How are your new year resolutions going? Remember them? Personally I am not a great fan of resolutions – they are too restrictive, too easy to “fail” at. Which is why I loved the concept of a One Little Word to guide me through the year. And this year, my word is “Grace”.
“A thought that changed the World… Grace finds beauty in everything” – U2 (“Grace”)
So what is a One Little Word? Scrapbooking maestro Ali Edwards first started choosing an annual One Little Word back in 2006, to help focus and guide her through her year. You can read more about it here. (Didn’t know there was such a thing as a “scrapbooking maestro”? You will love Ali’s website and work!) I love that such a small thing, essentially a selection of letters on a page or sounds on the tongue, can have so much power.
Last year was the first time I chose a word – and it was “Choose” itself. Towards the end of 2014 I was feeling increasingly overwhelmed with all the roles and responsibilities that made up “Me”. Throw in all the things I wanted to be able to do, my plans and my dreams, and I was getting frustrated. Until one day I saw this great little quote on Instagram: “You don’t need more time – you just have to decide”. Wow! So simple but something I had forgotten amongst the to-do lists and deadlines of my day-to-day. So “Choose” became my mantra for 2015. Stop worrying about all the choices. Weigh up the options. Pick one. Put your heart into it. Repeat. And to a certain extent it worked. Enough at least to encourage me to end 2015 by choosing a new OLW.
I chose “Grace” for a number of reasons. After a pretty rough end to 2015 (including broken bones, bruised spirit, cluttered house, crammed diary, a generally more dishevelled me than the one that started 2015 so positively), I started thinking that I needed to give myself a bit more grace. To find the good in everything, look at the sunny side. As I was driving to work one morning, mulling over what I wanted 2016 to look like, I found myself listening to U2’s song “Grace”. The lyrics were speaking to me, and from there, I started to jot down definitions, usage, quotes… and the more I found, the more I realised that “Grace” was shaping up to be my 2016 OLW.
- “a quality of moving in a smooth, relaxed, and attractive way”
- “a willingness to be fair and honest”
- “a period of time left or allowed before something happens or before something must be done”
I’ve read many times that your One Little Word chooses you. I’m not sure about that, but I do know that since adopting “Grace”, I am finding it everywhere, and it speaks to me in the most random of places. To me Grace means patience, slowing down, seeking the good in everything, recognising beauty in the every day, effortless control, elegance, changing the world bit by tiny little bit, from right where you are.
This year I have had the courage to share it with others too, and the response has been supportive, engaged and inspiring. People are sharing their interpretations of the word “Grace” with me, sending me photos they have seen, song lyrics that resonate around the word. (OK, so my husband laughed at first – physically I know I am the opposite of graceful – but once I explained it he was totally on board!). It is not lost on me that other people are beginning to find the beauty in the word, and grace seems to be spreading through my own little world already. This is definitely going to be my word. My year. How lucky am I to have found the right word so effortlessly. (Gracefully even?!)
I was also lucky to have found the incredibly talented Olivia at Random Olive who wrote my beautiful script for me. I highly recommend taking a look at her work – you’ll love it!
Do you have a One Little Word this year? It’s not too late to consider one. What is it?