Many people greet the New Year with a glass of bubbly and one or two resolutions they aim to achieve. Once the champagne is consumed, what happens to the resolutions – if they’ve made them at all? Most people give up on them within the first few days – even though they have 365 days to work on those resolutions.
If you’re never been into making New Year’s resolutions or you don’t take them seriously enough to keep them, I’d like to offer you an alternative – the one-word intention. Or if you prefer, the one-word theme.
The concept is simple. Think of the year ahead. Is there some overarching issue that you’re dappling with? Is there some aspect of your personality that you’d like to improve? Do the activities you have planned for the year reflect a certain common theme? That is where your one-word intention can give you focus.
Before I share with you my own one-word intention for 2023, here are a few examples.
- If you’re making several changes in your life, such as moving to a new city to start a new job, your one word might be Transition or Change.
- If you want to develop more trust in your relationships or within yourself, your word for the year might be Trust or Relationships
- If you would like to spend more quality time with loved ones, your one word might be Family.
- If you’re focused on creating a healthier lifestyle (and who doesn’t after the holidays), your word might be Health or Wellness
- If the year ahead is filled with workshops and classes, getting an advanced degree or attending conferences, your word might be Education or Knowledge.
- If you want to begin a regular writing practice or start on that novel you keep telling people you want to write, your one word might be Consistency or Persistence or Imagination.
You get the idea.
What difference can one word make, you might ask? After all, it is only one word.
Don’t overlook the emotional significance or power that one word can have on your psyche. Think of it as a mantra. You can repeat it inside your head whenever you face a particular situation. For example, if your mind keeps wandering or you begin to feel scattered and unfocused, you might use the one-word to bring back your focus.
Every word in the English language carries energy. Words can either bring you down or build you up. In this case with your one-word intention or theme, you are building your life for the New Year. Let your word of the year guide you to become the person you want to be. Making that one-word intention is a lot easier than making New Year’s resolutions, and you don’t have to feel guilty if you forget your one word. There’s no additional work or action involved on your part. It’s more of a mindfulness about the year ahead. The important thing is to keep the word positive, so it gives you positive energy.
So what is my one-word intention?
That word came to my mind as I grapple with the different areas of my life that I’d like to change. I’m not talking about a major overhaul, just tweaks here and there. Everything from my living environment to my personal health and wellbeing to my finances, the organizations I support and the publications I write for.
I know the word restructure may have negative connotations for some people, but for me, it’s about rebuilding stronger foundations. It’s about changing out the old for the new. It’s about making a fresh start and rethinking how to do things better, more efficiently to get better results. Isn’t that what the New Year is about – making a fresh start?
So what is your one-word intention for 2023?