Every year, since my divorce, I’ve chosen a word of the year instead of making a bunch of overwhelming and impossible-to-keep resolutions. I’m thankful to my critique partner, Sarah Patsaros, for introducing me to One Word because it has literally changed my life. I don’t say that to be dramatic or cheesy. It’s the truth.
Anyone who has gone through a major life change–birth of a child, death of a loved one, new job, new relationship, end of a relationship–understands how you can have the best of intentions on January 1 each year; but when life throws you the old curve ball (and sometimes even a curved fast ball), you have no idea how you will hit it out of the park. Word of the year fixes this because you can always adapt a word to fit whatever situation you find yourself in. And it’s much easier to remember a WORD than it is S.M.A.R.T. goals on a piece of paper or your computer. (Now, there’s nothing wrong with making goals, and some people need these in their lives–but I know myself and I don’t!)
So, as you can see from the “professional photo” above, my word of the year is…
I chose it because I’m ready to grow after three years of self-reflection, figuring out life, therapy, journaling, writing, and more. What do I mean by GROW? You see, when you choose a word of the year, you actually do have goals that fall underneath it. They are just more loose and easily changed and make you feel better about ANYTHING you do with that word in the year. Trust me, this is my fourth year. I’m almost an expert by now. (smiles)
Goals that fit underneath GROW:
- Grow my bank account (savings account)
- Grow my Editor 911 and writing business
- Grow my personal development (don’t stay stagnant)
- Grow my parenting skills and patience while parenting
- Grow memories with my daughter, my boyfriend, my friends, and my parents
- Grow my healthy habits
That’s what I’ve come up with so far for 2019! That’s a pretty hefty list, so I will probably stick with that. I also have a vision board which brings in specifics, such as fitness and travel, and you can check that out here.
In the photo above, you can also see my words from other years. I like to build on the past, so I feel like I’m still working on organization, peace, and calm; but I have made progress! For example:
Organization: When the Firestick remote wouldn’t work this week, I immediately knew WHERE the batteries were to put in it, and the problem was fixed within minutes! I also did a declutter challenge earlier this year, and I hope to do more of that in 2019. (Grow my cleaning skills! LOL)
Peace: It’s sometimes hard to be at peace with your decisions, and I think I still struggle with this. But currently, for example, I feel good about working the day job I’m in and the benefits of it while trying to GROW my own business and writing career. I understand that where I am in my career is the best for my family at this point, and I do not have regrets about quitting teaching and staying home with my stepson first and then my daughter.
Calm: Maybe we should ask my daughter how I’m doing with this one. (smiles) But we’re actually both working on being more calm, taking deep breaths before we speak, and thinking of what comes out of our mouths. Mother-daughter relationships can be tumultuous; but because we are both working on a goal together, it brings us closer. Just the other day, I said to her: “Remember, we are both working on responding calmly.”
So that’s my progress. If you think Word of the Year sounds like something you would like to do, Google it. There are all kinds of resources available and articles like this one. Some of my friends picked words such as MOVE, COMPLETION, JOY, HOME, and ADVENTURE. There’s no right or wrong choice. Like your wedding dress, you know when you have the word that fits you for the year. Think about some things you want to accomplish and then brainstorm a list of words that encompass those goals.
Here’s to 2019!
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