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Three Words for 2019

Most of us will begin 2019 with three words – Happy New Year!

It’s a phrase that carries a happy and positive wish for ourselves and for our loved ones.

Many of us might use a further three words – My resolution is…

New Year’s Resolutions are really well-intentioned but actually 80% have failed by February.

Remember that guilty feeling when you had to admit defeat because you still weren’t exercising twice a week despite that expensive gym membership you paid for?

Most people who set New Years Resolutions end up feeling like they have let themselves down.

One reason I don’t think New Year’s Resolutions work is because they are too general.

“I want to lose weight”

“I want to save money”

“I’m going to spend more time with family”

Resolutions are all about the “what” or the “how” but not the “why”.

So, I don’t make a resolution.

Instead, at the beginning of each New Year, I like to choose three words that represent my intentions and aspirations for the year ahead.

They set the focus for the choices and actions I make every day and act as guideposts to look back, look forward, take stock, re-evaluate or adjust so I can become a better version of myself.

Of course, we can’t predict everything that will happen in the coming year, but I can choose how I want to respond to things that come my way; whether those things are positive or negative.

To pick my words, I reflect on the challenges I faced in the previous year and think about who I want to be in the future. What are the traits, values and behaviours that the new me has?

From there, I pick three words that will be my guide and inspiration – and they capture my most important values.

In 2018, my words were trust, abundance and fun.

Trust – To trust myself and the decisions I make.

I’ve learned to listen to and trust my instincts.

Abundance – To have plenty of people to coach. To grow my business.

My business has grown. I’ve met wonderful people and done wonderful things.

Fun – To make more time to do some fun things.

In the end, I didn’t have as much fun as I would have liked. For 15 weeks of 2018, the priority was supporting my Dad through chemo. It wasn’t what I hoped for but it did provide some amazing quality time together.

And that’s okay because without the word “fun”, I may never have valued that time as much as I did.

I’m yet to decide on all three words for 2019 but I have chosen one.

Courage - Courage to take regular trips outside my comfort zone

What will your three words be? Answers on a postcard.



Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash



Denise Chilton is an executive coach, business coach, life coach, accomplished author, speaker and entrepreneur. She worked in corporate banking for more than 15 years before launching her own coaching business in 2010. She has built a business working with women who want to make a change in their lives, empowering them to experience life to the full. Although based in Liverpool, Denise works with women across the world via telephone and Skype coaching.

In 2017, she published her first book Suddenly Single: How to overcome heartbreak and find your way to a new happy ever after. Suddenly Single is a guide written partially from personal experience to help women to heal healthily after a significant relationship comes to an unexpected end.

Denise was awarded ‘Mentor of the Year 2017’ by the Northern Power Women for her work with women and shortlisted for 'Diversity Champion of the Year' in 2018 by Forward Ladies.

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