Posts tagged ‘one word’

December 31, 2011

2011 review :: One Little Word

My one big goal for 2011 was One Little Word


You’ll see from the lack of entries on this blog that I totally failed in documenting that goal. For over half the year I also believed I had failed in achieving that goal. And then something interesting occurred: I put some thought to the happenings of the past 12 months – to the daily moments, the small celebrations, the big epiphanies – and I realized that 2011 had not been a year of failure after all. In fact, even today there are visual reminders of success. I almost missed it because it didn’t look anything like I expected it would look.

When I chose the word HEALTHY in January, I hoped that twelve months would bring a significant weight loss, a habit of fresh foods, a joy of home cooking, and a pattern of regular sleep. I expected to feel more energy, less sickly all the time. I expected to need an entirely new wardrobe. None of those things occurred. Hence, my assumption that 2011 was a failure in the area of goals. I also wanted to embrace creativity in a larger way, to focus on personal art projects that brought a renewed health to my mind and my spirit. Again, I determined that this goal ended in failure because much of my year was spent in front of a laptop with the television droning in the background. Sometimes 24/7. Definitely not healthy. No matter what I may have been “watching.” With those things in mind, I declared 2011 a resolution FAIL. And vowed to make 2012 “the year.” But then I came to a realization…

It all began with a pair of jeans. Jeans that, last year, did not fit comfortably during the first hour of wear because they were simply too snug in the waist when freshly laundered. This year, when the weather finally turned almost cool, I pulled on those jeans and found room to spare. At first I believed they must had been worn and placed back in the closet unwashed. I rarely do that, but perhaps this one time? I wore the jeans all day and found them to be far too loose for my taste. Baggy in weird places. Still I didn’t think much of it… until I wore a different pair a week or so later. And those were just as loose on first wear. Freshly laundered but looser than ever. Suddenly I realized! I had kept off enough weight to make my clothes fit loosely! And my thoughts turned to the summer and another moment of success.

While visiting my parents in July I stepped onto the scale after a shower one day and saw that I weighed 30 pounds less than the last time I’d weighed, sometime during the past 6 months. Thirty pounds! And I’d not been on the Healthy wagon for four months by this time! But in those four months of neglect and passivity toward my yearly goal I had still managed to keep 30 pounds at bay. That was clearly a success! I held onto that Win throughout the remainder of the year, but until I encountered the results in my clothing I still did not treat it as a completion of my resolution. After all, I still wasn’t sleeping properly and I still didn’t see much difference in the mirror. I also wasn’t eating properly. No, not at all. The old habits were ever-present, with fast food my most frequent menu. Yet, in the midst of all those bad habits, I’d remained thirty pounds lighter than before. Thinking back on this while analyzing my looser jeans, I could not deny that I had made some headway on this goal of HEALTHY.

Nearing the holidays I mentioned all of this to my mother. I still couldn’t believe my clothes were telling a different story than my mind, but she agreed that I had made some progress this year. She hadn’t noticed the clothes – I’m a plus-size girl with a tendency for ill-fitting clothing, so that did not surprise – but she pointed out that I seemed to be healthier than I’d been in a very long time. There seemed to be fewer stomach issues (which I’d had for over a decade), and I’d been more joyful this year than other times. And despite my irregular sleeping patterns, I had, in fact, been able to go to sleep and sleep more restfully than the past few years. At least, she noted, I was able to get to sleep when I went to bed rather than lying awake for hours before drifting off. That itself counted for a lot on this road to Healthy. I had to agree.

In the end, I’m not where I imagined I’d be by December 31, 2011, but I’m further along than ever. And that encourages me and motivates me to continue on this path. While I have chosen a new word for 2012, I will continue to hold onto HEALTHY, as well. That period at the end of the word up there? That will remain in the front of my mind. I want Healthy to be a lifestyle. I want it to be a pattern and a habit of my days. I want the fast food to become a treat, and I want my kitchen to be a place of joy. As far as it will, of course, for a girl who truly despises the act of meal preparation. Simply put, I want to be HEALTHY… period. And this year was a decent start.

I’ll be back this week with my goals and resolution for 2012. It’s my favorite One Word yet!

One Little Word is a yearly challenge issued by Ali Edwards. I also (kind of) participated in the One Word community at Grit and Glory this year. Perhaps you’ll join me in the new year!

February 3, 2010

one word: heart

Today’s One Word post is special because I share it with my friend Cerella D. Sechrist, who is posting her own take on the same word over at my pop culture blog. The word is her own choice as we determined to do a Valentine-type focus, but in the end we couldn’t bring ourselves to write in a traditional sense about such a traditional topic. Take some time to stop by and read Cerella’s take. And enter the giveaway over there by commenting on your own Word. But first, this week’s challenge to write One Word…
The usual imagery associated with “heart”, especially around this time of year, is something pretty, sweet, romantic. But I’ve never been that kind of girl. When it comes to Valentine’s Day, though, I do enjoy sharing my heart with others, just not in the typical sense. I’ve never been in a romantic relationship during this season, so I have always focused my attentions on the people who are constant in my life. My heart remains fixed on them all throughout the year, and so Valentine’s Day is just one more day to remind them of that love. And while that is the true nature of the day anyway, it’s not what most people end up doing. The commercial aspect has overshadowed the sentiment. But I grasp that sentiment and hold onto it tightly. My family and my friends are the focus, but words will be the main gift I give them. My heart is constantly filled with emotions that very few words can adequately express, yet I’ve come to learn that these few words mean the most anyway.
Jesus told us that where our treasure lay, our hearts will be. I want my heart to lie with the people I love. I want them to know that they are my treasure. This can’t happen during a single day in February. My heart must be full of them at all times. I’m thankful that I know the God who teaches us all how to love. And I’m thankful that His heart is big enough to forgive me when I fail. Without the example of a loving God, my own heart would have no hope at all. Yet it is because I do have His example that my heart is constantly bursting with more love than I know what to do with. I’m grateful that my life is filled with people who understand that about me and have turned their hearts toward me, as well. Every day of the year.

This post was derived from the list of inspiration words gathered on Ali Edwards’s blog and from the concept of writing about one word.

January 27, 2010

one word: more



I’ve mentioned here before how much I love bright, shiny things and how tempted I am to make impulse purchases and spend far too much — even when spending for a valid reason or good cause. It is my nature to want and to do more. I’m the first to tell you that I have an obsessive personality. Just enough is just not enough. It’s too little. I work to perfection, I overdo almost everything, and I’m always thinking about what else there can be rather than settling into what already is. I’m the kind of person who can easily miss what’s right in front of her. And I often do. It’s not easy for me to be still and just live in the richness of the moment. But God is always at work in me.
During the past year I’ve become deliberate in how I view the world around me. I’ve taken time to unplug from the busyness, and I’ve challenged myself with a daily project designed to turn my focus outward and see all the beauty that exists around me. I’m learning to appreciate the moments of each day. And I’m learning to make do with what I have right now. I’m still obsessive and still have an addiction to “want,” but God is helping me channel those traits into more productive outlets. For now, that’s enough.

This post was derived from the list of inspiration words gathered on Ali Edwards’s blog and from the concept of writing about one word.

January 20, 2010

one word: thrive

My heart of hearts longs to soar, to do all the things I’ve ever dreamed of doing. My mind tends to get in the way, telling me that I “can’t” or I “shouldn’t” or “not just yet.” It’s been a lifelong struggle between my creative, passionate heart and my logical, fearful intellect. And yet I still long to soar. To thrive. To be more than I ever dreamed I could be and all that I’ve ever wanted to be. I want to do more, say more, dream more, and I want to find the fulfillment that has often been lacking in my life.
I love the word “vigorously” in the definition of thrive. It reminds me that there is action involved. I will never achieve a level of satisfaction without stepping out and pursuing it. It’s not enough to stand still and “grow”; I must develop vigorously. Only then will I achieve all that my heart desires. Only then will I understand what it means to thrive.

This post was derived from the list of inspiration words gathered on Ali Edwards’s blog and from the concept of writing about one word.