The Power of One Word

In a world filled with constant noise, complexity, and the perpetual pursuit of improvement, finding a way to simplify and focus can be a game-changer. One such powerful method is the concept of choosing One Word for the year. This intentional practice has proven to be a catalyst for life-changing transformations, offering a pathway to clarity, success, and fulfillment. Several books have been written about One Word. The most popular is probably the one authored by Dan Britton, Jimmy Page and Jon Gordon. Another book is authored by Mike Ashcroft and Rachel Olsen. I have utilized One Word with all of those I coach and mentor.

The Problem with Resolutions:

New Year's resolutions often set us up for failure. The enthusiasm for change is palpable in January, but as the year progresses, the initial zeal wanes, and resolutions are left by the wayside. Resolutions are easy to make and to break. The need for a targeted approach to support the overall well-being is the best approach.

The Simplicity and Focus of One Word:

In contrast to the overwhelming nature of resolutions, One Word encourages simplicity and focus. By selecting a single word that encapsulates your intentions for the year, you cut through the clutter and complexity that often lead to procrastination. This focused approach brings clarity and success by addressing the core of your intentions.

The Three-Step Process:

1. LOOK IN: Prepare Your Heart

In the midst of life's chaos, taking a deliberate pause allows for introspection and the contemplation of essential queries: What do I truly need, and what obstacles hinder my path? This intentional break from the clamor sets the stage for the profound introspection necessary to identify your One Word. Despite the common advice to "listen to your heart," conflicting messages caution against leading solely from the heart. Leadership guidance often presents a paradox, creating confusion. However, when embarking on the journey to select a guiding word for the year, it is the heart where the exploration begins. Within its chambers resides your "why" and the essence of your life's purpose.

2. LOOK UP: Discover Your Word

Once your heart is prepared, plug in and listen up. This step involves creating a peaceful space to allow your word to come to you. It's not about forcing a decision but rather being open to the word that resonates with your aspirations for the year. Many words can dance around your head as you think about all the things you have on your list to do. Slow your thoughts and focus on what is the common word which develops from all of these thoughts. In this tranquil atmosphere, let the essence of that word guide your intentions and actions throughout the upcoming journey.

3. LOOK OUT: Live Your Word

Armed with your chosen word, set forth on the adventure of embodying it across every facet of your existence. This marks the true enchantment, as you integrate your word into the realms of your mental, physical, emotional, relational, spiritual, and financial dimensions. Extend this commitment to your inner circle, fostering both accountability and support. By keeping your One Word at the forefront, you establish a daily compass for purpose and passion. Consistently revisiting your chosen word becomes a guiding force, steering you in the right direction and anchoring your journey.

The Impact of One Word:

Choosing One Word transforms your life across multiple dimensions:

Live Your Word:

One Word is not just a concept; it's a call to action. By strategically looking in, looking up, and looking out, you pave the way for a year of growth, purpose, and fulfillment. So, embark on this journey, live your word to its fullest, and witness the positive impact it has on every dimension of your life.

If you're ready to embrace simplicity, focus, and transformative change, join the One Word movement and make this year the most rewarding and exciting one yet. Please share your One Word with all of us as you welcome in 2024!

My one word this year is grit. I really need it! I am pushing myself these last few weeks and doing a big push right now. Yes, I am trying to fight the urge to quit!

Several years ago, I decided not to set goals as a New Year’s Resolution. It is true when you see the reports that most people will set goals but fail to achieve them. Many of the “resolutions” set are unrealistic, or they have too many they do not keep track of and forget. The statistics about New Year’s are interesting to look at, and some do find success.

Many want to find a way to save money, be healthy, and improve overall well-being. I believe these are all great goals to have! We should all strive to work to do these things each day of the year.

It can be overwhelming if you pressure yourself to pay for a gym membership to work out each day and not go. Then you begin to place guilt on yourself for not going and paying for something you do not use. Then if you pay for a weight loss meal program and do not see results in the first few days, you give up. What if you are paying for a financial planner and seeing monthly losses? In your mind, you begin to think it is not worth it.


I have often stated I am very simplistic in my lifestyle. Keeping things simple is the best way to stay focused. I only have “Two Rules” in my philosophy of education and life, I suppose as well. In my approach to each day, I have “one” word to maintain my focus on all I want to accomplish, how I want to live, my passion, and the: how, what, why, who, and when of all the commitments I have, will make and create.

I select a new word each year based on what I see I need to do based on where I am. It sounds so easy, but it is, and it is not. One word is for everything. You apply it to all aspects of life. If you genuinely want to make a difference, then begin with “one word.”


My word for this year is Grit.”

I have had a goal to write a book. I in fact, wrote a book. I wrote this book as I was recovering from my brain injury, and my career in education had ended. It was the perfect time to work on creating and filling the gap in life.

During this time, the world was hit with Covid-19, I developed Breast Cancer and went through my treatments, and I am cancer free. We also lost some loved ones during this time and experienced difficulties with other health scares. You would think it is time to give up, but no.

An individual with “grit” knows it is the passion and perseverance you need to see things through that is needed. So “grit” is my word for 2023 as I see my book make it to the publishers. I have been working with an editor, and I know we will get it right and into the right hands.

"I only have 2 rules!"
© 2023 Brenda Yoho
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