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My word for 2019 (and how to pick your own)- Hf #186

on December 29, 2018 by Jami Balmet 15 comments

This is my fifth year picking a word for my year and I am just as excited as that first time to pick a word and a general direction for my year. In today’s episode I am going to share my word for the year, what goals and ideas this will entail, and then I’ll cover a little bit about how you can pick your own word for 2019! 

Here are my past words: 

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What has gone into choosing this word:  

The past two years have brought with them a lot of exciting things and several really hard things! In the beginning of 2017, we welcomed baby #5. Magnolia was born when our oldest set of twins (yes we have TWO sets of twin boys) had only turned 4 years old 3 weeks before. 

So we were very excited to meet our first little girl and she has since proved to be the very perfect addition to our male heavy family. But having 5 kids in 4 years really takes a tole on one’s body (um…DUH)! So as I weaned Magnolia throughout 2017 and she was sleeping through the night but I was still so exhausted I could barely get out of bed many days…I finally admitted that this was way more than normal baby exhaustion (even for having 5 kids 4 and under)! You can listen about my journey this year with chronic fatigue

It took me until a good way into 2018 to finally start to figure out my issues and make progress. It boils down to this: I probably have an auto-immune disease that has been triggered by all these babies and tiring 4 years mixed with a hyperactive thyroid, very imbalanced hormones (testosterone and progesterone) and adrenal fatigue. 

All of this means NO ENERGY for Mama!! Seriously, I couldn’t believe it by my exhaustion had hit new levels of low, even for a mama who birthed two sets of twins. So after alllll the blood tests and results, we start working on supplements and hormones that have finally been helping. It’s a slow road to recovery with these types of issues and I still have to be hyper aware of taking care of myself, but I am happy to report that I am finally doing so much better! 

It’s been about 9 months now of all my new stuff and for the last 3 months or so I’ve really been feeling back to my normal self. The first 6 months saw a dramatic 80% increase in my energy and health, but more recently it’s been incredible once again. 

So my focus for 2018 has been Refresh. I wanted to hit a reset button on our life from a hard 2017 and work on refreshing my health, our family life, and my spiritual disciplines! 

Now that I’ve been feeling better and I am looking forward to a new year with new goals, one word clearly came to mind for me: Discipline. 

But discipline didn’t quite have the right connotation for me. It felt too negative for some reason (even though I know it’s not and it’s a great word)! But there are still so many variables in my day that I can’t control (hello: I have 5 very young kids)! So after a lot of thought and prayer, I landed on my 2019 Word of the Year and I’m very excited….


Faithfulness is giving me that same idea that I wanted with discipline, but with a very firm reminder that God is in control of it all!! I can strive and strive and strive…and nothing will come of all my striving. Or I can rest in the Lord, show up and be faithful to what we has called me to that day…and God can make everything happen (all for His Glory)! 

So as I work diligently this year, as I discipline myself to get back into better routines in my spiritual disciplines, homeschooling, homemaking, and my work….I am doing it all in faithfulness knowing that everything I do is NOT in my own strength but rather in God’s strength! 

One thing I’ve had to learn over and over again this year as I struggled with physical health is that my true strength comes from the Lord, not from myself. I’ve been met with that time and again this year as my physical healthy hasn’t been there. And I want to remember this lesson even more as I head into 2019 with hopefully much better health! 

Here’s a few Bible verses I will be focusing on to go along with my word: 

“Only fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you.” – 1 Samuel 12:24

“For we walk by faith, not by sight.”. – 2 Corinthians 5:7

“My son, do not forget my teaching,

    but let your heart keep my commandments,
for length of days and years of life
    and peace they will add to you.

Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you;
    bind them around your neck;
    write them on the tablet of your heart.
So you will find favor and good successa]
    in the sight of God and man.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
    and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
    and he will make straight your paths.
Be not wise in your own eyes;
    fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.
It will be healing to your fleshb]
    and refreshmentc] to your bones.

Honor the Lord with your wealth
    and with the firstfruits of all your produce;
10 then your barns will be filled with plenty,
    and your vats will be bursting with wine.

11 My son, do not despise the Lord‘s discipline
    or be weary of his reproof,
12 for the Lord reproves him whom he loves,
    as a father the son in whom he delights.” – Proverbs 3:1-12

Faithfulness in my Spiritual Life

Bible Reading – I will be starting off 2019 strong with this one! During the month of January we will be doing a 30 day Spiritual Disciplines challenge within my online training academy, My Homemaking Mentor. I will be focusing on this this Bible reading plan

Prayer – I don’t even know what has happened to my prayer life the last few months! I’ve honestly just been lazy – so this is a big focus this year – getting back into prayer more! Wondering where to start with prayer? This little guide can help! 

Faithfulness in Homeschooling 

I want to be more intentional with our homeschooling times. Yes, I want to make sure we are on track with our book work. But more than that, I want to create an air of learning in our home that is contagious!  

Faithfulness in my home 

If one thing as really been clicking for me at the end of 2018, it’s actually been my homemaking routines! Our house has been consistently cleaner than anytime since having at least a few kids. And I want to stick to these even better in 2019. 

Faithfulness in my business & work

I want to and need to be more thankful on a daily basis for the work and mission that God has given me. 

Faithfulness to invest in myself

For me, this mainly revolves around eating well and exercising more!  

Resources for picking your own word: 

Just getting this list written out gets me so excited and motivated for 2019! I have big plans, goals, ideas, and dreams for 2019 but I am also holding all of those loosely in my hand and knowing that God will work all things out in this beautiful timing. 2017 and 2018 were rough, but out of that roughness God taught me to trust in Him more than ever. I am thankful and grateful to carry those lessons into 2019 and beyond. 

Come what may, I will praise God through the storm and in the sunshine! 

Do you want to pick your word for the year or are you wondering what to do with it now? Here are some resources: 

How to pick a word for the year

1) Stop, slow down, and think 

Picking a word for your year doesn’t need to be overly complicated or hard. Chances are, you won’t have a terribly hard time coming up with word options. You will probably have a hard time narrowing it down. So spend a few minutes dreaming about what you want for this year:

What do you wish you had more of (or less of) this year?

What word or idea do you want to dominate your life this year? 

What do you want 2019 to be characterized by?

Is there something you want to work on? Like finding more joy in your home.

When you stop. think for just a second. What one WORD comes to mind?

2) Look up the definitions

If you are struggling to narrow it down. Then hop on google and look up the definitions, this might help clarify things. I was thinking that CREATE might be a good word for me this year and when I looked up the definition, it solidified it for me. 

I don’t think it needs to be a complicated to pick your word. Chances are, your gut is already telling you what you need for this year. What do you dream for 2017? Some ideas might include: 

  • Joy
  • Create
  • Grace
  • Rest
  • Discipline
  • Grateful
  • Thankfulness
  • Connected
  • Intentional

There are so many great ones out there to choose from! I would LOVE to know what word you picked for this year. Leave a comment here or hop on over to Instagram and share your word there! 

Get instant free access to my Finding Joy in Your Home video course.

  • Do you want to discover more joy, peace, & tranquility within your home?
  • Do you feel overwhelmed and like your house is out of control?
  • Join my free course and learn the essential habits for Christian homemakers
  1. This is my third year choosing a word and verse. The word for next year is one I know I have needed for a long time, one that is a constant struggle for me in friendships, relationships, self-esteem, work, my ministry work, my writing, etc. So I know it’s finally time to focus on it, even though I know it will be convicting and very difficult at times. This is what the Lord led me to for 2019:

    WORD: Confident

    VERSE: So do not worry about tomorrow; it will have enough worries of its own. There is no need to add to the troubles each day brings. (Matthew 6:34 GNT)

  2. Great word, Jami! And your littles are too precious in that photo of you all holding hands!!

    Some of my words in the last years have been Focus, Persevere, Nurture, Savor, and Forbearance.

    This year I’ve chosen Sabbatical.

    It’s kind of the opposite of yours. Ha! My oldest is about to turn 11, and I feel like I’m learning what I’ve been holding on to out of obligation or a desire to please, rather than because it’s right for us. He’s going to be out of my home in too few years, so this year I’m practicing letting go of the hustle. I want to look at what rest really means, beyond just self care. How trust and simplicity interact with our command to observe the Sabbath.

    I will even be outsourcing much of the schooling this year! The younger three will go to the neighborhood elementary school and my oldest will participate in Classical conversations as well as lots of independent work.

    It feels like the right time to invest in the rest of this journey with a time to really think and study. But at a measured rather than frenzied pace.

  3. This is my fourth year of choosing a word. My previous words were – Purpose, Rest and Be Anxious for Nothing.

    This year 2018 has been challenging and mixed with both highs and lows for my family. My family experienced unanswered prayers (anxiety ) a job lost and then restored with a better one (sadness and happiness) and a child got married (joy) and I myself had an unexpected a knee injury that left me incapacitated for a short while, I really felt overwhelmed.

    In the midst of all this, I heard the words “Trust in Me” and so my word will be Trust because I know God can be trusted and He is good even when I do no understand the circumstances around me.

    Proverbs : Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding.

  4. Great idea! I think I will try this for the first time!! I’m thinking this year I will choose Excellence. I feel like I have been settling lately for what is good or ok and not what is best or godly, so this year I want to work on choosing what is the most excellent (in my health, attitudes, relationships, home making etc)!! My verse will be Phil 1:10 and prob 8:6.

  5. Jami,

    This is my ninth year selecting a word. My word is “disciplined”. Isn’t that funny? The Lord has truly been refining me and submission to my husband, being more meek and quiet in spirit, and providing joy to our four children have been a huge desire of my heart. I am hoping my word will inspire and continue to motivate me in those areas.

  6. I go back and forth on “word of the year”. I like the idea but I struggle with consistency. For 2017 my word was “prayer” and I benefitted greatly from studying and applying what I learned. I am far better about praying now than I was before that. But honestly? I don’t even remember if I picked one for 2018. If I did, it didn’t sink in.

    For 2019 I’m choosing “content” or “contentment”. We are in a tumultuous time in life and it’s so easy to complain. Philippians 4:11-13 will be my focus this year. “I have learned the secret of being content…”

  7. I have been thinking about a focus or word for the year for a couple of weeks. I had started with Diligence, but that didn’t quite fit and finally came around to Faithfulness – Steadfast, Diligent, Grace. Not exactly one word, but the last three are descriptive of where I need to focus. I saw you had a post about picking a word for the year. I finally had a chance to take a look and I just had to comment, since we both came to the same word. I have scriptures picked and just have to write it all up. I would like to include a link to this post for those who want a bit of direction on picking a word for themselves.

  8. I just stumbled across your blog when I googled, “how to chose a word for the year.” My problem was I had so many things I want to work on and a ton of different words came to mind!
    I have never actually chosen a word for the year, but midway through 2018, I started striving for joy. Having a chronic illness, like yourself, that causes severe fatigue-I was struggling with joy because I was trying to find it in my circumstances, instead of just being joyful!
    I want to continue to pursue joy in 2019, but I have other goals too. Many are similar to yours. And when I read “faithfulness” I realized it summed up the other words I was considering. So I am stealing your word! The real kicker for me was the line where you said “as I struggle with my physical health I realize my strength comes from the Lord.” I am trying so hard to remember that! So thank you so much for this inspiring word! I am going to pick my own verse to go with it!

  9. My 2019 word I think is “drink” / “refresh”. There has been a lot of things in the last few years that I have especially felt lately have taken my time away from God. To develop my relationship more, I feel I need to take in from Him…not elsewhere. I also have been feeling like I should put more focus on pleasing Him and not others. I don’t need to be Superwoman…just His beloved. Sit more at His feet. Maybe my word should be focus.

  10. This is great, Jami. I love your word, and I think faithfulness is even better than discipline for what you’re going for. Also, your family pictures are just so sweet. Thanks for sharing them with us!

  11. Hi Jami:
    Wonderful post!
    Great idea to seek out that word for the year and plan life around it.

    I’ve been feeling led to do the same in many directions.
    1. For our church-I get one word, with meaning behind it.
    2. For myself-what I should focus on for the day.
    3 For dates on the calendar-into. The future.

    Interesting enough, for this year I have heard “No fear this year”
    And the ability to have no fear stems from your word “Faithfulness”
    1. Confidence in God’s faithfulness allows us not to fear.
    2. Confidence in His promises, allows us not to fear.
    3. Confidence in His word, allows us not to fear.
    4. Confidence in God’s plan and direction are always “yes and amen”, allows us not to fear.

    No matter the past, the trials, or life’s circumstances, God is faithful to complete the good work He has begun in our lives and laid out before us.
    The things that trip us up, or hurt our progress have no impact on the fullfillment of His perfect plan and victory for us.