It just may be that New Year’s Resolutions were a long-lasting fad that now seems so 1950s or 2010s.
Here’s a relatively new thing: What’s Your Word for 2023?
Why a single word?
This may take a bit of explanation if you haven’t heard about choosing a word of the year or haven’t given it much thought. And don’t worry: It’s not too late to pick your word for 2023, and doing so can be fruitful.
Sundried, a fitness-clothing company, recently surveyed 4,000 people and found 43 percent of people expected to abandon their resolutions by February. The company said 95 percent of resolutions are fitness related, and it listed the Top 10 reasons the resolutions fail:
- Going solo;
- Overly high expectations;
- Giving up too easily;
- Not enough time;
- Not enough money;
- No plan;
- No motivation;
- No self-belief;
- Peer pressure, or giving in to temptations; and
- Forgetting the resolutions.
A word can be a better way
As opposed to a resolution, the choice of a single word can serve as your guiding star as you make your life journey through the year. If you write the word in a prominent place or take other steps to focus on your word as the days pass, it can help steer you toward improvements in your life and career.
It can help you be more purposeful and move toward an overall goal of Living Well into the Future ®, as we here at ERS call it – a healthier, happier, more enriched life.
Choosing a word can be transformative. A friend of ours in her early 20s last year decided to use the word Chrysalis: the protective shell that helps a caterpillar transform into a butterfly. Her word for this year? Butterfly. And we’re already watching her take to the air.
Some of our Words for 2023
These examples provided by ERS team members can give you an idea of how we formulated OUR words for the year and the thought processes and motivations behind them. We’re a pretty thoughtful bunch.
Interestingly, most of our words and thoughts behind them do not involve fitness. Instead, most involve seeking more connections with those around us. But maybe our Word choices will help with fitness and healthier living as we seek to be more purposeful throughout the year. Here are some of our Words and thoughts about them:
- Jennifer Schlotbom, the move-in coordinator at our Marjorie P. Lee retirement community, oscillated between the words “Spark” and “Intention” before deciding on SPARK. “I can spark living intentionally, AND I can spark joy in doing the small and mundane things, spark happiness in my relationship and friendships, and spark activity to stay physically and emotionally healthy,” she said.
- Hannah McCarren, the memory support household coordinator at Marjorie P. Lee, chose HEALING. “The past two years have been survival mode, coping with a global pandemic, personal loss, and life stage transitions. As I, and we as a culture, move farther from this time, I turn toward a yearning to focus on a way of living that allows me to heal and grow and provide others with the space to heal as well.”
- Kat Lohr works in security at our Deupree House, which like Marjorie P. Lee is a continuing care retirement community (CCRC), where people can live independently and receive higher levels of assistance as their healthcare needs change. She chose the word DEDICATION. She went with that, “because while I always seek to nurture my relationships and do my best with the tasks at hand, this year more than anything, I want to go the extra mile – with friends, family, work, work friends, work ‘family,’ residents, school, and any other task, favor, or request that comes across my path. I am grateful for so much in my life and I want to share that with everything and everyone around me this year through service and dedication.”
- Emily Lorentz, the executive assistant at ERS, chose BETTER because of her favorite quote, which “my grandma always said to us,” Emily explained: ‘Leave the place BETTER than you found it.’ I want to do better at staying connected to those I love. I want to do better at giving back. I want to do better at making time for me.”
- Elise Hyder, ERS’ director of individual giving, chose HEART. “I want to be more connected with my heart in all that I do, and all that I am,” she said. “I believe the world needs more love and joy, and when I am connected with my heart, these things flow out of me! Being connected with my heart will help me reach my goals of being a more loving, present, caring, compassionate, humble, spiritual, effective human.”
- Mike Rutledge, ERS’ integrated marketing manager, said, “My word is DELIGHT because I want to focus more in finding delight in the beautiful world and people around me and to delight even more in those around me, including residents and team members at ERS.” He also wants to create occasional delight for other people.
- Sarah Meyer, fund development specialist at ERS, chose INTENTIONAL: “I have taken on the task of decluttering (throwing a lot of stuff out 😁 ) and organizing my home with the goal of becoming more intentional with what we bring in, and utilizing what we already have. My hope is that this helps us become more intentional with our time together as a family since we're not focusing on managing all the extra stuff that would be crowding our space. I am hoping that a less cluttered space will help my boys put things back in their place and have more relaxed play because there’s not too many toys and overall junk for them to pick over.”
- Joan Wetzel, vice president of human resources and organizational development, picked THOUGHTFUL. “So often I feel my to-do list dictates my every move, and I tend to go into auto-pilot,” she said. “ My hope for 2023 is to slow down and be more thoughtful and intentional about how I use my most precious commodity, which is my time.”
- I personally went with MOMENT because I spent time in 2022 thinking about “What are my defining moments?” This stems from reading “The Power of Moments,” by Dan and Chip Heath. I’ve realized that in daily life, I’m sailing along, checking things off my to-do list, but rarely noticing moments and the potential to elevate or connect. Being mindful and present in the moment can produce a ripple of positivity and joy. I think that’s my wish for 2023. I’ve also realized many significant moments are not planned. They are totally unexpected and cherished for their impact. In particular, moments of connection, those that reveal what has led me to where I am in my journey. My word for 2023 is MOMENT – with abounding hope and expectation.
Meanwhile, here’s a blog the AARP wrote about why you should choose a personal word for the year.
Also, the organization HappinessIsHomemade offered a list of possible words to choose from.
Do you have a word for 2023?
Do you have a favorite word among those? And here’s a thought for the day – or the year, you might say…. What is your Word for 2023?
At Episcopal Retirement Services, we strive to serve our community's seniors in a person-centered, innovative, and spiritually-based way. One way we do that is through our premier and affordable senior living options. To Live Well Into the Future® means to cultivate a life of wellness in all aspects so that, as an older adult, you can live a happy, fulfilled life the way you want.