Joy: One Word Resolution 2013

I spent the end of 2012 wrestling with the idea of committing to another One Word Resolution. For the past two years I have chosen one word as my intention for the year - Move and Celebrate. The hardest part about these resolutions (for me, anyhow) is the lack of accountability and measurability that I feel. When your resolution is to lose 10 pounds or to quit smoking, it’s easy to know whether you have succeeded or failed. And yet, I have decided once again to commit a year of my life to one word- Joy.

Make Your Own Joy

Make Your Own Joy

In 2013 I am committing myself to a life filled with Joy. Like Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness ProjectI am not choosing this path because my life is devoid of happiness or joy; rather, I am choosing it because I know that it could be greater. A part of my journey this year is going to be learning the difference between happiness, gratitude, optimism, and joy.

To be completely honest, I am not entirely sure I can explain why I chose this word. Cliche as it sounds, I felt chosen by this word. Maybe it was the Joy to the World message flooding December, but it seemed that this word tapped me on the shoulder at every turn. So, in what feels like an act of bravery, I am going to let this word choose me and see where it leads this year.

Does this bring me joy?

Whenever possible I will ask myself Does this bring me joy? Doing laundry and shopping for groceries do not innately bring me joy, but perhaps I can find some joy in the mundane, but necessary tasks. In things which are optional though– it’s a chance to stop and reconsider if there is something else I ought to be doing, thinking, reading, buying instead.

Joy Jar

Joy Jar

In an effort to make my resolution more measurable, I’m going to create a Joy Jar. Naturally, I found the idea on Pinterest. The idea is to write down the good things that happen to you on tiny pieces of paper and then to reread them all at the end of the year.

Find what brings me joy and do more of it.

Reading. Family. Writing. Learning. Yoga. Dancing. Creating. Serving. Cooking. Eating. Music. Listening.

I love this quote: “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.” – William Morris. I think the same could be said for the kind of life we create for ourselves too. Sure, there are going to be people and experiences in our lives that we cannot control – but to the best of my ability, I resolve to be more discerning with the things I invite into my life.

Stop eating and drinking things that don’t make me feel good, taste bad, or nourish me; Spend less time documenting life from behind a lens and more time enJOYing it; Spend more time and less money; Read more books, less webpages.

As I begin this journey, I would love your advice: How have you cultivated more joy in your life? Created it for others? 

16 thoughts on “Joy: One Word Resolution 2013

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  6. I love your word “Joy”! That is an intention for me this year – to do things in joy… no matter circumstances. However, my word I chose is Unstoppable for 2013! I enjoyed discovering your blog today!

  7. Just had to come visit and comment since my word of the year is also JOY! I love that you are doing the JOY Jar, because I am too! I have already put in a few slips of paper, and find myself excited to see what I get to write on the next one! I will be following your JOYFUL year and looking forward to how it goes for you!

  8. JOY was my word for 2012, my first time choosing a word for the year. To be honest, the word started out as REJOICE but as I went along I realized what I really was seeking was joy. My life has been stressful, more stressful than normal for me I should say for everyone’s life is stressful afterall, and I had been feeling like I had lost the joy I used to have. Fast forward a year, or less actually cause I didn’t discover the one word thing till spring, and I can honestly say I feel (mostly) like the joy is back. Are the situations which had dampened my joy gone. No. My son still has a serious chronic illness. I suffer from a chronic pain condition. I am feeling the change of watching my firstborn graduate college and prepare to move on to his next phas of life. But…. I am different. I am seeing the blessing that all… ALL… is to my life. All is joy. It’s in how you see it. Have you read Ann Voskamp’s 1000 Gifts? I discovered it during my searchings for writings about joy and keeping a written list of the daily blessing in my life has been one of the biggest helps in seeing JOY everywhere.

    • I like the idea of Joy vs Rejoice– an idea, rather than an action. Your honesty is beautiful too– it’s in the darkest and hardest hours of our life that we need joy the most. I haven’t read 1000 Gifts, but I will look for it. Thanks for sharing :)

  9. This year my word was Fulfill but I ended up finding much more Joy in the process because of the same things that you mention. I was much more discerning about the extra projects I took on, the people I spent time with, even the vacations I went on because I wanted to make sure that each one fulfilled me. Through that process I found so many more things that I love to do!

    Good luck! I love the Joy Jar idea. What a great blog post that will be at the end of 2013 as you reflect!


    • Thanks for connecting! I’ve had the idea of a gratitude jar on my pinboards for a while and this seemed like a perfect opportunity to do it. So glad to hear that the word was good for you last year- hoping for the same here in 2013.

  10. Measurabilty–that is the biggest difficulty I have found with the OneWord project; I love that you are using the Joy Jar to measure your progress (Pinterest for the win!), and wish you the best of luck with your journey!!

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