As is typical on New Year’s Eve, people start getting philosophical in anticipation of the new year ahead. I mean, a blank calendar filled with 365 days of possibilities stretching ahead, waiting for us to fill them with activity, meaning and purpose. If you are like the majority of people, you probably make a resolution or two, vowing things such as ‘to lose weight’, ‘to be more patient’ or ‘to spend more time with my spouse/children/friends’. And about 3-4 weeks into the new year, you may already have forgotten what it was you resolved, succombing instead to the pressures at work or home and losing sight of the hope and possibilities you felt at the turn of the calendar.
I don’t make resolutions. I haven’t for several years. But until today, I didn’t really have much to fill it with other than a specific goal or two (run a marathon being one in 2015!).
Until today when I looked on Facebook. One of my running friends had posted the following:
A couple years ago I gave up New Year’s Resolutions for good. I had read something that talked about choosing a one word theme to live my life by for the year. In 2015 my One Word was Purpose. In 2016 my One Word was Fulfillment. Will you join me in choosing One Word for 2017? If you’d like, please share your word below.
–Holly, Facebook post, December 31, 2016
When I read this, I had a word on the tip of my tongue already: JOY. Perhaps it is because I had already determined that I would run with joy, enjoying the fact that I simply get to run – something that is never a given (and something I learned after a forced few weeks off after my knee injury). But in all honesty, I think this is something I could make a theme for my whole year, not just for running. All during my 16 mile run today I thought about this and whether this was the right word for me. I mulled over a few other words that also seemed to fit, but I honestly kept coming back to the word joy.
So I am committed to JOY for 2017. Joy in my marriage, joy in my travel, joy in running, joy in managing our house and daily lives, joy in interacting with others, joy in the mundane and the sensational. I look forward to how many ways I can live my life with joy in the coming year. Certainly it will be easier to remember the concept of joy throughout the next 12 months rather than some resolutions that don’t really inspire me to make and stick to the big changes I always try to take on.
Like Holly, I now also invite you to participate in this ‘one word 2017’ challenge. If you do, please share your one word with me. I’d love to hear the theme by which you will try to live your life in the new year.