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One Little Word 2013

One Little Word necklace from Lisa Leonard.

My word for 2013 is open.

Last year I had a great story about how my word came to me. This year it was more of a whisper and to be honest I'm not really sure what it means for me right now, or what it will end up meaning for me 12-months from now. And I'm okay with that.

Open is an attitude and an approach. It's a reminder to live wholeheartedly, to enter the ring, to live the length and the width. It's how I want to tackle this year.

I love that open is an action & a re-action. I can act with an open heart; I can re-act with an open heart.

I want to be open to it all - the amazing and the challenging. Wide open.

Are you considering selecting a word for yourself (or letting one find you)? There's no right or wrong. The main thing to remember is that this is your word. It's not for your child, parent, partner, spouse, sister, etc.

And what do you do with this one little word?

You live with it. You invite it into you life. You let it speak to you. You might even follow where it leads. There are so many possibilities.

I'd love to read what word you've chosen or are considering for 2013. In the comments feel free to simply leave your word as your comment or write a bit about why you are choosing this word. In a couple days I'll combine all the words into a single post - super inspiring to see all the words in one place.

If you’re new to the concept of One Little Word, you can read some of my previous posts here: 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012.

One Little Word necklace from Liz Lamoreux. Use ONELITTLEWORD and receive 15% off through Jan 31.

ONE LITTLE WORD WORKSHOP

Registration is open for 2013 and you're invited to join the journey.

Each month you'll receive a prompt with a simple creative, writing, or photography project and a gentle reminder to check back in with your word. By the end of the year you'll have compiled the contents of an 8.5x11 album that documents, defines, celebrates and generally makes your word more visible. Workshop materials include printable elements, full-color PDF handouts, and video presentations.

People have been asking me if you have to be a scrapbooker for this class. My answer is no. Even though we are making an album it's really more of a journaling/record keeping/thinking/exploring project. I'm excited to see how people interpret the prompts and make them meaningful for their own lives.

This is not complicated and it's not time-consuming. It's simply a way we  can come together to share our experience with our words throughout the  course of the year.

The One Little Word classroom opens on January 1, 2013.

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916 thoughts

  1. Cindy Hayes says…
    12/26/2012

    My one little word is Embrace for 2013. Can't wait to start the journey in your class.

    Reply 4 Replies
    1. Meredith says…
      12/31/2012

      Embrace is my word, as well. There are some big changes coming up this year (a new house and a wedding among others) and I intend to embrace every moment of them.

    2. jenn shurkus says…
      12/28/2012

      me too cindy! i'm ready to embrace all the changes and new things coming my way in 2013
      :)

    3. Megan @ The Nerd Nest says…
      12/31/2012

      FINISH

    4. Beverly Cole says…
      01/01/2013

      "Embrace" is the word that came to me as well. I want to embrace the gifts I have as well as embrace the opportunities that come my way. I want to embrace those that become a part of my world.

  2. dawn says…
    12/26/2012

    I like the word you have picked Ali and it suits you so well!! I've been amazed at all you've done this year and I'm sure will do again in 2013.

    My words are STORY and PEACE, they both just came to me over the last couple months. Hoping to take your class this year.

    Thanks so much for this class/inspiration/idea from you and letting us go on this journey with you.

    Looking forward to see the list of words, always fun and inspiring to read them.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. Katherine says…
      01/01/2013

      My word for 2013 is "grace" I chose this word because it means many things.

      1. elegance or beauty of form, manner, motion, or action
      2. favor or goodwill.
      3. a manifestation of favor
      4. mercy;
      8. the condition of being in God's favor
      5. moral strength: the grace to perform a duty.

  3. Joana T.C. says…
    12/26/2012

    Hi
    My word is MORE. I didn't like it at first, but it just kept popping into my head until I felt I had no choice but to embrace it.
    I'm a 'less is more' kind of person so More felt wrong at first.

    But the more I thought about it, the more sense it made.

    Live more, love more, observe more, laugh more, sleep more...I want to be more in 2013.

    Live the length and the width and the depth.

    The word now makes perfect sense to me and I am so excited to start this journey in 2013.

    Reply 4 Replies
    1. Nancy M says…
      12/28/2012

      Here is a quote on happiness that I pinned. 7 Steps to Happiness: Think less, feel more; frown less, smile more; talk less, listen; judge less, accept more; watch less, do more; complain less, appreciate more; fear less, love more.
      This seems to complement your approach to your one little word for 2013.

    2. Bekah Doak says…
      12/27/2012

      I didn't "like" my 2013 word at first either...it's "action"...but it kept popping up in things I was writing and reading. It chose me this year, so I'm going with it! Good luck!

    3. Betsey M says…
      12/27/2012

      My OLW for 2013 is also MORE! Would love seeing how yours develops for you!

    4. Joana T.C. says…
      12/29/2012

      Yes, I love that quote! The word more can seem a bit greedy but it all depends on how it is used. As is the case with any word, I suppose. For me it really is about living more and experiencing life more completely, more aware.

  4. Deb says…
    12/26/2012

    My word is CHOOSE - choose happy, choose the positive, choose love

    Reply 4 Replies
    1. JoAnn says…
      12/31/2012

      Choose is my word also, but also a word were are using as a family theme this year. We all having some choosing to do this year.

    2. Birgit says…
      12/26/2012

      CHOOSE is my word for 2013, too. I loved what Elise Blaha has done with it this year. And it has been on my mind the last few weeks already. I CHOOSE, actually it's two words: 'I' and 'CHOOSE', not my husband, not my kids, not my family, not my friends, not my neighbors, not anybody but 'I' . I CHOOSE to go to bed early, to spend less, to simplify, to focus, to organize, to go on that 3 mile run every morning, to cook healthy meals, to finish a project ... looking forward to choosing may way of living in the new year.

    3. bry says…
      01/05/2013

      My word for 2013 is CHOOSE as well.

      Lately I have felt like there's a lot of things I HAVE to do, and I want to regain control by CHOOSING to do them. I feel, very much, that this work is about control, and strength. I feel as if I have lost control of my finances, my recipes, the clutter, my job, my body.

      I CHOOSE to get healthy.
      I CHOOSE to lose weight.
      I CHOOSE to work.
      I CHOOSE to stick to a budget.
      I CHOOSE to make a meal plan.
      I CHOOSE to clean my house.
      I CHOOSE to feel good about myself.
      I CHOOSE to smile.

    4. Val says…
      12/28/2012

      I am completely with you on this. 'Choose' is also my word and after a year of suffering life, it's time I feel in charge. I love Elise Blaha's monthly goals on a photo:I choose... Looks very powerful and realistic.

  5. Sherry Eckblad says…
    12/26/2012

    My word for 2013 is 'persevere'.

    Reply 0 Replies
  6. Thinkie says…
    12/26/2012

    Im choosing 'look' for 2013. I'm hoping it will remind me to open my eyes to things that might otherwise go unnoticed. To pay more attention to the visual aspect of communicating with people. To look more closely again before taking a photo in stead of just snapping away. To look for opportunities that might appear. And my studies this upcoming year will mostly be about art history, so looking at art will be a huge theme in my life.

    Reply 0 Replies
  7. Pat M says…
    12/26/2012

    I chose harmony as my word. Moving to Cape Cod recently I resonate with life and land here. Harmony seems like the perfect word for me in 2013. Looking forward to the class.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. Pearl Maple says…
      12/29/2012

      hope you are enjoying cape cod, it is a beautiful part of the world

  8. Candy says…
    12/26/2012

    This year my word is going to be "silent". Kind of popped into my head after a really rough day at work about a week ago. I think it is the perfect word for the upcoming year.

    Reply 0 Replies
  9. Jessica Bailey says…
    12/26/2012

    Moments before logging onto my chromebook and traveling to your blog to look at your most recent december dailies, I stumbled upon my word. The word was solidified when entering your blog to find your blog entry.

    My word came to me while reading my gift from Santa A Year of Living Your Yoga by Judith Lancaster. This is something I need to do right now. My word is LIVING it's in the title of the book but also as I scanned the book this morning it kept coming back to me.

    I love the possibility of this word:
    Adj.
    1. Possessing life: famous living painters; transplanted living tissue.
    2. In active function or use: a living language.
    3. Of persons who are alive: events within living memory
    Noun
    1. Possessing life: famous living painters
    2. In active function or use
    3. Of persons who are alive: events within living memory

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. Jessica Bailey says…
      12/28/2012

      After really thinking about OLW over the past days I knew I needed to DO something with it this year...like really DO something with it so I took the plunge and registered for class. Pretty giddy about this!!!

  10. Suzitee says…
    12/26/2012

    After much thought and consideration, I have chosen the word reclaim. I want to reclaim my health, my fitness. I'm hoping my word will empower me to reclaim my time, rather than saying yes to things I don't want to do. Now my children are becoming more self sufficient, I want to reclaim the old me, the pre- kids me. Already I can feel my word empowering me to make changes! Thank you Ali... I so love this concept!

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. Sue B says…
      12/31/2012

      Suzitee, WOW! I am in tears. I have been going around with many words: accept, embrace, peace,awaken, create. I can't seem to settle on one and was just thinking I am pushing/working to hard at it and maybe I need to just let it all rest for now. Then I read your word: reclaim. Immediate tears popped up. What you said just resonates with me so much. And I am all about reclaiming already. I think I will sit with this awhile and see what comes of it. Thank you!

  11. Lisa H says…
    12/26/2012

    My word is breathe. I considered it for 2012, but decided to forgo a word this year. As I reflect on the past year, there are many situations that might have turned out better if I had just taken a deep breath first. Also, I need to focus on getting in shape this year. To much labored breathing, I want to breathe free.

    Reply 3 Replies
    1. PaperPixie says…
      12/27/2012

      My word is also breathe. The first time I read about OLW it instantly came to mind and I knew it was the one.

      I tend to be anxious and stressed out too easily. It makes me enjoy life less, it is detrimental to my health and well being and that of my kids as well. When I feel that rising, I need to breathe.

      I have a new baby. I want to breathe in every moment, to sit in it, to document and remember and treasure it.

      I need to leave myself some space to breathe. Don't ask so much of myself, don't schedule our lives to the hilt. Wake up a few minutes early so we aren't rushing to get around and yelling at each other.

      It is about perspective and slowing down and pulling life down in big, life giving gulps. I am ready to meditate on it and make it a part of who I am.

      Thank you for the inspiration, Ali!

    2. Sandy B says…
      12/31/2012

      My OLW for 2012 is Breathe also. Part of a quote that I really like is Whine less, Breathe more. When I decided this would be my word, after spending quite some time trying to narrow down areas of "me" that need improvement, the words, "Breathe on me, breath of God" came to mind. Now that will be a real improvement.

    3. Allie says…
      01/02/2013

      Breathe was my word in 2012. It lived with me quietly and served me well. I even forgot about choosing it for this project; it became such a part of my every day, I even tattooed it on my wrist last summer. I'm excited for your journey with this idea.

  12. Susan A says…
    12/26/2012

    My OLW is light. It chose me back in October and has been with me ever since.

    Reply 3 Replies
    1. Jamie says…
      12/27/2012

      LIGHT was my word last year and it served me well. I lightened my burdens (less stress, less debt, etc) and shed a few pounds ;)

    2. Jane says…
      12/27/2012

      I am going somewhat reluctantly with LIGHT also. It fits I want to take things less seriously, be fitter and gain a different balance. Last year the OLW was given. I am finding it harder to choose by there it goes... Trying to not take it too seriously, be light, and go with the flow!

    3. Briel says…
      12/31/2012

      I'm going with LIGHT also. I know you had the OLW, Ali, and now it's speaking to me. Sorry to move on from ENJOY. BUT, it will still be close by. Looking forward to 2013.
      LIGHT the way
      Be LIGHT
      See the LIGHT
      LIGHTen up!

  13. Natalie (QSOgirl) says…
    12/26/2012

    REJOICE (Philippians 4:4... and really, Phil 4:4-8)

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. Elaine says…
      01/04/2013

      I'm going with "joy," so it's pretty closely related. I thought I had chosen something else, but then joy chose me and I can't get it out of my head!

  14. Ruth says…
    12/26/2012

    My word for 2013 is CHANGE. We are looking to leave London for a new life in a different part of the UK. We are looking for the right school for our son who has high-functioning autism and requires extra help in the classroom. We are looking for the right house to become our forever home. We are planning how my husband can continue to run his business outside of London.
    I could go on, but suffice to say, CHANGE is in the air.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. Claudia says…
      12/29/2012

      My OLW for 2012 was CHANGE. Looking back, the most significant change that happened in the past year was that I decided to adopt a vegan diet.
      My OLW for 2013 is a bit of an extension of CHANGE: GROW, in the sense of personal growth.

  15. Tracey says…
    12/26/2012

    Open was my word last year, Ali, and it served me very well. I tend to get too deep into a comfort zone, and I used the word to remind me to be open to new things and to take things as they come without resistance. I was also unemployed at the beginning of 2012 and wanted to be open to new avenues and possibilities. And when I found my new career path before January had even ended, the word open helped me to enter it with an open mind. I'm excited to hear about how you live the word in a way that works for you!

    My word this year will be CREATE. Now that I have had time to adjust to new experiences and schedules, I want to rediscover not only scrapbooking and crafting, but I want to "create" habits, memories, food, and artwork. I needed an action word this year -- something to DO instead of to BE.

    Reply 5 Replies
    1. Hayley says…
      12/31/2012

      This is my first year doing OLW. I have choosen many words. But they all come back to CREATE. I started with DO and ACTION but full circle is create for me. I am having trouble visualizing this all.

      Any suggestions would be great!

    2. Jen Matott says…
      12/27/2012

      I am choosing CREATE too! It's been a word that has so many meanings in my life right now and I want to explore it throughout the year. I want to create art, create good habits, create a new mindset about difficult things, and create a home of love and peace this year.

    3. jeanne says…
      12/31/2012

      My word for 2012 was create! It was an amazing adventure that carried more meaning then I ever could have imagined in January of 2012. Best of luck.

    4. Julie M says…
      12/26/2012

      Love this word and how you are approaching it. I am contemplating it for my word this year too!

    5. Donna B says…
      12/26/2012

      Create was my word for 2012 and it was such a wonderful word....it inspired me to make many positive changes in my life to create the life I wanted. I wish you well in your journey!

  16. aliza says…
    12/26/2012

    My word came to me in a flash, and then I knew that was it. "OUtside" is my word. OUtside my head, my self, my home. I don't want it to be a huge change, just a shift really that pushes me a little bit outside my comfort zone.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. Pidgen says…
      12/26/2012

      I love this!! I need to get out of a lot of the same places. lol!!

  17. Bev W. says…
    12/26/2012

    My word for the year is Joy! I also don't really know why this word had chosen me but I'm going to live it out and see where it takes me.

    Reply 2 Replies
    1. Tammy says…
      12/31/2012

      my word is also JOY- in all things, not just the obvious. This is my first year for something like this, and I think it will be a great learning, process!

    2. Lynn Wigren says…
      12/26/2012

      JOY was my word for 2012 and it was wonderful - it really kept me focused on finding the joy in so many things - unexpected things. I think it will be with me forever now.

  18. Mary-Lou says…
    12/26/2012

    My word is really the suffix - "ful" I will ask in situations if I need to be more "ful" such as respectful, hopeful, grateful, playful, joyful, etc.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. P.J. says…
      12/27/2012

      What a wonderful way to include SO much into your year. Enjoy it to the fullest!

  19. orange gearle says…
    12/26/2012

    This will be my second attempt at OLW. I say attempt because, although I kept my word (balance) close to me and reflected on it often, I didn't really follow through with the prompts! I don't really feel like I failed, though, by not following through with some of the prompts, I chose to do other things -- which helped with balance, to be honest! I thought about choose for this year, but, like last year, my word picked me.

    This past year brought our family a lot of loss, including the sudden death of my two year old granddaughter in April. As a result I have been dealing with anxiety issues and a bunch of worry! Also, it has been difficult to remember to 'Be present' for my One True Love, our three year old daughter, and my 24 year old daughter who lost her child,. I chose the word present to remind myself to be present for them, and for myself. But I also chose present to remember to enjoy the present and not worry about the future too much, or dwell on the past. My 24 year old daughter is joining me on the OLW journey this year! I am excited about that! She has several words rolling around in her head right now, all absolutely great ones, and I cannot wait to see which one she will choose!

    Reply 3 Replies
    1. Paula says…
      12/26/2012

      I wish you the very best of luck with your word this year and in 2013, I am so sorry for your loss.

    2. stacey says…
      01/08/2013

      Orange Gearle, I am so sorry for your family's loss. I hope for your, and your daughter's, continued healing, and much peace and joy in the future.

      From a stranger passing by....

    3. Susanne says…
      12/28/2012

      I wish you all the best for the new year with your new word.

  20. Darla says…
    12/26/2012

    LISTEN - because I need to work on that.

    Reply 5 Replies
    1. Lindsay says…
      12/29/2012

      My word is also LISTEN, I'm not good at this!! I talk to much, control too much & need to focus on listening.

    2. Lindsay says…
      12/29/2012

      My word is LISTEN, I'm not good at this!! I talk to much, control too much & need to focus on listening.

    3. Kathy says…
      12/27/2012

      Listen is my word this year. It came to me in a conversation with my husband...

    4. Ann English says…
      01/01/2013

      LISTEN- yes. This word came to me within minutes of reading your original post, Ali. I didn't labor over it- it was there, waiting, patiently, quietly, hoping I'd pick it. I once thought myself a good listener, but recently decided I had lost the ability to truly listen not only to others, but to myself and my God. It's time to listen, fully engage and stop the dance of conversation where I'm always tring to lead. This will be a year of growth and improved relationships.

    5. Tammy says…
      12/26/2012

      Listen was my word for 2012 and I loved it. What it taught me will continue for a long time, even after I focus on a new word for 2013. Good Luck!

  21. Elizabeth A says…
    12/26/2012

    My OLW for 2013 is BEGIN.

    Reply 0 Replies
  22. pammie~k says…
    12/26/2012

    My word is JOY. Right now I see it as finding it every day...in all that I do. Looking forward to this journey in 2013.

    Reply 0 Replies
  23. janet kemper says…
    12/26/2012

    My word this year is... FOCUS.

    Reply 5 Replies
    1. Heidi says…
      12/29/2012

      I also chose FOCUS. I can't wait to see how we do!

    2. Raylene says…
      12/26/2012

      That was my OLW last year and following the prompts each month just wouldn't let me slough off this one. I chose 2 things to focus on, but I ended up really focusing on one and I must say that success is sweet! You'll love it!

    3. Birgit says…
      12/26/2012

      FOCUS was my OLW for 2011. It was a wonderful companion and will always be. It is amazing what one little word can do.

    4. debbie says…
      12/26/2012

      FOCUS was my word a few years ago...and I really liked that word.
      I still have quotes, etc on my One Little Word Pinterest board if you want to repin any of them. It is under Debbie Nobles.
      Enjoy the journey

    5. Barbara Maynard says…
      12/26/2012

      I've chosen FOCUS as well Janet - it'll be interesting to see how similar/different our paths will be ;-)

  24. Tammy says…
    12/26/2012

    My word for 2013 is "Story"

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. dawn says…
      12/27/2012

      I picked this word too. Good luck with it in 2013!

  25. Caitlyn says…
    12/26/2012

    My word this year is 'assert.' It just came to me last week and I'm going to run with it!

    Reply 0 Replies

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