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What Word Will You Embrace?

Part 5 of 5: Choose A Meaningful Word For Your New Chapter


Tips to help with your journey to thriving while living with chronic illness

As Seen On
by Lisa Cohen in Expansion, Quality of Life, Strategies

Sometimes, choosing a word with a special meaning can give you hope and frame how you look at a new season in your life.  Leaning into a new word can create a readiness for growth and change as you begin to transform in one or more areas of your life.

Once you’ve decided to choose a new word, start paying attention to the words that come to you and notice the things around you. In particular, you want to look for a word that keeps showing up in your life even when you haven’t shared your chosen word with anyone else. 

For example, I hadn’t even decided to choose a new word, but was clearly in a period of transition (and even turmoil) in several areas of my life all at the same time.  I noticed that the word “Phoenix” came to me and started showing up around me repeatedly.  A Harry Potter movie marathon was being run several times on TV and I happened to turn on Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets shortly before the Phoenix Fawkes burst into flames. I continued to be reminded of the bird by the titles on the Guide Channel as X-Men series movies (Jean Grey is the Phoenix) and the Harry Potter films (most notably, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix) ran for a couple of weeks. I also met someone who was considering naming her brand-new car Phoenix. Clearly, “Phoenix” was meant to be my word.

Letting Go of an Old Word

Choosing a new word to represent this new chapter in your life may also mean releasing an old word. Off the top of your head, write down five words that you feel describe you. Now, look at them.  Are these words kind and truthful? Or are they maybe inaccurate and even hurtful?

If one or more words feel painful to you, it’s time to re-evaluate them. You don’t have to carry these words with you into the future, and you don’t have to let them define you any longer. 

Consider doing a little release ceremony to let them go. Write the old word(s) on a piece of paper, put the piece of paper in the sink, and then run the water and soak the paper until it falls to pieces. When you’re tempted to think about the hurtful word(s), remind yourself that you released them and they’re now just a part of your past.

Love Your New Words

Did yes, no, hello, or oops really resonate with you? Which one do you think you need to use more often in your life?

Do you love your new word? Does it make you feel bold and confident? Does it give you the freedom to finally make choices that align with the life that you want to create? Does it encourage you to dream a little more?

If you want to change your life, first change your words. Your words can literally shape the course of your entire life. So, always choose them consciously and choose ones that remind you of your strength and power.

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Tips to help with your journey to thriving while living with chronic illness