Some years ago, I adopted the practice of identifying an annual focus, a yearly goal, or an overall theme for the coming year. As in other years, I’ve spent the last few weeks trying to feel into my word for the new year. Every day I’ve been bouncing words around in my brain to see if they feel like my true purpose at this point in my evolution.
Let’s just say it hasn’t been going particularly well. Each time I feel close to finding a word, some ping of intuition says it isn’t right for 2018. Frankly, the whole practice doesn’t jibe with my current energies at all. It all seems too scheduled, so contrived, too masculine a process. It’s like trying to label something now that my inner knowing won’t reveal until later.
If you listen to business gurus, empowerment coaches and other thought leaders, they’ll explain the power of intention, which is about putting something out there and watching in amazement as it is easily fulfilled. Intention works, explaining why I’ve lived by words like FOCUS, AUTHENTICITY, SERVE, and CREATE every 365 days for the last ten years. I’ve made the posters, done the meditations and bought the planners. Short of scribbling the words across my forehead, I’ve done everything imaginable to keep my words constantly out front.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve loved my life and I’ve loved my words for a lot of different reasons. I always notice major growth at the end of a cycle, and I have no regrets about what I’ve purposed to do over the years. But, looking back, I don’t connect my growth to those words — I was ready to be and do that stuff anyhow.
There were other problems with the word thing, too. It often bothered me how other words would strongly come to me throughout the year. And how sometimes, I’d feel like I’d completed my annual word too soon, then worry over what should be my focus for the remainder of the calendar year.
Then there was the feeling of limitation. I felt stifled, fairly boxed in. There was a feeling of artificial guidance and restraint. My word would seem to label me. The word left me no room for other expansion. Or if it did, there was a layer of guilt over veering too far from my initial commitment.
So, I’ve given up the practice of choosing an annual word. Instead, which I’m thrilled about, I’m giving myself permission to just be. This year, I shall do or become whatever feels right regardless of the date on the calendar. I shall stop restricting myself to the practices that work for others, but not for me. This year will be even more about listening to inner guidance and co-creating whatever I was meant to co-create in 2018.
Are you using a word for next year?
Is it right for your life, right now?
I feel tremendous freedom in my personal decision. I’ll be honest, without boundaries, I’ve never been more excited to enter a new year!
One more thing. If asked for my word, I will simply say: LOVE. It undercuts any word or thought I could’ve come up on my own anyway. I’d love to see more people choosing love as an annual word. If you feel so led, you might think about using LOVE as your word, too.
Wishing all of us happy adventures this new year! Feel free to comment with any thought you have about this process, or contact me about a consultation if you get stuck anywhere along the way.
With much love for the coming year, and always,
As a coach, writer, recovered over-doer and busyness addict, I understand the challenges of creating a balanced, healthy lifestyle while the mind tries to sabotage your success. In my journey to vibrant health, I created a personalized health system of nutrition and supplementation, lifestyle changes, and I retrained my mind and the energy of my body. I view my success as the formula to my happy, healthy life. I now empower other women to create their own personalized formulas, including the tools and strategies just right for them! Amazing life shifts come from our relationships. I look forward to helping you, too!