Saturday, January 7, 2023

FIT—My One Word Theme of the Year: What's Yours?

I won't go so far as to write 22 highlights of 2022, but if I had to, one would be attending the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am at Spyglass Hill Golf Course (the tourney is played on three courses)I arrived late Friday afternoon and joined my friend who had just completed her volunteer shift. We ventured out to watch the remaining groups. We were so busy catching up and enjoying the gorgeous afternoon, I actually didn't pay attention to who we were following. As fate would have it, there was so much down time on the back nine that it was easy and natural for the celebrities and golfers to interact with the fans. I looked over and realized one of my favorite singers—Darius Rucker—was in the mix.

Too often known as Hootie. Rucker is an excellent golfer (I've read his handicap is as low as a 4 and as high as an 8). I could hardly believe he was so up close and personal, as his music had recently and unintentionally found its way into my playlist. He looked at me and said "have we met before?" I was so caught off guard, I didn't say much. If I were to press rewind, I would have told Rucker how much I love his music and in particular his voice. It is so pure. That is the word I use over and over to describe his voice.

Well, if I see him this year, I will let him know he is a big reason, pure became my one word theme for 2022.

Gretchen Rubin and her sister Elizabeth Kraft of The Happiness Project taught me about the power of a one word theme. On their blog, Rubin has written,

At the beginning of a new year, many of us look for ways to make our lives happier, healthier, more productive, and more creative in the months ahead.

I love these kinds of exercises, so for 2022, I: made new year’s resolutions, joined the yearly challenge—this year, to “#Outisde23in23,” and made a “23 for 2023″ list

There’s another kind of exercise I love: identifying one idea, summarized in just one word or phase, as the overarching theme for the coming year. choose one word, or a short phrase, to sum up what we want to focus on for the new year. When we distill our aims into a single word or phrase, it’s easier to remember it — and to take action.

Though a loyal listener, I had never chosen a one-word theme. However, when I found myself saying the word "pure" more and more, I thought maybe I ought to do something with it. 

My missed opportunity at the AT&T led me to stay at talk to John Angotti, a talented liturgical musician who came to Saint Francis High School to sing and teach music students. A long time fan, I love his voice because it's so pure—unadulterated, unfiltered. Its sound is powerful—so potent. It's pure.

After class, I made a point of telling  John how much I love his voice. "It's so pure," I said, with both gusto and conviction. I mentioned "as a music fan, I love singer songwriters and in particular I am drawn to a pure voice, similar to those of Darius Rucker, Ronnie Milsap, Wynonna Judd and yours." He nodded in understanding. He said, "My ex-brother in law was in the band Hootie and the Blowfish. "Hold My Hand" inspired "I Send You Out (Mission of Love)." And then he sang  the opening lines of both songs...."With a little love, and some tenderness... pause to speak: That paved the way to I send you out, on a Mission of Love." I nearly lost it. AMAZING!!! Pure and more pure. I had my word; I was all in.

In my prayer life, I began to reflect upon  the purity of God's love. God's love for us is beautiful. It's powerful It's true. It's pure.

I came to realize what I sought in the game of golf was to hit my irons pure. There is no better feeling. The outcome or result of my shot was of less consequence if I hit the ball pure. (It still matters, don't get me wrong!)

I was not seeking approval or affirmation for my word of the year. However, when I read the meaning of my mother's maiden name, I knew I made a choice that will stay with me in 2023.

I went on a two week golf trip to Ireland with 13 other women. We all made many purchases and among my favorites is a keychain for my mom of her family crest and the meaning behind her name. The back side of it said "A personal name meaning bright or pure." My word for 2022—pure— is part of my family lineage.

The Happier Project offers a list of words that you might consider for your one word theme. They included examples they have used in the past and why they are using their words today. While I did give it a glance, I prefer to let the word come to me. My sense is there is a word that is circling in the atmosphere for you to catch and capture. What is looming in your latitude?

For me the word for 2023 is fit. Who doesn't want to be more fit in the year ahead. I know I do. I think I will feel better if I am a little more fit. I enjoy going to the gym and I always feel more energized when I do—both personally and physically. This morning, I got my body fat measured. #fun. Therefore, 2023 is a year to get fit.

2023 is also a year for me to reclaim its power. I have been told "it's not a fit" personally and professionally. Fair enough....but I'm here to figure out how I can make it fit, or at least try to to do that. 

I'm excited to see other ways that being "fit," making things "fit" and a good "fit" will emerge in the year ahead. 

What is your word or phrase for 2023? What word or phrase can you use to serve and guide you in the days to come? Are you looking for one? Or will you let it come to you? Let me know what sticks...and fits. Happy 2023!

And one more good song...Pure Love by Ronnie Milsap

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