January 25, 2019

What is your word of the year?

Did you set a resolution this New Years Eve? 

Don’t worry — I didn’t either.

Unfortunately, resolutions haven’t ever seemed to work for me in bringing about lasting change in my life. My resolutions were generally some sort of unmeasurable commitment to do something that I hadn’t done, or to stop doing something I was doing too much of already.

I have resolved to give more to charity, to stop drinking, to eat more vegetables and less meat, to read more, to have longer, more thoughtful conversations, and to stop biting my nails.

Now, if you know me at all, you know that I’m about making life better. But for me, making a wish in a champagne haze at the end of the world’s longest cocktail party is probably not the most effective way for me to go about it.

Enter the Word of the Year. And combined with sanctuary, this is a powerful practice.

Let me explain: My word of the year is my theme, my mantra for the year. And that’s powerful stuff. But when coupled with the practice of sanctuary, the word of the year becomes an engine of change.

My word this year is MANIFEST. When something is manifest, it is clear or obvious to the eye, or to the mind.

But I intend the word as a verb: to manifest amazing things this year. 

My list of things I want to manifest is a long one, but it has a few highlights. I’ll share them with you here:

  • A growing audience for the message of sanctuary
  • My design firm continuing to thrive and grow, both in the number of projects we undertake, but also in the number of highly-qualified, seriously motivated sanctuary creators we have on our team, as well as a lovely, bigger office for all of us to use for that cause
  • More mind-stretching learning at my graduate courses (and of course good grades)
  • More amazing opportunities for my daughter to grow and take on more independence
  • My son to continue to unfold his wings in the world and fly steadily toward his future

So here’s where the magic of sanctuary comes in. In my morning writing, I refer to my word of the year every single day. It’s right there on the cover of my notebook. Every day I’m thinking about my list of things I want to manifest, and every day I take some step toward shepherding those dreams into my reality. 

It’s that constant, daily attention to the candle that keeps the flame burning in my heart.

I wonder what your word of the year is. Have you picked one? Would you share it with me, along with what it means to you?

If you haven’t picked a word, the right word will find you right when you start to reach for it.

And when we incorporate that word into our daily sanctuary practice, we take the first steps on the path of creating real and lasting change.

With deep appreciation and wishes for a blessed 2019,


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