Tag Archives: My One Word

My One Word 2015

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At a friend’s request several years ago, I chose one word to concentrate on throughout an entire calendar year.  My 2012 word was peace.  In 2013 I chose the word focus.  Last year my 2014 word was truth.  Each word has been enlightening, engaging and eye-opening.

It’s been a busy several weeks for me but I want to go on the record with my chosen word for 2015.

listen water

Not only do I enjoy talking a lot and appreciate a good active listener, I also started a new job at a call center which requires careful listening.  The people who call me are in some level of crisis in their homes, typically burst pipes, theft, fire, or storm damage.  They deserve someone who will listen with empathy and skill.

My first obvious challenge with this word is to begin actively listening instead of finishing people’s sentences, which I only do as a helpful service.

Turns out some many most people don’t like it.  Also?  Sometimes I’m waaayy off.

listen beer

Webster’s Dictionary defines listen this way:

1.  to make a conscious effort to concentrate on hearing something or somebody

2.  to pay attention and take something into account. 

Hearing and listening are not the same thing.

I am discovering moments where the word LISTEN practically blinks in my mind, preventing me from interrupting and instead valuing the other person’s time, thought and input by allowing them to continue their train of thought to completion.  It’s like I’m learning how to listen–really listen–for the first time.

hand over mouth listen

I am slowly learning that listening at my job and in my home are reaping great benefits.  I’m learning a lot more about the people I listen to.  When I actively listen, I show them they are important and worth my full attention and time.  Listening avoids mistakes and helps solve problems.  Trust and respect increase.   Well, most of the time.

listen strangers

It is also very telling how quickly I get distracted, want to interrupt, or make wrong assumptions.  And sometimes I get so wrapped up in what I am doing that I acknowledge verbally, only to be reminded later that I wasn’t listening.  Like, at all.

Take for example just now when my kid told me something but I was distracted by writing this post on listening.

But it is only February.  I have 10 more months to improve.

listen dog better

What helps you listen?

Theme Song 2014

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Here in the stillness
Where thoughts are born
Here in the frailty
We’re tattered and torn.
Tattered and torn.

Here in confession
Here in our mess
Here in the places
We’re mostly undressed.
Mostly.

Oh, honesty.
Oh, honesty.
The truth be told
For saving of our souls.

TRUTH

Here in the corner
Where we craft our pain.
Here in the open
We’re laying our blade.
Laying our blade.

Here in the hallway
Here behind doors
Here in the places
We wage our private wars.

Oh, honesty
Oh, honesty
The truth be told
For saving of our souls.

TRUTH

Only the truth and truthfulness
Can save us now
Only the truth and truthfulness
Can save us
Only the truth and truthfulness
Can save us
Can save us now

Oh, honesty
Oh, honesty
The truth be told
For the saving of our souls.

Honesty — Sara Groves

Truth

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In 2012 the word PEACE served me well as our family barreled towards a lovely, heart-wrenching crisis.

In 2013 the word FOCUS surfaced time after time in many ways in my relationships, writing and self-care.

My One Word for 2014 is TRUTH.

truth in love

In each of these three instances, the word that bubbled up for me was something I was reaching for, striving for, not quite mastering.

In the past few months I have recognized the need for TRUTH–learning and speaking my own, and discerning then acting on the truth around me.

Art by Beata

Art by Beata

I love how the artist made this lady look serene, but not overjoyed.

Truth blindsides.

Truth shocks.

Truth is often delivered by a gut-punch.

Truth sometimes is unbelievable, takes time to process, and requires a period of recovery.

Mareike Böhmer Graphics

Mareike Böhmer Graphics

On the up side…

Truth is a worthy journey.

Truth is deserved awareness.

Truth breeds authenticity.

Truth is productive and fertile and unifying and an effective tool of discovery.

 

What is your One Word for 2014?