Embody Your Word of the Year

Hey Hey Bold Leaders. Welcome to episode 55 and today we are talking about something FUN. At least I think it’s fun.

I’m going to assume that MOST of you have picked a word of the year. This has become a tradition over the last decade to very hopefully pick a word that will embolden you to create change or achieve a specific feeling when the year is complete.

Today I wanted to hop in here and talk about your word of the year. I’ve intentionally picked now to talk about it because the rah rah-ness of the new year has passed. We have stopped asking everyone what their word is and you have most likely put your head down deep into the doing and perhaps you haven’t thought about your word in the last few weeks.

How to embody your word of the year and use it to create intentional change in your life

There’s not a lot of guidance out there on how to choose your word of the year Which I’m thrilled about because it absolutely is an intuitive and personal experience. And there’s not a lot of guidance out there when it comes using your word to create the change you are longing for with the exception of the advice to change all your passwords to this word. Which in fact, is a great suggestion.

However, in the absence of guidance, most people are left in limbo with their word. At first, many people try to DO their word where the set out to DO bold or DO expansion or DO joy (that makes me chuckle a little bit). When life starts life-ing and your attention to your word starts to wane, it’s easy to shelf it for a while. I mean, it’s just a word, right?

NOOOOOOOOO. You picked this word for a REASON.

Here’s the first secret to this word thing…

You can’t DO your word. You have to become your word. In that simple shift of energy, you go from gunning for the destination to preparing for a journey.

I have picked so many words over the last 8 years. Some of them have been epic flops like the time I chose the word FEARLESS only to spend an entire year deeply entrenched in fear.

Some of them have become faithful companions like the time I picked the word trust. When I picked the word trust, it challenged me to get serious about this word game. I had no basis for the word trust. It was a construct that struggled to bring to life and after overcomplicating THE WORD THING I finally understood how simple it all is.

Last year I choose the word DISCIPLINE because it triggered me. It brought up feelings of restriction, it didn’t feel like fun, it felt hard and fueled with expectations.

But here’s the thing...it’s just a word. You get to decide the energy you attach to it. Words are just words. You give them meaning. You give them a charge either negatively or positively.

So, before you go tattooing your word on you (by the way, I have absolutely done this and it works but it’s a bit permanent for most). Here are my time tested recommendations for becoming your word of the year and embodying the change you want to see:

ONE: What’s possible if you slow down and allow your word to evolve over time? To become a part of you? To become a filter for how you make decisions? To be a lens of reflection.

TWO: Look up the actual definition of the word. Sometimes words have multiple meanings and may not even mean what you think in its entirety. For example, deserve vs earned. Next, I want you to define the word in your own terms. What does it look like for you to embody this word? What will you do to embody this word? What won’t you do because it goes against what you believe about the word?

THREE: This is perhaps my very favorite thing. Write the word. Over and over and over again. I did this with the word Trust because I understood what trust meant on a logical level meaning in my head I understood trust. But I couldn’t feel trust. I couldn't’ feel it in my heart and in my body. So I wrote it. Every day. For an entire page. Until I wrote it into the fabric of my being. It felt ridiculous. It sounds silly. Most of you will chalk this up to woo woo bullshit but it works.

FOUR: Meditate on the word. Sit in silence and repeat the word.

FIVE: Add a question to your CEO Debrief to hold you accountable to embodying your word. Track your progress by asking a scaling question. For example On a scale from 1-10, how bold was I this week? What is the evidence of my boldness? What result did I get from being level 10 bold?

SIX: Use it as a filter to make decisions. Is this the boldest action I can take right now? Will this create EXPANSION in my life or business? Am I looking at this with open curiosity?

SEVEN: Share it with the people who matter most in your life. Your partner, children, friends, and team.

EIGHT: Read a book that has a theme that captures your word.

NINE: Pick a fragrance that smells like your word. Any time you can involve your senses, you create ritual and significance.

I often share lessons learned on this podcast, it’s one of my favorite things to be able to share.  I’m able to do that because of a commitment to radical self-reflection I have with myself.

This commitment means that every week I am looking at what is happening my business and in my life, the good, the bad, and the occasionally ugly. Doing that work allows me to look at my months, and even my years with real data, even for the less tangible parts of my life.

I call these weekly meetings CEO Debriefs, and twice per month inside The BRAVE Society we do them together. I pulled together some of the highlights from CEO Debriefs I’ve done inside BRAVE and I’m sharing the best of the best with you. You might have heard a couple on this podcast, but I want you to take it a step further and feel what doing this with us in BRAVE feels like.

So head to the show notes and sign up now to receive 10 CEO Debrief questions I want you to ask yourself, plus listen in on some of the most popular shares I’ve made. Listening to someone else debrief is a great way to bring up things you didn’t realize were there or ask questions you don’t always think to ask yourself.

If you have found this podcast valuable, help us develop more bold leaders in the world by sharing this episode with your friends, colleagues and other bold leaders.

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Special thanks go to Stacey Harris of Uncommonly More, she and her team are the producer and editor of this podcast. Go check them out for all your digital marketing and content creation needs.

Be sure to tune into our next episode to help you embrace your ambition and leave the grind behind.

Important links to share:

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Tara Newman