A Word?

Stephanie Shackelford — 

          Looking back is important in making goals. So is looking forward. In order to keep making progress, you also have to continually evaluate and adjust, using your observations of past, present and future goals and desires to make sure you are headed where you want your life to go. I often get lost in the “forest” of the individual goals and travel in circles. I may accomplish a lot, even check off a lot of goals. Sometimes, though, I realize I haven’t mentally stepped back enough to evaluate if my goals are propelling me in the right direction. I find I’m really at a standstill. Or worse, going backward.

          I read an interesting blog this week that gave me a new perspective of how to maintain that forward momentum. An alternative to resolutions . Choose a word or short phrase that encapsulates that “big picture” view of what I want for my life.

          This was eye-opening for me. I can see it will be a great help in deciding where to spend my time and energy. And, periodically, when I realize that word/phrase is no longer as great a fit, I’ll be reminded to re-evaluate. It may be I’m being distracted by “shiny objects” and the word/phrase is still appropriate or it may be that it’s time to change focus to the next thing. Whatever that may be.

          With just a little thought, I realized that my word for the past several months has been Healing but that I’m entering a new phase in my life-journey. I need a new word. That word is Discovery.

          This article also suggested several ways to explore and/or remind yourself of the word/phrase. Some of them, like making a collage or a sculpture or story out of things that remind me of the word, I will do later. A quick and easy one, though, was to create a Wordle . A wordle is a “picture” that contains words written in various sizes, styles and colors. You write out the list, then choose different variations of layout and color. Here’s my Discovery Wordle.

Wordle: Discovery

          What word or phrase would you choose to define past or future desires, goals, and direction?

Stephanie Shackelford


Stephanie is an aspiring writer of fantasy romances. She creates her worlds while traveling the globe with her husband and helping her fledgling birdies "fly the nest". She can't wait till those birdies have their own nests she can visit.

2 responses to A Word?

  1. Pam D at

    “What word or phrase would you choose to define past or future desires, goals, and direction?”
    Mine would be “Write On!”

  2. Kitty Bucholtz at

    Great idea, Steph! Hmm, I think my word this year is FAITH. I need to keep going in faith, believing in the new journey I’m taking in self-publishing. It’s going to be an exciting, sometimes scary, exhilarating new year!