My word for 2018: Happiness

11th January 2018

Back in October, I started to think about what I wanted my goals for 2018 to be. Yes, I started thinking about this very early, but 2017 was a pretty terrible year for me and I couldn’t wait for it to end!

Last year, instead of setting myself multiple goals, I just chose one. My goal was to buy a house, and I did accomplished it. In previous years I had set myself multiple goals, but I always failed at achieving all the goals I set and it just made me feel really bad about myself.

Sometimes it was 100% my fault that I didn’t accomplish my goals. I was lazy or I forgot about them, or I was overambitious and didn’t realise the full scale of the challenge ahead. Sometimes, it wasn’t my fault. Sometimes life didn’t go to plan and my goals became impossible to achieve. Either way, I still felt like a failure.

This year I have decided to try something different. This year, I’m not setting myself any major goals for the year. Instead, I have decided to choose a word for the year.

I don’t remember where I first heard of this concept, but it’s something that a lot of online creatives do. They choose a word, and this word is their focus and their guide for the year. This episode of the “Elise Gets Crafty” podcast explains the concept really well.

I spent a lot of time thinking about what word I would like to use. I thought about Gratitude, Creative, Challenge, Leap, Grow, and many more. But in the end I chose quite a simple word.

My word for the year is “happiness”.

I can’t think of many moments in 2017 when I felt truly happy. My happiness always seemed to be overshadowed by other thoughts and feelings. In fact, I was afraid of saying “I’m happy” because I knew the feeling wouldn’t last and I almost felt like I was jinxing my happiness by saying it.

But in 2018 I want this to change. I want to prioritise my happiness, and really focus on the ways that I can bring more happiness into my life. I also want to find happiness in the ordinary everyday; the little things in life that bring me happiness that I often overlook.

52 Lists for Happiness

So here are a few aspects of my life that I want to bring more happiness into:

My career

In my last blog post I announced that I had quit my job, mainly because I wasn’t happy. Choosing to leave that job wasn’t easy, but almost immediately after handing in my notice I knew it was the right decision.

I don’t know what will be in store for me career wise this year. I am looking for another job, but I’m also not completely ruling out the idea of full-time freelancing. But what ever I end up doing I want to be happy. I want to enjoy what I do it, and feel fulfilled in my work.

My online life

I have this love/hate relationship with the internet. The internet has given me a career, hobbies and friendships, but at times it has a really negative impact on my mental health.

Last year I didn’t blog anywhere near as much as I usually do. I wasn’t in a good place, and it was hard for me to talk about how I was really feeling. I also didn’t feel like creating, and I let comparison get the better of me.

This year I want my time spent online to be happy. If what someone is saying online is getting me down, I’ll unfollow them or mute them. If I end up online without a clear purpose, I will close my laptop and find something else to do. I will write for me, and create the content I want to create.

My home

While I definitely had a few “Am I doing the right thing?” moments during the whole house buying process, I now feel really settled in our new home. But we still have a lot of work to do to make this house our own, and I’m excited to make some serious progress with the renovations.

I want to make my my home a happy place to be. I want it to reflect our personalities and our interests. I want it to be a place where my friends and family feel welcome and safe.

My friends and family

Although I am a massive introvert who loves being alone, I know that spending time with people I love, whether it be friends or family, can really lift my spirits. Being around because is important to me, especially now that I’m out of work and I spend more time alone than ever before.

I want to go home to Shropshire more. I want to meet up with my blogging friends more. I want to rekindle old friendships. I want to put myself out more, and make more of an effort when it comes to spending time with loved ones.

Most of all, I want to spend my time with Tyrone more wisely. We kind of have a routine in the evenings that consists of eating dinner, watching TV and then going to bed, but I feel like we could be do more with our free time. I also want to carry on having date nights once a month like we did last year, and I want to go on more adventures on the weekends. Maybe a couple of mini-breaks?

My health

Okay, so it’s not exactly easy to be happy with your health when you live with a physical disability that is the result of someone’s mistake, and that’s only going to get worse over time.

However, I want to feel happy that I’m doing everything I can to look after myself in the best way possible. I want to keep on top of my steroid injections, and I want to develop a consistent work out routine and stick with it.

I also want to focus on my mental health. My anxiety is one of the biggest causes of my unhappiness, but I know I have the power to take control of it and not let it consume me.

52 Lists for Happiness

To accompany my journey of happiness in 2018, I’m going to be using the 52 Lists for Happiness journal. Last year I worked through the original 52 Lists book, which I absolutely loved, so I decided to purchase the second book in the series that focuses specifically on happiness. I will set aside some time each Monday to fill this in, and maybe I’ll share some of my lists here on the blog.

I’ll also be continuing with my Little Victories series on the blog. Sitting down to write a list of all my achievements that month can be so uplifting, and these posts are amazing to look back at as time goes on.

(Plus, they helped me to write my review of the year blog post because I’m so forgettable!)

52 Lists for Happiness

What are your goals for 2018? Do you have a word for the year?

P.S. If you also want to pick a word for the year of 2018, Elizabeth has made a Word of the Year worksheet to help you out.

Enjoyed this post? Why not share it...


  1. First: I LOVE your happiness book!! I’d love one of those!
    I don’t have a word of the year, but I’ve decided that this will be the year when I learn to set other priorities in life and to do what makes me happy, what gives me energy, and ditch the rest. I so agree about the internet, I also have a love/hate relationship with it. I love how you can connect with people in other countries and keep in touch with people far away, find information fast and create things, do business etc, but there’s so much bad stuff around there, and people I call “energy thieves”. Stop feeding myself with things online that steal energy and happiness is something I’ll do too this year.

    • Holly

      I highly recommend the book! It’s full of lots of great prompts.

      I’m glad you are prioritising your happiness too. I’m definitely guilty of spending too much time online and allowing it to drain me of all of my energy and creativity.

  2. Joy

    I think happiness is the perfect word to use this year. You are already taking steps to assure your happiness and I think that’s amazing.
    I don’t know why I didn’t think of it but yes, what other people post on social media can really get me down sometimes. I feel like I have to be more mindful of the things I say on social media because I never realized how my negativity (I don’t think I brag but bragging too) can alter someone else’s mood.
    I’ve said this before but I look forward to see how you conquer this year and I wish you nothing but the best 😊

    • Holly

      Social media is a strange old place. I worry that I might come across as quite miserable and moany at times. It tends to be the people who find fault with everything, or who get easily offended, that drive me mad on social media!

      Thank you, Joy! I hope I have lots of exciting things to write about this coming year.

  3. I hope you’ll achieve your goal this year. πŸ™‚ Everything you said sounds wonderful, spend more time with loved ones and worry less about what other people are saying.

  4. Happiness is such a good word. I’m sorry that 2017 wasn’t a good year for you, but here’s hoping 2018 is everything you want it to be and more. You’ve definitely started the year on a strong foot, making that amazing decision to leave work because it wasn’t making you happy. I’m sure you can achieve everything you want, and make 2018 the year you deserve =]

  5. This is such a great word for next year! Mine is Slow and is for very similar reasons, happiness hasn’t been too prevalent due to just being so busy and stressed all the time!


Leave a comment



Your comment

Thank you for leaving a comment! I ask you kindly not to plug your website/social media in the comments section. It's bad etiquette. Please use the Website section of the form to leave a link if you wish.