My word for the year

It’s been my practice lately to pick a word at the end of the year that will accompany me throughout the following year and will help me to focus on some aspect of my life that needs to be improved, changed or thought over. I can tell you that it’s quite interesting to watch how this practice evolves and how these words come to me.

You can read about my previous experience here, for this year the scheme hasn’t changed. A few days before Christmas I was driving on my way to work and paying attention to the traffic when suddenly a photo appeared in front of my mind’s eye. It was a photo I took last year when I was trying to fulfil a task from a course focused on still life photography, a task asking us to add “human touch” to our still life photos.

I saw the photo in my mind and “heard” the word EMBRACE and I knew right away it was my word for 2017. I need to embrace who I am and who I am not and that says it all. Hugging a ladder and embracing my personality seems a funny connection but the message got deep, I felt it to the core. For me it is a difficult word to accept, a painful challenge to face, I’m sure it will stay with me till the end of my days.

We are often our own worst enemies and place unnecessary obstacles in our own path. It would be fair to add that we usually place them subconsciously but anyway, they don’t have to be there forever, many of them could be moved if we cared to strain. Life would be easier then. So I welcome this new word to join those that stay from the previous years. Humour – Persistence – Gratitude. They are all powerful in their own way.

Do you pick your word for the year? Do you find the practice enriching? I would be pleased to hear.



  1. No, I don’t pick a word for the year, Petra, but I do pick a short sentence that I add to my email signature. My new sentence is “The only recognizable feature of hope is action.” ― Grace Paley. With all the uncertainties of the new Trump Presidency, it seemed appropriate.

    I do like the word “embrace.” I rank it up there with another word, “cherish.” 🙂

    1. I like your practice of picking a quote or thought to be added to your email signature, Ginnie. I had to think about the one you’ve mentioned for a while, it goes deep. It resonates with what Robin expressed in her latest post about being active and hoping for better…

      “Cherish” sounds like holding the crossbar a few inches higher than “embrace” but I agree with you, the words are connected in a way… 🙂

  2. Wonderful that this portrait inspired you. It is now inspiration in a new way.
    I feel that a word as a companion is an amazing thing to do. Often they offer insight we could not have imagined when we chose it.

    I also have chosen words, some seem to touch my life more fully than others.
    Thank you for your lovely message.

  3. You picked a great word! Embracing ourselves is sometimes a hard thing to do. I love that you included not only embracing who you are but also who you are not, very wise words. 🙂 I chose ‘focus’ as my word. I want to focus on what is important to me this year. I haven’t wrote a blog post yet on it, but hopefully I will get there soon. Have a great day!

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