It’s become quite popular to choose a word of intention to start the new year.
You ‘ll read facebook posts, emails and advertisements now asking “What’s your word this year?” You’ll see people wearing necklaces or bracelets with their word stamped as a reminder.
Instead of setting resolutions that we then internally flog ourselves for breaking one week into the shiny new year, we have moved to setting intentions. I actually think this is a good shift. It’s a gentler approach and aligns us with the process more than the result. I’ve been doing some version of this for a long time.
I used to love to start my year by creating a vision board of these kinds of intentions. For many years, I joyfully launched into each year with a theme of my choosing. One year , it was “ The Year of Learning about Healthy Eating” and another year was “ The Year of Learning Radical Self Care” or “ The Year of Play”. You get the idea. My bestie used to tell me, “ You are the only person I know who dedicates an entire year to something.” Well, it gives me lots of wiggle room! And I like having time to explore something in depth over time.
About 5 years back, two dear friends launched what is now an annual gathering of a small circle of women who come together to celebrate whole-hearted living and intention setting. We’d all read Brene Brown’s, “The Gifts of Imperfection,” and my friends decided to invite a few friends to a glorious creation of what they called a "Wholehearted Party" to come together to set intentions and share our word for the year. Every year now, we gather to enjoy a meal of delicious soup and salad, drink a bit of wine, play and create shrines (aka cigar boxes with lots of glitter, glue, photos, stickers and gems) to cradle our newborn intentions. In the most beautiful part of the evening, we gather in circle with hushed voices and the occasional outbreak of laughter or tears, but always wide open hearts, to receive each woman’s whole-hearted intentions, dreams and hopes for the new year. It’s a sacred time around that circle.
Intention setting is, at its core, a sacred process. It’s a pact you make with the Divine. You are shaking hands and agreeing to do your part. If you don’t believe in a higher power, then it’s perhaps a pact you are making with your healthiest version of yourself. For me, it’s a sacred contract with Spirit. Our words create our experience and ultimately our world.
Last year, my word’s were Nourish and Hope. They were guides throughout the year. They kept me focused on what somewhere beneath the surface I knew my soul needed last year. I cherish these words, who like good friends, stood with me and tenderly reminded me of my needs during some rocky days or seasons of the year. They are always there guiding me to remember.
As I begin the year, two new words were ready to take center stage. I don’t require lots of thought, they just show up on time and I greet them with open arms. Meet BEAUTY and ADVENTURE. As the year unfolds, these word-friendships will deepen and we’ll have many heart -to- hearts. It’s just how these things work. It’s a year-long, heart -shaped metamorphosis. Sort of like that bedazzled cigar box made of glue and glitter and gumption turned shrine, it's so much more than the initial shape of things.
Do you choose a word of words for the year? I’d love to hear yours and how they guide you along your way! Leave a comment below and let’s share this beautiful adventure.
We just sent you an email. Please click the link in the email to confirm your subscription!