My 3 Words for 2018

This is still my favorite way to approach New Year’s resolutions and some reflection on the year behind me. This process is from Chris Brogan. You can read about the discernment process and his 3 words for 2018 on his blog. You can search for the hashtag #my3words to see other people’s takes on it. You can read my 3 words for 2017 and find links to the years before that on my blog.

My three words for 2017 were Slow, Teach, Ask. I feel like I made progress in all three areas, so that is something. And I specifically referenced these intentions in my mind throughout the year, to help me choose my words and my commitments and my actions. Which is the point. And it was easy to tell other people my words because they were both simple and cryptic. Most of Brogan’s 3 words choices fit that model. Each single syllable word holds a wealth of meaning and serves as a touchstone for a profound intention.

This year, I’m going to buck that tradition and use the longer words that baldly mean what I mean.
Family, Intellectual, Marketing. 
Family, because this year is going to require more engagement with my extended family than before. My parents are aging and my sister is bearing most of the burden because I live so far away. So I am acknowledging how much positive love and support I have been given by my parents and committing to be more present and more helpful in the coming year.

Intellectual, because I really enjoyed the writing and reading and talking to academic people I did in 2017. I want to push myself to find more opportunities for thinking and writing and talking to people about ideas in the coming year. Most of my non-work reading in the last dozen years has been young adult fantasy and adventure fiction, following my tween and teen kids. (Part of my standing commitment to be able to have conversations with them about the things they are interested in.) But I remember now that I want to read to challenge my brain, not just to comfort or distract myself. And I want to push myself to articulate my ideas clearly and completely. And to write for a wider audience.

Marketing is all about my paid work. This last year, I took an online course with Seth Godin, the first cohort of The Marketing Seminar. It helped me in so many ways. What do you do? Who is it for? What change are you trying to make? How do people who need us learn that we have what they need? How do we delight the people we serve? This coming year, I want to address more straightforwardly the challenges for FWCC, which all have a marketing component. And I don’t want to waste time looking for new words that mean the same things as marketing technical terms but sound spiritual. Plain speaking is still a Quaker value.

As I look at this, these are my personal intentions for improvements in 2018. And as always, I try to remember that what I truly desire to do is not my will, but thine, O Lord.

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