What’s Your Word for 2020?

I had such a great time leading a workshop recently for the members of my book club helping them craft their vision for 2020. It was empowering for us to spend this time together focusing on what’s important.

We discussed the big differences between the more traditional style of “making a resolution” versus the recent philosophy of intentions. Simply put, resolutions are fixed absolutes, somewhat inflexible demands we put on ourselves to commit to a change in our behavior. It’s the goal we want to achieve but does not outline the steps to get there.  Here is an article on the “Top Five Resolutions” and I have made all of them over the years.  Did you know 80% of us will fail at the follow-through of our resolution by mid-February?  This is due largely to our lack of self-discipline (link here for a great article).  A resolution doesn’t focus on “the why.”

In contrast, an intention is “the why.”  It’s the steps we need to take to reach our goal.  Intentions can be adjusted and are more forgiving and allow us to stay on course even while changing direction.  Here’s an article on how to take those top five resolutions and change them into intentions.

Ready to find your word?  Still need more ideas?  Here’s a link to brainstorm ideas for your Word for 2020.  My word for 2019 was #movetobloom and in 2018 it was #celebrateeveryday – which turned into my mantra for my blog that I still use today. For 2020 I chose “Nourish”. I am focusing on three key areas in my life – Body, Mind and Soul and how I can practice nourishing each of these.

At the end of the workshop, we created our own My Intent bracelets stamping by-hand the word we chose. Each woman selected something different and unique to the season of their life – Bloom, Create, Worthy, Courage, Grace, Balance, Forward, Trust, Bold, Strength, Present, Be Still, Connect, Boundary, and Simplify.

Finding your WORD is a simple, fun, and empowering exercise.
In a world inundated with distractions, it’s powerful to have a daily reminder of what you want to actively focus on, or manifest, every day. The WORD you choose will evolve over time, it’s what you want to remind yourself for this chapter of your life, it may be a few weeks or months.

To cap the day off, we shared our takeaways from our January book club selection – The Moment of Lift by Melinda Gates.  Here’s an article outlining “Seven Lessons” from Gates’s first book in which she discusses the complexities of feminism and the phenomenon that communities can only flourish when women are lifted alongside men. It’s an enlightening book and made me realize I have formed prejudices that I need to reframe.  I highly recommend all women (and men, for that matter) read this book.

For 2020, forget setting a resolution. Instead, ring in the New Year with an intention. This slight change to how you set your goal can actually improve your success in achieving whatever it is that you desire.

Making Date Night As Important as I Do

I ordered a book recently from Amazon Date Night In: More than 120 recipes to nourish your relationship.  Sweethearts, spouses, and parents Ashley and Gabe Rodriguez found themselves deep into marriage and child-rearing when they realized they were missing the connection of their early relationship, and needed to prioritize each other. They instituted a weekly date night at home to sauté, roast, mix, dice, and spend time reconnecting over delicious meals.  

I loved the part that it’s just enough food for two people.  One of my favorite things to do with Mr. Bee is cook alongside each other in the kitchen. This book got me to thinking about the importance of date night.  To be totally honest, in my first marriage my then-spouse didn’t make time for me to do this and I was always fighting a losing battle trying to get him to see the value of it.  Ultimately, I believe the non-verbal message I received was that I wasn’t important enough to carve out time together and we drifted apart. I decided that if I could be lucky enough to find someone to love again that we’d make each other feel important.

I did some internet research and found The National Marriage Project founded in 1997 by Rutgers University Sociology Professor David Popenoe. NMP is a nonpartisan, nonsectarian, and interdisciplinary initiative whose mission is to provide research and analysis on the health of marriage in America, to analyze the social and cultural forces shaping contemporary marriage, and to identify strategies to increase marital quality and stability.

Here’s five reasons date night is important to your relationship.  If you really want specific information on why date nights help strenghthen commitment, sexual satisfaction and communication download this handout from NMP on the value of date nights (if you and your sweetie love charts and graphs and data, this may be a great read for an upcoming date night!). This study suggests that even just one night a month can increase your chances of staying together.

A while ago I created a date night board on my Pinterest page.  When I find things I think would be fun to do together I pin them there so I won’t forget. Here’s a fun one…60 Questions to Ask your Partner

According to this NYT article most studies of love and marriage show that the decline of romantic love over time is inevitable. The butterflies of early romance quickly flutter away and are replaced by familiar, predictable feelings of long-term attachment.

But several experiments show that novelty — simply doing new things together as a couple — may help bring the butterflies back, recreating the chemical surges of early courtship. Here’s a fun fall date nights check list to try…

“You don’t have to swing from the chandeliers,” Dr. Fisher said. “Just go to a new part of a town, take a drive in the country or better yet, don’t make plans, and see what happens to you.”

Something’s Rising — Save the Date!

Save the date for Saturday, July 21 at 10 a.m.  Something fun. Something big.  If you love biscuits and making a difference in people’s lives, then what I have planned will be a real treat.  Stay tuned here and follow me on Facebook so you don’t miss it.

P.S.  Wear stretchy pants.