Choosing a Word to Live By for the Year

As 2018 has officially made its appearance today, many of us are getting ready to or have already set resolutions to ring in the new year.  For some it may be to be a better mom or wife, for some it is to lose weight.  For others it may be to be more present or have better self-care.  Maybe you want to blog about your fashion or you’re a great cook and want to share your skills.  Or maybe you want a new job that fills you up rather than one that drains you to empty.  Whatever it is, let’s choose a word to live by for the year; a focus word.

Choosing a word lets you place all the resolutions or things you want to accomplish and goals you want to achieve under one umbrella. It acts as a guide to stay focused and achieve those goals.  As you go through the year you can take those resolutions and apply your “word” to them.  Last year I chose the word “CLARITY”.  I made a printout of what that meant to me, applied a verse and added some goals. Every time I approached a goal I asked myself how doing this was going to bring clarity to my life.

I chose “CLARITY” because I wanted to become more clear in my purpose.  I was still transitioning from having littles around and being needed all the time to the other things that now filled my days, dealing with my husband’s illness and trying to gain a clearer vision for my life as it was changing.  I prayed hard that things would become clear.  After my husband’s cancer crisis, I needed to become more focused and simplified in my life.  So many stressors had impacted my life in 2016 that I needed to have a bumper along my path to keep me focused on my goals in 2017.  In addition to relying on God, I focused on “clarity” to define things.

I kept a copy of it on my bulletin board, along with encouraging and sweet letters I have received from friends, so I could be reminded daily of the vision.  Below is the actual page I have printed in my office.  Let’s review it and see how I did.

As I was prayerful over this verse in Ephesians, I let things be revealed and stop fighting for “my way”.  Obviously nothing I ever planned was ever truly HIS plan, so I let go.  With another cancer crisis and surgery for my husband in 2017 and a destination wedding to plan and travel for after we had already planned the wedding where we live, I have learned not to REALLY plan.  I go along in life now with more of an idea of what I would LIKE to happen.  That way I am never too shaken when things go differently than I thought they would.

On my page, I named areas that I wanted clarity in.  Even though I named all of those areas, I wish I would have named specific goals to apply this word to.  Applying clarity to all things is a little vague and it would have been more helpful if I had been more specific in HOW clarity would have helped me in those areas.   I have chosen a new word for 2018 and will apply specific ideas and goals to it rather than just having it cover all things.  I think it may help me to feel proud of what I DID accomplish this coming year rather than look at the whole year and try to gauge its success based on a general idea.  Because the areas were so vague, it is hard to say just how much clarity I actually got in 2017.

Let’s look and see how I did in each area of my goals for gaining clarity:

HOME:  I wanted to go through my home and clean out every drawer and closet but I didn’t do that.  I did manage to get clarity in some areas of my home so I should consider that a success.  I finished most of the basement and hit some major goals down there.  (You can see that here.)

ORGANIZATION:  I so wanted to get really organized, but I didn’t.  I read “The Magic of Tidying Up” just like most other people on the planet and and finished up projects that I started in 2016, but didn’t really organize much. There were a lot of challenges and changes this year so I consider what I DID get done a “step in the right direction”.

CAREER:  I have been a SAHM for 25 years.  I started working this year and that has been a transition.  It is only part time but I have so much admiration for the moms that hold full time jobs and get it all done.  WOW!  But I did get some clarity on what I want to do when I grow up!

LIFE:  It is hard when life happens to you.  My daughter moved back home after college and brought everything with her…..More stuff came into my home than went out!  My husband had another cancer crisis this year.  Another major surgery for him and more uncertainty crept back into my life.  I started my blog and I couldn’t be happier. It has given me a happy place to go and share positive things even when life isn’t all that amazing.  It fills my soul and allows me to share…I love to share and be inspired by others. It took me a long time to work up the courage to open myself up to blogging. But I did it. And all by myself (with encouragement from my family).  I learned WordPress and that was new to me.

HEALTH:  Well, um, I didn’t get to the gym as often as I wanted to. I used to compete in the NPC Figure division so it is really hard to not be in shape anymore after so much of my life was dedicated to living in shape all the time and eating the right things.  It turns out that Oreos aren’t really that good for your waistline (who knew?).  It happens. Life, I mean.  And I have been so focused on taking care of everyone else that I have kind of lost track of myself.  I joined Orange Theory and loved it.  My body responds to a good HIIT workout but, being honest, I haven’t been faithful in that area.  I did get my veins in my legs done and I love the results.  That was a really big deal!  They were bothering me for years.  It’s hereditary….thanks Nana.  Oh, and I have started taking my vitamins again so that counts for something, right?!

My new word for 2018 in “INTENTIONAL”.  I want to be intentional with everything I am doing this year.  I will still name the same areas to work on, but this time I will name specific goals I want to hit this year within those areas.  I would like to be intentional with everything I bring into and take out of my home.  I want to take care of ME.  Intentional with what goes into my body and focus more on getting a little of my old self back. Can anyone relate?

It is so important to take care of the person who takes care of everyone else.  I want to continue to share on the blog and make it even better.  There are a lot of projects to do around the house, but I want to be intentional on what gets done without setting myself up for failure by expecting too much out of myself.  I also want to have a B.H.A.G.-A Big Hairy Audacious Goal!  Don’t know what that will be….yet!  My B.H.A.G. for 2015 where I built my craft room by hand from scratch can be found here.

So, by telling you all of this, I guess I have spoken it into motion and made it all come to life.  I don’t expect it to be easy and certainly nothing will happen overnight.  But, it gives me something to reflect back on at the end of the year.  I need to find a verse that I can apply to “INTENTIONAL”.  That is my next step.

I hope you kick off this year with positivity and BIG dreams.  I encourage you to speak a word over YOUR year.  I would love to hear what you come up with and what your wishes are for 2018.

 

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2 Comments

  • Reply
    Allison Cornett
    January 2, 2018 at 9:43 am

    Your daughter Chloe posted a link to come read this blog post and I am so happy I did. Resolutions never stick with me, but applying 2018 to one specific word is realistic and manageable. I believe creativity will be my 2018 word. Thank you for the great ideas! Cheers to 2018!

    • Reply
      thoughtfullylovelyapril
      January 2, 2018 at 11:43 am

      Happy New Year!! I am so glad that you came over to visit me! I love your word for 2018!! I would love to see how you apply it to all the things you want to do! Enjoy a fantastic year of CREATIVITY!!

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