Day 21: A mini-workshop to help you find your word for 2018

With just a few days left in 2017 and the holiday festivities winding down, I am feeling the energy shifting all around me. The old days are passing by and new ones are just around the corner.  And, these in-between days, these transitional days, are perfectly placed opportunities to begin let go, release, and turn toward the future. And, that means that it’s time to tap into the energy that will lead us forward. So, what’s the best way to ground ourselves + start to move into 2018? Well, in my opinion, the ritual of choosing a word for the upcoming year is the perfect place to start.

And, so, I’ve created a mini-workshop for us to use to do just that.

Now, I’ve been taking it slow this December. It potentially can be a crazy hectic month, of course, so to keep myself grounded + centered, I’ve focused on trying to be present in all of the moments. From meditating, to soaking up nature, to celebrating holiday + solstice traditions, to basking in the mystical darkness, I have incorporated moment after intentional moment into my daily life. And, to be honest, it hasn’t been that tough. And I’m starting to really sink into the energy of magic + meaning in every little moment.

The thing is, I’d like to continue this discipline, practice, focus into the new year. And, one of the best ways that I know to do that is to take some time during these last few days of the year, to dig deep + listen to the whisperings of my soul. In the midst of having some time off from work for these few weeks, I am letting my body fall into it’s natural rhythm, waking + sleeping + eating + keeping my moments slow + intentional.

In some of this slow time, I have also been internally preparing for the end of the year + the beginning of the next. Taking some time to honor the lessons + memories of this year, and to easy my way into the new year feeling deeply rooted in my soul.

Now is the time to bring forth the optimism and hope that lingers in these slow days as we march slowly toward the turning of the page. And right now is the perfect time to begin to transition to the new year from the inside out. To spend a few moments thinking about what our visions + intentions are for 2018. 

Of course, we can’t know what the year will bring. But, if we slow down just enough, we can hear the whispers of our heart, guiding us to the knowledge of what our soul wants + needs. And, with that mindful, grounded practice we can choose a focus. Something that can guide and lead us and inspire us.

So, my friends, I encourage you to join me in choosing a word of the year. If you haven’t embarked on this soul-searching, visioning, intention-setting journey before, then I highly recommend it. And, if you have, then I invite you to join me again.

It is truly an inspiring and grounding practice… to seek that word that seems to just well up from within you. And I guarantee that, if you quiet your soul and listen just a bit, you will feel it + hear it. There is one there. In all of us. Just waiting for us to let it unfold and inspire us all year long.

It can be a passive word or an active word. something that helps you to slow down + focus inwardly or something that forces you outward + gives you energy. And, when you settle your soul just a bit, then you will know which kind of word is best for your upcoming year.

If you’re curious about and interested in this process, then this post is just what you are looking for. All it takes is a few intentional minutes set aside for digging deep and listening softly. And, i guarantee that, in the end your soul will share with you a vision for your 2018.

Here’s your chance to discover your word for 2018, if you want. We’ve got 4 days before the new year begins. So, we’ve got plenty of time. Let’s get started!


find your word: part one

Alright. Are you ready?! Time to slow down + listen.

// get quiet. find a quiet space alone for about 30 minutes – an hour, at least. take an entire day retreat if you can. whatever feels right for you. gather some totems or symbols or photos that inspire you, support you, or are spiritual icons. gather a blanket + a pillow, or whatever makes you feel comfortable. get a notebook + pen. light a candle + grab a glass of your favorite drink. and get ready to open your heart and set some intentions. be open. listen. breathe deep.

// create your vision. imagine how you want the upcoming year to look. what you want to be + do. what does your soul need. think about your dreams and goals and wishes for the new year. write it all down, if you want. or make a collage. doodle. create. brainstorm and dream away…

// inward or outward. based on your thoughts from above, decide if you feel that 2018 is a year to focus on slowing down and looking inward or if it is a year to be more active and social and putting yourself out there. just listen to your soul + feel where your intuition is leading you. trust.

// take note. look over the lists of passive + active words below and notice 2 or 3 that seem to stand out at you. use them as a starting point to kind of get in the groove. don’t think about it or analyze it. go with your gut. remember, these are only a few words that are suggestions to get you thinking. use them, or pay attention to others that seem to pop up. just let them come to you.

// write it down. note on paper or in a journal any word that pops into your mind. gather about 3-5 possible words and let them sit there on the page. then, close your journal or put way the piece of paper. leave it alone and come back to it tomorrow.

examples of passive words:

nurture, be, rest, peace, spirit, heart, soul, magic, truth, light, calm, meditate, grounded, centered, breathe, simplicity, slow living, meaningful, zen, balance, honesty, love, bliss, authentic, rooted, magic

examples of active words:

motivate, energy, focus, radiate, soar, grow, strength, change, flow, direction, create, travel, love, compassion, explore, brave, proclaim, manifest, balance, trust, freedom, bliss, authentic, rooted, intuition

try not to stress about it. trust that your soul already knows exactly what you need. there can be no “wrong” word. however it appears or follows you throughout your year will be just how it needs to be. some years my word has changed throughout the year. some years it has felt just perfect.

let the words just roll around in your head for a while. give them over to your heart. and move on to something else. later on (or tomorrow, if you wish) we will narrow it down and the perfect word (which may not even be one of the ones you chose to write down) will emerge. trust yourself. everything you need is already within you.


find your word: part two

Now, let’s finish up finding your word for 2018.

by now, you may or may not have had a word bubble up and just come to you. it’s totally possible that you already discovered your word just by thinking about it a bit. however, you may also not know exactly what word to settle on or need a bit more time to figure it out. no worries. we’ll deal with that right now.

// envision the perfect day. ponder this for just a second: what would the perfect day in 2018 look like to you? what would you do? who and what would you see? where would you be? what are your intentions + dreams for the upcoming year? write it down. draw it out. create a schedule or describe your perfect day in a fictional diary entry.

// take out your possible words. if you followed activities above, then you should have about 3-5 possible words written somewhere. hopefully you were able to write them down + set them aside until now. go ahead and pull out those words and look over the list again. think about them and notice if they are passive or active words. have you chosen which type of word you feel that you need for 2018? do you need to focus more inwardly, on your self and your spirit/soul? or do you need to get things done and focus on things that are outside of you?

// define the words. using the 3-5 words that you wrote down… think about the meaning of each one. how would you define each word? how does the dictionary define each word? what are other words (synonyms or related words) that come to mind for each word?

// feel the words. now that you’ve gathered your list of words + thought about their meanings, see how they feel. which one seems to make you feel warm? which one inspires you or energizes you? which one brings you a sense of calm and peace? which one feels like a gift that you have received that you’d been longing for?

// the one you love. you’re looking for that word that you have fallen in love with. perhaps one just seems to fit. trust that, and go with it. let that be your word. however, perhaps you are stuck between 2 words. well, flip a coin, assigning one word to “heads” and one word to “tails”. flip the coin and see what your immediate reaction is when you see which word the coin lands on. were you disappointed? or excited? you don’t have to “choose” the one that “wins”. this is about seeing what feeling is triggered when you have a word “chosen” for you. pay attention + just observe.

remember: your word may end up being something completely different than you originally thought or imagined. it could also feel right + weird all at the same time. trust the universe + trust your intuition.

// commit. there is no absolute perfect word. but, it should make you giggle and feel excited, at least more than your other words. so, which word is it? which word feels just right to you? no explanation, it just feels… well, right.

// but be flexible.  remember this: your word may change in the middle of the year. let it grow and move and be fluid. give yourself permission to change your mind, if you need or want to. this is for you. there is no right or wrong.

// trust. write your word down. look at it. feel it. run your fingers over the letters. trust that your soul has given you exactly what you need. take a deep breath and soak it in. let the word become part of you.

// create + incorporate. over the next few days, explore ways to use your word + to make it part of your life.


finding your word: part three

Keeping your word with you all year long.

the beauty of choosing a word for the year is how it helps to bring a sense of focus + purpose to everything, if we let it. for me, throughout the past years that i’ve had a special word for the year, i have just let it sit in the back of my mind or pop up when + wherever it may.

but, actively keeping my word with me throughout the year makes it even more real + intentional. i want to have my word in front of my face, and often, so that i don’t forget about it. so, in order to make sure that i stay focused + active + motivated, i need that word of mine slapping me in the face day in and day out.


so, if you decide to join me in choosing a word, i’ve got a few suggestions for you to consider to help you keep your word in the front of your mind:

  • create a pinterest board: you can find mine {here} or in the sidebar to the right of this page.
  • dedicate a journal to your word: include quotes, photos, images, stories, anything that reminds you of your word. write in it daily or weekly.
  • make your word your phone background image or desktop wallpaper
  • leave post-it notes with your word written on it in different places. or go crazy + create a vision board to hang in your home all year long.
  • set a schedule to check in with yourself at the beginning of each month, or by following the phases of the moon. checking on your progress + setting intentions for the upcoming month
  • wear your word, or a symbol of your word every single day.
  • any other ideas? share them in the comments below!


congratulations, my friend! you have listened to your life + to your soul. welcome to your new word!

now, if you’d like, share your word with me. send me an email (use the contact button at the top of the page) or leave me a comment below. share your word with the world, too, if you’d like. create a blog post or a tweet or a Facebook status. take a photo that represents your word + your vision. use the hashtag #findyourword2018 and discover more people sharing in this journey.

i am so excited to have shared this process with you. i am so thrilled to have set an intention + vision for 2018. it makes every day so much more meaningful + purposeful, i believe. and i’d love to stay up to date with you on how your year + your word unfolds. i’ll most definitely keep you updated on how my 2018 goes. you’ll find out what my word is in the beginning of january sometime!

for now, it’s time to embark on the last day of 2017. i wish you peace + calm + a centered, grounded being as you bid farewell to this year and welcome a new year filled with new opportunities + adventures, just waiting for you. enjoy it all.

xoxo. liz.



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