Every year since late 2010 I have picked a word for the New Year—as a sort of beacon to guide me through the coming 12 months. The word is usually based on what I’ve experienced in the past year, as well as what I am looking to be, do, feel and stand for in the next.
2011 was discipline. The next year was leap, and 2013 was refine.
2014’s word is “own.”
Continuing to own my value, worth and expertise.
Owning my principles, values, boundaries and policies.
Owning my true authenticity and everything that organically makes me, me.
This new word came a little late for me this year. Just a week ago I thought to myself that a word still hadn’t showed up. As soon as I recognized that, it slipped right into my consciousness.
It’s a word that feels very empowering to me, and just right.
It occurred to me that so much of the internal and external struggle in life occurs because we often worry more about pleasing others above ourselves.
And that’s not meant to say we are to be selfish.
It means that we all have our own personal set of values, our own boundaries, policies and principles. And yet it is so easy to say “well… I’ll make an exception… this time.” Or “well, I don’t want them to get mad at me, so I’ll say yes to doing this thing even though that twinge in my stomach is telling me it’s just not right.”
It makes me uncomfortable. I don’t agree with it. It’s a major inconvenience to me. I gave them an inch but they are taking a mile.
I’d argue that it’s pretty tough to build a highly successful business–or heck, a successful life—if we’re consistently feeling out of integrity with ourselves, or allowing ourselves to feel bitter, taken advantage of, or out of alignment with our core values… and then beating ourselves up for it.
Do not misunderstand—it’s not about being inflexible, closed-minded or a hardass. Be kind, be fair, approach all situations with a pure and loving heart—but OWN what it is you intrinsically believe and hold up as true for you.
These are agreements with ourselves that ultimately negatively impact our happiness, when we decide to break them in our day-to-day life.
That’s the truth I’ll own in 2014. What’s yours? Share with me in the comments below, ok?
Great article Christine! My word for 2014 is connection. Connecting more deeply with G-d, myself, my inner truth, my authentic self, others, community, love, passion, my own heart and soul. Connecting even more with the feeling that not only is being me good enough, it’s the only person I can be anyhow. Feeling like I need to be more like others just leaves me feeling like I’m not being who I NEED to be to fulfill my purpose. Connecting with that deep part of me that can help me let go of some of those unrealistic expectations and external standards that don’t equal success for me.
Woohoo, cheering for you Elizabeth! Love that 🙂
I loved your article. My word for 2014 is Explosive Growth. My goal is to explosively grow (with no apologies) in all areas of my life: Spiritual (deeper relationship with God), Health and Fitness (through focused diet and exercise, go beyond my self imposed boundaries), Mental (take greater risks in my business and do and create new products) and Emotional (Purposefully and Intentionally take charge of my emotions).
Hi Karen, thanks for sharing–love that you’ve applied it to all areas!
I have used your word tool for 4 years and the results are truly phenomenal. My word for 2014 is harmony. Recently I have felt disharmony between my intentions and my actions. I want a daily reminder to align what I say, think, feel and do. Then when there is the harmony I will experience both inner and outer peace and flourish!
Jonda, that’s a great word that just FEELS awesome 🙂
For me, for 2014, the word will be LEAN … as in concepts of the book, Lean Startup.
The emphasis is making businesses/products that you can quickly learn from.
Minimum viable product and metrics that give you quick feedback from activity
your customers/clients do.
It’s like when apps are updated based on user experience.
Just the same, in getting clients, your marketing efforts to get traffic,
grow your list, sell ebooks, secure new lead phone calls, the lean approach
will help you learn faster what works.
Thanks for continuing the tradition. Happy New Year!
Great word Kenn. Happy New Year!