For 2010, with Aloha

Hau‘oli Makahiki hou ~ Happy New Year!

There’s no better time to ask these questions:

Will we walk our talk, and demonstrate our Aloha in 2010?

Can we do so with wild success and joy?

Let’s answer with a resounding “Yes!”

The year ahead is a clean slate, and we can have it be whatever we wish it to be.

Like I imagine many managers are, I have been immersed in strategic planning these past few weeks, drawing up detailed plans for what my 2010 business strategies will be. I am excited about what I have put together, feeling it will energize me, will serve others, and will express my personal Ho‘ohana (intention with worthwhile work) in a meaningful and rewarding way.

So now I am thinking bigger —about all of us as a community, Kākou (inclusively), and about what collaborative objective we could share throughout the coming year no matter what our individual work may be.

Shopping Bag Aloha

What I keep coming back to, is Aloha

I keep coming back to Aloha because I think it’s gone missing a bit too much, and I feel us yearn for it.

Aloha. Old word, as old as the Hawaiian islands. Time-honored value in theory; passed down to us from our ancestors in their  kaona (storied meanings), and thus, something we refer to as “our spirit.”

Can we make it remarkably real? Can Aloha become a palpable physical presence for us in the coming year, more than it’s ever been before?

It can when we choose Aloha, and focus on it

Here are some thoughts I’d collected when journaling, for writing helps me think things through with more clarity. I kept staring at the word ALOHA these past few days, talking to it, and asking it to be the spirit we talk about. I wanted it to help me feel what it might want from me. I colored it in, I doodled around it, I thought about what my kÅ«puna (elders and teachers) have taught me, and I came up with this:

A — Aloha…
We need a comeback of better service, person to person, with human graciousness experienced in every single encounter we have with each other. They are encounters where Ho‘okipa (unconditional hospitality), Lokomaika‘i (generosity of good heart) and Aloha (as an expectation of good spirit, even in strangers) combine, mix virtuously and nourish us.

L — Less will be more
It’s amazing: When we have Aloha present, we don’t need that much more. When Aloha is shared between us, it grows in an exponential way: It becomes more. It satisfies needs we ache to have soothed, and it heals others we weren’t even aware had started to hurt. We need not clutter up Aloha either, with caveats, rules and scripts: It is perfectly stellar on its own.

O — ‘Ohana
I have a favorite self-coaching (you’ve read it here before): Life is not a solo proposition; we human beings were not meant to live alone.

This enlarging of ‘Ohana is something I have had to learn, and it remains something I have to better learn every single day. Let’s keep that kind of relationship-strengthening learning alive and well too; investing our energies in Aloha is not something we need do alone.

— Health
Of this I am sure: Aloha is a source of better health. When we feel less than completely healthy in life, we know that it is a red flag: Aloha has gone missing somewhere in that life. No more ignoring the red flag (and no more throwing in the towel). In 2010, let’s get Aloha healthy and watch it infiltrate everything else as the good contagion it is.

— Alignment
Aloha is an all or nothing kind of thing: You have to go ‘all in.’ There must be alignment between Aloha and all your other values. There must be alignment between Aloha and your verbs — all the actions you take, whatever they are. As a result there will be another ‘V’ — Verve. Vitality. Vigor. There will be the energy for everything else you wish to achieve.

This is my mana‘o, and I am happy to share it with you, however know you can do this in your own way too, and as Aloha speaks to you.

For 2010, with Aloha

“With aloha” is how so many of us will end emails, cards or letters, and sign off on much of the correspondence we do — I know I do; it’s been a long-standing habit; part of my Hawai‘i signature of sense of place. It has something we feel we are blessed in being able to write, and say universally, whether we live in the islands or not.

No more salutation without authenticity.

Starting today, let’s not write “With aloha” or say “With aloha” unless we mean it. However let’s mean it so we CAN write it and say it every day, and all the time.

You in? All in?

Don’t wait for someone else. The only way you get Aloha, is by being obsessive about being the first one to give it.

Hau‘oli Makahiki hou ~ Let’s make 2010 the Year of Aloha. We will get what we choose, and what we give.

Art Credit:
See more of this letter art at Daily Drop Cap by Jennifer Hische.
Mahalo for sharing it with your Aloha Jennifer!


  1. says

    Rosa, my sincerest desire is that we can all make a little more room in our lives and work for Aloha this year. You’re absolutely right…we need it now more than ever before. We need it in our interactions with our loved ones and friends, with our employees and managers, with our customers and clients.

    With fullest and intentional aloha, Chris
    .-= ´s last blog ..What Value Is A Piece Of Paper? =-.

    • Rosa Say says

      Mahalo Chris, for adding your voice to mine. Many blessings to you and your ‘Ohana in this shiny new year, all Aloha filled to the brim!