Friday, January 8

three words for 2010

Happy New Year! Twenty-ten. Wow!

Below is my reminder note of the three words I picked for 2010…


(fonts used: Home Remedy, Amanda’s Hand, Sketchy Times)

To back up a bit, last year around this time, rather than writing down New Year’s Resolutions, I got the idea from this post by Chris Brogan to pick three words for the year. It’s a very interesting article; in a nutshell (in Chris’s words):

If you want to try the process, it works something like this: think of how you want to be successful in 2009. Then, try to think in even broader terms. Extrapolate on the broader terms, and find one word to hang the idea on.

You do that three times, and end up with three words to guide you throughout the year as you make goals, choices, etc. And I liked last year’s experiment so much, I’m trying it again this year.

My three words for 2010: Struktur. Spontan. Schenken.

Or in English: Structure. Spontaneous. Give. As Chris points out, the words don’t need to make sense to anyone but the person who picked them. But I do love hearing a bit of the reasoning behind his words (like his 2010 ones here). So here are some of the thoughts behind mine…

Structure: I have some dreams for this year, but they won’t happen without some structure in my life. And since I’m not that way by nature yet I see its importance, I figured I’d put that as my foundational word.

But then I didn’t want to totally dread the year ahead, so I added: spontaneous. And loved that choice even more after I looked it up!After reading various meanings, this word turned into more than just “spur of the moment” as in “Hey girls, let’s go have our lunch at the park today!” To me, it now also signifies acting in a way that’s consistent with my “internal forces.” Staying dialed in with who I am on the inside to the point where it regularly gurgles up naturally, spontaneously, to the outside.

At this point, I switched to German because I was already starting to think about what these words would look like on my little reminder notes and realized “spontaneous” is about 40% shorter in German! (What?!? When is a German word ever shorter?!?) “Spontan” would fit so much nicer… Plus it could be a reminder to talk more German this year.

Lastly, schenken (or give): At a basic level, this touches on wanting to declutter my home some more and give the extra stuff away. But it also goes deeper, acting as a challenge to take a broader view of the world, to remember the many who are lacking access to education, medical help, not to mention the basics of shelter and food, and to give of my “wealth”. And deeper still, to be mindful of my ever-present pride and to choose instead live unselfishlessly, others-focused; to give of myself, to my family, friends, and more.

The fact that they all start with “s” makes me happy. The fact that one is a noun, one is an adjective, and one is a verb makes me crazy! But perhaps I can learn to loosen up on the inconsequential details this year… Or perhaps not.  I already got a lot to do in one year! : )

Last night, I finally popped the words into Paint Shop Pro, resulting in the picture at top. Next on the to-do list: print out a couple, paste ‘em up here and there… and let ‘em guide my year!

You got words?


  1. I picked five words for 2010:

    They don't go together as neatly as yours do (in German), though. BTW, I think the fonts you picked match the meanings of the words beautifully.

    Happy New Year!

  2. Love your 5 words, MaryAnne! And I've been so inspired by the monthly goals you set and share on your blog each month. Thanks for your note -- glad you liked the font choices. It was fun looking for just the "right" ones... : )

  3. I can have those words cut in vinyl...if you want them on your wall???? Let me know, K.

  4. that is a GREAT idea jenny!! I think I'll hold off til after I paint some of my walls (why did i decided to spackle all the old anchor holes, dents, etc in the dead of winter?!?) this spring, eh?



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