Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

December 28, 2009

One Little Word 2010

I am a fan of welcoming the new year with open arms. I love fresh starts, new opportunities, clean slates, possibilities.

Back in January 2007, as a way to celebrate these beginnings, I started a public tradition of choosing a single word to focus on over the course of the year.

Many of you are familiar with this tradition and have been joining me in selecting a new word each year. If this is your first time reading about the idea of one little word I recommend taking a few minutes to read my original post here.

Here’s a look at my words from the past three years with links to the original posts.

2007 : Peace [ read my post for 2007 ]
2008 : Vitality [ read my post for 2008 ]
2009 : Nurture [ read my post for 2009 ]

Essentially the idea is to choose a word (or let it choose you) that has the potential to make an impact on your life.

Maybe you want to invite something or maybe you are hoping to subtract something. Maybe your word will be practical or hopeful or creative or fanciful. Maybe you need a big word, something in-your-face that will challenge you everyday. Maybe you need something smaller and quieter that will whisper gentle tidings as you make your way throughout the year.

Whatever word you end up with, make sure it is your word (not your sister’s, mom’s, partner’s, child’s, etc). You can share it publicly or keep it close to your heart.

My word for 2010 is STORY.

I’m planning to do a post with more details on my thoughts about this word on Wednesday (look for the finishing pages of my December Daily tomorrow). I am hoping to use my word as a springboard for a variety of different projects and inspirations, in my life and my scrapbooking, over the next 365 days.

Have you chosen your word yet?


  • 51.
    Kathryn Johnson said…

    My word for 2010 is HEALTH. 2009 has been an awful year of sickness & health problems for myself and my family. The only lesson I can take from this is that I need to focus on taking better care of myself and make the well being of my family my first priority this year.

  • 52.
    Lynn said…

    My word last year was Silence. But I didn’t do so good. It’s hard for me to keep my mouth shut. This year I am trying the word Change. I have picked a friend who’ll use it too as we help keep each-other attuned to our word. I’d like to change myself for the better, in many areas. Happy 2010 to all your friends and readers Ali and to you and your family.

  • 53.
    Randa Pospisil said…

    Unclutter… life, my home, my brain :)

  • 54.
    Sarah said…

    My word for 2010 is thankful. In spite of all the things I dislike about my life, I have a lot to be thankful for and this will remind me, no matter how bad I am feeling, I have great family and friends and I should be thankful for them.

  • 55.
    Jen Vogt said…

    I hope you had a fantastic holiday, Ali!
    My word for 2010 is CREATE. So much of my life is about planning, that this year I want to focus my energy on putting those plans into action and creating throughout my life. I plan to create a business. Scrapbook. Photograph. Get pregnant. I want to take the inspiration that fills my life and make something of it.
    Wishing you and your family all the best in 2010! I can’t wait to read all about your stories :)

  • 56.
    Hashi said…

    My 2009 word was FEED, and boy did I feed a multitude! For 2010 it’s MOVE. I want to get out of the kitchen and into the big outdoors, and MOVE my body!

  • 57.
    Wendy said…

    This is my first year choosing a word and what a wonderful idea! My word for this year is COMMITMENT. I want to commit myself to doing more with and for my children, be a support for my husband, be there for my friends–someone they can trust. Commitment to my responsibilities as a wife, a mother, a friend, and to my own self and my goals.

  • 58.
    Lori said…

    My word this year is acceptance!
    The past three months have been the most difficult of my life. Major life changes when brought on by someone else are very hard to accept. This year will be my year to learn how to accept these changes and learn how to live my life and raise my daughter on my own. I have a long road ahead but with acceptance I hope for a positive future.

  • 59.
    Deirdre said…

    My two best friends and I always share our word for the new year and touch on them throughout the year—thank you so much for this tradition, Ali!
    My word for 2010 is ATTEND.
    I’m excited about being extra aware of where I place my attention, of attending to the things I care most about and having an amazing year.

  • 60.
    shelley said…

    Trying to choose between ENGAGE and PURPOSE,so I may have two words this year. Want to dream big and discover this year. Make some goals and achieve them. And determine the really important things and be present. Be more of a participant in life. Can hardly wait!

  • 61.
    Debby Lewis said…

    2007 was Faithful
    2008 was Trustworthy
    2009 was Grateful
    2010 is Determined
    I’ve set projects and goals for myself this year and I want to explore my own determination, not subborness, in acheiving these goals. I will explore examples around me of people who have been “determined” in their lives and achieved the unexpected.

  • 62.
    Donna said…

    BRING (IT)
    BRING on a new year and all of the possibilities that it holds. I’m ready.

  • 63.
    Jo said…

    What a fabulous idea Ali. Nurture was the perfect word for you to pick for 2009. Must have a think. The way things are shaping up I think 2010 will be a year when myself and my family will be tested. i think having a word to help keep things in focus will be very helpful. Jo x

  • 64.
    Shawna said…

    P L A Y ;)

  • 65.
    Nina Douglas said…

    This is my fourth year of OLW too. I’ve had Happiness, Be and Appreciate, and all of them have really helped me throughout each year. Next year I am making an exciting trip to Australia for my brother’s wedding and visiting Singapore and Hong Kong en route. So my word for 2010 is taken from this – EXPLORE. Not only exploring in a travel sense, although I intend to see more of my home land next year too, but to explore myself and the opportunities available to me.
    Happy New Year to you and your family, Ali, and I look forward to another year of your STORY!

  • 66.
    Rose said…

    My word is positivity. I find I am negative so much of the time, without even meaning to, so I think a little positivity in my life would be a good thing!

  • 67.
    Tennille Anderson said…

    My word for 2009 was contentment. Actually I used the Zulu word for it, Dela.
    I have 2 words for 2010… I’m not sure how or if I’m going to combine them but they are HUMBLE, SERVICE and DISCIPLINE. Discipline sounds a little harsh but I’m working off weight so I can start trying for our second baby next year so discipline will be appropriate for what will happen to get that weight off.
    Ali, thanks for reminding me that I need to post these words on our own blog.

  • 68.
    Tennille Anderson said…

    that was 3 words….

  • 69.
    Carrie P said…

    My word is going to be TRUST. God has been so good to our family, and now as our boys are men moving on and out of our home I need to trust God for their spiritual and physical care as well as my husband and I’s financial needs as we help finance their moves.

  • 70.
    patti said…

    JOY! Two of my three kids got “Joyfulness” awards at school last month and it got me thinking that I am lacking a lot of joy in my life. Not that it has to be given to me, but joy is something that I should choose and seek out in everyday life just like my kids do. I will be JOYFUL in all things!

  • 71.
    Jeanna GT said…

    PERSEVERE. I think alot of us don’t realize how sometimes we simply truck on through life. For the past 2 years I have been doing this and finally have to admit that I have persevered. I need to continue on. I am ready for 2010.
    Thanks, Ali, for always having inspiring words and thoughts. Happy New Year!

  • 72.
    Lisa said…

    not sure what my word will be, but wanted to recommend a book that yours reminded me of. It’s called “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: What I Learned While Editing My Life” and is basically the story of a guy who wrote a bestselling book about his life, that someone wanted to turn into a movie, and what he learned about the elements of what makes a great story, and how he applied them to his life, asking basically, “how can I write a great story with my life?” The author is Donald Miller, and the book is definitely worth checking out – one of my top reads of this past year.

  • 73.
    Kelly B said…

    This will be the third year of choosing a word & I’ve passed your idea on to lots of friends as well. I love having a word that “centers” my life for the year. My word for 2010 is REAL. As in, I am going to be real & not do things that are not authentically me. Spent too much of my life being what other people wanted me to be & now its time to be the REAL me.

  • 74.
    Ali Edwards said…

    Here’s a link to the 2009 words: /2009/01/2009-words.html

  • 75.
    Ali Edwards said…

    That book is one of my inspirations for my word :) . I am going to write about it tomorrow. Great book.

  • 76.
    Steph said…

    I’ve thought about this a lot and I think my word needs to be NURTURE. We are moving this spring (for the first time in my kids’ lives) and it’s going to be hard on all us leaving behind this house and especially the kids’ school. Nourish means to feed, to educate, and to help grow and develop. So, my goal needs to be to nurture my children through this change, nurture our souls with love and peace while we adjust to new surroundings and the loss of old ones. If I can nurture my family while we go through this, we will all come out okay on the other side. :)

  • 77.
    Christina Moquin said…

    I’m torn between balance and reach. I’m taking this semester and going full time since I was laid off and haven’t found a job yet. There will be a lot of balance this year, financially, school and with my brand-new fiance. I think I’m going with BALANCE

  • 78.
    Kristin said…

    My word last year was “begin” and I definitely accomplished that. Now out of necessity, my word for 2010 is “balance.” I’ve already blogged & scrapped it… now I just need to figure out how to incorporate it into my life. :)

  • 79.
    Lara said…

    So inspiring! I’m relatively new to your blog Ali and this will be my first year of one little world. I’m in the same boat as Beatriz – my word, too, is CREATE. I’m hoping for a little family of our own, starting a new craft business and welcoming new possibilities… here’s to 2010 x

  • 80.
    Solgunn said…

    My word for 2010 i s FOCUS. Focus on storytelling, focus on improving my health, focus on productivity, focus on patience (of the same reason as Elizabeth). I need to get more focused on all the projects I have. Thanks for the inspirariong Ali.

  • 81.
    paula said…

    Mine is Serve. Lately I’ve been feeling quite resentful at the load I’m carrying and I want to change that.

  • 82.

    My word for 2010 is RESTORE.
    As the new year starts – my desire is that the chaos of my husband’s health – the upset that riddles our sons – - the upside down of the house/home and the flat line of my scrapbooking business/hobby is RESTORED.
    Happy Hew Year Ali and friends!

  • 83.
    Lynsey said…

    Not just the physical aspects of my home, but the bigger aspects. Organize my beliefs by getting them on paper. Organize my day around a routine. Organize a book club, a family gathering, or a trip to see friends. Basically, it’s about eradicating the chaos that has always ruled my life…and do something positive with the extra time I’ll have when I’m not spending half an hour searching for something in a mess.

  • 84.
    Laurengreene29 said…

    This will be my first year doing this, if I ultimately decide to do it, but the word I’m thinking of is CAPTURE. I guess you could say it found me; when I opened your blog page today, the first thing I noticed was “capture + create” in the header.
    Being a senior in high school, I really want to capture the last few months of my high school career and summer before college. I don’t want to miss a thing or forget anything that happens.

  • 85.
    LaurieS said…

    For the past few months I thought my word for 2010 would be Believe but it has changed to Journey – I want to get more from this every day journey in life by taking more photographs and detailing more of my thoughts and dreams in my journaling.

  • 86.
    Jamie K said…

    Hi Ali…I love your 2010 word. Mine is CHOICE. I realized very recently that how I feel, how I deal, how I live is based on CHOICEs. That my emotions, actions and reactions are all my CHOICE. One of my favorite quotes is “Happiness is a choice”. And, my choices deeply affect all of the people that are important to me – including myself.
    Happy Holidays!

  • 87.
    Rosa said…

    After keeping the same word for 2 years(Conquer) I think I did just that, in so many ways I need now to give it all use…. a practical use so my word will be TRANSFORM

  • 88.
    Kirsten H said…

    I have been thinking all month. Last year was simplicity, and I think I did well with the word.
    This year is health. There are many levels to this for me, physical health, mental health, and more.

  • 89.
    Jamie K said…

    Hi Colleen…I was just reading through all of the comments and noticed that you and I picked the same word! Good luck with your CHOICES in 2010! :)

  • 90.

    gotta have it..can not live without it…

  • 91.
    stephanie said…

    My words for last 3 years have been organize, focus and control.
    While they were all good words, they have almost felt too stressful and serious in combination with my life LOL.
    So this year instead of trying so hard to feel in charge of things (not that I won’t still try to get control of life) I feel the need to remind myself and try hard to just relax and ENJOY life.
    So for 2010 I am making it a point to ENJOY each day, ENJOY the smallest things, ENJOY the mess, ENJOY sitting in a bit of traffic, ENJOY just sitting down and having a nice conversation with a friend… even if my to do list is not getting done.. ENJOY my home and family… and every minute with my son. I plan to just ENJOY life.

  • 92.
    Michelle W. said…

    My word for 2009 was LEARN and I think I did a pretty fair job living up to my expectations for that word.
    For 2010, I have chosen the word PRIORITIZE. I recently re-read a talk given in our church a couple of years ago about choosing between the good, the better and the best. Each of us only has so many hours in every day and there are so many good ways to spend our time. I often ended up choosing the good or even the better…and realize later that I missed out on the best. By choosing to focus on prioritizing, I am looking forward to my life being filled with the best choices.

  • 93.
    Terri said…

    My word for 2010: SIMPLIFY.

  • 94.
    Erica Hettwer said…

    My word for this year is Capture. I’m going to be doing Project 365 and I want to capture 2010 for my kids. :)

  • 95.
    Chrissie said…

    Last year my word was “be”. We were in the midst of a long hard battle to gain custody of my precious nephew out of an abusive foster home. Our last name starts with b and his with e. With three kids within 3 years and he only being 5 months older than our oldest, I needed to be a lot of things to a lot of people. I needed to focus on what we would become as a whole. This year with a huge job change, finalizing guardianship, and a potential move in our near future, I had no idea how to put that into one word. Then I read a previous post. I hope she doesn’t mind sharing her word because I’m choosing “nest”. I refer to our 4 kids as “peeps” and love the image of creating that safe and cozy haven for my family during our times of drastic change.

  • 96.
    nerdgrl said…

    Wow! I’ve read through the comments and they are all so very inspirational that I’m thinking my word is so mundane. However, it’s something I really need to work on for 2010; both my SBing room and my office really need it. My word is ORGANIZE.

  • 97.
    Tiffany said…

    I was thinking about this last weekend. For 2010, I want to EXPLORE. I am looking foward to where that word will take me and my family.

  • 98.
    AmyGee said…

    as a noun: an act of concentrating interest or activity on something.
    and also
    as a verb: pay particular attention to.
    something that has been lacking in many aspects of my life for way too long…
    focus on family
    focus on me
    focus on creating
    focus on learning
    focus on following through
    focus on the wonderful little things of everyday and the big picture of what’s to come

  • 99.
    debbie said…

    My word for 2010 is”Open” 2009 was a very emotional year and I think 2010 will be similar but I hope in a more positive way and I need to be OPEN to what God is saying and doing

  • 100.
    Kirsten said…

    What a great idea; I love hearing the “why” behind everyone’s choice.
    After a few minutes of contemplation, I selected “affirmation.” I knew that I wanted something that was related to the new direction in which my life is headed, but not simple appreciation for it – I want something that will help it grow, nurture and support it, strengthen and enhance it. Affirmations of self and of those I love create an unshakable foundation if they’re laid with care and regularity.

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