Wow – what a whirlwind the past year has been. Who would have thought that shortly into the year 2020 that our entire world would suddenly come to a halt and change our everyday way of life? And how did this year already go by so fast? I swear this year zoomed by and I have no idea how because every day for the last 10 months since the world shutdown has felt like Groundhog Day. Living in lockdown and in isolation is definitely not how I expected my life to look for the majority of the year. However, despite the uncontrollable circumstances of the past year, looking back I was still able to experience some highlights as well.
- I completed my interior decorating program (after three and a half years).
- I started tackling some home reno projects.
- I celebrated the last year of my twenties.
- I got to celebrate the weddings of both friends and family (all within appropriate restrictions)!
- I reconnected with old friends.
Luckily, it’s now a brand-new year so it’s time to set new intentions and think about how I want this year to look. Unfortunately, we are still in the midst of a global pandemic so who truly knows what this year has in store… but there’s no way it can be as bad as last year, right? *Knocks on wood*
At the beginning of last year, I decided to pick a word that would describe how I wanted my new year to be… a word to focus on and drive me forward. You can read more about the word I chose last year in my previous blog post. Given that it’s a brand-new year, I decided that I would pick another word to live by. A word to keep me on track and a word that would describe how I want to live my life in 2021. I started brainstorming words that came to mind and chose the one that stood out to me the most and resonated with me. It is based on both a reflection of the past year and some forward-thinking of how I want the next year to look.
So… what is my 2021 word of the year?
Having balance in your life right now may seem like such a far-fetched idea. I get it. It’s hard to have balance in a world like this when there are so many restrictions in place. However, if there’s anything that 2020 taught me, then it’s the importance of your mindset and focusing on what you can control vs what you cannot. Even though I cannot do a lot of the things I used to do (go to the gym, visit family and friends…. basically just being able to do anything aside from only grocery shopping), I can still try my best to have a positive attitude and create balance with what I am able to control. I can control getting up early and doing a work-out. I can decide to go for a walk over my lunch break. I can finally choose to read that book I’ve had on my shelf for years and never read (the last three Harry Potter books to be exact… and no, I haven’t seen those last few movies so I still to this day have no idea what happens at the end and please do not tell me). I can still connect with friends and family (even if it’s just virtually).
So what am I wanting to balance? I suppose I’m wanting to have a more balanced life overall going into 2021. I like to think I have a fairly balanced life, but I always find that when you are thriving in one aspect (job, health and wellness, or working on a hobby for example) then the rest of it is lacking. For instance, I always feel that when I’m doing consistent workouts and meal prepping/planning like a boss, then I lack the time and energy to blog or work on my home and diy projects. Or if I’m busting out projects and diys, then I’m not taking the time to connect with others.
I think a part of establishing more balance in my life is having a more consistent routine. I’ve always been one for routine, but the last year has really impacted that. My get-up and go to the gym at 6am, come home, shower, eat breakfast, and go to work has now shifted to waking up later, changing out of my pj’s into an outfit that probably could also be considered pj’s and shuffling over to my spare bedroom/office to work. There have definitely been many days where I have not moved out of my office all day. This is something I’ve definitely recognized that I need to change in order to have more balance in my day-to-day life. Even though we are only a couple weeks into the new year, I have already made a shift in my routine to integrate more balance throughout my day. I’m sensing another blog post? My daily routine, but stay-at-home edition? Basically, I’m trying to focus on what is going to make me feel good – movement, connection, energy, mental breaks. These are all things I’m trying to establish into my daily practice and by doing that, I’ll hopefully feel a better sense of balance in my life.
So now it’s your turn!
How do you create a word of the year?
Sometimes it’s as easy as a word popping into your head and feeling a connection to it. Or it can be helpful to reflect on previous years and think about how you want things to look moving forward. I find it helpful to think about what you may have been lacking in the previous year and let that be the word that you focus on bringing into your life. Here are some questions to help you think about the past year and what you want to change in the upcoming year:
- How do you want to feel?
- What did you feel you were lacking?
- What could you use more of?
- What could you use less of?
Think about how you want your new year to look. Maybe you have goals planned out (I know I do) or “resolutions” and maybe your word is stemmed from that. Maybe you have one large goal or many small goals you are working towards. What is going to drive you towards accomplishing those goals and create momentum in your life? Think about how you want to feel in the next year. What is going to allow you to reach your goals and keep you on track?
Now that you’ve thought about both the past and the future, what words come to mind? What describes how you want to live your life this year? You may have a handful of words that come to mind. List them all out and choose which one feels the best. Don’t over think! If you are having trouble finding a word that you identify with, here is a selection of words I’ve put together to help you narrow one down!
Now that you’ve identified your word of the year, embrace it! (Hey maybe that is your word of the year)! Let that word become your mantra. Write it out. Display it. Have it posted on sticky notes on your desk or on your bathroom mirror. Wherever you feel like you will need the reminder to help you remember what you want to focus on in this new year. Embracing that word and taking the time to reflect on it throughout the course of the year will keep you accountable and shift your mind and energy onto what you really want to be focusing on.
I hope you find this post helpful in selecting your word of the year. I really enjoy this little exercise and I feel like it is such a great way to start off a brand new year. But if it is well into the new year and you are only just discovering your word of the year, then that’s okay too. It’s never too late to think about how you want the rest of your year to look and what you want to be focusing on!
Let me know what your 2021 word of the year is!