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Word of The Year

The phrase ‘Word of the Year’ gets a lot of hype each January. It’s very trendy to pick a word and try to live it for the next twelve months. Seems like a daunting task when I say it like that, but at least it’s not a New Year’s resolution – which I can’t stand and don’t make.

Choosing a specific word is a relatively new concept for me, but I found that I’ve really enjoyed it over the last few years. One simple word has the power to remind me of what I set out to do during the next orbit around the sun. I don’t just choose a word and try to fit my current life into it; instead, I aim to modify my life (not force it into submission or quit cold turkey) into alignment with the word’s essence. Since my needs and values are in a constant state of motion, choosing a word each year lets me align with what I currently require.

Over the years, the words I’ve chosen have unconsciously become a barometer for decision-making, allowing me to align my current needs and values. I’ll give you an example; last year’s word was STRETCH. I did everything I could to try to live the idea of stretching myself. Each time I had to make a big decision, I thought of what those six little letters meant to me. If the choice in front of me supported my word (for me, it was the weird sensation of being slightly overextended – you know, the hurt so good kind of sweet spot), I would gladly comply. Still, if it made me retract or feel like I might be reaching the breakpoint, I’d step away without feeling any guilt.

This year I’ve decided the word FUEL will be my 2022 choice. It’s a small word with the potential for a significant impact. The word fuel has many definitions, and I hope I can use the term in all the different ways. Fuel is an energy source, encourages further growth, nourishes, and creates power. I believe fueling myself (mind, body, and soul) will allow me to fuel others – through my writing, my work as an aspiring coach, as a mother and wife and friend, or a stranger on the street.

Like a blank slate, a new year offers us 365 opportunities to learn, grow and be still when we need to. If the idea of choosing a word of the year is too scary, maybe try a word of the month… hell, sometimes I feel like I need a word of the week or even day. That’s why I like the idea of living the essence of the word. It allows me to think about how the word will serve me right that very second and gives me good vibes knowing I’m really listening to my heart instead of some ridiculous resolution that I probably would have broken on day one.

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