16th January 2015

My office did an exercise at our retreat this summer that I’ve seen a lot of bloggers mention lately – we defined our One Word for the year. Each of us read One Word that will Change Your Life and then picked our own word – mine was Build.

I really enjoyed the exercise, the conversation that stemmed from it, and the effects of my word on my work habits. My word made a lot of sense at the time – I was literally building our new website, I was focused on building a network of friends and colleagues on campus, and I wanted to build an office space for myself that I could be both comfortable and productive in. Our “work year” isn’t over yet, and I’m not abandoning my word – but I like the idea of giving my personal life its own word for 2015.

words for 2015

I think there’s a Bible verse about the woman who has all of these qualities…

So I started writing down words that I liked the sound of – mostly adjectives, mostly aspirational, mostly kind of fluffy-nebulous-loosey-goosey-not-exactly-actionable words. I really liked Elise’s idea of a “hold-able” word.

And then this week, as I was tinkering around with this website, digging and shaping in what is likely the closest to a garden my hands will ever get, a word came to me. Well,the word came to me.

My word for 2015 is FLOURISH.

verb – to grow or develop in a healthy or vigorous way, especially as the result of a particularly favorable environment

I’m going to give myself room to flourish in real life. Go to those barre classes, even if I do flop around to my own beat, uncoordinated and out of sync. Show up for yoga, even if I can’t touch my toes or flatten my back or completely relax my face. Go to bed when I’m tired, take a bath when I’m sore, read a book without worrying who else is reading it or what the rest of the world thought. Keep buying myself flowers, because they make me happy and that’s all the reason I need.

I’m going to nourish my relationships so that they flourish, too. Be as silly as I can be when I’m reading to Henry. Be gentle and soft, and love him enough to teach him the rules. Really give the dreaded bedtime routine the effort it needs (and deserves). Ask my husband out on dates so that he knows that I know what a catch he really is.

And I want to flourish professionally, too. Go to those networking events that terrify me so. Connect with the amazing community of Charlotteans who are out there talking about our city and our industry and the amazing things we can do together. Don’t get in my own way when it comes to building my tribe and really putting down roots in this city.

Water, sunshine, oxygen, love, challenge – these are the things I need to FLOURISH. Let’s get started.