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Word of the Year

Choose Your Word Of The Year

If you could choose one word to sum up what you’d like out of your year ahead, what would it be?

Maybe it’s a word that describes how you want to feel? Or something you wish to accomplish?

I’ve been choosing an annual theme word for the past few years. I usually just go with my gut instinct – whatever seems to be calling me.

Then I write it down and hang it somewhere visible, as a steady reminder. I also write it in my journal and put it on a sticky note next to my computer. I’ve sometimes made a bookmark featuring my word of the year which I transfer across to whatever I’m reading each month.

And you know what? I really think it makes a difference! Here are some examples.

One year I decided my word needed to be Simplify.


I recognised that I was over-complicating my life too often. I wanted to learn to how to KISS – ‘Keep It Simple Sista!’

By reminding myself over and over to keep things simple, I actually began to. That year I proved to myself that dropping perfection and taking the easy option was good for my state of mind. After a while, I felt noticeably liberated and free and this has continued to stick with me, several years later.

Two years ago I chose the word Connected.


I felt too connected to my iPhone and social media and wanted to disconnect from technology more and re-connect with whomever I’m with – including myself!

This ended up being the year I ignited my simple morning practice of waking up 20 minutes before the kids and spending time connecting to myself and the Universe by meditating and journal writing. I now wake up 30 minutes before the kids, which would have been unthinkable a couple of years ago when I was still telling the, ‘I’m not a morning person’ story.

Last year my word of the year was Balance.


My choice kind of surprised me at first. I mean, I’m the Queen of Balance and the whole premise of Project Me is based on the Project Me Life Wheel® and keeping a happy balance!

But I’d become aware that I was becoming a tad work obsessed. The Work petal on my Life Wheel was beginning to tip me in one direction and even though that wasn’t causing me any major problems yet, I knew all too well that the potential was there.

So with Balance as my new guiding word of the year, I began to pay more attention to this. It made me realise how often I was working through lunch and also listening to online business-related podcasts even at the gym or during my downtime.

It inspired me to start a new lunch break ritual of eating away from my desk – screen free. I deliberately made a practice out of reconnecting with my kids over a snack after school. And stopping what I was doing to physically connect with my husband for a kiss or a hug a lot more often.

It was a great word to choose last year and set me up with some new healthy habits.

Last year I also discovered the cool App WordSwag which lets you create a beautiful graphic out of your Word of the Year, like the ones I’ve done here!


I’ve set my WOTD as my iPhone lock screen image where I see it many times a day….

Last year I offered my Facebook followers their own graphic based on their word of the year. You can see their words and images here.  Super inspiring!

I’m not sure I have the time to offer that up again this year, but you can create your own here by downloading the WordSwag App straight onto your phone from the App Store.

So, what’s my word this year?

It came to me during my morning meditation.


This is the year I want to push less and flow more.

I wanted to feel guided by my intuition and by the Universe. Be less in my head and more in my heart – feeling what I could be doing rather than over thinking things.

It also means letting things go and being more easy going.

Go with the flow!

Everything I want lives downstream, not upstream. Once I’m clear about what I want, I just need to let go, allow and flow towards what I desire. Doesn’t that sound nice?

Vinyasa Flow is also one of my very favourite types of yoga. I love how free-flowing and natural the movements are. Maybe I need to do more of this over the coming months too.

This picture beautifully captures my visual interpretation of how I want my life to flow this year.


So, what about you? Have a think about a word that describes how you want to feel or be this year. Ask yourself why you’re drawn to that word.

Once you’ve got your word, think what you can be doing more of (or less of) to live in alignment with your word-of-the-year. Make it your mantra. Put it somewhere you’ll see it often.

I’d love to hear your word of the year and why you chose it. Or if you’re stuck between two or more words, let’s hash it out together in the comments below.

Flow on over to the Project Me mailing list to get my Monday Motivators. Pop your first name and email into the box below and I’ll send you the Project Me Life Wheel® for finding a better balance in life. (I’ll never spam you or share your details with anyone else.)


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  1. Tina on January 25, 2016 at 12:03 PM

    You never cease to inspire me Kelly! i always love your ideas. I started a vision board with my kids after reading about yours, I made a toolbox of calm, I use the apps you’ve recommended, I’ve read some of the books and listened to the podcasts on your love page and I use your worksheets. Keep them coming!

    My word of the year needs to be Action. I want to implement more and do the things I say I’m going to do instead of just thinking about them! I’m going to get the word app you mention and make mine now. Thank you so much again for all that you do to keep me inspired.

  2. Kelly Pietrangeli on January 25, 2016 at 12:27 PM

    Oh wow! You have no idea how wonderful it is to read this Tina, thank you! Given how many of my ideas you’ve already actioned, I’d say that you’re going to be on fire with your Word of the Year! Look out!! 🙂

  3. Nicole on January 25, 2016 at 1:11 PM

    My word is “opportunity” – I need to take back the power in my life and stop doing things because “I have to”; my overwhelming sense of responsibility holds me back from doing the things that can make me happier and more fulfilled. So I need to maximise those opportunities!

    • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 25, 2016 at 1:50 PM

      Nicole, this is a wonderful example of how self-awareness shines a light on our lives and shows us what we can be doing to feel more happy and fulfilled.

      Doing things just because you feel you ‘have to’ or you ‘should’ takes up valuable time and energy on things that aren’t serving you.

      I love your WOTY and I hope you’ll report back next year on what OPPORTUNITIES you’ve grabbed since you wrote this!

  4. Fiona Wiseman on January 25, 2016 at 1:41 PM

    Hi Kelly, I think my word for 2016 is going to be “Mindfulness” – recently the simple act of colouring in both by myself, with my kids and even my husband has allowed me to take a step back and be mindful of my surroundings and all that I have to be grateful for in life etc etc. Bye for now , Fiona 🙂

    • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 25, 2016 at 1:54 PM

      Fiona, I spotted your WOTY for last year in the Facebook link I included above: BRAVE! (and I created a courageous lion image for you.) How did that word shape your year?

      I love your new word too: Mindfulness. 🙂

      I’ve heard about the raging popularity of these colouring in books and hadn’t associated it with Mindfulness yet – but YES! I can see how that would work and I feel inspired to do this myself! xx

  5. Catarina on January 25, 2016 at 1:43 PM

    My word of the year is Expansive. This feels so right in every area of my life 🙂 The two tributaries are Trust and Receive, so I have a little word pyramid this year!

    • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 25, 2016 at 1:56 PM

      Ooooh – I love your three-word pyramid Catarina! That’s a wonderful combo – thanks so much for sharing 🙂 xx

  6. Tracy on January 25, 2016 at 2:58 PM

    I’m new to all of this…. but I had three words I have tossed around this morning. “Calm, Mindful, and Purposeful”…. maybe I need a pyramid as well.

    • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 25, 2016 at 3:25 PM

      Tracy, imagine you wake up every morning and you see your Word of the Day and it serves as a daily reminder of who you want to be / how you want to feel.

      Which of those three words speaks to you the most? Ask yourself WHY you want to feel ______ for each of them. See if one of them becomes the clear, outright winner.

      The other words will still have meaning and you can write them somewhere too, but having one theme word for the year can be very powerful. I’d love to hear which one you choose!

      • Tracy on January 26, 2016 at 12:44 AM

        Accomplished. I want to go to bed at night feeling like I accomplished the tasks of the day. And I want to wake up every morning KNOWING I CAN accomplish what needs to be done. Thanks for the response that helped me work through my morning confusion. I don’t have an apple product, but was wondering what picture was associated with my word?

        • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 26, 2016 at 5:18 PM

          LOVE your WOTY Tracy: ACCOMPLISHED!
          That has so much positive power attached to it!!

          Email me and I’ll make you a graphic to go with it 🙂

  7. Mariah on January 25, 2016 at 3:26 PM

    My word of the year is *GRATITUDE*

    I’ve always been one to find the positive in any situation (definitely a glass-is-half-full sort of gal!) but I noticed I started getting a bad case of comparison-itis.

    Our house isn’t big enough…
    Our cars are old…
    We rarely go on vacation…

    It always seemed like those around us had it ALL (or so it seemed!)

    So, I started turning inward and and REALLY started appreciating how blessed we are.

    We have a beautiful home that gives us safety and protection from the elements…thank you
    Our cars get us reliably to and from work…thank you
    We got to go to Mexico this year for our anniversary…thank you

    We’re only three weeks into January and I feel so much better already!

    Love your word of “flow!”

    • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 25, 2016 at 9:47 PM

      Ahhh Mariah! So beautifully explained! YES to feeling these surges of gratitude for what we DO have, rather than focusing on what we don’t.

      Have you read “The Magic” by Rhonda Byrne? It’s a 28 days of gratitude book with a short written exercise to do each morning. It will absolutely solidify your amazing word of the year! 🙂

  8. Jan on January 26, 2016 at 6:11 PM

    I love the word of the year (I remember last year my word was focus). The word that sprang to mind for this year is Harmony. My intent for the year is to be more positivite by focusing on gratitude and I think harmony encapsulates this along with being more at peace with myself, creating a more calm and ordered environment at home, enjoying and valuing relationships etc.

    • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 27, 2016 at 4:28 PM

      Harmony is such a beautiful word Jan! I love your added explanation for why you chose it and I agree that Harmony encapsulates all of that so wonderfully. Here’s to a harmonious year ahead! x

  9. Beth on January 29, 2016 at 9:37 AM

    I’ll be stealing one of yours, Kelly, but having had a pretty unsettled January after a lot of change, I think my word of the year will have to be ‘balance’. I need to remember to look after my needs as well as everyone else’s AND not feel guilty about it!

    • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 29, 2016 at 7:15 PM

      I’m so happy for you to pimp my word Beth! Sorry you;ve had an unsettled start. YES to looking after yourself GUILT FREE. xx

  10. […] 1. I began attending a weekly Kundalini yoga class with Gabrielle Thill. I’ve done many types of yoga before, but Kundalini is so deeply spiritual and I float out of each class feeling light, free and in the flow. (Flow is my word of the year!) […]

  11. Mimi on January 8, 2017 at 4:59 PM


    Things have been a bit grey lately. I need to pick up, dust down, move on. And always find the shiny silver lining.

    I’m going to start by remembering to start each encounter with a smile!

    • Kelly Pietrangeli on January 9, 2017 at 3:11 PM

      I love your word: SHINE! And a very lovely intention to start each encounter with a smile. I’m going to borrow that one 🙂

  12. […] January I choose a Word of the Year. (You can read about that process here and see what my previous words have been and how they’ve helped my personal […]

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