What *Was* Your Word?

What *Was* Your Word?

At the start of 2018, we asked a bunch of people what their ‘word’ was for this year. The word that they would ruminate on, that would inspire them, and maybe even inform their decision making for the year. And now here we are, one year on and cracking open the time capsule that is The Oh Nine to ask those same people - what happened!? Was it the year of (insert here), did it turn out differently, and would you be brave enough to give us a word for 2019?

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1.

At the start of last year, you said…

“2018, is the year of: sleep. This year I want to look after myself better by making sure I get enough rest. Instead of consistently going to bed late and then spending countless hours on my phone before getting some shut eye I'm going to leave my phone in the kitchen, buy an alarm clock and try to get the full 7-8 hours every night.  I think this will do wonders for my performance at work, mental health and general wellbeing.”

Did 2018 end up looking like you thought it would, a year of ‘sleep’?

Well, sort of. I wanted to look after myself in 2018 by making sure I had enough rest.  As they say, good quality beauty sleep is the key to one’s healthy well-being right? So I started going to bed at a decent time and even bought myself an alarm clock so that I didn’t need to have my phone in my room. I probably gained hours of precious sleep which otherwise would have been needlessly wasted away scrolling through Instagram and Youtube.  However, as with all New Year resolutions, this probably lasted until March/April… I definitely tried to be more disciplined with my sleep after this, but I would be lying if I said I fully lived up to the expectations of my word for 2018.

How does it make you feel reading that back?

Reading my word for 2018 back, I can’t help but feel a little disappointed.  That said, I’m also encouraged to take steps to keep looking after my sleep (and myself more generally).  I don’t think I would change how things played out in 2018. In the words of Nick Cummins, a.k.a the Honey Badger, a.k.a the Australian Bachelor – “there are no mistakes, only lessons”. What a rooster.

Do we dare ask.. your word for 2019?

Kind. I want to work on being kind to myself. I find it easy to be kind to others, but I tend to place unrealistic expectations upon myself (both professionally and personally) and then struggle to be kind or give myself grace when I fall short. So I’m keen to be kind in 2019.

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2.

At the start of last year, you said…

“2018, is the year of: dreaming. Where last year unravelled and left me with a new foundation, this year I want to try build upon it. I want to be more determined and disciplined in allowing myself to dream, which terrifies me. For a long time I have believed the floor will dissolve beneath me, so there was no point in making future plans. I’m hoping this year I can be brave enough to plan ahead, and that from that, creativity, opportunity and compassion can flourish.”

Did 2018 end up looking like you thought it would, a year of ‘dreaming’?

I would say I only started being brave enough to plan ahead in the last few months. I finally booked a trip overseas, got a plant for my room, grew a vege garden. In saying that - at the end of 2017  a friend and I wrote down each others words for the coming year. A few weeks ago they asked me if I achieved my word of ‘growth’. Turns out when I wrote this at the start of 2018, I had already forgotten my chosen word, haha. But I guess in a weird, kinda beautiful way, it did end up shaping my year. I may not have dreamt as much as I wanted but there was a looot of growth. I started a hectic job which has given me some pretty unique opportunities to do things and build relationships I couldn’t have dreamt of, I experienced some difficult situations that stretched me, I grew my roots deeper in new and old friendships and started seeing my desires and what I hold dearest is growing too.

Would you do anything differently?

Buy bedroom furniture!

And your word(s) for 2019?

Settle-down. For the most part last year was pretty chaotic. I felt quite out of control of my choices - making things up as I went. This year I want to build a home in myself, plant the things I want to see and then start harvesting them.

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3.

At the start of last year, you said…

“2018, is the year of: identity. A bit of a cliche, but after an occupationally ad-hoc 2017, I have realised the extent to which one's everyday activity (whether this be a job, hobby, personal project etc) can constitute personal identity and sense of purpose. This is ironically in contrast to myself a year ago when I, probably somewhat arrogantly, didn’t seem to care what I did and wanted to prioritise being “chill" over anything too "career-focussed". I still wouldn’t say I’m hyper-career driven, but I have definitely realised the importance that regular activity can have for sense of identity.”

Did 2018 end up looking like you thought it would, a year of ‘identity’?

More or less, yes! I have worked one media related job all year, as opposed to the 5 different jobs the year prior, which has ultimately left me feeling more grounded in my occupational identity than this time last year.

How does it make you feel reading that back?

I guess I feel happy for getting myself into a more regular and stable rhythm. Though it also makes me realise I was potentially being too hard on myself this time last year.

Would you do anything differently?

I would like to have been more productive with my spare time outside of work. But that’s always tricky!!

And your word for 2019?!

Reinvigorate. I want to reinvigorate my passion and time for working on personal creative projects.

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4.

At the start of last year, you said…

“2018, is the year of: self-knowledge. Being overwhelmed by a multitude of feelings showed me that there is so much going on within me that I choose to ignore if I don't spend time and effort with myself. Going into this year, I see an opportunity to deeply engage with who I am, and to be comfortable in the wholeness of that – the good, the bad, and the ugly. I want to separate self-knowledge from self-improvement, and learn to sit with myself rather than always trying to change who I am.”

Did 2018 end up looking like you thought it would, a year of ‘self-knowledge’?

Yeah, I think it really did! Right after I wrote this I did a sort of deep-dive into figuring out who I was, regardless – for the first time ever – of who I wanted to be. I am finally getting to this radical place of self-acceptance where my flaws arise, and I sit with them, acknowledge and accept them, rather than seeing their presence as an indication that I desperately need to change something about myself. It’s kind of like letting my true self float to the surface, realising that I am already wholly me, rather than a blank canvas I can paint my ideal personality onto.

How does it make you feel reading that back?

It’s super weird. I can barely remember feeling the way that I must have felt when I wrote that. It feels like forever ago, and makes me appreciate all the ways that I have grown in the past twelve months. While too much pressure on New Years resolutions can be a really bad thing, I am thankful for the opportunity to reflect on how far I’ve come.

Would you do anything differently?

I wish I journaled more – maybe then I would have been able to see my growth earlier too.

Your word for 2019?!

Create. I went into my first year of full-time design work in 2018, which took a lot of my creative energy – but I would like to start creating for myself. To take all that internal work I did and start making something with it, even if it’s only for me. For my personality type, self-discovery and creative work go hand in hand: the more I know myself the more I create, and the more I create the more I know myself.

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5.

At the start of last year, you said…

“2018, is the year of: recovery. 2018 needs to be the year of putting those things into practice and taking care of myself in ways that I didn't in 2017. My mental, physical and spiritual health all took a huge hit and I really want to take better care of myself this year.”  

Did 2018 end up looking like you thought it would, a year of ‘recovery’?

In some ways yes and in some ways completely not! I didn’t expect to be so happy. Sounds cheesy but everything fell into place in 2018 and I feel so good. I think I lost myself last year and that’s exactly what recovery for me was- finding myself again.

How does it make you feel reading that back?

Nostalgic, sad, proud

Would you do anything differently?

I don’t think so. That’s a tricky question.

And… your word for 2019?!

Resilience.

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6.

At the start of last year, you said…

“2018, is the year of: content. This year I am learning to be content. I am going to practise teaching myself to be satisfied with both the little successes and the big wins. I'm going to remind myself that I am human, I am young and I am allowed to feel uncertain, lost and insecure, but above all else I'm going to practise being kind to myself when dwelling in those feelings. I am going to endeavour to think positive, to be patient with myself and to whole-heartedly love myself. When the pressure of the world is telling me to be more or to be greater, I am going to gently remind myself that being content is enough.”

Did 2018 end up looking like you thought it would, a year of ‘content’?

When I look back at the beginning of 2018, I’m not entirely sure I knew what I wanted from it. My chosen word for the year was to be was ‘content’. For the most part, I truly believe that I tried to live with the intention of being self-satisfied, in who I am, in where my life is at, and in the reality that I may not be where I always dreamed to be at 23. It wasn’t easy, I don’t have ‘contentment’ sussed and I’m still a work in progress, but the important thing is that I started chipping away at it. Being content was (mostly) on the back of my mind and something I (mostly) strived to be.

How does it make you feel reading that back?

Reading back on what I wrote for my word for the year, I’m pretty proud of myself for acknowledging where I was at and what I needed to work on to love my life more. It was a big goal and one I will constantly be working on throughout my life. Being ‘content’ was a challenge set around self-care, self-appreciation and self-love. It may sound a little selfish when I put it that way, however I believe that when we take care of who we are, we can love on and cherish those around us in ways that we never dreamed we could before.

Do we dare ask.. your word(s) for 2019?

Back Yourself. It speaks for itself really. My goal is to get rid of self-doubt and to stop holding back on things that I’ve been too afraid to try or start. My challenge is to dream big and strive on knowing that I can do whatever I set my mind to.

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At the start of last year, you said…

“2018  is the year of: doing.  Last year was a year of dreaming, mapping, planning and building, preparing for a life of full time music and living in a van.  2018 is the year of doing, we’re embracing that dream and it’s amazing! Living the dream we worked hard to make happen and continuing to embrace all of it and keep building it as we go. It’s a never ending adventure.”

Did 2018 end up looking like you thought it would, a year of ‘doing’?

100% yes, and I’m bloody stoked I can say that!

How does it make you feel reading that back?

It's pretty cool to getting to this time of year, where a lot of reflection naturally happens for me, and to be able to read something I wrote a year ago and actually think, yeah! We really did make things happen and chase the dream... I'm stoked! It hasn't all been easy, but I think we did good this lil 2018 year.

Would you do anything differently?

Yes, I would worry less! I have a husband who has such a peace about him, when things get rocky, like when the head gasket of your van dies... like the whole engine stops and you can't go anywhere without spending everything you've saved on your full time music adventure so far... and you're stuck in a small snowy town in the South Island with only one giant tow bill quote and a huge sum to fix the van you live in to get you going again. I worry! He stays calm. And then, it's 5 months later and you look back and everything worked itself out and you realise you wasted so much energy worrying about something that was always going to be okay in the end. I'd love to learn to worry less, and I think I am, maybe. Slowly, but surely.

Your word for 2019?

Anticipation. I'm bloody excited for this new year ahead.

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8.

At the start of last year, you said…

“2018 is the year of: experience. I don’t want to just survive for the weekend and spend my days churning out the daily grind.  I want to be present in my working lifestyle with clients and experience new places, food and countries. I want to get to the end of 2018 and feel like I experienced a full year, not just the highlights.”

Did 2018 end up looking like you thought it would, a year of ‘doing’?

Reflecting back on my hopes for 2018 and my word ‘experience’ I feel I have definitely lived this out. I’ve been fortunate enough to travel all over the world trying new things and visiting beautiful places. I’ve  spent a lot of quality time with friends and family and even managed to achieve a few personal goals.

How does it make you feel reading that back?

I previously said that I didn’t want to live for the weekend and that I wanted to enjoy every day, was this a reality? No not really, the amount of stress and pressure I can put upon myself is ridiculous, but I do think this is something I can control better into 2019.

Your word for 2019?

Satisfaction. I’m hoping 2019 will continue to involve new experiences however my job satisfaction will be my main focus. I want to work hard to achieve my business goals.. but also find a balance between home life and work.

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