Jan 8, 2018

Word of the Year

New Years Resolutions have always made me twitchy.

I’ve tried them, of course. I mean, any chance to write a list, right?  #stationeryaddict

But I’ve never really bothered to follow through in a real way.

Partly because I’m hopelessly laid-back and partly because I’m a naturally contented person, so the idea of making wholesale changes has never really stuck.

Mostly because I’m not great with being told what to do. Tell me not to eat a Tim Tam.  Go on.  I dare you.  I’ll show you!  Watch me eat this whole packet, right in front of you.  Take that!

But, in the contrary nature of the human condition, I love the thought of a New Year.  It’s the ultimate Fresh Start.  The chance to shake off the cobwebs. To take a deep refreshing breath and do better.  Be better.

Which is why I have fallen in love with the concept of Word of the Year.

Rather than a list of ways to self-improve, for me my Word of the Year is a touchstone, a way to gently tug me back to something meaningful.

For example, last year my WotY was SIMPLIFY.

I decluttered like crazy. Oh the bliss of a tidy house!  I cut back – on worries, on endeavours that sapped my time. I let go. Having that word as my touchstone worked. It made my life lighter.

This year it’s MOMENTS.

For me that could mean a hundred different things all of which speak to me at this point in my life.

It can be a reminder to stop. To breathe. To notice.  To soak in a bright blue sky filled with fluffy white clouds. To take a moment to Shazam that song that made me dance in my seat. To see beauty in a wasp flittering over the pool. To spend a minute soaking in the first Jasmine flowers of the season. To look for accidental art in my coffee.

To put not only the big events in our family’s yearly Jar of Awesomeness, but those small moments, the forgotten joys – when my daughter tried to do a handstand in the pool, failed, and laughed at herself with the most gorgeous lack of self-consciousness. When my son made his Captain Underpants, fan–fiction comic book.  When I forced my mum to wear a huge pink ‘birthday girl’ badge the day we took her out for her 70th birthday.

These moments are my bliss.  My happy place.  My smiles.  My delight.

I'm pretty good at knowing what they are when I see them, but this year I intend to bask in them longer.  To bank those feelings.  To swim in the sparkles till I turn all pruney.  So that it will become habit.
And I can't wait.
So how about you? If you had a word of the year, what might it be?


  1. I have had a Word of the Year for several years now.
    It has been Ruthless (as in getting rid of as much "stuff" around the house as possible), Balance (as in doing things for others, but adding more things for me to be done too), and Cleanse (as in purging myself from toxic friends, emails and "stuff"). Last year's was my favourite: "Nike" (as in "Just Do It" - because I have ONE word of the year and not three, LOL). I am still working on THIS year's word, but I'm leaning toward Just Do It again, as that phrase resonates with me often. (I have already worked the previous three WotY into my life effectively, but this WotY, still needs reinforcement, as I got away from it for several months last year, mostly because I was away for almost two months and was overwhelmed when I returned.)

    1. Love Just Do It! That came close for me too. It would take great willpower on my behalf - which I need! One for next year, perhaps.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Hi Ally

    This is a great idea one that I need to start and declutter will be my first I really needs to get rid of a lot of stuff in this house and as you said let go of feelings that stress me out as well so declutter the mind.

    Have Fun


    1. That's where "Simplify" came in for me. I made a list of every part of the house to clean and I was ruthless in moving on the unnecessary. It was wonderful!

  3. I'm with Helen on using DECLUTTER as my word of the year! Time for my grown up kids to reclaim their treasures from my garage and attic! Also time for me to prepare for a future downsizing. Starting with my closet!

    1. Yes! Do it! It feels so good, lightening, to have less 'stuff'.

  4. While I like the concept of a word of the year, I always find that I can't narrow it down to one.
    Instead of New Year's resolutions, I set goals as I find them more specific and more likely to be achieved or at least have progress made. One of the changes that I've made with setting and writing down my goals this year is that I use the SMART acronym, but I also include my Why (aka my motivation).

    1. I think that's the real key, Lyn; finding what works for you. Goals make me shudder. I have little willpower. But that one word that gives me a visceral reaction as well as a nudge in the right direction really works for me.