2011 Words, Goals or Resolutions — Add Your Link

Susan here…

I’ve been thinking for days about words.

It was Chris Brogan that kicked it off with an email announcing his three words for 2011.

You see, while tradition tells us to make resolutions on January 1st, history tells us that doesn’t usually work out so well.

Because too often their resolutions are broken before day’s end, many people are changing resolutions into goals.

And some go further and focus down to one word that will define their year.

As 2010 has been getting closer to the end, I’ve been toying with the idea of drilling down to a single word for 2011. But then an email from one of my favorite business and blogging mentors Chris Brogan gave me the idea to stretch it to three words.

So all day I’ve been visualizing my upcoming year and trying to decide on the three words that I want to focus my year upon.

I walked and thought. I waited in a bank line and thought. I played with my children and thought. I stretched on a yoga mat and thought.

And here are my three words for 2011.


I can be sure of one thing, whether I want it or not, 2011 will be a year of enormous change for me.

Now before I explain, I want to remind you that this is Susan writing.


I have not yet shared this with you, but my husband and I separated in September of this year. I have not blogged about our separation as he is and always has been a very private person and while he was always supportive of my blogging, he preferred that I never write about him.

It has been difficult to go through such a profound transition and not share my journey with my blogging friends, but out of respect for him and our marriage, I felt it best to not blog about it.

I will simply say that I accept my full share of responsibility for the decline of our relationship, that I appreciate the decade we spent together and I am thankful that we are able to work so well together as partners in parenting our girls while living separately.

So as I think about what 2011 will bring, I know that a divorce will be part of it.

And thus change will be part of 2011.

I’ve always tried to embrace change but as we all know, some change is harder to welcome. Some change we initiate and some we don’t. But it comes whether invited or not.

In 2011, I will grab hold of change and squeeze as much goodness out of it as I can. I will seek out opportunities to grow myself and my businesses and push through so much change that this time next year, I’ll need a telescope to see where I was when I typed these words.

I will change thoughts and actions and I will become a new woman, mother and business owner.

I recognize that I will fall down, run backwards, make mistakes, and fail many times in 2011, but as long as I’m changing, I’ll be moving forward.


I love to give.

I truly, truly love to give. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m terrible at giving birthday gifts and such… I can never think of something creative and I stress that the recipient will feel obligated to pretend to like what I selected. But that’s all about me and my own insecurities. And I’m not talking about giving in a monetary sense.

What I mean is I love the feeling when I think I’ve helped someone – friend or stranger.

I remember my Dilbert days as a software developer and business analyst, and while I so often hated my cubicle job, I’d get such a lift if I had a chance to help a new team member learn the ropes, or take a moment with a co-worker to find a bug in her program, or share a techie insight with a stumped business analyst. Giving some of my time or knowledge and seeing it help someone, made my day so much better.

I often laugh to myself how ‘giving’ can actually kinda be a selfish thing, because it feels so good when you do it.

But lately I haven’t taken enough time to give.

I think it’s partly because as moms we are ‘giving’ of ourselves constantly in certain ways and we feel depleted. But when we recognize other parts of ourselves that have value that we can share, we actually fill ourselves back up.

So in 2011, while I know I’ll be just as strapped for time as I was in 2010, I’m going to find knowledge, contacts, skills, and most importantly friendship and love that I have to give to family, friends, employees, business associates, Twitter followers, Facebook friends, blog readers and more.

I’m going to find resources to give.


A few days ago, I joked with a friend on Facebook that I don’t often have a status update that says “Done”.

Which do you enjoy more, starting or finishing a project? I’d have to say I like the starting more than the finishing. The wrapping up of details just isn’t as fun as the excitement of the start.

I’ve got a lot of tasks on the go that need to be finished up and set to “done”. My mind is racing with new ideas that I’m dying to implement, but I’ve got a bunch to set to “done” first.

But, much of that “doing” will be “delegating” and will include some key “outsourcing” and “hiring”.

I recognize my gifts and how I want to spend my time and how my time is best invested. So in 2011, I will move towards getting tasks “Done” either by myself or the best resource.

I am truly excited to embark on the journeys of 2011.

I will change, give and do.

What about you?

Whether you’re using Words, Goals or Resolutions for 2011, we want to hear. If you’ve blogged about it, then add your link below, otherwise share in a comment.

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Written by 5 Minutes for Mom co-founder Susan.
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    • says

      That is wonderful to hear Tara. It is so empowering when we recognize that we have the power to improve our lives. I know this will be a great year for you and I both.

  1. says

    I’m so sorry to hear this, Susan. Endings are hard, regardless of how they come. Even endings that are for the best are hard. I’ll keep you in my thoughts and prayers, and I know that many good things are in store for you.

    And as for me, my word for 2011 is ‘space’. As in, finding space to breathe, not exploring the final frontier.

    • says

      Thank you Amber! Yes, endings can be very hard so I try to focus on the beginning that is brought about by the end.

      I love the word “space”. That is a fantastic word for 2011.

  2. says

    I was so encouraged by your post, Susan. I know how hard your big change must be because I was in your exact spot 2 years. I pray 2011 brings you an inspiration through it all. You inspired me to write my own post with my own 3 words for the New Year.

    • says

      Thank you Sara! I’m looking forward to reading your post and I will surely be looking to you for inspiration as you have traveled this road already.

  3. says

    Thanks for sharing your heart, Susan. I’m so sorry to hear about the end of your marriage, but am praying that the coming year will be full of hope, healing, and happiness for you.

    • says

      Jill, that sounds like an exciting photography challenge, I’m going to check that out.

      And I love that word… Embrace. Powerful stuff.

  4. says

    I’m sorry, Sue. I’m sure that’s not an easy change to make. I like your three words for 2011. I picked mine. Well, I just stuck with one. “Well-Functioning.” I just need a little bit of that around here. 😉

  5. says

    big huge hugs to you Susan… It sounds lame but I am so proud of you for sharing your heart so publicly. I love that feeling of having helped someone too and I need you to know that your open vulnerability helps others feel ok to share their vulnerability. It is a really good thing sweet friend. We all need to know we are not alone :)

    Very good words. I am having a terrible time coming up with mine… I can’t seem to get positive enough quite yet. :)

    we’ll talk soon :)


  6. says

    Wow, Susan . . . you are so inspiring! My heart and prayers are with you and your family. This TOTALLY puts my faith firmly in the quote, “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.”

  7. says

    I’m sorry Susan…it’s hard to blog about the real personal details, I too have chosen to remain silent on so much. Those are great 3 words you have chosen – I look forward to seeing what 2011 brings for you and Jan – I know it’ll be wonderful!

    Sending hugs…

    Tammi @ My Organized Chaos

    • says

      Yes, it is hard when our identities are public and we want to talk about private stuff b/c we have to protect others involved. Complicated stuff.

      Thank you so much for your support.

  8. says

    Sending you hugs, Susan. You and Janice are always in my family’s prayers, and there you’ll stay.

    Sometimes it’s the hardest of things that make us the strongest. Know how much I believe in you.

  9. says

    Susan, I’m so sorry to hear about your marriage. Endings can be so hard, even when it’s for the best and when we can appreciate the time we had. I tried doing a word for the year for the past two years and by about March, I would totally forget what my word was! This year, I went to the blog and I posted 7 simple, achievable goals. Once I achieve those, I’ll set more, no matter what time of year it is.

    If there’s ever anything I can do to help, don’t hesitate to send me an email or a facebook note or a blog comment..Isn’t technology grand? lol *hugs*

  10. Helen Brown says

    I LOVED the article “And here are my three words for 2011.” It is exactly what I want to do from today forward. I hadn’t put my thoughts into three words, but the words WOULD BE the same as yours. I began my “change” in September 2010 when I decided to run a mile at least 5 times a week. The last time I actually excercised was pre children. I will be 50 years old this year and decided I want to be healthy and live longer to enjoy grandchildren, if that is in the cards for my two daughters. My “give” will be next week when I give blood for the first time ever, and for the “do” I am researching how to donate my time to an organization that I belive in. I am so glad that I found your site. But, I will want to spend more than 5 minutes on it daily basis.

  11. observer says

    I’m sure there are two sides to every story…would be interesting to hear your husbands side of the story.


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