2018: A Year of Purpose

Happy New Year, dearest readers!

How are you today? How did you celebrate New Year’s Eve?

It’s time for our Word for the Year post. The post where we talk about goals, intentions, and plans for the new year. But first, here’s a quick recap of what happened in 2017.

On the blog, not in the big ol’ world out there.
We don’t talk about that.

2017: Disciplined Thinking

Back in January 2017, I told you the word that would serve as a thread for the whole year and I shared with you some of my intentions. We checked in on them back in September, so we don’t have to go over all of them again. I managed to achieve most of them but there were things where I really dropped the ball:

Read at least 25 books | Read the Bible every day | Participate in the four courses on my To Learn list

Yeah. They didn’t work out.

But there’s always time next year, right?

The three most-read posts

  1. What? You’re only Mexican?
  2. The Year of Disciplined Thinking
  3. Book Review: The Fellowship of the Ring

My Top Four Books

My goal this year was to read 25 books. Boy, did I fall short!

I read 11 books and left The Stand, by Stephen King, unfinished. I do intend to continue reading it, but because it is over 1400 pages long, I couldn’t bring it with me during the holidays. I still have 500 pages to go.

However, of the eleven books I did finish, here are the ones that I liked the most.

Born a Crime, Trevor Noah

In 2016, comedian and The Daily Show host Trevor Noah wrote an incredibly funny and incredibly poignant book about his childhood experiences and his coming of age as a biracial boy in a divided South Africa during and after Apartheid.

The Year of Magical Thinking, Joan Didion

John Gregory Dunne died in December 2004 in front of his wife while his daughter was in a coma at the hospital. Joan Didion was left completely alone for the first time in many, many years. This is a beautifully sad book she wrote on life, loss and grief the year she wished her life were different.

Wishful Drinking, Carrie Fisher

On the same section of the shelf is Wishful Drinking, by Carrie Fisher. Carrie Fisher was a complicated, funny, brave woman, and her book definitely left a mark on my reading heart; even months after having read it, I still find myself thinking about it and quoting it.

Imagined Communities, Benedict Anderson

I finished this book last week and I haven’t posted my review yet, but I can tell you that it is one of the best academic reads I’ve had in quite a while. I will tell you more about it in a few weeks but suffice it to say that Anderson may just have helped me define my field of research.

My Word for 2018

Unlike last year, I spent days thinking about my word for 2018. I considered many options and went over my list several times. What word could be broad enough to fit into all aspects of my life but specific enough to set the theme?

And then it hit me. Purpose. My word for 2018 will be Purpose.

“Purpose” is one of those words that we hear again and again. To make it my word for 2018 and announce it on the 1st day of January definitely makes it seem like a cliché. But having thoroughly thought it through, having looked at my life, story and longings, and after having read its many definitions, I have decided that it is the best fit for this year.

The Oxford Dictionaries define purpose as follows:

  1. The intention, aim or function of something; the thing that something is supposed to achieve
  2. What is needed in a particular situation
  3. Meaning that is important and valuable to you
  4. The ability to plan something and work successfully to achieve it

This year, I want every aspect of my life to have purpose. In the words of Donald Miller, I want a better story for my life. Wherever I go, whatever I do, it needs to have purpose. It doesn’t need to be big and epic; life is not in the big deeds, but in the details. May every detail be meaningful.

And so, dearest readers, here’s to the new year. May your 2018 be blessed and may it be meaningful. I will see you soon, with lots of plans, books, and literary routes.

Happy New Year!

Paola.