My Word for the Year – Open

Open year


Even though I’ve set goals for myself for this new year of 2014, I’m still intrigued every time I see someone choose a word for the year.  Usually, the word is chosen as a theme.  Often, people choose a single word instead of setting goals or resolutions.

There’s something interesting about choosing just one word to focus on for the year.  It seems doable and not nearly as overwhelming as a list of goals to meet.  And, let’s face it, a word for the year is just cool!  You can find some kind of token with your word engraved on it so you can remember your chosen focus.  Whether that ends up being a piece of jewelry, a journal or a keychain it’s a nice idea to have a physical reminder.  I don’t have anything like that for my goals or resolutions.

This year, I decided I want a word.  A single word that will support all the other goals and bring focus to my year.  I wanted a positive word that would encourage me.  The first several words I came up with had more of a focus on the things I needed to work on.  For me, words like intention, discipline or accepting didn’t have the positive push I was looking for.

After considering and abandoning several different words, I woke up one morning with two, small syllables ringing in my mind:  Open.

Open is a perfect word for me this year.  Maybe it is for you too.  A quick check of the thesaurus shows that open can mean:

  • Unburdened
  • Uncluttered
  • Unlocked
  • Unstopped (maybe even unstoppable?)

Sign me up for all of those!  Specifically, here’s what Open means for me this year.

Open to…

  • New Adventures
  • Stepping outside my comfort zone
  • Making new friends and growing closer to old friends
  • Accepting that reality doesn’t always match up with my preconceived ideas of what “should” be – and that is okay
  • Embracing the messiness of life
  • Changes in the circumstances that surround me (these are often out of my control)
  • Making changes in my routines, family life and myself that will make life better
  • Eating healthy snacks, like pistachios from Puritan’s Pride and giving up sugary treats
  • Grace and forgiveness – Granting both of these to others and to myself.  And accepting God’s grace and forgiveness for me.

What are you open to this year?  Do you think being open can support you in achieving your goals and resolutions?

On January 29 at 9pm, I’ll be hanging out on Twitter with @PuritansPride for the Resolution Reboot Twitter party. We’re going to be chatting about keeping our resolutions and there will be prizes involved too!  Follow along with #PuritansPride.  You can also find Puritan’s Pride on Pinterest, Facebook and on their blog, Healthy Perspectives.

Disclosure:  This post is sponsored by Puritan’s Pride.  I have been compensated for my time, but all opinions are my own.

How to Get a Better Attitude #OneSmallChange

“I was compensated by Puritan’s Pride for this post.  All opinions expressed here are my own.”

A few weeks ago, I shared how I kicked the complaining habit.  It’s something that I have to keep constant check on.  Complaining, negative thinking and a bad attitude are my default.  I wish I could say that I’m naturally happy and easy going.  But in my case, that takes work!

Since we’ve talked about quitting complaining, I wanted to tell you about the next step in my journey to be more positive.  I found that just stopping negative talk wasn’t enough to turn me into a positive person.  I had to replace all those complaining words with something.

For me, I find that I need to saturate my mind with good thoughts.  And since I’m not prone to find those thoughts within myself, I try to feed my spirit with a few trusted sources.

Bible Reading

I like to start of my mornings with some Bible reading.  I can’t say every morning starts this way, but I can definitely tell when I’ve neglected this time.  I’ve also found it helpful to memorize certain passages.  (My favorite is Philipians chapter 4.)  Running a good verse over in your mind throughout the day is like having lots of little nourishing meals for my soul.  It’s much easier to have a good attitude when I’m well fed (spiritually and physically too, but that’s a topic for a different post).

The Power of Positive Thinking

In January, I made a plan to work through this little book all year long.  Jim and I actually gave copies to all of my family members, kids included.  And I made a schedule to spend three weeks on each chapter, finishing by the end of the year.  Most of the chapters have a list of the main, action points listed at the end.  For those chapters that didn’t, I would go through and highlight the main points.  I put all of that in Evernote and then would text out one every other day or so to my family.  

I think my family like it to.  And it was a way to pour some of this great book’s ideas into the minds of the teens in the family.  I’m pretty sure none of them has actually read the book, despite the encouragement to do so.  

I did really well keeping up with my schedule until the end of the summer.  Then I fell apart with it.  I haven’t touched the book or texted anything out since the end of July.

So, I’m committing to change that.  Starting this week, I’m going to type up the notes for the next chapter and we’ll start where we left off.  I’ve already redone the schedule.  It will take us through March, but that’s okay.  There’s nothing magical about 1 year.  Much better to pick up and keep going.  And I know I need the encouragement!

If you’ve never read The Power of Positive Thinking, I encourage you to do so.  It isn’t a book of feel good fluff or a self-help manual.  It isn’t about convincing yourself to believe things that aren’t true.  In the words of the author, Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, “It teaches positive thinking, not as a means to fame, riches or power, but as the practical application of faith to overcome defeat and accomplish worthwhile creative values in life.  It teaches a hard, disciplinary way of life, but one which offers great joy to the person who achieves victory over himself and the difficult circumstances of the world.”  The book really teaches faith in action.

What’s your #OneSmallChange?

So, that’s the next step in my #OneSmallChange.  What about you?  You can share your one small change by going to the Puritan’s Pride Facebook page.  Your change can be anything from exercise to food related to learning something new.  Or join me in my quest to improve my attitude and be more positive.

You can find more about this #OneSmallChange Challenge on the sweepstakes page, on Twitter and on the Puritan’s Pride Pinterest page.  



Small changes in your life can improve your well-being. Puritan’s Pride wants to help. Pledge today, enter the sweepstakes to win $2,000 and prizes to help you stick to it.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Puritan’s Pride. The opinions and text are all mine.

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