Temperature fluctuates tremendously in a single day in Georgia–at times I go to work needing several layers of clothing to keep warm, but by the end of the day, I’ve stripped down to a single layer. Layering clothing for the day is like layering and targeting goals to improve over time. For the last several years, I’ve chosen One Word for my yearly focus of self-improvement.
2017: I wanted to be able to prioritize, but my brain was fuzzy in how to select what task to complete when there are so many things to do. To move in the direction of prioritizing, I selected CLARITY for my One Word. That year I blogged for a coach as I worked to gain clarity in how to live more successfully.
2018: After gaining clarity, I moved forward and decided to make PRIORITIZE my One Word for the year. Prioritizing is tough for me because I try to do too much at once and often I get overwhelmed with all I must do. I made big strides, though. For the first time in my life, I kept a planner with a greater consistency that ever before. At times this past year I had a lot on my plate (helping as a part-time caretaker for my mom, my daughter entering middle school, my mom dying, a GCTE presentation, an NCTE presentation, helping write a literacy grant, greater responsibilities at school because of the literacy grant). With greater responsibilities both at work and at home, I had to shift my priorities and because of the layering and building off clarity, I was finally able to see with clarity what prioritization really means when push comes to shove.
My word PRIORITIZE continues to be a struggle, but with a new year, comes a new word. What I have found is that my ability to gain clarity and prioritize is more easily achieved when I deliberately pause to consider what’s most important and how to achieve that. This brings me to my next layer.
2019: I’m excited to add another layer to who I’m becoming. While I don’t shed the previous layers of CLARITY and PRIORITIZATION, I find that I’m at a point that I need to shift my One Word focus to continue to better myself.
This year I’m choosing PAUSE. What I love about the word PAUSE, is that the mere thought of it fills me with peace. There is such peace in pressing pause. In fact, to press pause is a means to achieving clarity, and achieving clarity is what helps me realize my priorities.
I guess you could say I’m bundling up to prepare for the year ahead. Each layer is essential in the process to becoming my best self, but as I build who I am this year, my plan is to focus on how I press PAUSE in a moment when necessary and deliberately each day as a part of re-energizing, relaxing, focusing, and planning.