Since 2016, I have selected a word of the year: a word to motivate, inspire and guide me in the months ahead. As I’ve shared before, I collect my words throughout the year, and see what speaks to me as I head into the autumn months. Sometimes I choose a word that has shown up significantly, repeatedly, or that has taken on new meaning. Other times I select my word as a reminder of something I would like to build within myself, or make room for within my life. And occasionally I simply pick a word that makes me smile!
This time around, as I approach the 10 year anniversary of Gain Your Edge Coaching, I’ve chosen a word that is at the core of how I want to live my life, run my business, and interact with the world.
Simply put, I love my life, my work, and the people in it. I want to lead from a place of love. I want to look for love in others, assume good intentions, and hold space for the empathy, understanding and openness that comes with it. I want to choose love over judgement…of myself and others. I want to choose to love my life as it is, with all its imperfections. I want love to motivate my decisions, and be the lens through which I view the world.
Having said all that - and at the danger of disagreeing with the Beatles - I don’t believe that Love is all you need. Pursuing a job you love doesn’t make the work easy: they call it a ‘labour of love’ for a reason! It can, however, be an incredible motivator, and a source of comfort and connection. Loving others doesn’t mean you’ll always like their behaviour or agree with their decisions. And loving yourself doesn’t give you a free pass to avoid introspection and reflection.
Love is hard work.
And it’s so worth it.
“Love” has been on my shortlist for Word of the Year many times. And if I’m being honest, I was hesitant to choose it, despite wanting to. I worried it was too ‘soft’, or not corporate enough. It felt like a vulnerable choice, and so often vulnerability is seen as a weakness in our society. Yet I believe that living a life that is honest, authentic and fulfilling requires moments of vulnerability…even (or especially) if it’s difficult.
Love - like all the best things in life - takes courage.
So as I look forward to the start of this new year, and the next chapter for my business, I intend to love bravely and boldly. And I hope you'll join me.
Find YOUR Word of the Year!
Curate a long list of words, then live with them. See how they make you feel, what they make you think of...what they bring up for you. Cull that into a short list of three or so options. Then reflect on those and choose your word for 2023!