Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year's Word: Balance

A writer friend of mine, Cat Woods, posted about her new alternative to New Year's Resolutions.  She chose one word that will motivate her throughout the year. I chose a word but, as I was thinking it through, I realized I'll need two more words to make my first word work.  


I chose the word balance because I am constantly trying to balance the various areas of my life - family, friends, health, teaching, writing, hobbies, interests . . . - and it's often hard to do.


But, balance isn't enough.  If I don't focus, I can't achieve balance.  I flit from thing to thing, often leaving things half-finished or finished, but not to the best of my ability. 


And, balance and focus won't happen unless I use planning.  If I take the time to plan my days and for upcoming events, I'll be prepared to focus on each aspect individually and fully, and I'll achieve balance.  Well, that's my goal at least.   

In addition to adding these words, I'm hoping to strike the phrase "should have" from my vocabulary.  If I apply planning, focus and balance, I "shouldn't have" cause to use it!

Typically, I would have posted this without giving it another thought and later I'd be saying to myself, "I should have had a giveaway for my first post of the year!".  But, since I'm banning that phrase from my life and I'm doing more focusing and planning, I stopped myself!  

Introducing, my first giveaway of 2012!!!

You can earn up to three entries by doing the following:
1 - Comment here with your word - or words - for the new year (required).  
2 - Link to this post on your website, blog, facebook or twitter.  
3 - Follow this blog (if you're already a follower, you'll get an entry).

I'll randomly pick from the entries a week from today, January 8th and one lucky winner will receive a $25 gift card to the independent bookstore of his/her choice.

Good luck - and may the word be with you!  (sorry, I can't resist a bad pun!)


  1. I think it's possible we are twins separated at birth, Lori! :) The words you chose and the way you describe yourself/your situation sound so exactly like what's been going through my head lately! So I'm going to have to copycat and use your words and hope that maybe I can get myself balanced, focused and organized (as the planning suggests) this year! I'm certainly hoping to do something to make 2012 a better writing year than 2011 was! :)

  2. It sounds perhaps as though there's a case of triplets separated at birth (and by a few years) here. I am in need of these things too. Thank you for pointing out that

    Focus + Planning = Balance

    That's an equation I can definitely work toward!

    I'm about to share this, and definitely I'm going to subscribe to your blog.

  3. Susanna,
    I'm already a twin so we'd have to be triplets :-)

    I can list a zillion things I wanted to do last year and never got around to - I'm hoping to shorten the list this year! I think 12x12 will definitely help in the writing department!

  4. mmm I was reading this and got so caught up in reading more posts on this blog I forgot to come back and comment. Like Susanna this sounds so like me. I make that WILL print off this post and have it stuck to my laptop. I need to be reminded of this EVERYDAY. Thankyou for this..
    Like Pat I was at the LA SCBWI to.

  5. I forgot to share my word. One of my words for 2012 is going to be openness. Being open to new possibilities, to opportunities, to new ways of doing things, as well as to constructive criticism and feedback on my writing.

  6. Elizabethanne - I was posting the same time you were - make that quadruplets :-)

  7. Diane,
    I just checked out your website - I like it! I found this quote that fits here:

    “Without leaps of imagination, or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning.”

    -Gloria Steinem

    I don't think we met in LA, did we? Maybe this year!

  8. This is tough! I have a A LOT of words I would like to focus on here...

    Patience-Everything will happen when it is suppose to. Also, to be even more patient with all of my students.

    Relax- I need to stop and smell the roses more often. I am always on the go and always have some sort of work to be doing. I am missing out on the fine details of life. Example: When students want to share something personal and I just don't have time to really listen and embrace their story. Have to keep up with the quick pace in the education world.

    Optimism- I am a rather optimistic person. However, I would like to focus on helping others take on the world in a more positive and uplifting approach.

  9. I love that quote.... thankyou, mind if I use it on my blog?
    No we didn't meet, mind you there were soooooo many people at that Conference...mind blowing! This is going to be an exciting year I think!

  10. I like your equation, Lori!

    Focus + Planning = Balance
    This equation works on so many levels.

    Less stress = opportunity for an open mind.
    The more open a mind is, the more creativity will flow.

  11. Diane, I got it on your site - on your quotes page :-)

  12. MTJ - I like your words and that you're so concerned about your students! I bet you're a great teacher! What grade do you teach?

  13. LJ - I like your equation too! Very true about open minds!