Choose Your Word Of The Year
In January 2021, this post was turned into a podcast. Listen to me share the story of how choosing an annual word of the year since 2013 has profoundly changed my life. (And how to use the Sway Test to tap into your intuition if you’re not sure which word to choose.) Listen to episode 14 of the Project Me Podcast.
If you could choose one word to sum up an intention you have for the year ahead, what would it be?
Maybe it’s a word that describes how you want to feel? Or something you wish to accomplish? Perhaps it’s a value you want to hold true to?
I’ve been choosing an annual Word of the Year since 2013 and I believe it helps plant a seed of intention that goes on to make a positive difference to my life.
I turn my word of the year into a graphic and use it as the lock screen image on my phone – which means I see it many times a day.
I’ve been adding my Word of the Year to this blog post every year and have updated it again for 2020, along with the images:
In 2013 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.
In 2014 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.
My word of the year for 2015 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 getting 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 and set me up with some healthy, long-lasting habits.
In 2016 my word was Flow.
It came to me during my morning meditation. I knew I wanted to push less and flow more, 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 meant 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.
This picture beautifully captures my visual interpretation of how I want my life to flow downstream.
My word of the year for 2017 started off as Intuition but that soon morphed into more of a theme when I made this into my phone screen image:
Throughout 2017 I discovered more about energy and how to raise my vibrational frequency to connect to the Universe and Source Energy. I began to tune into my emotions more than ever and use them as an indicator of whether or not I was in vibrational alignment. My previous word of Flow became easier for me once I understood that all I need to do is be aware of how I’m feeling. And if I’m not feeling good, I’m not in flow and so the best thing I can do in that moment is stop pushing and striving and do anything that makes me feel good.
My word of the year for 2018 was Open.
Open-minded, open-hearted, open to new possibilities and opportunities. Open to learning, open to experiencing. Opening my heart-chakra to give and receive love without fear of hurt or vulnerability . Opening my throat chakra and letting my authentic voice be heard. A wide open sense of eager anticipation for what’s to come. I’m so in love with my life that all I can be right now is open to receiving even more. I’ve experienced how living in vibrational connection to the Universe makes me feel guided and switched on and ALIVE and I entered 2018 with so much OPENNESS which lasted the whole year long and brought me wonderful opportunities and experiences. I loved having this as my phone lock screen all year:
My word of the year for 2019 was Vitality.
I chose this word because I’m prone to being a real winter hermit and often spend full days working in ‘my box’. (What I call my small home office.) 2019 was the year I instigated a healthy new #FlowFriday routine of going to the gym, then not heading straight back to the box! I hung out at an amazing private members’ club, wrote in my journal, read, socialised, ate yummy food and went with the flow. I proved to myself that I can get my work done in less time and reward myself with a wonderful #FlowFriday at the end of the work week. I shall continue this into 2020!
My word of the year for 2020 was
In 2019 I kept repeatedly seeing the number 34. I mean constantly! So I finally looked it up and it symbolises unfulfilled creativity that is wanting to come out. That really touched something deep within me. I realise that I’m in the habit of consuming more content than I create these days. I have so many creative ideas waiting for the ‘right’ time, including another book and a podcast and many draft blog posts and videos that are gathering dust. I know that when I’m in creative flow, I am in my highest vibration! So in 2020 I will answer that creative calling. This gorgeous goddess is my new muse, a full embodiment of unleashed creativity! She is my new lock-screen image:
And now my word for 2021 is… listen to episode 14 of the Project Me Podcast to find out.
Now 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. Use the app WordSwag or Canva to create a beautiful graphic out of your Word of the Year, like the ones I’ve done above. Save it as your phone lock screen where you will see it many times a day.
I’d love to hear your Word of the Year and why you chose it in the comments below. (As this is a post I keep adding onto, maybe you’ll find your previous word in the comments if you left one!)
Want extra accountability for living true to your Word of the Year? Join Project WE the private online membership club for women with a growth-mindset who want to find a better balance in life, live with intention, and enjoy the journey. I’d love to get you know you there and support you with your dream visions.
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