I use January as an opportunity refresh, reboot and rethink my priorities for the upcoming year. For years, like everyone else, I set New Year’s resolutions. By March, it was out the window, which always left me feeling so down on myself. My intentions are fantastic, but I put so much pressure on myself. NO MORE!
A couple years ago a friend posted on Facebook her “word” for the new year. The one word, or short phrase, that is the guidepost for your year. Amazing how a word is powerful and en-powering.
Two years ago, I changed my focus from the list of goals (or to dos) to just a simple, but life changing, one word. The word speaks to you. It guides and leads you through adventures of uncharted territories. That word becomes comforting like a soft blanket and familiar like an old friend who is there for you.
My word back then was TIME, not that I wanted more of it. Instead I wanted to savor each minute, make the best of it and not waste it, and to remove “time wasters” so I could do the things that brought me joy. When I began to feel overwhelmed, I reflected on my word. I didn’t feel discouragement, failure, or falling short, but comfort. I look back on that year and I see how I was more present and enjoyed all of the moments.
I also challenged by teenage children to find a word. My daughter picked courage, which guided her through 9th grade and struggles in math. My oldest son choose excel and that is what he did that year as faced major learning challenges plus a new school. Finally, my youngest claimed adventure. That year was filled with new experiences out of his comfort zone.
I claimed “be joyful” in this new year. Deciding that even in the roughest days, I would find joy and be thankful.
Choosing a Word
I believe there is something intrinsically rooted in the choosing of the word. Deciding on that one word, isn’t easy. Find some time to be quiet, so you listen to yourself. Consider asking one question: Who do I want to be? I write the question on the first page of a my new journal and then jot down whatever comes to mind.
There are so many possibilities, with no right or wrong way to approach the adventure. I have had a word come to me out of the blue while I was cooking dinner. Another time, I’ve embarked on a search for what it was I most wanted to bring into my life.
Some inspiration: Beloved, Love, Compassion, Kindness, Confidence, Worthiness, Enough, Embody, Be Yourself, Uniquely You, Embrace, Making Peace, Valuable/Valued, Thrive, Belief, Sacred, Cherished, Treasured, Awareness, Exquisite, Loving, Reclaim, Body Peace, Emerge, Wholehearted, Sweetness, Appreciate, Passion, Shine, Self-Acceptance, Devoted, Enchanting, Adore, Care, Cultivate, Reverence, Nourish, Support, Nurture, Radiance, Live/Alive, Whole, New Perspective, Home, Heal, Acceptance, Ease, Wholeness, Letting Go, Possibility, Reconnect, Savour, Listen, Authentic Self, Flourish, Full, Revolution, Yes, Discover, Embrace, Voice, Intuitive, Journey, Hope, Celebrate, Change, Unique, Appreciate, Seen, See with New Eyes, Permission, Tell Your Story, Visible, Recognition, Movement, New, Heart, Loveable, Forgive Unconditional, Spark, Magnificence, Precious, Luminosity, Grow, As You Are, Dare to be…, Inherent Worth, Open to Possibility, Celebrate, Feast on Your Life, Choose Love
Be ready for challenges. You are building something new. It is a construction site. There are drills and cranes and large scooping machines clearing out space for the new structure. Sometimes it’s dirty, noisy, messy and not pretty. When our life is messy we think there is something wrong. Let’s declare it as something right. Remember you are under construction! That sky scraper is coming up and it’s going to be Awesome!
Pick your word for 2016 and celebrate it! Display it in place you frequent – office, car, bathroom mirror, even on the refrigerator. (I love Picmonkey) Consider starting a journal to write about it.
Enjoy and grow this new year! If you take on this adventure, I would love to hear about your word and why you choose it.
Originally posted in 2015, updated 2021