Friday, January 3, 2014

Words for 2014

Two years ago I came  across a habit created by Chris Brogan and picked up by most of the people in the media and marketing industry I most respect, like Mitch Joel and Christopher Penn. At the turn of the calendar, rather than making resolutions, you pick three words that will help guide your entire year. It's not concrete goals, I feel like it's more an invitation for something to happen.

On that first year I only heard about it when people started posting their words. I loved the idea, but felt I didn't have enough time to put thought into words for my year. Many people start thinking about them a week before the new year, some even earlier in the month.

Last year I decided to try, but mostly I could only come up with one word. Maybe I wasn't ready yet, or maybe that one word Read was so important to me I wanted to focus on it.

This year I have three words.


I love C.C. Chapman's book Amazing Things Will Happen. I've seen him speak and he talks about how important it is to consume content. I love his assurance, but I feel like I've done nothing but consume for the last 3 years. I know that's not entirely true, but the rate that I consume is way more than necessary. It's time for me to switch my focus to creating.

I had decided that Create was one of my words for 2014 before the holidays and was already planning for some ways to do that when I found the 30 Day Challenge. And so this is the beginning of my creations for this year.

But writing isn't the only way I hope to create this year. I also want to create more videos and a podcast, and while I've always been pretty quick to pull out my phone and snap a picture I want to be more purposeful with my pictures and learn more editing skills.


Why break a streak? Last year I vowed to read more, which seems counter to my previous word about consuming less content but I still maintain that reading blog posts and articles, even white papers and e-books is not the same as a full book.

About halfway through last year I realized that Goodreads has a reading challenge as part of their app,
so I set a goal for myself to read 25 books before the end of the year. I didn't challenge myself too much, I was already just over halfway through my goal and felt pretty sure it was manageable. But by the beginning of December it was looking tough, I was still 4 books behind. I changed tactics and read a number of graphic novels I've had kicking around and managed to just squeak through the year with all 25 books read.

This year, I am definitely challenging myself. I've chosen to set a goal of 30 books


This one I struggled with. I struggled with being able to find a word that described a feeling I've been having.

Since 2005 I have been pretty transient with my living situation. I lived with family for about 3 years, I lived with a bunch of friends for a few years, and now, I live in a small basement apartment with a lifetime's worth of stuff I can't seem to get rid of. Not only that, I have a man in my life who has his own place which means I sometimes live out of a bag.

I had a hard time choosing this word because it started as a clear goal with no deviation. I want to live in a shared space with my man. And while that is certainly the best outcome I can think of, it's certainly not the only one, and it's also not something that is completely in my control.

The feeling that I have is that I want to be able to be settled. I want to put things up on my walls. I want to have anything I'm keeping in storage actually, you  know, in storage, not in the way. I want to be able to invite people to my place and not apologize for anything.

I don't know what that looks like, I don't know where that will be, I don't know who else might be there, but I want to make a home for myself.

Create. Read. Home.

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