One Word

estimated read time: 2 minutes

It’s 10:49 am on January 1, 2016. To my right is a stadium cup from Shakespeare’s Pizza, half-full of a home-made smoothie: frozen berries, a banana, almond milk, a handful of spinach, and a scoop of protein powder. It’s not my best effort; it’s a lovely shade of lavender, but I used too much of an under-ripe banana, the berries were freezer-burned, and the consistency is all kindsa wrong. Still, it’s preventing me from pouring a giant bowl of Lucky Charms, so my year is already off to a healthier start.

Not that I’m resolving anything along those lines.

Because I don’t believe in resolutions.

Because I’ve yet to keep one.

Which isn’t my fault.

Okay, yes it is, but there’s no reason to dwell on the past.

ANYWAY. Several years ago, I came across One Word 365, a community of people who, rather than make resolutions, choose “One word you can focus on every day, all year long… One word that sums up who you want to be or how you want to live.” (Note: Their website’s been a bit twitchy this morning, but don’t give up. It’s a great spot.)

The idea is waaaaay more compelling than my typical “eat better, move more, spend less,” but I’ve never participated because what if I choose the wrong word? My word must be meaningful and inspirational and unique and profound. It must not be lame. It must not be cliche. Other people’s reaction to my word must be, “Dammit! Why didn’t I think of that one?”

(I’d choose ridiculous as my word for 2016, but I’m pretty sure it’s cheating to pick one you’ve already nailed.)

This morning on Twitter, I’ve seen #OneWord365 posts about balance, impact, quiet, yes, ready, bold, embrace, joy, and one that made me laugh out loud (and grumble, “Dammit! Why didn’t I think of that one?”): badassery. 


Yeah, so… I was just about to end this post with an I’ll-figure-it-out-stay-tuned when my word smacked me in the face.

My word is now. It’s so perfect. (For me.)

I’m a world-class procrastinator. I put off everything: no task or decision is invulnerable to “later.” At the very least, now will help me become more intentional about what I put off. But that’s not all.

Now also addresses my tendency to wander. Mentally, I mean. Now will snap me back to the present moment.

Who are you with now? Give him your full attention.

What are you working on now? Turn off your phone and focus on that.

Where are you now? Feel the wind, hear the water, smell the leaves.

What meal are you having now? Close your laptop so you’re aware you’re eating and so you realize when you’re full. (Okay, that one sounds dangerously close to a diet plan. It’s not. Well, maybe a little.)

Now. I’m giddy about this word.

How ’bout you? Have a word for 2016?


  1. Jess Townes   •  

    Not that I’m surprised at all by this, but we chose nearly the same word. My word is present. As in, be present where I am right now, physically, mentally, spiritually present. Happy New Year friend!

  2. Kris   •  

    I’m so glad I came across this! Last year my word was connection. All year long I tried to be more connected with God and with people. I struggled with habitual and longstanding fear of rejection, abandonment, and loss. But God showed up and I deepened old friendships, connected with tons of new people, and learned how to rest in a deep connection with God. This year my word is zoom-out (the hyphen is necessary to make it one word even though I know it’s not grammatically correct…) When stuff starts stressing me and getting me down, I want to be able to change my perspective, to zoom out and see the big picture. Maybe see things from an eternal perspective, rather than from my own myopic vision which keeps me focused on a very narrow range right in front of me. So this year I will zoom out!

    ps. My comment is my attempt at connecting. 🙂

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