isn’t it?

Karen in Oxford

I love the idea of ‘moderation’. Don’t you find that these days we have to be so organised that we have to plan too far ahead (for instance, having to plan Christmas in October!) that it sucks the joy out of enjoying the present? By the time the momentous occasion has arrived, we’re exhausted. This year, I refuse to be caught up in all that and propose to make things simpler by not taking on more than I can cope with. This, of course, also involves one of those other virtues the obsessive in me is not very good at – patience.
Happy New Year.

Cathy Wong

I am firmly on board with moderation….I think it may well be what I’ve been needing in many aspects of my life for quite a while now. I’ve been trying for balance, not much success….Ithink I’ll start with trying moderation as an attitude…in shopping, housekeeping, eating,even at work….

Linda B

Vicki, you never cease to amaze me. How I need to think about this word–moderation–and all that stands behind it. Learning to be “good enough”, not perfect. Learning how to lead and produce high quality work, and also how to let go of getting results that are 200%. This is so not natural for me. I look forward to more of what you have to say about this!


I like your idea Vicki; moderation.
I’m an all or nothing sort of person, you know the type; every day at the gym, then don’t set foot in the place for a year, starve myself or binge!
Lets see if I can stick to a bit of moderation in 2016!

Sam Hoffer

Moderation is an excellent goal for me this year. I am a “don’t stop until you drop” kind of person and having some moderation will be a big help and a new experience. I practice moderation with food, but it never occurred to me to practice it in my every day life. Thank you for the idea.


I have just discovered your site and love the layout- so beautiful! I love how you’ve distinguished between mediocre and moderation as well :)


Hi Vicki
I seem in the opposite direction here, I’ve lived a moderate life always it seems, I’m needing more of the passion, don’t stop till you drop. Calm, fair, reasoning, not too much, yes this is how it is for me, thinking, observing etc this year we move into fire, monkey. In Chinese astrology. Feb 8th I think, see how this goes to give me some oomph to find a new job…


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