A New Year Resolution in a Word


In a recent post in her inspiring blog, Christine Kane talks about an idea that she and her friend came up with a couple of years ago. Instead of writing a list of New Year’s resolutions this year, she suggests choosing one word that is meaningful to you. Let this word guide you throughout the year in your actions. Since so many of the words resonated with me as I read her list, I printed out the words, cut them up into individual pieces of paper and placed them all into a bowl. I closed my eyes and meditated about my intention to choose a word that would speak to me. Then I swirled the words around until I felt it was the right time to stop and then carefully picked out a piece of paper. It said:


The word “beauty” derives from the Middle English beaute, bealte, and from the Anglo-French bel, beau, all meaning beautiful, also from the Latin bellus meaning pretty.

Merriam Webster gives 4 definitions of the word:

1: the quality or aggregate of qualities in a person or thing that gives pleasure to the senses or pleasurably exalts the mind or spirit : loveliness

2: a beautiful person or thing; especially : a beautiful woman

3: a particularly graceful, ornamental, or excellent quality

4: a brilliant, extreme, or egregious example or instance <that mistake was a beauty>

As I thought about what beauty means to me, I kept coming back to the idea that it is more of something felt than of something seen. So, in googling the word, I was particularly drawn to this quote by Helen Keller:

“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen, nor touched … but are felt in the heart.”

A day later, I was browsing at the bookstore and a book fairly jumped off the shelf at me, Way of the Lover: Rumi and the Spiritual Art of Love by Ross Heaven. I have learned from past experience that it’s always good to pay attention when something is placed in your path like this. Bringing it home, I turned to the first chapter and discovered the following quote:

“…those with mirrorlike hearts

do not depend on fragrance and color;

they behold Beauty in the moment.”

Wow, how perfectly this fits with my meditations on my word. For months now, I have been trying to be mindful of living in the present and enjoying the gifts of each moment. This can be very challenging at times but the rewards far outweigh the challenge. If you make it a part of your daily spiritual practice, you enter into a new way of seeing the world.

So, I continue to contemplate my word as the calendar turns from one year to another. I will let Beauty be my guide in this new year.

Happy New Year to all of my friends and family, new and old. Let our “mirrorlike hearts” reflect our love for each other and may we all behold the Beauty in our moments.