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My Three Words for 2014, What Are Yours?

If you’re a writer, blogger or avid reader, you’re probably a bit of a word geek. Words have power. There’s a reason for that old saying, the pen is mightier than the sword. Of course what kind of power is the big question. Most writers (or at least this one) intend or hope that their words inspire, inform, help, entertain or spark conversation. Otherwise what’s the point, right?

Every New Year now, quite a few bloggers and blog readers whom I’ve come to know and respect, choose three words to live by for the upcoming year. Of course, no one really lives by them; the words are merely intended to serve as a compass of sorts.

Even this might be a stretch, but never-the-less I have found this exercise to be quite beneficial. I prefer it hands down to making resolutions or setting goals. I like the simplicity of selecting three words to serve as my personal guide words for the year. I like how it re-enforces, at least for me, the power that words have or can have to influence life on a daily basis.

The first year I participated in this exercise I chose the words inspire, enjoy and balance. Last year I chose  focus, joy and yes, balance again. Finding balance is a challenge for me… and yes, you can hang onto words for more than one year!

Throughout 2013, I did find myself reflecting upon my word choices. I did pause from time to time to ask myself how I was doing. I never really did this with resolutions or goals, which for me tend to feel too restrictive or unattainable. Or maybe I just always picked the wrong ones…

This year the three words I’m going with are persevere, growth and contentment.

There are many things I want to persevere at such as writing my memoir, getting my ebook into print and making healthier life-style choices – the list goes on and on in my head; putting it all into practice, now that’s another matter.

As a person, I want to grow in many ways as well. I could stand improvement in countless areas. I guess we all could. As a writer, I want to grow my writing platform and of course, my writing skills in general. I also want to grow in my cancer advocate role. And oh yes, I want to grow a better head of post-chemo hair. Sorry, I couldn’t resist that one and I also realize it’s probably not happening… oh well, I can still dream can’t I?

And as for contentment, it’s the best word I could come up with for now to take the place of balance. I figured I probably couldn’t use that one three years in a row… Does balance bring more contentment? I think it might. Contentment will happen naturally if I manage to persevere more at certain things and if I do manage to grow even a bit, right? Contentment doesn’t mean settling, it means being satisfied with doing what I am best able to do on any particular day and remembering that effort always counts. Plus, I wish to find more contentment as I embrace the here and now of each day as it unfolds.

I like my three words. I like how they are umbrella words allowing me to “tuck” many things under each of them.

If you haven’t yet tried this simple word exercise, why not give it a try?

And if you decide you don’t like your three words, you can always change them or ditch them altogether. There are no rules to this exercise; perhaps this is another reason why I like it so much!

So those are my three guide words for 2014, as of today anyway.

What are yours? I’d love to know what they are!

Also, if you have a post about your three words, feel free to share a link to it with a comment.





3 Little Words | Axium Healthcare Pharmacy

Wednesday 7th of January 2015

[…] blogger, Nancy Stordahl says “I have found this exercise to be quite beneficial. I prefer it hands down to making resolutions […]

New Year's 2015

Sunday 4th of January 2015

[…] three words to act as benchmarks or guideposts throughout the year.  Here’s an example where Nancy Stordahl chooses her 3 words and then writes their meaning to […]


Monday 13th of January 2014

My three words are


That simple, doable, it is what it is.......

Last year was a write off a lot of misery this year I'm done with it . It didn't bother any one but me in the long scheme of things. I will not Regurgitate past wrongs..Let go of other things Bottom line If I don't care you sure can't expect anyone else to either...... Love Alli..


Monday 13th of January 2014

Alli, LOL! Your three words are priceless! Thanks for sharing.

Lisa DeFerrari

Friday 10th of January 2014

I always like to take time to reflect at the beginning of the new year and am in the process of doing that now. I'm not sure if I'll have three words, but I do know that growth is a big theme for me too this year. Thanks so much for sharing your three words!


Friday 10th of January 2014

Lisa, Probably most people do at least a bit of reflection as each New Year unfolds. I kind of prefer the idea of a fresh start every single day. Growth is always something to strive for and there are so many areas in need of growth one can choose to work on, well for me anyway! If you do pick two more words, stop by and share them if and when you'd like. Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

Claudia Schmidt

Friday 10th of January 2014

Hi Nancy,

What a great exercise. My three words: Expand, embrace and exhale.

In my mind if I'm not expanding, I'm contracting so this one is important.

I want to embrace what is, and not judge.

I want to exhale so that I continue to find peace and my calm center.

Thanks for making me clarify this with your post!



Friday 10th of January 2014

Claudia, Oh, those are good ones. The "e" word trio I guess! And I appreciate you sharing why you chose them. Good luck expanding, embracing and exhaling this year! Thanks for sharing!

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