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A Word that Propels You Toward the Best Version of Yourself

| written by Rey Lopez | 3 comments

My name is Rey, and I suffer from severe writer’s block. Considering my word for 2019 was “write,” this poses a bit of a problem. But this recent struggle to put words to screen has also shown me how important our word of choice is in shaping how we see ourselves.

As you consider what your word for 2020 will be, you want it to reflect an aspirational identity, a facet of your humanity that will move you forward toward the best version of yourself. The challenge is finding a singular word that captures a goal as big as personal transformation. Such an endeavor can be overwhelming. Is it even possible to find a word that embodies how you want to see yourself?

Toward the end of 2018, I was struggling with personal identity and the way my life was turning out. There were so many things I believed to be left undone; so many goals, dreams, projects. I knew I wanted to find a word that would spur me on to greater heights of self-awareness. I wanted a word that would serve as a synopsis not only of how I viewed myself but also how I wanted others to see me.

I wanted my word to incorporate three things.

First, I needed my word to call me to action. I’m a procrastinator at heart, so my word had to be the kick in the ass I need to get me going.

Second, my word needed to be a reflection of who I am called to be. I don’t believe any of us are called only to earn an income to simply pay bills and meet monthly expenses. My word had to echo that one thing knew I needed to be for myself and those around me.

Finally, it was critical my word oozed passion. If it was a representation of a milquetoast, there was no way I could be excited about it.

For 2019, I landed on the word “write.” Do I earn my living as a writer? Nope.

Have I begun my great American novel or typed the first page of an Oscar-winning screenplay? Not at all.

But that wasn’t the point.

I chose “write” not because I care about earning a living writing (although to be honest, if that ever happens, I won’t complain). I chose “write” because what I care about most, what makes me sit in front of a blank screen and type, is a desire to craft thoughts and string words together in a way that challenges, inspires, and motivates others. In that regard, I am proud to say I’m a writer. I credit my word for 2019 for how I see myself.

Now it’s your turn.

It’s time for you to consider how you see yourself. What is your aspirational identity? What does the best version of yourself look like?

Rey Lopez is a native of San Antonio, Texas, and is the father of two kids, Ruben and Elena. After spending more than twenty years in local churches as a youth worker and digital media director, he now works as a freelance writer and marketing consultant. He’s a Disney nerd, a film buff, and a lover of great conversation, people, and wine… not necessarily in that order. He keeps his own blog at thisisreylo.com and you can follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


iliana Genkova: "Write" was/is my 2019 word too. It was a personal challenge. To be honest, I did not write as much and as well as I could have, but I did write a lot, with passion, gathered ideas, connected with a writing community, and before I knew it I awoke something within. Most probably I'll pick another word for 2020, but I will continue writing for sure. I hope you'd too! :) Reply

Janine Dunagan Finney: Congratulations, Rey Lopez! I love what you've written about how to choose one's word! I love that your word was/is write! Your writing is eloquent, and expresses a very different "take" on my interpretation of the assignment of selecting a single word for the year! I appreciate so much, that you provided a fresh new perspective for me to ponder! I've been choosing one word for about four years now. I've always searched for a word that could act as a daily reminder of what I might do to change my behavior in the coming year to create new and better outcomes. I liked the idea of having a single word to refer to, verses a list of New Year's Resolutions that I'd forget about by the end of January. What appealed to me about this new concept of choosing one word was that this word would become a touchstone when I felt stuck or needed guidance. Like a whisper from that quiet voice within that knows the way. As I choose my word for this year, I will incorporate the ideas that you've shared! Thank you for the invaluable gift! Reply

Sue: My word is FEARLESS. I want to fear less and not be fear full. I have been saying this to my staff all fall and I am having sleepless nights at times worrying about either not doing or saying the right things. Losing sleep over things that invariably work out. I need to be rested and on my game every day, I need to be fearless. This doesn't mean I will not quake in the coming storm but I will know that whatever I do in earnest, it will make a difference, a positive difference. I want my staff to join me as I journey on and encourage each of them to rise to whatever it is they want to be. Together we will be a confident and encouraging tribe journeying on together. Reply

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