Word of the year – contentment

Last year I chose three words to try to live my life by – contentment, creativity and compassion. This year I have narrowed it down to just one – contentment. I think the other two fold into that.


What is very different this year is I haven’t set myself goals and targets and other measures of success. I am a highly driven person and I am actually trying to change that and be more relaxed in my life. Last year I had a complex series of goals and things to achieve.

I don’t need to set myself daily things to do because I have an incredibly strong morning routine which includes meditation, prayer, journaling and my creative writing. My music practice happens later in the day, normally after I have finished my work.

Contentment covers various areas that I want to focus on – music, writing, drawing, simplicity, relationships, connection with the divine and looking after my health. If I’m working towards all of these things I am content. And that could just be spending twenty minutes a day on each area.

I think I have got my life balanced now so that I know where I am with all of these things and what I need to do to move forward with them. Setting myself goals and targets gives me a rod to beat myself up with when I am not doing enough or missing targets. I also don’t need a daily calendar to tick off things I have done, that sends me a bit crazy.

This is a new and much softer way of working and I hope that it will allow me to relax a bit more. Stress causes fatigue and even pain for me, so I hope that working towards being more relaxed will help with my health.

Join the conversation


  1. Good for you, taking such loving care of yourself. It is wonderful to read what you share about this. You are the second person I know of who has a yearly word.

    I never have, mostly because I could never count on what the future might bring, but I think I am in a place where it feels safe enough to have that kind of nexus.

    Anyway, my word is acceptance, as in accepting and honoring whatever comes along, as well as being aware of judgement and how disruptive it can be for me.

    Thanks for the boost to get my year going somewhere. Have a wonderful holiday season.

  2. Jan, I am in the same boat as you. I am a person who wants to achieve goals in life too. My major goal is to receive my Master’s degree in Classical Studies that I am working on now. I am expected to finish by the fall of 2017. I hope that it goes alright for me. The discussion questions are not easy for sure. I hope to succeed too. I am glad that you are keeping yourself busy and looking after yourself well. At least, taking music lessons relaxes you more.

  3. Acceptance is an excellent word! As you say, honouring what comes along and not judging!

    I’m glad I was able to help you – I hope you enjoyed the season

  4. Yes indeed, music lessons and my practice really does relax me.

    A Masters in Classical Studies is ace – is that through the OU? Best of luck with it, part time study can be really hard as there are so many calls on our time!

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