I’m a logophile—a lover of words.
Or logomaniac might better describe my lifelong obsession. Since I first uncovered the magic of the lines and scribbles that formed letters, words continually intrigue and fascinate me.
Given my penchant for language, the idea of selecting words to focus my life, work, and goals came naturally. Resolutions never appealed to me, and I’ve learned that static plans rarely reach fruition.
Choosing a Word
Every day brings change. We live in a world of interrelationships and interdependencies. No matter what you do, circumstances seen and, more often, unseen influence or affect your chosen path.
That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t plan but expect serendipity, surprises, unexpected turns along the path. I have always set an intention, written goals, or thought about what I want to achieve, change or grow.
When I first heard about choosing a word to focus the year, I knew I had found the happy balance that would provide a lens, a beacon, and a reminder.
A lens to filter and focus my actions.
A beacon to light the way when the fog of obstacles or circumstances obscured the path.
A reminder to press on because even if my plans unraveled, I had a single thread to cling to.
Hope in 2021
I clung to hope through 2021. A word that brought me through fear, self-doubt, bewilderment, and hate spewing across the world.
I found hope in twelve other words. The words in books broadened my perspective Love and friendship lifted my spirits—together, we find strength. I found new ways of seeing and listening by noticing and giving attention.
Other words reflected the hope I longed to find: nature, wisdom, belonging, and discovery. As I grew into my story, a sense of wholeness permeated the days.
In music, I found harmony and comfort. Songs inspire, uplift, and help me let go for a moment, dancing in the joy of being alive.
By the end of the year, my quest for hope gave me the courage to be in the now. I accepted and embraced self-compassion. Many days, I doubted the power of a single action or person. But as I read stories of how a single act of kindness could ripple through a community, a nation, the world, hope soared.
Kindness does matter.
Sometimes it’s easy to lose faith in people. And sometimes one act of kindness is all it takes to give you hope again. —Randa Abdel-Fattah
As always, the universe conspired. One word kept finding its way in my reading, thinking, and conversations.
Jeffrey Davis points out this truth in his recent book, Tracking Wonder.
“Wonder is a portal of consciousness that lets us see again what is beautiful and real, true and possible.”
This word swirled in and out of focus for the past several days. Was it a single word? Was it an anchor for other ideas? Why this word?
Finally, as I lay in bed trying to go back to sleep, an acrostic took shape, giving me my north star for 2022. Other stars may emerge to light the way, but I have a path. Like every journey, 2022 begins with single step—now.
As I choose books to read, projects to consider, and live in the “here and now,” I will use wonder to see “what is beautiful, real, true, and possible.”
Wholeness to fully be me.
Open and curious to create and play.
Now is all that is—live there.
Devote my life with purpose and intention.
Energy fuels my wonder through healthy habits and positivity.
Reach for possibilities.
While wonder may serve as my guide for 2022, I believe I have found more than a word. Tracking wonder, according to Jeffrey Davis, is more than a concept, “to track wonder is both simple and complex…pervasive and evasive…a skill set you can build.”
I’m ready to build a skill set to “see the familiar in a fresh, new way,” and “appreciate just how extrordinary an ordinary moment can be.”
We evolve and become every day. I’m only one person, but I strive to share words and images to encourage you to be and become your best.
I wish you many moments of wonder in 2022 and always.
Becoming isn’t about arriving somewhere or achieving a certain aim. It’s forward motion, a means of evolving, a way to reach continuously toward a better self. —Michelle Obama