One Word: Gratitude

Do you make New Years resolutions? Not me. I always have good intentions to get in shape. Then, by February I am sitting on the couch eating guacamole and chips, watching The Biggest Loser.

Instead of a resolution I choose One Word. One word helps keep me focused for 365 days.

There is only one rule for my word, as should be for yours: My word must mean something deeply to me, or I will just forget about it, and end up doing nothing at all…or eat a huge heaping bowl of guacamole and chips.

Every year I wait.

I wait for my One Word to speak to me. Some years it’s been a load roar, and other years it’s been a soft whisper. This year, my word took its sweet time showing up.

I’ve been feeling out of sorts for awhile now. Like I am forcing myself to get out of bed and participate in this thing we call life. So much so that I almost chose Sleep as my one word.

It could be the shift between a stay-at-home mom to full-time working mom again, the stress at work, trying to get along with those who don’t want to get along, the wanting to do more but really I am tired and don’t want to do anything, the missing my kids, the feeling of doing more but getting nowhere…sounds a lot like life, right?

Although with all of that above drama and stress, I am blessed. Because it could always be worse.

With a quietness, my One Word whispered, “Gratitude.”

Once my heart kind of settled on the word gratitude, I was hit with obvious signs to confirm it. Gratitude was the only word I could choose for 2016.

One little word, gratitude

Did you know practicing gratitude is scientifically proven to make one happier, more compassionate, healthier, and feel less alone? So says Harvard, Berkeley, and the Bible.

“The real gift of gratitude is that the more grateful you are, the more present you become.” -Robert Holden

And, that’s what I need, I want…to be more present, Robert.

So, now what? After choosing your One Word, I would suggest displaying that word around the house so that it is always in front of you.

Let’s face it, life gets busy. We “forget” what our goal/word is for the year. It gets shoved to the bottom of the to-do list. If your word is ever present, in front of you, you are more likely to “remember” and not lose your focus.

This could come in the form of a framed quote centered around your word. It could be a hand-stamped necklace with your word, or in my case, a gratitude bracelet. Put you word written on sticky notes around your house, make a desktop wallpaper for your laptop, or go to extremes and tattoo your word on your forearm. Whatever works for you; I won’t judge.

Also, don’t forget to share your word with others. Encourage others to choose their word. This is your tribe of like-minded people. They will be your cheerleaders in 2016.

Some of my One Words that I have chosen in the past:

2009: Be, as in “just be in the moment.”

2010: Faith

2011: Nourish

2012: Explore

2013: Joy

2014: Leap

2015: Create

What’s your word for 2016?

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