A Guiding Word

Did you make any resolutions for the New Year? Maybe you have a sankalpa, a yogic practice based on who you are, and your deepest intentions.

To complement your resolutions or sankalpa, have you thought about selecting a single word to help guide you through the year?

I was introduced to the concept of a word for the year when I participated in the December Reflections online photographic challenge. Having a single word to guide you through the year provides clarity and focus to your goals.

Choosing a word has certainly help me focus. Last year I felt I was being very reactive, reacting mindlessly to situations and stressing about an ever-increasing list of to-do's. So I chose the word Now to remind me to be present.

My word is not a New Year's resolution, but being more present helps me make better decisions to achieve my goals. It's not my sankalpa, but again, being present is a step towards supporting my sankalpa. I have used my word as a mantra when I'm meditating and in place of my sankalpa when I'm practising yoga nidra. When I feel particularly stressed, I have found repeating my word helps me to centre and re-focus.

A word might not necessarily come to you right away. Take time to reflect on your abilities, your achievements and your goals. And although we were asked to think of one word, a couple of people selected two.

So, what is your word for 2016?

Want to know more?

  • For suggestions on choosing a word, see:
  • For information on developing your sankalpa, see “How to Create A Sankalpa” by Kelly McGonigal, Yoga International.
  • For inspiration, follow or join the #TalesOfFebruary creative challenge on Instagram.

    You don't have to be a member of Instagram. You can view the leader's (Tori) posts by accessing instagram.com/toris_tales, and see all submissions for the challenge by searching on the hash tag #TalesOfFebruary.

    The challenge comprises daily prompts based on words selected by members of the #TalesWithFriends community. Each day (UK time) Tori will post her submission for the daily word prompt and include information from the community member on why they chose that word as theirs for 2016.

    If you would like to join the challenge, Tori included details in her Instagram post listing the first week of prompts for Tales of February.