Unfading Beauty and Strength

Christian Encouragement and Practical Tips for Ordinary Women

Words have power! Choose Your Word of the Year!

A Reflection of My Year and My Word for the Year Ahead

Inside: 6 Practical Ways to focus on a word of the year

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The word of the year concept is a little new to me. I don’t historically make resolutions and goals, but as I am delving further into my life and business, I’m realizing the necessity.

Every good goal has a plan. It doesn’t mean you are always going to meet your goal or even keep the same goal. However, even if I only meet a quarter of my goals, then I would consider any progress better than no progress.

Even though I hate clichés, January is naturally a time of reflection. It is hard not to get wrapped up into the hype of the new year and all the plans that are being made around you. Everybody seems to have a renewed attitude that this year will be different.

Though I did not write about it, last year I did choose the word, “Completion”. I wanted to do the things I kept saying I wanted to do and I wanted to start dreaming and following through on my dreams. I did not actually even make goals until the summer of 2019.

Nothing happens unless first we dream.

Carl Sandburg

Focusing on the Negative:

When I look back on my year, I did accomplish quite a bit and started pursuing the things I’ve been talking about forever. Any progress is success, even if that success is not coming as fast as I would like.

I tend to look at my day and see the glass half empty. I see the mountain of laundry still on my couch, the full sink, clutter left cluttered, and I think to myself, “What did I do today?” I often forget that I played with my son, finished a post, folded one mountain, and went to the store, and cooked dinner.

My Completions:

The word completion is perhaps incomplete. The word, “Complete” assumes that I am finished, but do you ever really complete a dream? The power lies in pursuing more than completion.

“You should be far more concerned with your current trajectory than with your current results.”

James Clear, Atomic Habits

While nowhere near where I want to be, I am proud of my “trajectories” and the grace given to me to pursue them.

  • I have been consistent on my blog weekly since May.
  • Last year, I finally got a new job. (Technically this was late 2018) I had been saying I needed a new job for years.
  • I resumed a blogging course I purchased a few years ago. (I am embarrassed at how many years ago it was!)
  • I have consistently stuck to an early morning routine since the fall. I credit the reading of The Miracle Morning, by Hal Elrod, as being the final catalyst that spurred this action.
  • Since starting my 2019 reading challenge in September, I finally started to make a dent in my want to read list. Follow me on Goodreads to see what I am reading. In 2020 I have set the goal to read 50 books! I am so excited!

My Biggest Struggle:

As stated above, I tend to look at the glass half empty. One of my biggest struggles is getting too caught up in my lists and to dos. So much so that I forget to just enjoy life. I forget to laugh at myself. I forget to dance and just be with the ones I love.

I may have accomplished a great deal, but I do not remember enjoying it all. When I look back on my life, not only do I want to pursue my dreams and passions, but I want to say that I enjoyed the journey.

New Year, New Word: Delight

Since last year marked the beginning of finally learning to establish good habits, I decided, after much reflection, my word for the year 2020 will be DELIGHT.

The dictionary defines the word, delight, as “great pleasure”.

Growing up in a conservative Christian home, I was taught certain rules and principles and and strict how to’s. While it can be argued that there can be freedom in rules and schedules, one thing that was missing in my life, was to truly just delight.

May we find the reason behind the rules, and delight in them if they are well-founded, but not be afraid to break the rules if they are not.

Some rules are meant to be broken.

So this year, I will delight, and I will take great pleasure in all things.

Delight in my family. Delight in God. Delight in life.

Sometimes, we think we have to have it all right all the time, and have all the boxes checked off before we can enjoy life.

But life is meant to be enjoyed in the everyday moments.

If it’s rest we need to live fully, it’s the minutes we must enjoy, for those are when God shows up.

Bekah Jane Pogue, Choosing Real

Too Much Joy:

2018 my year was marked with the word, “Joy”.

You might say, why are you choosing the word “Delight”? While, joy and delight do go hand in hand, but can we really have too much joy or delight?

Delight to me is more about enjoying life to the fullest, while joy is about attitude in spite of life circumstances. Certainly when we have joy we can delight in what’s around us, but in the same way, when stop to delight in our lives, we can see the joy set before us.

Oh, the joy set before us!

It is fantastic! From the sunsets and sunrises, from the incessant talking of my little four year old man, from the powerful and passionate hugs and embraces from my six year old spitfire of a daughter. From the love and support of a husband who adores me. How can I fail to delight?

Yet I do, I still struggle. I focus on the discipline and the honey do lists and the selfishness of my time, instead of delighting and knowing that all time belongs to God first.

He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.

Colossians 1:17, NIV

A Prayer of Delight

Lord, help me delight in your ways, for you go before all ways. Help me to enjoy the gifts you have given me and to ask for things in prayer and thanksgiving. For you God, are a God who enjoys giving good gifts to his children and you will never leave me nor forsake me.

Oh, help me enjoy the life you have set before me, for there will never again be such a time as this.

Plan of Action

Be it as I am a practical Martha, I need more then a word. I need a plan on how I can make my word a daily part of my life.

How do we take a word and make it our own and truly make finding the word of the year an important part of the year, not just merely a word. (And if you have not found a word, don’t worry, we don’t all have to follow the same path. Remember, as fellow blogger, Stacey Pardoe stated so eloquently, the only word you really need is the Word.

If you are like me, and you want a practical plan/steps to take for your word of the year, consider adding the following into your habit routine. (Speaking of routine, have you read Atomic Habits? I have a hard time following through on well, anything, and this book is full of practical steps for actually making a habit, a habit.)

The Practical Stuff

1. Daily Affirmations:

I will choose to enjoy today and delight in the ordinary. (I say my affirmations in the morning, preferably before my little dragons wake.)

2. Memory verses: Not just for your kids

I plan to memorize the verses below.

Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires.

Psalms 37:4

But they delight in the law of the Lord, meditating on it day and night.

Psalms 1:2

The Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their day.

Psalms 37:23

3. Choose a Song for the Year:

The song I am choosing will be the Old Church Choir by Zach Williams. I absolutely LOVE this song! This song makes me dance and smile and laugh and DELIGHT, all at the same time. It makes me want to stop what I am doing and just dance and delight in the almighty power of God!

Maybe I’ll just start every morning like that. That will wake the kids up!

4. Find out what delights those around me and give.

Giving is receiving. I do not just mean money. We can give in so many different ways. Check out the following posts for some more ideas on giving: 10 Unique Ways to Spread Kindness or 10 Simple Ways to Practice Hospitality

5. Find inspirational items to remind you of your word.

What we surround ourselves with helps us fill our minds with good things. I plan to surround myself with things that give me delight and joy!

I love a good painting or decorative sign, and I enjoy my daily Seize the Day Calendar! I also love a good inspirational mug!

See below for more links to things that bring me delight! (P.S. Some of these links, I may get a small commission for at no cost to you, other links I just think you might love!)

Etsy has some great customizable options for anything your heart desires, from bracelets to customizable signs, inspirational prints to instant downloads. The sky’s the limit. And as an added bonus, you’re supporting others who are pursuing their dreams!

6. Finally, Expect struggles.

Whenever you try to pursue something good, the enemy is always there ready to pounce. Be aware, while God delights in giving us good gifts, Satan does not want us to delight in our Lord. He only wants your delight and love for the world. He is a liar and he will make you believe you cannot enjoy the life God has given you.

So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him.

Matthew 7:11 (NIV)

Whatever word you choose, I hope these tips will help you keep that focus, and remember the only word you really need is “The Word”. While goals and words and plans are good, there is only one true compass to light the way.

Do you have any tips for staying focused throughout the year? I would love to hear from you! Comment below!

Thanks for reading, as always! Sharing is Caring!

This page may contain advertisements or affiliates, which may allow me to take home a small amount of income at no additional cost to you. For more information, go here.

You may also enjoy:

Can We Have Eternal Joy? Inspiration from a Southern Snow Day (unfadingbeautyandstrength.com)

10 Bible Verses for When You Want to Give Up (Free Printable) (unfadingbeautyandstrength.com)

7 Encouraging and Authentic Examples of New Years Goals (unfadingbeautyandstrength.com)

Encouragement to Persist With Your Word of the Year (unfadingbeautyandstrength.com)

7 thoughts on “6 Delightful Ways to Focus on Your Word of the Year

  1. Delight is such an awesome word. It was my word for 2018. Pressing closer into God and delighting in Him helped change my relationship with Him. He Himself has become my greatest joy reward and not just what He can do for me! Blessings on your year ahead with Jesus, it is going to be so awesome for you!

  2. I love how you share you thoughts on your word from last year. We see a lot of people share their word for the year, but I haven’t seen many share their thoughts about word they chose for previous year. “Delight” is a great word!!!

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