I love family traditions, especially around the holidays. Jeff and I are still trying to decide what holiday traditions we are going to make traditions in our little family. Probably some past down from my family, some from his, and a few that are just our own.
One of the traditions that my family as adopted as my siblings and I got older is to draw names on Thanksgiving and spend $100 picking out a gift for one of our siblings. We also usually spend about $25 on a themed gift and play a game to decide who gets what gift. In years past we have all gotten a $25 gift card and my mom organized a game — like puzzle races or tossing rings onto reindeer antlers, something goofy. Whoever won the game would get first pick on what gift card they wanted, second place would get second pick, and so on. This year we decided to switch it up and do a book exchange. Everyone picked a book and we played a dice game that had us rotating, swapping, and stealing gifts for a few rounds until that very last roll.
I’m biased because I love my siblings, but dang, we can pick out some really interesting books! I ended up with One Word That Will Change Your Life, which my sister-in-law picked out after reading it earlier in 2019. I had heard of the book from one of my coworkers just a few months before and I was excited to read it — especially because it’s a fast read and reading an actual book is harder than Audible for me.
I decided on my word for 2020 and I’m excited to share it with you!
Why One Word?
If you haven’t done it, you’ve watched others fall into this the trap of making a bunch of new years resolutions just to fall short of them before we flip the calendar to February.
The One Word concept is intentionally simple. The simpler something is, the more likely we are to do it and stick with it. I read the book on New Years day during Hayes’ nap time, went through their process, and came out the other side with a word.
In the book, the authors make it clear that the One Word concept is not about more effort, more willpower, more goals. Often times when the new year hits we fall into the trap of setting “to-do goals instead of to-be goals.” The One Word book encourages you to pick one single word to be your driving force for the year. A theme for the year. When it’s just one word vs. 15 goals, it’s easier to remember and check in on. And you’re more likely to be successful with it.
The One Word process
The book is a very easy read, full of stories, and has lots of helpful hints so I would recommend reading One Word That Will Change Your Life for all of the details if you’re going to try this out, but at a high-level the process that they outline is:
1. Prepare your heart
This is where you proactively unplug and find space to look inside of yourself and prepare yourself to find your word.
2. Discover your word
This step has some helpful questions that will help you discover your word. Your gut does have a role here.
3. Live your word.
This is the step where start to live your life with your word in mind, some may even say when you follow their advice that you are guided by your word.
My word for 2020 is joy
They say the process can take days or an hour depending on the person and the year. In my case it was all discovered over nap time.
My word for 2020 is JOY.
- Choosing what will bring me the most joy, saying no to the rest
- Choosing joy instead of being nit picky, having patience
- Following what lights me up and brings me joy and doing more of that
- Finding joy in the smallest of things each day, no matter what the day ended up being
Will you be a part of my Stretch Team?
I have never done this exercise, but they said in the book that you should “share your word with your Stretch Team—that inner circle of friends and family most important to you and whom you trust without hesitation.”
I’ll be sharing my word for 2020 with my sister-in-law who brought the book to our exchange and does it every year, my husband who also read the book, and one of my very best and longest friends who texted me to ask what book I was reading when I posted it on IG Stories. But there’s room on this Stretch Tea — I’m looking for more to join me! If you’re going to pick one word for the year, drop it into the comments or DM me on Instagram, I’d love to hear from you!