My Word for 2013: AUTHENTIC

To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

We are three weeks into the New Year already, and it’s taken me this much time to decide upon my word for 2013.


From this moment forward, every decision I make is true to who I am, to what I love, to where I see myself one/five/ten years from now.

How do I spend my money?
What food and drink do I put into my body?
How do I spend my days?
How do I interact with others?

This is easier said than done. Constant effort is required to keep those wheels from falling back into the deep ruts worn over many years of living. The biggest battle is with myself, as I attempt to break free of the confines of the many roles that have defined me so narrowly. And too often I remain silent in the face of controversy, keeping my true self hidden, allowing others to assume things about me that may or may not be true. Somehow, I must find a way to celebrate who I am while giving myself permission to be much, much more.

Similarly, I want to give everyone I come in contact with the opportunity to be their own authentic selves. Whether I’m having a conversation with a friend, teaching a piano lesson, or dealing with an angry driver on the road, my goal is to assume nothing, to expect nothing, to meet each individual with openness and acceptance and love–even when it seems they don’t deserve it.

This is my quest.

What is your word for 2013?