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?


  • 101.
    Linda said…

    my word is CHANGE!! Everything changes this year!! One daughter is getting married and graduating from Med School, one will graduate from college and the third is on her own now too–Not sure what I will do with all of the extra $$ we will have!! :)

  • 102.
    Arika said…

    I’m still thinking about it, but I think my word is going to end up being REFINE. In 2010, I really want to focus on getting all kinds of clutter out of my life. Not just physical clutter (although that’s a big part of it!), but mental clutter as well. I want to spend my time on things that count and my money on things that will last. I want to clear out everything that doesn’t work or doesn’t bring me joy.
    I also thought about going with authenticity, but I think REFINE fits better for what I want to do in 2010.

  • 103.
    Jessica said…

    My word is TREASURE.
    It was my word last year too, but I love it again for 2010!

  • 104.
    Carla Farmer said…

    For 2010, my word is organization. The words organize and organzation have never been a part of my vocbualary until now. So far, I have my shoes in boxes and the closet in the other room has been clean out. Next, it will be my car. I am learning to let go.

  • 105.
    traceyclark said…

    mine is ‘deliberate’. i want to live my life more deliberately this year. thanks ali for encouraging such a powerful idea here!

  • 106.
    Fiona said…

    Mine is going to be courage

  • 107.
    michelle said…

    My word is SHOOT.
    won’t make any sense to anyone but, well who cares. It’s FOR me, right? :)
    It began with the simple concept that I need to take (shoot) more pictures of my children. I used to take hundreds every month…this Christmas (and last) I took 5. I don’t want to regret not recording their lives.
    But then it morphed into something a bit deeper (and more obtuse) in that I want to shoot down bad habits, negative thoughts, that second cupcake, etc. I’m throwing those things that hold me back into the sky, like a clay pigeon, and will shoot that baby down and become a more positive person for it.
    told you it wouldn’t make sense LOL

  • 108.
    Theresa said…

    My word found me this year, too. After three years of successive losses (last living parent passed away, my marriage fell apart) I am ready for the future. I keep remembering the verse: He restoreth my soul. My word therefore will be RESTORATION, because I know God will restore my life.

  • 109.
    Kate said…

    Loving this–if I chose one word for 2010, it would be the same one that guided me in 2009…SURRENDER.

  • 110.
    Helen Noble said…

    Wow, so many inspirational words. This year as I wake early to read emails and have some quiet time, my word snuck up and tapped me on my shoulder. My word is COMPLETE. I want to finish what I start, I want to be COMPLETEly happy with my creative projects, work choices and my life. I want to COMPLETE my circle of friends and stay connected to them and re connect with past friends. I want to complete my Christmas Cards before Christmas. I want to give myself COMPLETEly to my family. I want to live COMPLETEly in the moment.

  • 111.
    Tinka said…

    I’ve been giving much thought to my word for the past month or so and couldn’t really come up with one that encompassed what I want to achieve in 2010. But reading through the comments, I found the perfect word. With thanks to Debbie W. I, too, am going to REDUCE in 2010. This applies not only to my weight (that never-ending struggle!), but to the clutter in my home and at my office, the excessive amount of scrapbooking stuff I own, the unnecessary spending
    I do (mostly scrapbooking supplies!), and the general stress in my life!

  • 112.
    Sherry said…

    Heard about this on Jakki’s blog (My Life My Life My Life) and I’m doing it!
    My word is going to be Share. I feel so much potential with this!

  • 113.
    Michelle Suleman said…

    My word for 2010 is *Blessed* – For many different reasons.

  • 114.
    Mary Jo said…

    My word is *purpose*. I feel like I have been coasting along not really meeting goals or accomplishing what I really need to be focusing on.
    I want to start living my life everyday with “purpose” and use each day to accomplish a goal no matter how small!

  • 115.
    Stephanie Cunningham said…

    2009 my word was Cherish – for the month of January I specifically found something each day to cherish — then it was just as natural as breathing….So many things I probably would have missed!!
    My word for 2010 came to me suddenly – iti s actually the last page of my December Daily album….My word for 2010 is Breathe..plain and simple right….so many times this year I was so busy with whatever I forgot to take a minute and BREATHE………….bring on 2010 :)

  • 116.
    Debbie McIntyre said…

    My word for the year is LESS. Less pounds, less nagging, less fuss. Less is more.

  • 117.
    Ashley said…

    My word for 2010 is “Save.” My word for 2009 (Patience) served me so well, that I am excited to start this new year with a new focus. 2009 had a lot of expenses for us (a new baby, a new house, an old house that didn’t sell, a new business,) My husband and I joke that 2009 was the year of spending and 2010 will be the year of saving. I look forward to the challenge saving for my children’s college accounts, our retirement, and for a trip to Paris with my mother. I also am excited to think about how else I can apply my word to my day to day routines. Like “Saving Time” by organizing and planning ahead. “Saving the Planet” by amping up our recycling efforts. And of course “Saving my Sanity” by…well, I’ll let you know if that happens!

  • 118.
    Bec said…

    My word is ROUTINES. Even to me, that sounds a bit boring but the last few years have been filled with so much chaos. Although there is much sadness right now, I want to build a rhythm in life that I can rely on. My theme for 2010 is Becoming a Whole Person.

  • 119.
    Ashley said…

    I think that is so great Michelle! Makes total sense!

  • 120.
    Lori Paximadis said…

    For 2009 I chose “flow,” and I’m going to hang on to that one. I’ve made a lot of progress with taking things as they come and working with instead of fighting against challenges, but I’d like to go further.

  • 121.
    Michelle said…

    Last year my word was “less”. I feel like I really followed the meaning many times, not just with physical items, but with less stress, less emotion, etc.
    This year the word is:
    I start so many things (not just tangible projects either) and need to focus on the follow throgh.

  • 122.
    Janet Ang said…

    Ali, thank you so much for being you and sharing so much of yourself to the world! My word for 2009 is JOY and I really concentrated and focused my attitude all year on that word….. For 2010, it will HEALTH.

  • 123.
    emily said…

    my word is abide. i love this practice, ali, thank you!

  • 124.
    DeAnn said…

    My word is ANGELS

  • 125.
    Daphne said…

    I chose the word: Humility I chose the word acouple months ago. I am so excited to look up the definition, Bible Verses and Quotes. I am looking forward to a new year of being humble, listening and observation!

  • 126.
    Esther (New Zealnd) said…

    A word from you post jumped out at me – POTENTIAL – I’m going with that because I feel I can apply it to so many areas of my life.
    Thank you for sharing so much of you life with us Ali. may we all live up to our own Potential :)

  • 127.
    emily said…

    I am new to this concept and new to your blog (I heard about you via Shutter Sisters) and I LOVE IT!
    My word for 2010 is Endeavor. With a capital E.
    I’ll be posting about it on my blog in the coming days. Thank you for sharing this idea with us.
    Best in 2010!

  • 128.
    JanineBoyd said…

    I’ve been thinking for the past few weeks about my word for 2010. I love how the words I’ve chosen the past 2 years have become a real part of who I am (I chose ‘simplify’ and ‘create’) and I really want next year’s word to have the same impact. I’m torn between JOY and CALM at the moment, but I’m feeling that more calm in my life would bring more joy – is this my word calling me? I look forward to more of your stories in the next year :)

  • 129.
    Megan said…

    Last year my word was hope. At the time I was struggling with infertility, trying to become a mom.
    This year I’m in the same place and facing my fifth and last IVF try in February.
    My word is still hope. Or maybe HOPE in all caps.

  • 130.
    yolanda said…

    After going through a difficult year this year my word this year is enough. I want to explore this and know that I have enough of love, life, living,etc. I may not have extra but enough is plenty to live an abundant life.

  • 131.
    amy t schubert said…

    Ali – thanks for always inspiring us … I’ve been thinking about participating and choosing my word for the last couple years but never have.
    But this year …. My word will be RISK.
    As in, I’m going to RISK failure to try to reach farther and accomplish the goals I’ve only thought about in the past.
    I’ll post more on my blog in the coming weeks, probably …

  • 132.
    Busymomma66 said…

    I think my word for 2010 is Begin.
    Begin to start taking care of myself.
    Begin searching for a love life.
    Begin following my dreams.
    Just begin!!

  • 133.
    Valerie said…

    My word this year is me. Selfish I know, but for so many years I’ve concentrated on being a good wife, a good mother, a good daughter, and now I find myself on the cusp of 40, and I think this is the year that I need to put a little work into me. Honestly I don’t know how well it will work, but I’m going to try to be mindful of taking care of myself while taking care of the rest of my family. Me.

  • 134.
    Susan Cokley said…

    I woke up at 2.30am this morning (even before I read your post)with lots of ‘stuff’ running through my head. In the midst of it two words emerged “REGAIN CONTROL”.

  • 135.

    Ali, I joined you w/ this idea last year and truly enjoyed the it – thank you!
    Last year was “aspire” – I was so eager to learn more, to be more than what I was at the time. It was inspiration that served me well. :)
    This year, I’d like to go w/ “believe”. I love this word because it has so many possibilities….
    God Bless Ali – and thank you again for sharing the gift of YOU w/ all of US!
    Melle in FL

  • 136.
    Irene said…

    I didn’t have to think hard about my word for 2010. It is write. I already started write our story this year and made a very good restart with YT (which I have not yet finished but will in the future). I want to keep on writing. Which will not be hard because I get so much joy in reading what I wrote (remembering it all) and seeing others reading it and enjoying it.
    Thanks. Ali

  • 137.
    D'Nese said…

    Over the past 11 years I believe that I’ve lost many things within myself that I need to get back. The first word that comes to mind for me for the 2010 year is, “restore.
    I am making it my goal to restore all my inner faith, to restore my values, my self worth and my well being.
    This WILL happen for me this year and I look very forward to making the positive change for myself and my family.

  • 138.
    Dawn-Rene said…

    I have resisted the urge to pick a word for the year. But this year, reading your blog one word came screaming out . . .
    I need to do that in all areas of my life! I feel like my life is cluttered literally and figuratively.

  • 139.
    jackie said…

    I think my word will be thoughtful as in be thoughtful with my time, activities, words. Be thoughtful with the types of things, people etc I surround myself with. I’m hoping thoughtful will also lead into reflection. Thanks for the reminder!

  • 140.
    Melanie K. said…

    I am going to choose … JOURNAL … meaning I want to actively keep an art journal and in whatever way it comes out. Pictures, words, random bits of flotsam, or jetsam? LOL, anyway, I admire all those on the web, I subscribe to Art Journaling magazine. It is time for me to do it. For me. I will probably even look at it like a type of scrapbook. Maybe that will make it easier for me to do. I so hope this year gets cheerier and brighter than last year.

  • 141.
    Kim said…

    I chose a word last year after reading your blog, my word was HOPE.
    For 2010 my word is PASSION(ATE). If I choose to do something it is to be with passion otherwise I need to consider whether it is the right thing to do, instead of saying yes to anything/everything and getting stressed if it feels right I will do it with PASSION.
    Wishing you and your family a Happy New Year xxx

  • 142.
    Esther said…

    I never could come up with a word for myself, but this year I don’t even have to think about it. It is ‘letting go’. (In Dutch this is one word! ;-) )
    This is what I need to do this year. I will sing my mantra many times!
    Let it go, let it go, let it go.

  • 143.
    {vicki} said…

    GAJILLION is my word (not sure if that is a real word or not) But……….
    I plan on accomplishing a GAJILLION things this year. Big and Small— and looking forward to each one!

  • 144.
    Susan Hessler said…

    Dear Ali,
    I’ve taken classes and made scrapbooks with you that are wonderful and meaningful. But perhaps the biggest impact you have had on me and my family has been with the one little word. In 2007 my word was roots – and it brought me home and work that I love, in 2008 my word was breathe – and it made a huge difference, in 2009 my word was joy – and it might have been too big of a word, it was a very hard year. Last year my oldest daughter chose balance as her word – and she really pulled her life together. She has already chosed grow as her word for 2010. I am still considering…I need a nourishing, kind and optimistic word – I am thinking about dream and I am thinking about loved. I’ll let you know.
    Thanks so much!! Susan

  • 145.
    Danielle said…

    I think my word for 2010 is Create! Of course I want to create scrapbook and craft projects but I also want to work on my novel and create a happy healthy home and family, create a safe haven for friends and family I just want to create something special in everything I do in 2010

  • 146.
    DawnS said…

    I never did guess the right “S” word on twitter! Story is a great word. You do such a fabulous job of telling your own story already…and you also help all of “us” with getting our stories told as well :)

  • 147.
    Sara said…

    Move. It came to me instantly and has multiple meanings to me this coming year.

  • 148.
    christine said…

    I pondered and pondered about my word for 2010 and it didn’t hit me till I read Anna’s word and that was it.
    My word for 2010 is WHOLEHEARTED.
    To pursue everything wholeheartedly, family, work, art, journaling everthing!

  • 149.
    Leslie said…

    My word is BEGIN.

  • 150.

    My word for 2010 is: Breathe. Instead of worrying about the what-if’s, I’m going to focus on the what’s-happening-now’s.

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