How to Choose a Word of the Year and Why It Matters

Have you chosen your word of the year yet? If not, you need one asap.

What is a word of the year and why do you need one? I was first introduced to this concept several years back when I started as a health coach. Instead of creating a New Year’s resolution which you may or may not follow through on, a word of the year can set you up for success, give you focus, and direction.

A word of the year is like a theme or intention you want to live out over the next year.

Words are powerful. The words we use impact our mental well-being, affect our mood and impact our mindset. Words guide our thoughts and emotions and can bring about positive change or drag us down into a miserable abyss. You may not realize how many words cross your mind every day. Words matter.

When you get intentional and choose a word to live by, you start creating focus and find things in your day to day that support that particular word.

For example, a few years back my word of the year was bold. My phrase became be bold. I was able to use this in so many different situations I was faced with. Whether at work, at home, or wanting to take part in a new workout class etc. By keeping my word of the year in the forefront of my mind I was able to find opportunities that allowed me to live out this theme. It helped me push outside my comfort zone.

How to Choose a Word of the Year?

The good news is there is no one right way to choose a word of the year. The main thing is to find a word that speaks to you. One that once you come upon just feels right.

To help get the juices flowing, here are a few prompts you can use to determine which word to choose.

  • On a piece of paper, write down five things you want less of in your life and five things you want more of. Think about the past year. What went well and what are some things you want to change?
  • Look at your list and write down five words that represent how you want your year to feel. Think of nouns or verbs- anything that makes you feel good.
  • Narrow this down to one word (or phrase). If two words are really calling to you, choose them both.
  • The final step and most important is to write or print this word. Post it in your bathroom on your mirror. Even better is to write it down in your calendar on a monthly or weekly basis.

Want some more inspiration?

Check out this list of words to help you get started.

I’d love to hear from you. Once you determine your word of the year, feel free to share it in the comments below and tell why that word resonated with you. I’d love to cheer you on!

And if you’re looking for more ways to create a positive mindset, check out these other posts:

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