How does one little word make a difference in your life? I heard about Ali Edwards’ idea to pick a word for the year (OLW) back in the middle of 2010. I figured why not jump in even though it wasn’t something I did on a more traditional day like January 1st. The word I chose was CONNECT. I really wanted to be closer to the wonderful people I was already lucky to have in my life, like my siblings, parents and my immediate family. Additionally, after being laid off from a second job within two years, both of which had me working in my home office, I realized that outside of my far away colleagues that I really didn’t have any friends in close proximity. I did have one wonderful friend locally, my friend Stef. However, she is a single Mom that worked full time crazy hours and her daughter was very active in extra curriculars so we didn’t see as much of each other as she liked. And, to boot, she was planning on moving to Ohio a few months later. At the time, both my husband and I had home offices so I couldn’t even rely on him having any work friends either. I’m the social one of us and that left us essentially friendless.
Since I had so much time on my hands, I picked up the phone. Instead of wondering whether or not one of my siblings would be busy, I just picked up the phone and called. I’d send emails more often just to say I was thinking about them and I really do feel a bit closer. Then, I started just getting out more around the neighborhood and talking to people at our neighborhood pool and that certainly helped. Fortunately, one of my neighbors then invited me to a brunch at her house on the first day of school. There I met my wonderful friend Julie for the first time and we’ve been practically inseparable ever since. Shortly thereafter, Julie had a party and invited her neighbor Katherine, and two became the three musketeers. We have done countless things together, breakfasts, brunches, lunches, dinners, parties, working out, dancing, playing games, birthday kidnappings – it’s been awesome. So thank you to my 2010 word of the year for getting me to connect better with the important people in my life and getting me out there to meet these fabulous gals! I have affectionately named us Annie Gooth (Annie because we all have ‘ann’ in our middle names, and G.O.O.T.H. for Get Out Of The House because we like to do just that!)
In 2011, I choose the word STRENGHTHEN for a variety of reasons. Probably the reason that was the most motivating was the desire to feel stronger in general. I decided to start working out again and join a gym. I’m realistic enough to know that I’ll probably never have a six pack or arms like Angelina Jolie, but I really just wanted to feel stronger at the core. I’ve had back and knee problems for years and I know it’s good for me to keep them strong as well as the rest of me. Fortunately, my two buddies that I made in 2010 were up for the challenge as well. I’m happy to report that over the course of a year I was able to remove (not lose, which implies I want to find it again) 15 pounds and keep them off! I walk taller, I creak less and overall I feel stronger in so many ways. The obvious way is physical, but to be able to set a great example for my kids and let them see me love exercising and doing good things for my body certainly makes me proud.
Now to choose my word for 2012 – or perhaps have it choose me. I’m tossing around a few and can’t seem to settle on one just yet. I’m toying with PURPOSEFUL, FREE, BREAKTHROUGH, NOURISH, STRETCH, and TRANSFORMATION.
Some of the things I’m planning on doing this year are: start meal planning, pay off debt, remove more weight, strengthen my body, balance my time (just started working full time again), be in the moment (leave work at work), keep up with my FLY Lady cleaning routines.
So at the end of the year if I can see a big dent in my debt as well as my @ss that would be awesome. Additionally I don’t want my relationships with my kids nor my husband to suffer because I’ve gone back to work. I’ve been enjoying a house that is mostly 15 minutes away from being ‘company clean’ and I would like to keep it that way because it makes me happy.
To that end dear blog readers, please chime in with some advice on picking my word for the year!