My Word of the Year Inside
Now that the year of all years is over, I wonder how we will look back at 2020 in history. Not in a history book way but in the history of each of our own lives. Will we look back and think, that it was a strange time just as any other? Or, will we look back with a chamber of negative emotions?
Was it the year that was unfair or was it the year of extraordinary opportunity?
I recently saw a woman post her word for 2020 at the end of the year. That was interesting, she was assigning a word by looking back rather than forward.
Typically when you pick out a word for a year, you’re setting a new intention or mission to hold for the next 365 days. The idea is to provoke positive change without the burden of overpromising on goals.
Truthfully, I love it as somebody who has struggled with the need to overachieve which usually leads to disappointment for not accomplishing a goal list 5 miles long.
Gurus and discipline experts don’t have to be the only ones who shine. We can do it the simple way. Hopemade women are regular ladies with lives, families and jobs to do. Yes, there are circumstances that may serve as obstacles but Hopemade women are fully aware of the strength God provides us to stay focused. Somewhere there is a healthy balance between discipline and peace!
Don’t you want that? Well, I will be the first to admit that sticking to an intention was not easy but it was certainly doable. 2020 was actually the first year I chose a word, in the past I’ve used goals, resolutions, and quotes. Here is my experience with setting a Word for the Year.
A Simple Approach, A Complex Process
My Word for 2020 was COURAGE. I like to turn the word into a simple sentence that explains how that word will apply. I call this my mission or mission statement.
Subsequently, my mission for 2020 was to fail a lot [with the idea that failure would bring about learning opportunities].
And my Bible verse for 2020 was,
Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”Deuteronomy 31:6
Courage showed up for me in an odd way this year. Like totally against my own beliefs.
To start off the year, I got a new job to supplement my substitute teaching income. While I loved the people, I did not love the job. With a knot in my stomach–you can say I am not a fan of disappointing others–I quit the second job.
Shortly after, I was actually offered a foot-in-the-door job at the school I sub at, which is a respectable private school. This was a great opportunity. My logical side understood how blessed I was to be offered this position, yet, my emotional side was feeling pushed in a direction I did not want to go.
My heart was to be at-home, cooking and starting an at-home business. Then came lockdown, and I was able to be that stay-at-home-mom! I didn’t take courage and start a business at that time. I just savored life with my little girl and my family. I guess it takes courage to slow down, especially if you’re a busybody like me.
Well, the schoolyear came around. I wanted to be excited but in my heart, I was shrinking from the task. I thought that this was a lack of courage and followed the logic of responsibility, people-pleasing and nobility. Off to Teacherdom. This was courage!–courage to do something with the hope that it would work out.
I could teach, homeschool and entrepreneur all at once. In retrospect, this may not have been courage as I was ignoring my own feelings and overburdening myself. Quickly, I felt burnout, physical unwellness and a strained relationship with my daughter.
I had a lot of trouble deciphering whether God was stretching me or prompting me to move. People urged me not to give up. I thought if I did give up then I would be disappointing them and even God. I thought if I did give up that I would be acting honestly with what was on my heart.
Well, I mustered up every last bit of courage and left. God would take care of me. And He did. For a couple weeks, I was able to do some freelance work as I launched my first business! Thank God for its success as I sold out on my first collection.
Now, I am actually working a part-time job, again, which I am very excited about as it centers on cooking and I get more time with my girl.
Originally, I thought that 2020 would be about the COURAGE to COMMIT. It was actually about the COURAGE to QUIT. Funnily enough, quitting feels a lot like failure. These failures were pivotal in my growth. The experience moved me toward opportunities to engage in a deeper faith, creativity and connection to God’s design for my life.
Leave behind the comfort zones, people pleasing, and settling.
How did your word of the year impact you? What did you learn from 2020?