Word of the Year 2011 – Flourish

Reminder of Summer

Reminder of Summer

There are posts all over the place about chosing a “Word of the Year” for 2011. I’ve mentioned it quite a few times in the past as well, as this will be my fourth year picking a word. I’ve had mixed results with these words. The first year was  Reveal and that saw me start my blog and become more “visible” on and offline. Joy the year after was a response to feeling suddenly less than joyful at New Year. Both of these words worked very well and acted as a gentle reminder throughout the year.

Last year I chose Bold and for some reason this had less impact. Maybe it was because there was an undertone of “should” and it felt overly harsh. Or maybe the timing was wrong. Or maybe it was because I didn’t have a physical token of the word on my person as I had with the previous words ? I’ve realised it is a delicate line between choosing a word that will encourage and support what I want to do, and one that will make me feel somehow harried.

So, on to this year and Flourish . I flirted with bloom, blossom and grow but settled on flourish because, basically it just makes me feel more upbeat than the other ones.

flour·ish  (flûrsh, flr-)

v. flour·ished, flour·ish·ing, flour·ish·es


1. To grow well or luxuriantly; thrive: The crops flourished in the rich soil.
2. To do or fare well; prosper: “No village on the railroad failed to flourish” (John Kenneth Galbraith).
3. To be in a period of highest productivity, excellence, or influence: a poet who flourished in the tenth century.
4. To make bold, sweeping movements: The banner flourished in the wind.

( from http://www.thefreedictionary.com)

For me the word sums up my plans for the year. To grow things – in terms of my existing business, new business ideas, a wider sense of community, visibility and lots of flowers.

( If the whole word of the year idea is new to you  there are a few places to help you get going . Christine Kane has a downloadable worksheet , Ali Edwards has also written about choosing a word of the year.  And Susannah Conway has  created a very nice tool that works together with the word of the year idea to plan the year in a little more depth.  Joanna Paterson has also written an interesting post about her thoughts on choosing a word ( or not). )

*Edited* to add Cynthia Morris’s take on choosing a symbol instead.

I’ve rounded up a few more resources for year planning but will save them for another post.

And the next issue of the Studio Newsletter will be out on Thursday – If you’d like a copy you can subscribe here – and there are some downloadable goodies you can print out yourself such as a taster 2011 calendar.

Have you chosen a word for 2011 ? I’d love to know what it is and why you chose it.


2 thoughts on “Word of the Year 2011 – Flourish

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