Here we are, the start of a new year. All freshly minted. Smelling like blank pages, freshly sharpened pencils, ready to rock and roll. And you know what that means…time for a new word.
If you've been following me for a while you know that each January I choose a word to serve as my focus for the next 12 months. I've been doing this since 2014. Previous words have been, Inspire, Change, Balance, Focus, Mindfulness, and last year's word, Simple.
It turns out last year was anything BUT simple. However knowing that this was my word, and having it on my inspiration board, meant that when I was evaluating things, or trying to bring order into chaotic situations, my uppermost thought was how to achieve that ideal of simplicity.
I like to encourage my friends and readers to pick a word as well and I love hearing about their word, what it means to them, and how they anticipate it will support them in the coming year.
Like previous years, the task of choosing a word is an important one. Not something I take lightly. I need to mull over the choices that seem to call to me until eventually settling on one that feels just right. Every year I find myself surprised at how the word somehow seems to find me. It's never a flippant or lightly chosen one, but one that I've truly searched for.
The word I've chosen for this year is Authentic – [ aw-then-tik ] – adjective
- not false or copied; genuine; real:an authentic antique.
- having an origin supported by unquestionable evidence; authenticated; verified:an authentic document of the Middle Ages; an authentic work of the old master.
- representing one’s true nature or beliefs; true to oneself or to the person identified:a story told in the authentic voice of a Midwestern farmer; a senator’s speech that sounded authentic.
- entitled to acceptance or belief because of agreement with known facts or experience; reliable; trustworthy:an authentic report on poverty in Africa.
I think we could all use more authenticity in our lives. I like to think I am authentic, genuine, firm in my beliefs or core values, as well as reliable and trustworthy. I choose this word, not because I feel I’m not any of those things, but to encourage me to be even more focused on what authenticity means.
In one way it means learning to speak up more firmly for what I believe in. But I also chose this because I see this path, this journey of focusing on authenticity as a means of helping me to winnow through some of the chaff that surrounds me. To look at those situations and settings and measure them against that yardstick of authenticity. And lastly, but certainly not least, to highlight my desire to be and be seen as reliable and trustworthy.
It's a pretty tall order. Only time will tell if I'm successful, but I'm looking forward to the adventures that 2020 will bring my way.
If you've chosen a word for the year share yours below. I really do want to know.