Chris Brogan suggests defining three words to guide your year. He views the words as more purposeful than resolutions, arguing that each word have its own depth and intent, such as his choices this year for Plan, Leverage, and Fabric.
He’s blogged about choosing three words for several years and a cursory review of Google hits indicate other bloggers following his lead, such as the following people and their words. Click their names to read why they chose their words.
Lisa Brown: Confidence, Present, Positivity
Rumbi Bwerinofa: Receptive, Synergy, Service
CC Chapman: Challenge, Value, Create
Beth Ann Chiles: Be, Fearless, Balance
Greg Falken: Rebuild, Train, Serve
Rob Fields: Present, Brave, Simplicity
Steve Garfield: Play, Fun, Surprise
Anthony Iannarino: Order, Depth, Lifestyle
Jessica Lawlor: Light, Choice, Possibility
Susan Murphy: Moment, Movement, Mindful
Danielle Omar: Align, Simplify, Partner
Hollie Pollard; Happy, Healthy, Helping
Jim Raffel: Processes, Service, Growth
Michael Schechter: Healthier, Re-situated, Expression
Michael White: Charity, Creativity, Insight
Betsy Wuebker: Do, One, Thing
Me: Perception, Is, Reality
It’s a phrase I’ve uttered many times over the past five years as a digital marketing consultant and an elected city councilor. Its meaning, spoken together, is clearly understood. It doesn’t matter what you think you’re doing because people will see through your charades. You must be real. You must be blunt. You must be yourself.
Perception: My clothes define me. My car defines me. My speech defines me. It is irrelevant why I picked one pair of jeans over another pair of jeans; or why I combed my hair forward instead of back. All that matters is how the other person in the room views me. To potential employers and to my constituents, I am very cognizant that people have their own perceptions about every which way I act and present myself. I need to remember all of them are correct simultaneously.
Is: The third-person singular of the verb, “to be,” evokes existence. Through the word, I practice mindfulness and honesty. It keeps me centered as me.
Reality: Everything happens for a reason. Fate, destiny, call the absence of free will whatever you want. The dictionary defines reality as “the world or the state of things as they actually exist, as opposed to an idealistic or notional idea of them.” I try to live as things are, guided in part by how people perceive them and in part by what they are. In this sense, reality is the objective of the other two words.
I do not want to choose three random words to define my year. I want to continue saying that perception is reality and to continue living through this idea. I empower you to create your own words to live your life.