Last year, instead of making a list of quickly forgotten New Year’s resolutions, I started a new practice. I chose a “word of the year.” Just one word, a word that would serve as my guiding light for 365 days.
It would not be based on a promise to do better, guilt me into a new habit or more productivity, but the intention of the word would be to motivate me to stay true to my desires. It would be a constant reminder of my purpose and path for the year, it would help me ground myself in how I wanted to feel.
Though I can’t take credit for the idea, it’s one that’s been floating around the internet for years, my inspiration came from intuitive lifestyle coach and my dear friend Carrie Saba.
My word for 2015 was focus. Back on New Years Eve 2014, I shared my word with everyone at the dinner table and invited them to think about their own word of the year.
My husband picked love….boy, did that surprise and impress me!
My daughter, Kelly, immediately knew hers. “Independence!” she declared.
And to her credit, she’s concentrated on that all year in little and big ways, learning how to do her own laundry, cleaning her room, getting her learner’s permit, taking driving lessons, and exploring her own voice in singing and writing. (She created the quote above:)
Reflecting on the past year, my word served me extremely well. Like Kelly, my word came to me easily and quickly. Focus was perfect for me because it aligned with my intention to write and finish my book in 2015, the book I’d been dreaming of writing for over five years.
The word focus centered me with my book writing intention and kept me from getting distracted by other things. You see, I’m very sensitive to the energy around me and love connecting with other people, but writing requires you to be alone, a lot!
Focus helped me create and implement my plan. In May, I enrolled in a book writing class for the community and accountability I knew I needed to get it done. I turned away clients so I could fully be present with my book. I also hired a book writing coach to help me with the flow of my story; like a helicopter, she hovered over me to help me see the forest from the trees.
It’s been an amazing journey of reflection, pause, and reprocessing the past with new eyes. The writing process allowed me to heal, release and step back to appreciate how far we’ve come, my daughter and I.
My memoir is titled, On The Bright Side, A Mother Daughter Healing Journey.
Every day Kelly sees the bright side of life, pointing out situations or stories and adding commentary, “On the bright side, it’s a sunny day” or “On the bright side, my cold is better.” To me, she is the bright side.
We could all use a little more light in our lives. More love, more acceptance, more hope and more freedom.
I know for some the word of the year may sound silly, even woohoo-ish. After all, it’s just a word. But what makes it work is the power of intention behind the word. Think about it, often resolutions are aimed at transformation and at the core of transformation is mindful intention.
I encourage you to explore your own word of the year. Find a quiet moment to light a candle, sip a cup of tea and meditate on it. Or if you’re more of the talk about it kind of person, go out with a friend and sit over a cup of tea or glass of wine to discover what your word is together. It’s fun!
Here are a few simple steps to get you started and a free resource for creating your own word of the year.
- Set your intention
- Let go of expectations and think of a burning desire
- Trust your intuition, your gut instinct
- Tap into momentum that the word will create
- Connect with and live by the word
- Allow it to give you clarity
- Make it your own, for no one else but you
Click here for your Word of the Year Workbook
Once you’ve found your word, share it with someone you love. That helps cement your intention. Feel free to share it here too, I’d love to hear about it!
Looking forward to creating magic together in 2016!
Happy New Year – Cheers!