Word of the Year

Note from Sheri: February 23, 2020

In the process of updating this blog post today. Sheri xo

Have you decided on your word of the year for 2020 yet?

I started picking a word of the year four years ago. I love this ritual.

I think it’s the perfect way to start the new year.

In fact, I actually think its MAGICAL (Word #121 in my new list of Word of the Year Ideas ;)).

The first time I chose a word of the year, I didn’t know it was a thing. It just felt so good to come up with a special over-arching word that fit how I wanted to feel in the brand year, I found myself being drawn to picking a new word every January.

Now it’s become part of a New Year’s ritual I look forward to every December. Tip: If it’s not a ritual for you yet or you have not had time to do it at the beginning of the year, just do it now, no matter what month it is.

In this blog post, I’ll share with you:

    • What is a Word of the Year? (plus a surprising book suggestion)
    • How to choose your Word of the Year
    • What to do if you just can’t pick one word or any word for this year
    • My Word of the Year 2020
    • DOWNLOAD my sweet Freebie: 11 Questions Worksheet Guide to help you figure out your perfect Word of the Year
    • Click here to get 211 Word of the Year Ideas!

This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using this link.

What is a Word of the Year?

A word of the year is a word you choose as a theme or intention for the year.

Reflect on that for a moment.

You can use a word or phrase to help you create a more beautiful year, even as challenges arise.

Thoughts really are things.

Here’s what happened to me.

When I first chose a word of the year, I really, clearly saw – probably for the first time – that thoughts are things. I chose Grace and then just seeing the word online, on paper, or even in my mind relaxed me. I became aware after a short while that even just intermittently remembering that I choose Grace as a word of the year,  I almost automatically set an intention to give myself more Grace and to experience more Grace throughout the year.

I discovered what I was doing was realigning my FOCUS on the energy or vibe of Grace . . . and it was so powerful.

I had experienced some life changes or turning points, I guess you could say, in the last few years in the areas of health, family, finances and career/business. It was almost tangible – the positive results I experienced when I remembered to choose Grace – my word of that first year.

What I’m finding now is that choosing a word of the year is expanding. It’s like building and shaping muscle. I’m taking the idea of “inspired action” more seriously. I’m now excited about creating my own vision journal and planning pages to keep my word of the year top of mind.

How to Choose Your Word of the Year?

So how do you select a word of the year?

By asking yourself some questions.

Is there a feeling or state you want to move toward? Happy, Renewed, Committed, Inspired? Is there a feeling or state you want to move away from? Disappointment, Fear, Grief, Complacency?

Now that I think of it, this reminds me of a chapter in my favorite self-help book, Awaken the Giant Within, by Tony Robbins. I discovered this book decades after it was written and it is one of those things that for me has withstood the test of time.

A while back, I found Chapter 15 (Life Values) of the book a bit overwhelming. Tony suggests you write out a list of your Top 10 Moving-Toward Values and your Top 10 Moving-Away-From Values – and to use this list to clarify the priorities of your life and therefore, shape your destiny. He suggests you “condition yourself to use them as your new compass” in life. However, I don’t think I really found an easy, fun way to keep my desired emotional states top of mind until I started choosing a word of the year – and then suddenly Chapter 15 made all the sense in the world.

Maybe I had to take it one word at a time.

I did come up with my own list of 11 questions to ask myself each year to help me discover my new Word of the Year – – – and I’ve designed a cute Word of the Year Questions worksheet freebie for you so you can too. *)) Download my helpful worksheet here. These questions can help you reflect on your life and tap into your intuition to come up with your ideal word of the year. I recommend you also check out Tony’s book, Awaken the Giant Within. You can probably borrow it from your library. I have two copies of the book at home. These are two my most cherished hardcover books that I will never part with . . . even during my most ruthless decluttering and go digital sweeps.

I’ve updated this post for 2020 and added 29 more words for a total of 211 words on my Word of the Year Ideas list.  I surveyed women IRL and in my Facebook and Instagram communities and brainstormed some of my own fave words, including “whitespace.” These are words that female bloggers and solopreneurs, mommy bloggers, crafters, creatives and students in my tribes are focusing on in 2020.

Click here to see 211 Word of the Year Ideas.

  1. Action
  2. Abundance
  3. Accomplished
  4. Adapt
  5. Advance
  6. Adventure
  7. Align
  8. Allow
  9. Anchor
  10. Authentic
  11. Aware
  12. Balance
  13. Become
  14. Begin
  15. Believe
  16. Better
  17. Blessed
  18. Blessings
  19. Bold
  20. Boundaries
  21. Brave
  22. Breathe
  23. Bright
  24. Budget
  25. Build
  26. Calm
  27. Capable
  28. Care
  29. Celebrate
  30. Centered
  31. Change
  32. Cherished
  33. Clarity
  34. Classy
  35. Commit
  36. Commitment
  37. Communication
  38. Compassion
  39. Complete
  40. Confidence
  41. Connection
  42. Conquer
  43. Consistent
  44. Contentment
  45. Courage
  46. Create
  47. Creativity
  48. Cultivate
  49. Declutter
  50. Dedicated
  51. Delight
  52. Dependable
  53. Determined
  54. Devotion
  55. Direction
  56. Discipline
  57. Discover
  58. Dream
  59. Ease
  60. Embrace
  61. Empowered
  62. Encourage
  63. Energy
  64. Enjoy
  65. Enlightened
  66. Enough
  67. Expand
  68. Explore
  69. Faith
  70. Family
  71. Fearless
  72. Fierce
  73. Finish
  74. Fit
  75. Fitness
  76. Flow
  77. Focus
  78. Forgiveness
  79. Forward
  80. Foundation
  81. Free
  82. Freedom
  83. Friendship
  84. Generous
  85. Gentleness
  86. Give
  87. Goals
  88. Glow
  89. Goodwill
  90. Grace
  91. Graceful
  92. Grateful
  93. Gratitude
  94. Grounded
  95. Grow
  96. Happiness
  97. Heal
  98. Healing
  99. Heart
  100. Home
  101. Honesty
  102. Hope
  103. Humble
  104. Imagine
  105. Immerse
  106. Improve
  107. Inspire
  108. Integrity
  109. Intentional
  110. Intuition
  111. Journey
  112. Joy
  113. Kind
  114. Kindness
  115. Learn
  116. Light
  117. Limitless
  118. Listen
  119. Love
  120. Loyalty
  121. Magical
  122. Manifest
  123. Mercy
  124. Mindfulness
  125. Motion
  126. Motivation
  127. No
  128. Nourish
  129. Open
  130. Organized
  131. Passion
  132. Patience
  133. Peace
  134. Persevere
  135. Persist
  136. Play
  137. Positivity
  138. Possibilities
  139. Potential
  140. Power
  141. Prayer
  142. Prepare
  143. Present
  144. Proactive
  145. Progress
  146. Prosper
  147. Purpose
  148. Quiet
  149. Radiant
  150. Rebuild
  151. Rediscover
  152. Reflect
  153. Refresh
  154. Reinvention
  155. Relationships
  156. Relax
  157. Release
  158. Renew
  159. Renewal
  160. Reset
  161. Rest
  162. Restore
  163. Rise
  164. Self-Acceptance
  165. Self-Care
  166. Serenity
  167. Serve
  168. Service
  169. Shine
  170. Simplify
  171. Slow
  172. Snuggle
  173. Softness
  174. Soul
  175. Sparkle
  176. Spirituality
  177. Stability
  178. Start
  179. Steady
  180. Stillness
  181. Strength
  182. Support
  183. Surrender
  184. Teach
  185. Tender
  186. Thankful
  187. Thrive
  188. Tranquil
  189. Transformation
  190. Transparency
  191. Travel
  192. Trust
  193. Truth
  194. Unapologetic
  195. Unconditional
  196. Unstoppable
  197. Uplift
  198. Valued
  199. Visible
  200. Vision
  201. Wellness
  202. Whitespace
  203. Willingness
  204. Win
  205. Whole
  206. Wonder
  207. Worksheet
  208. Worth
  209. Worthy
  210. Yes
  211. Zen

What do you think was the most popular word chosen in 2020?

For 2020 I did not find one single most popular word. Instead, I found a huge and imaginative cross-section of words, which I think is pretty awesome. For reference, BELIEVE was the most popular word by far in 2019.

What if you can’t pick just one word?

Ok, so if you (like me) can’t just pick just one word, you can 1) use two or more words and layer your words or 2) you can break your list down to 12 words and create your own little Word of the Month 2019 Calendar (more about that later) or 3) you can use one of your top picks to form a phrase that captures the vibe you are craving.

Here are some word of the year phrase examples, with some mix and match examples for Grace:

  1. Enough (I am enough)
  2. Progress (Progress not Perfection)
  3. Grace (Grace not Perfection)
  4. Grace (Choose Grace) – This is still mine!
  5. Patience and Grace
  6. Rise + Shine
  7. Sparkle & Glow
  8. Enough (I am enough)
  9. Faith (Walk in Faith)

What if you just can’t choose any Word for the Year?

If you are so stumped, you can’t even think of one word of the year that you are excited about, just skip it. It shouldn’t be frustrating or stressful to choose your word. It should feel exciting and make you happy.  Maybe it’s not for you . . . at this time. Or now that you’ve opened up to it, a special word might come to you later in the year.

Have you chosen the perfect word for you for 2020? Celebrate!

Stumped? Download my free 11 Questions Worksheet Guide to help you find your perfect Word of the Year!


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