There’s a lot of talk about theme words this time of year. Some is positive but there is a lot of negative criticisms of the process. Unfortunately, it can be a meaningless process, and I’ll give some personal examples of that, but I also want to share how I’ve made some changes to make it a meaningful and impactful exercise.
When I first started getting into personal development, choosing a theme word really appealed to me. I thought it was fun and an easy way to boost my mindset so that I could achieve my goals more easily. I thought that if I wanted to have more abundance or I want to have more success, all I had to do was pick that word and voila!
ACHIEVE was the very first theme word that I ever picked. I had so many goals that I wanted to achieve and so I picked that word and went off and built my vision board around it. It was a bad way of doing things. It did not work for me at that time because I was focused on what I consciously wanted without actually digging underneath the layers and looking at what is was I really wanted. There were so many limiting beliefs sitting on top of my goals, that they weren’t ever going to eventuate and in fact became a negative influence. Each time I missed an accomplishment with a deadline, it became a layering of negativity that really didn’t help to support me.
Years of Pointless Words…
There were a couple of years of choosing words in that manner, ABUNDANCE, FOCUS, SUCCESS and they did not support me, not because there was anything wrong with the words, but because of how I was choosing them and the intention behind it. I had such a negative experience that I stopped choosing theme words entirely.
Then I learnt about limiting beliefs and the power of the unconscious mind, I learnt how our unconscious beliefs can sabotage what we are doing and I learnt that we can often choose goals (and therefore words) that aren’t even our true desires due to societal conditioning and epigenetics.
The Turning Point…
When I started to choose theme words again, it was the year after I had lost Mia. I was post Creatrix®, I was emerging after a grief-filled year full of upheaval, and I was coming into that new year in a very different space, after a lot of personal growth.
The words I chose were EASE and GRACE, and it’s a no-brainer why that might have been but let me unpack it a bit. I knew that for me to succeed, to progress my business and to move forward, I needed to give myself some EASE and to tackle life with more GRACE, to roll with the punches, and let things go.
EASE and GRACE became a little bit of a mantra for me about how I approached things, how I approached relationships, how I approached my work, how I approached clients. Every aspect of my life needed to feel easy and if it wasn’t easy, it needed to be done with grace, with appreciation for what was going on, and a space of no judgement and acceptance. That was important for me, and it was a great year. I was pregnant, I gave birth that year as well. I needed to be easy on myself because I had a little baby. Having a little baby brings up a lot of emotional stuff, having a little rainbow baby brings up a shit ton of stuff. It was important to have that ease and that grace, that gentleness with myself.
The following year, I chose STRENGTH, and I chose it because of how it applied to a range of areas of my life that I felt needed attention. I wanted to continue to develop my emotional strength, we’d gone through another rocky year so emotional strength, physical strength, and the resilience that comes with both was incredibly important.
It was also an important theme in terms of my business. I wanted a strong team, I wanted a strong business, I didn’t want growth at any cost. It was about building strength, about building deep foundations that were going to make everything sustainable. It came from a place of deep intention, and STRENGTH became a guiding force. Everything came down to how is this building strength in my business, in me, in my family or in my relationships.
When theme words are approached in this manner it permeates everything. It filters its way through everything, and it helps to tie everything together and keep your mind focused around what is actually important at any given time. As a result, I strengthened my business, I strengthened my team, and I developed stability in my business, which was powerful.
I manifested a house…
I got to strengthen my manifesting muscle (something completely not on my radar), because that year we had to manifest a house, in a crazy market with no deposit. Using my own process, we manifested a house by the end of that year and had moved.
The following year, 2018. The words that I used were ENVISION, ALIGN and UNFOLD because they were very much part of the manifesting process that manifested our house. And so, they became my three words. They became the basis of my course, Envision~Align~Unfold: The Goal Getting formula for Heartcentred Women, as well as workshops that I hosted in my home.
They also became guiding principles in my life, 2018 was a year of self-development and creativity. I spent a lot more time creating and co-creating a crystal-clear vision for my whole life, had a lot of Creatrix® to clear limiting beliefs and get into total alignment, as well as giving myself space for things to unfold. I developed my course, I worked with people that supported me to create and helped me as my plans unfolded.
Permission to pivot…
Which brings me up to 2019 and last year’s word. Initially, I started the year with INCREASE. Everything became about INCREASE, increased connection, increased income, increased client base, increased fitness increased everything. My house went from a few house plants to a jungle. I made more connections with people, deepened my friendships and built new friendships. It was the year I turned 40 so I set a goal of doing 40 things that pushed me to have experiences and adventures that were way out of my comfort zone. Then I went through a profound realization around, who I am, my sexuality and my romantic relationships and I went through a big transition working with my husband and coming out into a new phase of my life. In that time of upheaval INCREASE fell away.
TRANSPARENCY, SPACIOUS and JOYOUS became important to me as they expressed how I wanted to crack things open in my life and become open to experiencing life and love in a different way. Although, I pride myself on being honest and truthful, there’s always more work that can be done. You can be telling the truth and still leaving things out, so for me it was about telling the whole truth, really putting a bit more of me out there. It was really challenging, but it was also an exciting change and something that will continue.
My word for 2020?
Keeping in mind that many of the changes each theme word has imparted will continue as a layering of intention, I’ve settled on ENVIRONMENT.
As part of my The Emerging Woman process that I’ve gone through and that I’m now teaching to clients as part of my 1:1 programs. One element is living through your values, embodying what you believe, and acting accordingly. One of the things that we started dabbling with last year was decreasing our environmental, looking at growing our food a bit more, reducing the amount of packaging that we’re bringing home, and just starting to make changes around those sorts of things. I’m also focusing more broadly on what’s in my environment, who is in my environment, and being mindful of who I want in my environment, who I want in my space, and who I want to be influencing my environment. It’s about the connections and relationships that I have with people and what those relationships look like and how I interact with those people and where I interact with those people. I want more Me time out in the environment as well. I started doing bush walks last year, and I want to continue that. I had a goal of 40, I’ve completed 29, and I’m planning on completing those 40, hopefully before the end of January. Not only will I set myself a new challenge around the number of walks I want to do but I’ll be spending time in my local environment, working in the veggie garden.
As you can see, the way that I apply my words to lots of different aspects of my life, helps to then create a lifestyle, not an isolated goal. By having a word that becomes all pervasive it stops being a representation of aspirational shit I want to have and becomes a way that I want to be in the world. It becomes a more powerful because it becomes a habit, building a lifestyle, creating a way of being. It becomes a movement within your life.
If it’s just a thing to tick off, it’s not especially motivating, it won’t have a meaningful impact on your life and you probably won’t even remember your theme word until it comes time to pick a new one.
If you’re wanting to pick a word, if you’re choosing to pick something to theme your life, please go beyond the conscious list of things you want and really dig into what you truly want from your life. Explore ways that your theme word can permeate your whole life as this will help you to really connect with it so that it can truly influence your mindset and aid you in achieving your goals.