Happy New Year, friends!

I hope your 2018 is already feeling great, and I’m happy to report that mine is! We spent the holiday weekend with friends in Philadelphia, and it was the perfect way to kick off the new year. It’s become a tradition for us to spend New Year’s Eve with Matt’s best friend and his fiancée, and this year, we had another set of friends fly in to be with us, too! Matt’s really lucky to have a close-knit set of friends from college — and I’m just as lucky to have been adopted into this group of truly good guys and the women they’ve chosen to spend their lives with. We ate sushi, played board games, drank wine, danced to our friends’ soon-to-be wedding band, and celebrated the stroke of midnight high above Philadelphia surrounded by windows, so we had an amazing view of the lights below and, of course, the fireworks. We also spent a few hours at a trampoline park (yes, that’s right, a trampoline park), which was as fun as it sounds! The six of us were easily the oldest people there without kids, and the jury’s still out on whether or not everyone else was thrilled to have us there — but we had a great time, and it made for a great workout, too. Who knew you could be so sore from climbing out of a giant foam pit? Not me. (I wish I had photos, but I was afraid my phone would fall out of my pocket and break!)

It’s never easy to come back to reality after a holiday, but I have to admit that it’s been nice settling back in here in Brooklyn. I was still mostly plugged in and working while I was staying at my parents’ house last week, and as much as I love the flexibility of working for myself and being mostly mobile, it’s definitely easier to get things done from my own apartment and office. I also always love the feeling of being home and back in the routine of buying groceries and cooking meals and going to the gym. Last night, we took down all of the holiday decorations, and even though it always feels a little sad to clear out the tree and all the tinsel (how does the season always go so fast?), it was nice to be able to deep clean the apartment and get back into our usual groove. When you live in a tiny little space, that tree takes up valuable real estate!

A new year, of course, means new resolutions, but if you’ve been hanging around here for a while, you might remember that I actually prefer to share a word of the year, instead of a specific set of goals. My word for 2017 was ABUNDANCE (you can read all the details here), and I can honestly say that keeping it top of mind — and on my desk! — was a driving force for me over the past 12 months. This last year was an abundance of work, opportunities, challenges, fun, and growth for me. I think I was able to frame it that way for myself because I’d decided to be intentional about seeking abundance in my daily life. Otherwise, it may have just felt like straight-up overwhelm.

Knowing how much I benefitted from having a focus word for 2017, I was really excited to choose one for 2018. I recently invested in a set of Powersheets from the awesome team over at Cultivate What Matters (I’ll share more about this later in the week when I post my goals for January), and I loved the process it laid out for figuring out the perfect word of the year. Thanks to Powersheets and some soul-searching on my own, I came up with…

WELCOME

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Friends, this couldn’t be more perfect for the year I have ahead. Here are some of the notes I jotted in my Powersheets that led me to choose it.

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2018 is likely to be a big year of change for Matt and I. There’s a good chance that we’ll be making a major transition to a new city, which brings with it all kinds of other transitions. I want to start this year with a mindset of welcoming change and embracing the opportunity it presents to continue to grow my marriage and make me a stronger, more adaptable person.

I want to welcome hard work, welcome new avenues for my writing, welcome new ideas, and welcome people with less judgment. I want to escape some of the internal “noise” I have about money and instead welcome the fruits of my hard work and use those resources to give back to others and make myself feel special, too! I want to welcome opportunities to try new things both in my work life and my personal life. I want to welcome good habits and embrace an attitude of health and consistency. I want people to feel welcome in my home. I want to feel welcome in my own skin by cutting back on the negative self-talk that so many of us are guilty of every day.

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Just like ABUNDANCE before it, WELCOME is now framed on my desk, ready to help me kick the new year into high gear. I would be lying if I said that the changes ahead of me this year aren’t a little intimidating, but I am going to try to do more than tolerate or deal with them. I want to do my best to welcome them!

Do you have a word in mind to inspire you in 2018? I’d love to hear more! Feel free to share in the comments below.