2013 was one hell of a year. It managed to hold some of my favorite memories and the absolute worst days of my life. I hate to lump an entire year under one label but well, I wasn’t too upset to ring in the new year.

I know that everyone says this but I am really, truly ready to make some changes in my life this year and all of those changes start with me. I have no resolutions but instead set goals and intentions in a bunch of categories that I’ll be sharing later.

I’ve also seen lots of people, including my favorite life coaches, setting a “word” for the year. I’ve never done this before but as I’m not setting resolutions and I so ready to make some changes, I thought it would be a good thing to do.

One of my favorite nights of 2013

One of my favorite nights of 2013

The word I chose to guide me in 2014 is Independent.

Independent. That’s something I haven’t been in a while. It used to be my favorite thing about myself. I worked to earn everything I had, worked even harder to be able to have all the experiences that shaped who I am. Unfortunately, somewhere along the line, I completely lost my independence and sunk into a mode where I relied on others for nearly everything. And, let’s be honest – that’s a pretty easy habit to keep. When you’re coming up with excuses to not be your best self, blaming others become pretty easy.

 Not anymore.

This girl loved her independence

This girl loved her independence

I am declaring 2014 the year that I regain my independence, the year I start doing things for myself and begin to see what all I can do. I am taking control and full responsibility for everything that happens (or doesn’t happen) in my life. No one else is going to make me sink or swim. No one ever truly had that power, even when I was willingly handing it over.

I used to have big dreams and goals and you know what? I used to achieve them. I worked my ass off and I did the things I wanted to, got myself where I wanted to be. I ran a fundraiser that raised thousands for libraries, I worked 2 full-time jobs to save up for travel, I spent my nights writing anything and everything, just to get experience, I took 16 classes my senior year to be able to graduate an entire year early. I was proud of myself and my accomplishments.

And now? Not so much.

I want to be that girl again. I don’t know when I lost that love for independence, that pure passion for life, but it’s time to get that back. There are far too many things I want to do to let life pass by idly.

I am taking control again.

Do you set a word for each year? If, share yours below! I’d also love to hear about any resolutions you made.