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A Creative Way to Usher in the New Year

A Creative Way to Usher in the New Year Many people have stopped setting New Year’s resolutions. That’s because traditional resolutions can feel tedious, punitive, uninspiring and overwhelming. Instead, many individuals have started selecting one word to encapsulate the upcoming year.

“The power in claiming a word for the year is that it allows you to claim who you wish to be in the world rather than grounding your worth and well-being in what you do,” said Rosie Molinary, author of the book Beautiful You: A Daily Guide to Radical Self-Acceptance.

Picking a word helps you chart the path to living a life you’ve imagined for yourself, she said.

Think of your word as a flashlight that guides and illuminates your next steps. It is a word that inspires and invigorates you. It is a word that sums up how you’d like to spend your days.

In the past years Molinary’s words have included: thrive; flow; wholehearted; expansiveness; well-being and peace. She’s still deciding her word for 2015 but these words have been resonating with her: spark; shine; abundance; radiate; glow; manifest; and embody.

She also shared these other examples of words of the year: connect; commit; leap; grow; patience; simplify; explore; and now.

Essentially, your word of the year can be anything and in any form — a verb, noun or adjective.

Here are additional examples: play; purpose; heart; gratitude; generous; spirit; soulful; listen; love; journey; rhythm; meaning; surrender; silly; slow; focus; flavor; feed; feel; appreciation; heal; wonder; magic.

Molinary suggested these prompts for helping readers identify their word of the year:

  • Reflect on 2014. What was its gift to you?
  • As you think about 2015, what feelings or ideas come to mind?
  • What feeling do you want more of in your life?
  • What shift or focus would bring you a greater sense of well-being or satisfaction in your life?
  • What would you like to experience in 2015?
  • What are some of the words you hope will describe your 2015?
  • As you consider these answers, what word makes sense to use as a touchstone and guide in 2015?

Here are other questions to ask yourself: What inspires you? What words feel true or meaningful? What would you like to surround yourself with in the New Year? Where would you like to focus your energy? What lessons have you learned in 2014? What would you like to focus your attention on in 2015?

Once Molinary has her word of the year, she considers these additional questions: “What will this concept bring to my life? How does living with the intention of this word make my life look? What kind of choices do I need to make to really live this word?”

She also considers her word before making critical decisions and identifies several actions that living her word encompasses.

According to Molinary, “Having a feeling front of mind for each year really does enhance how I approach most anything that comes at me during that time. It allows me to shape who and how I want to be in the world for that moment in time.”

A Creative Way to Usher in the New Year

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Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S.

Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S. is an Associate Editor and regular contributor at Psych Central. Her Master's degree is in clinical psychology from Texas A&M University. In addition to writing about mental disorders, she blogs regularly about body and self-image issues on her Psych Central blog, Weightless.

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APA Reference
Tartakovsky, M. (2018). A Creative Way to Usher in the New Year. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 30, 2020, from
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Last updated: 8 Jul 2018 (Originally: 28 Dec 2014)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Jul 2018
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