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One Little Word® 2016 | Whole

For 2016 I'm going with "whole" as my One Little Word®

Since 2007 I've been choosing (or letting a word choose me) a word to focus on over the course of a year. I love the process of walking with a word for 12-months and seeing how it works in my life. Some years it's been super visible and other years it's been a slow burn below the surface. I tend to choose words that have layers of meanings and can be applied to my life in various ways: physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. I love learning more about the word throughout the year and taking the opportunity to reflect each month via the process of working on the prompts from the workshop and via taking action on the things I'm inviting into my life. 

If you are interested in hearing me talk more about One Little Word® and my choice of word this year, check out my friend Elise's Get Crafty podcast where we both share our words for 2016 and talk about our experiences living with a word. She also includes a link in the show notes to a past episode where we talked about the process as well.  

A lot of times I begin my year with a question or two related to my word. This year my questions to myself are this: 

What does it mean to be whole? What does that look like and feel like? 

I'm interested in investigating "the pieces of the whole." What are the pieces of my own life that work together to create the "whole" and in what areas do I need to be letting go and in what areas do I need to hang on tighter to create a more "whole" life for myself? And where does acceptance fit into this? Lots of great questions for me to explore and wrestle with and ponder and learn from. 

I'm also interested in investigating more emphasis on whole foods - maybe try Whole 30. And I want to continue making yoga a priority as I work on the "whole" of myself - the physical, the mental & emotional, etc. 

Two specific quotes that are resonating with me related to "whole": 

“I am a broken person. And I know exactly where my cracks are and how deep they run. I don't pretend to not be a broken person and therein lies the big difference. Because the truth is, we are all broken in places, but it is those who know exactly where and how they are broken, who also know exactly where and how they are whole! And we may not be whole in all places and in all ways, but we take whatever wholeness that we do have, and we make good of it. And we try hard to work on the broken parts, and we ask for help when we need it.” - C. JoyBell C.

“I want to die living. And I want to be remembered as one who lived with purpose, joy and feeling. I want to spend my time learning what goes into a whole and happy life, then building that life the best I can.” - Steve Goodier

Some years I'm super clear at the start what I want to invite my life and what I want to work on throughout the year. This year is less concrete but feels "just right" for 2016. Remember, there is really never a perfect word - there are any number of words that can work for any one of us in our lives at a given time - don't get hung up on choosing something perfect. 

I have no idea what will happen in my life in 2016. I know, because I've been around the block a time or two, that it will likely be a mixture of awesome and tough - those beautiful highs and lows that we all experience throughout the course of a year. My hope is that this word will play a role in my continuing quest to fully live the length and width of my life. 

Let's do this. 

PS | The lovely "whole" heart talisman featured in the photo above is from my friend Liz Lamoreux's Soul Mantra shop. She'll make one for you too - order a custom bracelet, necklace, or talisman here.  


I’d love to read what word you’ve chosen or are considering for 2016. In the comments feel free to simply leave your word as your comment or write a bit about why you are choosing this word. Next week I’ll combine all the words into a single post – it's become tradition and super inspiring to see all the words in one place.

If you’re new to the concept of One Little Word®, you can read some of my previous posts here: 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 20132014, and 2015.


To help keep your One Little Word® more visible throughout the year I offer a year-long workshop featuring one creative prompt per month. Read all the details and sign up here. Registration is $5 off until December 31, 2015. I've also created a selection of products to help you document your journey with your word - check those out here. During the One Little Word® 2016 Kick-Off ordering period (between now and 1/31/16), items featured on this One Little Word® 2016 page are eligible for free shipping domestic and $5 international. If you add any other items from the shop to your cart, normal shipping rates will apply to those additional items.

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387 thoughts

  1. vetti says…


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  2. lorelei says…


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  3. mulberrywall says…

    My word for 2016 is Nurture.

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  4. jcannonmt says…

    My word is "finish". Finish what I've started. Reach for the finish line. Finish something to make room for something new. Inspiring quote: "whenever you want something you've never had, you have to do (finish) something you've never done."

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  5. linnealein says…

    "Magic" has been calling me for a few years, but I had always chosen a more "active" word in its place. For 2016 I realize magic is about noticing the wonder and awe in the world around me, and believing in those things that just make life more surreal. Looking forward to another year of OLW!

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  6. Gracie says…

    My word for 2016 is Story. :)

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