Every year, a variety of sources do it.
- Oxford University Press chose the word selfies.
- Merriam-Webster chose the word science.
- Dictionary.com chose the word privacy.
And while each of them chose a word after looking at the year in review, I’ve always taken a slightly different approach to the “word of the year” concept. Instead of choosing a word based on what’s happened in my life the previous 12 months, instead I choose a word to base my next 12 months on.
Why choose a single word at the start of the year? Because it can help as you set your goals. It can help you focus in on what you truly hope to accomplish.
And lets face it, its much easier to remember one word every time you need to make a decision than it is to read through list after list determining if something meets your requirements or not. Words like:
They have meaning when long passages would quickly be forgotten.
My word for 2014 is “reawaken”.
reawaken: Emerge or cause to emerge again; awaken again. To become or make aware of something again.
There are a lot of reasons for choosing it.
To start, my word for 2013 was chaos. Chaos can take on a variety of meanings, but when I chose it, it was because our lives were going through massive change. Our daughter was graduating from high school in May. She didn’t choose a college until April. We had to get her ready and move her 1200 miles away from home in August. We had to adjust to living as a couple instead of a family of three these past few months.
Huge change, right?
At the same time we had so much going on in our personal lives, we also were making big plans for our business. We sold one of our portal sites and started building a new facet to our business. We started making major changes because we see a time in the near future where we want to make even more changes, and take our love for travel to an entirely different level.
And in many cases, the two worlds collided again and again.
I chose chaos to remind me to not plan far off in the distance during 2013. I chose it to remind me that while massive changes were occurring, they wouldn’t exist for extended periods of time. And when I felt like I wanted to move forward or take big action steps, and the changes in my life prevented me from doing all I wanted to do, it was the chaos of 2013 that was making me step back and evaluate every thing I did.
I knew it wouldn’t last forever. And I knew eventually things would work themselves out and our lives would become “normal” once again.
And of course they did. As we head into a New Year, things once again look clear.
We’ve made decisions. We’ve changed. We’ve grown.
Which means 2014 will be our year of reawakening. A time to emerge and do the things I’ve had time to contemplate, think about and plan for. A time to once again emerge from all we’ve learned in the past and apply it in a totally new way.
2014 will be our year of reawakening. It works for me. And it will be my very special word that helps guide me in the year ahead.
What’s your word?