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Why choose a word for the new year?

Energies for a new year
Words for 2024

It is natural at the end of a year to reflect back, and look forward. In reality, every day is an opportunity to start afresh, but we are in a global energy of starting over, so let's go with it! In the past, many of us would make resolutions, promises of what we will do differently in the new year. However, in the past several years, choosing a word for the new year has become quite popular. Personally, I prefer to choose an energy for the new year, a theme of what I am moving into. This year, I am also choosing (or it is choosing me!) a symbol for 2024, a visual to remind me of the energy I choose. Last year, I chose the energy of allowing.

This past year was quite a year of transition for me, and adding a symbol to choosing an energy feels right, and as a very visual person a way to be reminded regularly of my choice.

Let's chat a bit about why choosing a word may be more powerful than a resolution:

1. Resolutions vs. Words for the Year


  • Often are too specific and rigid.

  • Can be easily abandoned if not achieved immediately.

  • Can lead to feelings of failure and disappointment.

  • Focus on what you want to "do." as opposed to how you want to be

Word for the Year:

  • Provide a broad, guiding theme for the year.

  • Are flexible and adaptable to various situations.

  • Encourage personal growth and self-reflection.

  • Focus on how you want to "be."

2. The Power of a Word for the Year

Choosing a word for the year allows you to set a positive and overarching intention for your life without the pressure of strict resolutions. Here's why it can be more effective:

  • Focus on Mindset: A word for the year serves as a constant reminder of your desired mindset and values, helping you make choices aligned with them.

  • Long-term Vision: It encourages you to think about the big picture and the type of person you want to become, fostering lasting change.

  • Flexibility: Unlike resolutions, a word for the year is adaptable to changing circumstances, making it easier to stick with throughout the year.

  • Reduced Stress: With a single guiding word, you're less likely to feel overwhelmed or discouraged, as it provides a sense of clarity and simplicity.

3. Exploring Alternatives: Energy of the Year and Symbol of the Year

If a single word doesn't resonate with you, there are alternative approaches that can be just as effective:

  • Energy of the Year: Choose an energy or feeling you want to embody throughout the year. Whether it's "joy," "peace," or "resilience," this approach focuses on the emotional experience you want to cultivate.

  • Symbol of the Year: Select a symbol that represents your aspirations. It could be an image, a meaningful object, or even a color. Use this symbol as a visual reminder of your goals and intentions. Perhaps find a charm you can wear of the symbol to carry the energy physically with you.

As we step into a new year, consider leaving behind a cycle of resolutions that may have led

to frustration and disappointment. Instead, embrace the power of choosing a word for the year, an energy of the year, or a symbol of the year. These alternatives provide a more flexible, mindful, and effective way to create meaningful change in your life. So, what will your word, energy, or symbol be for the upcoming year? The choice is yours, and the possibilities are endless. Watch this space (or subscribe to my blog or newsletter) for my next blog post on the process I use, and follow along as I choose my energy (and symbol) for 2024.

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