Who Do You Want to Be?

by Alece Ronzino on January 1, 2016

I finished 2015 much like I did the years before it: seemingly crawling to the finish line, ready to kick the year to the curb. 2015 was challenging in all sorts of ways — some old and expected, others new and unanticipated.

I’ve seen this gif floating around The Internets:

And it always makes me think: Yep. That pretty much sums up my year.

Heh.

Despite the bumps and bruises, I see good and growth and health in the past twelve months.

I’d chosen one word to focus on all year: wholehearted. And I see the ways I leaned into living more wholeheartedly, even when it was hard and even when it came with serious heartache.

Living and loving wholeheartedly led me back to a therapist’s couch, to dig in deep and keep working on the brokenness that is me. It opened my heart to love again, to let people in, to dream about the future like I haven’t in years, to cling to hope. It forced me to advocate for myself, to risk vulnerably in relationships, to hold my heart in my hands and extend it to another, without knowing what they might do with it. It’s what elbowed me to pursue a new treatment for my heart condition and what nudged me to get back on antidepressants. It’s the reason I’ve cried so much this year; it’s also the reason I’ve laughed so much this year. I’ve lived and I’ve loved and I’ve lost, and I’ve done it all with more wholeheartedness than ever before.

So even though I’ve been knocked down a time or two (or twelve), I know I am a whole lot stronger and healthier today than I was a year ago.

And maybe that’s the best I can ever hope for out of a year.

Maybe that’s more than enough.

photo-1446581804434-d1aca963b411

We find ourselves here again now, in the beginning moments of a brand new year.

And I can’t help but wish there was something magical about January 1st.

I wish that things would be better/different/new starting today simply because we’ve crossed into 2016. But sadly, life doesn’t work that way. Challenges don’t begin and end with the calendar; heartsoreness doesn’t dissipate at midnight amid the kisses and fireworks and shouts of “Happy New Year!”

If only…

Yet even I, with my jaded cynicism, can admit to there being something significant about the new calendar year.

Even if it’s just a placebo effect, there is an undeniable opportunity to start fresh. To begin again. To embrace new mercies. To get up from the mat, brush myself off, and determine to try again.

So that a year from now I can say I’m stronger and healthier than I am today.

I don’t start this year with a long list of goals or resolutions — my own history has proven that those don’t work for me. I lose sight too quickly, I fall short too fast, I forget my list in 4 weeks (if that), and ultimately end up feeling like a failure.

No lists for me. All I’ve got in my pocket as I begin this new year is one word.

This year I’m choosing to live with more badassery. It’s a continuation of my wholehearted journey — just with more spunk and boldness. And I’m thrilled/terrified to see what comes of it.

To be honest, I’ve been petrified to even say it out loud on The Interwebs. Because… @$$. And because… judgey people. And because… I care far too much what people think. So the irony isn’t lost on me: It’s taking badassery to declare badassery as my word for the year. So I’m stepping up to the plate.

Oy vey. The adventure has begun. Here goes…everything.

What about you?

Whether you feel like you’re starting 2016 from a position of strength or weakness, only good can come from choosing now to lean into this year with intentionality.

Who do you want to be? What do you want to focus on?

Choose one word and join me on the One Word 365 journey this year.

(You can read more about the movement, sign up, and find others with your word and in your region on the website: OneWord365.com.)

What’s your One Word for 2016?

Print Friendly

About Alece Ronzino

After pioneering and leading a nonprofit in South Africa for 13 years, Alece now lives in Nashville, TN. She is a Nonprofit Communications & Development Strategist and the founder of OneWord365. She blogs (occasionally, but candidly) about searching for God in the question marks of life and faith. Connect with Alece on Twitter, Instagram, and her blog, Grit and Glory.
  • Mark Allman

    Alece,

    I have been thinking over the last couple of days since I first read this post by you about who I consider a badass. There are very few people that I consider so. However you are one of those who is and has been in my mind a great badass. A badass in my mind is one who has been battered, bruised, and beaten yet stands back up to face life again; who even when they feel vulnerable do not let that vulnerability define what actions they take, who have supreme confidence in themselves and God, who stays true to what they believe in, who carry themselves with grace, and who has a personality that is captivating. Their character is rich and deep. Like my favorite quote by Khalil Gibran; “Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls, the most massive characters are seared with scars.”

    Alece, your soul is strong and your character is rich and deep and you are an awesome badass. In 2016 may you let it show!

  • This might be the best “one word” I have ever heard. Mine was simply “write” this year, but maybe “badassery” could be in the parenthesis just after. All the best as you start this new year!

    • Hahaha! I love your comment.

      Unpack your word for me? I’m intrigued to know why you chose “write”…

      • Over the past year I have put writing aside to do other things, good things, but writing has always been a way for me to process and I really didn’t have much space for it in 2015… international move, new baby, travel, bumps and bruises, etc. Ready to process and reflect on the past few years and Write seems to be the way. On a blog I started in India called IndiAanya.com we encouraged our readers to pick One Word for the year, too (we even linked to your site). This article, ironically, was passed on to my by my life coach, I had no idea you were the founder of OneWord365.com, but I think it’s a great idea!

        • Love hearing this! Here’s to your year of writing (best free therapy there is)! And thank you for sharing about One Word 365 with your IndiAanya site — I really appreciate it!

Previous post:

Next post: