Checking on the Word of the Year

This time of year the time seems to pick up speed and race toward the end of the year. The days are noticeably shorter and we begin to become more focused on the end of the year.

A good time, then to check in with your word of the year. Is it still serving you well? Are you satisfied with your choice? How often do you think of it or consider what it means in your life?

Half-way through the year, I changed my word from “scatter” to “distill.” It was

It's not a painting; it's an open space in the wall, overlooking Arizona's desert. Beyond is the Bar-T-Bar ranch, with the San Francisco mountain range in the background.

It’s not a painting; it’s an open space in the wall, overlooking Arizona’s desert. Beyond is the Bar-T-Bar ranch, with the San Francisco mountain range in the background.

worthwhile. “Scatter” was what was happening to my life–too many open doors, too many choices to keep them all balanced. What started out as some far-flung ideas ended up as not getting enough of the right work done.

It was less of a paring down and more of a taking the essence of my work–distilling–that worked well. I’m glad I made the switch.

How do I weigh the choice? I write the word on random calendar days and see what has happened since the last time I considered it. Because I look at my calendar on the weekly view before the daily view, I see the word coming and going through the week.

Tell me how you remember your word and what it has meant to you so far.

-Quinn McDonald loves watching words make meaning, whether or not she changes them.

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16 thoughts on “Checking on the Word of the Year

  1. My word is strength. It floated through my brain out of the blue back in January. I made a spinner ring and stamped the word on the spinner. I wear it everyday. I need it everyday. I took the ring off the other day to put on some lotion, got half way to work and realized I had forgotten to put it back on. I was desperate for it. If I wasn’t already late I would have gone back home to get it. It reminds me that I have both mental strength and physical strength and can call on them whenever needed, but it also reminds me to continually work on, improve, and increase my mental and physical strength because I can always use more.

  2. I just finished a lovely week long retreat in Santa Fe with the wonderful Jessica Wesolek. I wanted to let you know that she mentioned you at the beginning of the retreat. She talked about you labeling the INNER HERO instead of an inner critic. I think some new blog followers will find you soon if they haven’t already. My word of the year is BALANCE. I forget to even think about it so I will take your suggestion of putting it on my calendar to remind me. I found a gorgeous planner at a shop in Santa Fe that will remind me all year of this lovely time that I took for myself.

  3. My word for the year is “bloom.” I spent the first half of 2014 thinking, “So, when is this blooming going to start?” (patience not being my long suit!), and the second half realizing that before the blooming comes a time of growth and preparation that is not visible.

  4. I returned to my first choice “little by little” after having changed it for “passion” a good month ago.
    I made a journal page with the word and wrote it down on the first page of my agenda, but in a way it is with me almost all the time. Not always easy to fit my many creative projects in the busy everyday life, but doing a little something on a daily basis shows some results by the end of the month, and sometimes once I am busy enthusiasm (passion) comes in and I forget time about it.

    P.S.: This is the first time a word makes so much meaning to me. I think I started picking up a word about three years ago – but I never remembered it for a long time.

  5. I should have changed my word from Balance to Scatter because my life has been completely scattered this year. Oh well, I’m ready for 2015 because I certainly won’t have any balance the remainder of 2014.

  6. My word for the year was Dare. I have been mulling over a new word since you last suggested that one might like to change that word. I feel truly finished with Dare and will spend some quiet time over the next few days and see if another word presents itself. Ease would be a lovely one, but I don’t know that I am there yet. I am hoping for something a bit calmer in any event.

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