Explore: 2013

I first chose a word for the year (“seek”) in 2011 and, boy, did that turn out to be the right word. Then last year my word was “vibrant” and I’ve decided, upon reflection, that it was the right word.

I’m notoriously non-committal when it comes to “inspirational” stuff like this. I hear about a concept that I like and jump on board, but then my interest wanes or, more commonly, I end up unsure if I’m really on the right track. Either way, I can usually be counted on to give it a few weeks and then move on to something else.

Not with this whole one-word-for-the-year thing.

I’m not big on setting resolutions (another thing I was very good at abandoning almost immediately). I think it’s because resolutions tend to be things that I feel I should do (or shouldn’t do, in some cases) and shoulding is really not a terribly useful way to get motivated. But, I’ve discovered, I’m all over putting something out there and being open to seeing what comes of it.

In that spirit, my word for this year is EXPLORE.


My chosen word came to me sooner and more easily than in previous years. It was just there, and there was no question about whether it’s the right word. It just is.

I want to explore all kinds of things – items on my life list, writing opportunities, my writing here. I want to get to know our new(ish) community better – it’s lovely and pretty and so close to so many things I want to dip my figurative toe into. I want to find my running spirit in this new, snow-filled environment. I want to take more trips — nearby and possibly farther away — and I want to spend more time in the mountains just breathing.


I want to continue to keep in touch with dear friends from back home and find new ways to connect with them on a regular basis, because they lift me up. They were sent into my life for a reason and I’m not going to let geography push them out of it.

I also want to figure out my relationship with Connor. I haven’t written a lot about it aside from the delight of his four-year-oldness, but I’m struggling and the voice in my head is whispering that if I don’t do something about it I could become irreparably disconnected from my beloved first boy.

So that’s my word. Explore.

See you out there.


One word image courtesy the very generous Melanie at Only a Breath. Want one? She’s offering one word buttons now (and not just for bloggers). 



  1. Explore Asia. Come. :)

    (sidenote about relationship with firstborn: I have thoughts about that on my end too)

  2. It’s a great word Robin. For 2012, I chose authenticity. It changed my life, quite literally. Living in authenticity became an active way of being, even though it is a noun. For 2013, like you, I chose a verb, quite deliberately. Or rather, it chose me, because it’s not a word I would have chosen for myself. I call it my ‘one great word’ and for me it is ’embrace.’ Best wishes on your continued journey.

    • Thanks Kim! I’d love to know more about how your word changed things for you. I really do believe in the power of this approach.

      • Anonymous says:

        The power of choosing a word, one great word, for me has been holding myself accountable to it. I chose authenticity for 2012 thinking it would be about living more from my heart than my head. Taking the lessons I’d learned about myself and leadership to be more open, less analytical. I did that. But then I started to realize my word, authenticity, wasn’t just about small moves, but life moves. I held my decisions, and my life, up to that light, and had to ask myself those really hard questions – am I living in authenticity in my work; in my friendships; and most importantly in my marriage. The answer to the last question was no.

        So while my word was not the sole driver, it helped me really focus, really apply it seriously and remind myself why I chose it, and why it’s a core value. I initiated separation discussions in June, Shane moved out in September, the house sold over Christmas, and both of us take possession of separate homes next month. It was and is incredibly painful to end a 20 year marriage. And part of why I deliberately chose a big positive verb – embrace – in the wake of it, for 2013, Life change is really hard, especially if it’s just you having faith, hanging on, and doing it the best way possible. It took a lot of work, but we’re amicable, friends and able to help each other through the valleys. That’s both ‘authenticity’, and ’embrace’ at work.

        Embrace picked me, as an aside. I thought my word was energize, till I was pondering it, and actually heard a female voice whisper in my ear, don’t you mean embrace? And I realized I did,

        Picking one word, and what you get out of it, is all about how you apply it. I’m looking forward to embracing 2013, it’s a whole new world out there. Best wishes Robin on your explorations :)

  3. Explore is a fabulous word! You’re sure to have many wonderful adventures this year because of it. And your second paragraph about jumping onto trends and not staying committed? That’s totally me, which is why my word for the year is: Focus. I would love to stay focused on goals and finish things that I start this year.

    Happy New Year to you! Looking forward to seeing what you find to explore :-)

  4. What a fabulous word. I’m inspired just reading this. Look forward to learning from you as you explore this year! xox

  5. Robin, I love this word. You inspire me. My word is dare. I am ready to take all this growth that I have experienced and challenged myself. I am excited to hear all about your journey this year.

  6. Great word. Haven’t chosen one yet…perhaps “later” should be mine!! All kidding aside, I really believe that the way we look towards the year plays a big impact on the decisions and the direction it ends up going.

  7. Love this word for you! Mine is “fun.” I’m desperate to make this year more joyful, fun, and less serious.

  8. I love your word – and I’m glad it came to you easily:) I struggled with mine but have settled on “Create” as my word.
    PS: This is my first visit to your blog and just by your sidebar description I know that we have some common ground – looking forward to reading and “exploring” more of your content.

    Pink Chai Style

    • I love your word – that’s a great one. So glad you came to visit! Would love to hear more about you – will come your way for a visit as well.

  9. Explore away, Robin. You are going to find amazing things on your journey. Because, well, you’re pretty amazing.

  10. I love your word. It opens up a world of possibilities.

    Maybe that should be my word…possibilities.

  11. What a great word! And I’m glad I’m only 20 minutes away so I can explore with you! Here’s to an adventurous and exciting 2013!

  12. What a great word!! Sounds like it leaves you open to lots of exciting new things and events this year! I can’t wait to see what’s in store!

  13. Great word – explore! Love it.

    And your relationship with your first born? It’ll be ok. The first year of sibling can be very hard for the oldest. And for mama. Hang in there.

    • Thanks, Missy. And I hope you’re right. I fear that it’s deeper than that, because it was like this before Ethan came along. C and I are just too much alike and we push each other’s buttons. But I do hope it’s just a phase, whatever the cause.

  14. Explore is such a great word. It reminds me of the quote, “All that wander are not lost.” You can do so much with that word in so many aspects of your life.
    I hope you have many adventures in love and laughter as you Explore!

  15. What a great choice for a word. It’s very proactive! My word (emerge) came to be in a flash as well, and I don’t usually choose a word for the year. But the way it jumped out at me, how could I not? Best of luck to you and your explorations!


  1. […] This week’s writing prompt from Mama’s Losin’ It is to pick a word that someone else used for their New Year word and let it inspire you. It couldn’t be more perfect for this second part of my trip. I chose Explore from Farewell Stranger. […]

  2. […] Explore. (inspired by Farewell Stranger) 2.) Release. (inspired by Courtney Kirkland) 3.) Trust. (inspired by Queen of Chaos) 4.) […]

  3. […] Explore. (inspired by Farewell Stranger) 2.) Release. (inspired by Courtney Kirkland) 3.) Trust. (inspired by Queen of Chaos) 4.) […]

  4. […] Explore. (inspired by Farewell Stranger) 2.) Release. (inspired by Courtney Kirkland) 3.) Trust. (inspired by Queen of Chaos) 4.) […]

  5. […] I introduced my word I mentioned that it wasn’t just about going places, though certainly that’s part of […]

  6. […] not sure if I can honestly say I’ve been cognizant of pursuing my one word this last month. I think it’s almost been ingrained in me though. Get out there. Do stuff. […]

  7. […] had an adventure last week. The exploring kind. More for me, I guess, since we went somewhere I hadn’t been before that Rich had (and […]

  8. […] speaking of fun, summery things, I posted my summer bucket list based on my one word for the year. (We’ve crossed off a couple more since I posted that, […]

  9. […] in October (one more week! Already! How can that be?) is a beautiful thing. I had the summer to explore, play, and travel with my family. I think we made the most of it, and now I’ve had September […]