In part one of this mini-series, we talked about why everyone needs a word of the year. We left off with the idea that as people go through life, plans change, but intentions can remain the same. Choosing a word to guide your actions makes you a lot more intentional. But how?
Plans Change But Intentions Remain the Same
One of the scriptures I mentioned at the closing of part 1 reminds me of the importance of being intentional. “Train a child in the way they should go so when they are old they will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6).
I am not saying that this verse means anything more than what it is saying. I reference this verse because I see many areas in which this concept applies. When we work on something, train our minds, bodies, etc., we see the results down the road. It is hard to fall off track when you’ve prepared and practiced.
So, if we set our intentions, which I recommend doing with a word of the year, then no matter what changes, obstacles, or mistakes we encounter, we stay aligned with our intention moving in a forward direction.
How to Set Intentions with a Word of the Year
I was once told that intentions don’t matter, it’s what we do that count. I understood what they meant, but I didn’t quite agree with the notion that intentions mean nothing in life.
Even when we make mistakes, if our intentions were well-meaning, then our next step will likely be guided by those intentions. So how do we use a word of the year to set intentions?
Reflect on the Previous Year
There are lessons to be learned from our past and history. If we don’t reflect on our past year, we don’t catch the lessons. Ask yourself what you enjoyed, what areas you grew in, and where you struggled.
Ask Yourself How You’d Like to Feel in the New Year
If you’re not clear on what it is you want or where you’d like to be, you won’t be disciplined in getting there. There must be the intention. There has to be a vision. How do you want to feel?
When you have some skin in the game, or in this case you know what your intentions are and your vision is on the line, you’ll stay committed. You’re emotionally invested.
Identify Your Values
Once you know where you’ve come from, and where you want to go, you can be disciplined in your actions. Trust in the Lord to make straight your path. That when God’s plan looks different than your own, you follow with intentionality.
What do you value most? Are your actions reflecting that? Does your word of the year, reflect all that we’ve discussed?
Choose a Word That Embodies Your Calling
Finally, you want to narrow down your thoughts, goals, etc. into a single word. In part 3, I will share a list of words to browse and how to plan using a word of the year.
What was your greatest lesson in the year 2021?