A Word to Live By

Posted on 24th January, 2015

If you follow my blog, you may recognise Jen Gilroy's name. Jen is an ex-pat Canadian, now living and working in the UK. She is a romance writer and she also writes an excellent blog, in which she covers personal subjects and, in doing so, raises issues that are close to all our hearts.


I enjoy Jen's blog because she always gives me something to think about and sometimes the results of those thoughts end up here on my blog. Recently, Jen wrote about an alternative to New Year's resolutions that I hadn't heard of before - choosing a word to be your guide and inspiration for the year ahead.


Jen's word this year is GOODNESS, which has a special resonance after the events that took place in Paris a couple of weeks ago.


Since I read Jen's blog, I have been considering the best word to colour and shape my life this year. I quickly decided on APPRECIATION.


My lifelong dream was always to make my home in Llandudno in wonderful North Wales and two years ago, we made the move. Quite simply, it's the best thing we ever did. We love living here and two years down the line, I can honestly say we don't take it for granted. We still walk along the prom or look at the Great Orme with that wow, we live here feeling. So having 'appreciation' as my word rings true.


But it is also appropriate for another reason. Two weeks ago, I lost a good friend whose life was cut short by illness. It was such a brutal thing to happen. She was such fun and could always see the funny side; which isn't to say she trivialised things; on the contrary, she was kind and sensitive. But her personality was such that I knew, whenever we met up, that I was in for a jolly good laugh.


When I knew her illness was terminal, I wrote to her to reminisce about our friendship and also to tell her the reasons why I liked her and how she had affected my life. Now that she has gone, I'm glad I did that.


It has made me realise that there is more to appreciation than simply feeling approval or enjoyment. Appreciation should be an active thing. It should be expressed and shared. At its best, it can make a difference to a life. This year, I hope it's going to make a difference to mine.


Do you have a word you live by?




If you would like to visit Jen's blog, click here.


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Comments (8)

Thank you for your kind words, Jan.
I'm sorry for your loss, Susanna. I think your choice of word is very apt and your friend would have cherished your letter to her, I'm sure.
I'm sure 'hope' is a word that resonates with all of us. Thanks for dropping by, Wendy.
You have chosen your word well, Susanna. My word would be 'hope'.
Thank you for your thoughts, Nicola. This is the first time I have chosen a word in this way and I hope it will make me more aware as I go through my everyday life. Lovely to hear from you, as always.
I enjoy visiting Jen's blog too, Susanna - as well as your's of course. Such inspiring posts. I am sorry for your loss. Friendship should be valued and not taken for granted. We never know when it will be taken away from us. Your letter, I'm sure would have given your friend comfort. I don't have one particular word that I live by but I like to think that I am thoughtful and considerate to others - no matter what mood they're in :) Wishing you all the best.
Thank you for your kind comments, Jen, and for your continued support of my blog. Your blog is a source of great pleasure to me.

I'm glad you like my choice of word. I'm sure it will enrich this year for me. Thank you for the idea.
Thank you for your kind comments about my blog, Susanna. I'm amazed (and touched and honoured too) that my writing continues to inspire you, and has given you things to think about.

'Appreciation' is a lovely and rich word. I wish you a meaningful journey as you explore 'your word' in different aspects of your life throughout 2015.

You already know my word for the year but, coincidentally (and before reading your blog), I expressed and shared appreciation today. I wrote a card of thanks to my GP who is leaving our village surgery and who I will miss so much. I wanted her to know how much her care and compassion have meant to me over the years, and that she's a 'family doctor' in the best sense of the word.

I'm sorry for the loss of your friend and, having also lost a dear friend in the past year, have some understanding of that grief. I'm glad you were able to tell her what she meant to you. I'm sure that meant a great deal to her too. xxx