What’s Your Word for 2016?

Word-of-the-Year 2016

I love the feeling of freshness and possibility that comes with ending a year and beginning a new one. Even though this is often the busiest time of the year, I find it is the ideal time to pause and reflect. To think about what you want your life to be about in the coming year.

I got very reflective in this lengthy post looking back on 2015, a year full of both shifts and stuckness for me.

And because I have never been a fan of New Year’s resolutions, for the past three years, I have been coming up with a Word of the Year.

Word of the Year can inspire and guide choices + actions throughout the year.

Here’s how it works: Take a moment to think about this coming year. 366 days laid out before you, waiting to be lived (it’s a leap year so we even get one extra day!).

If you could fill these 366 days in any way you want, what would your heart’s deepest desires for the way we want to interact with the world, other people and yourself be?

In other words…

What do you want to stand for across these 366 days?

How do you want to behave?

What sort of person do you want to be? 

And what word best summarizes this image of you? 

When it comes to thoughts, feelings and actions, can you guess what we have most control over? Our actions. We can spend a lot of energy trying to suppress thoughts or feelings or even trying to change them…yet the reality is we can already take the action we want, even with thoughts telling us the exact opposite and even when we don’t feel ready or are scared. So for example, it is possible to give a great speech DESPITE your mind telling you You’re not good enough and You’re not ready and despite not feeling confident at all.

In fact, taking action towards what matters to you despite having ‘negative’ thoughts and feelings is at the heart of becoming the person you want to be. Even if it might feel forced in the beginning. Even if you have to fake it until you become it. Willingness to feel discomfort or becoming more comfortable with being uncomfortable in the service of what matters to you is one of the best kept secrets to change and growth.

So this year I would like to suggest finding an ACTION word of the year.

A word that inspires you to take action and not just dream about the person you would like to be. A word that pushes you out of your comfort zone and into the world, even if this means taking only a teeny tiny step at a time. Once you have your action word, try to think of how you plan on taking small steps every day towards this word.

My action word this year is VITALITY.

The way I plan on acting on acting on VITALITY is:

♥ By turning towards my emotions, both the pleasant and not so pleasant ones, so that I am fully open to life. According to Steve Hayes, the founder of ACT, “There’s as much life in a moment of pain as a moment of joy” and I want to be open to the full spectrum of living.

♥ By moving beyond my comfort zone both professionally and personally and choosing to greet fear as a sign of growth.

♥ By making choices that lead to a sense of VITALITY, such as nourishing foods, movement, meditation and activities that inspire me.

♥ By following my curiosity and seeing where this leads instead of overanalysing or being too cautious or trying to plan things out too much.

I would love to hear from you: What is YOUR action word of the year? And what are some actions you can take in the next 366 days to live in line with this word?

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