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One word

As I write, my thoughts are incomplete. The title of this post is "one word " and before I hit publish on this post, I will have to figure out what that one word is.

At Blissdom Canada last week (which I will write about more once I get a picture I'm waiting for), there was a keynote panel on branding yourself. One of the ideas that was floated around was coming up with one word that you think describes you. It is a condensed version of an elevator pitch, I guess.  Little Miss Mocha wrote a great post on how she came up with her one word: Reach. As I thought about my word, my one word, I also thought about the panelists saying that your brand is how others see you, not how you see yourself. When they mentioned that, I cringed a bit, worried that the things I am most well known for might start to define me. Worried that perhaps they were already. I've always liked to think of myself as an out-of-the-box thinker and I don't like the idea of other people's perceptions starting to put me into a box, so I would need and want a brand that evolves. I want to keep you guessing. I want to bring you along with me on a journey.

But in the spirit of the brand being how others perceive you, I asked people on twitter today what their one word would be for me (some of them snuck in a few, but I tried to get them to narrow to one, and may have left some out if it was a long list). Here is what I heard:

  • advocate (@littlemissmocha, @KristineBrite)

  • caring (@KristineBrite)

  • empathetic (@RanaAurora, @Violetsouffle)

  • enlightened (@windwardskies)

  • fabulous (@yayayarndiva)

  • focus (@littlemissmocha)

  • informed/informative (@tulipgrrl, @growingyourbaby)

  • integrity (@alexishinde)

  • intelligent (@OurOrdinaryLife)

  • knowledge (@bitofmomsense)

  • outspoken (@MariaMelee)

  • passionate (@fleur_de_lotus, @momnom, @outtajo, @RachaelNevins, @WomenOnTheFence, @LimeLitePR, @zchamu)

  • pensive (@Sherriemae23)

  • persistent (@invisible_daddy)

  • principled (@lakeline)

  • relentless (@RachaelNevins)

  • resilient (@ChildMode)

  • resourceful (@tailwagshelmet)

  • stand (@RaisingBoyChick)

  • stalwart (@herbadmother)

  • supportive (@cricketina13, @AccustomedChaos)

  • tactful (@CrunchyVTMommy)

  • tenacious (@monsterchew)

  • thorough (@bodhi_bear)

  • thoughtful (@fertilityplanit, @innerwizdom)

  • thought-provoking (@therealkazia)

  • unwavering (@postpartumprogr)

  • wise (@1xMum)

I'm guessing that "scary" or "intimidating" might be another word, since no one had the nerve to float a negative one word my way (this is nothing like my school days). Also note that I didn't ask my partner or one of the words would most likely have been "stubborn" or "forgetful".

"Passionate" was by far the most popular choice and I do think it fits. I am passionate about a lot of things. I like all of these words (THANK YOU!) and some that really stand out are empathetic, integrity, stalwart, stand, and unwavering. Those are all things I strive to be. But none of them says it all for me.

I want my word to incorporate learning, critical thought, humanity, sharing, and change. I want to evolve, I want you to evolve, and I want the world to evolve. My one word:


P.S. Looks like I'm sharing this word with @suzieswapper.
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Reader Comments (24)

That is a list to keep for bad days. When you're feeling like crud and need a reminder about all you are and all your do. I would have piped in but didn't see the request. I will admit to being intimidated (online) by your intelligence, conviction, and strength. But then I met you in real life and, after Blissdom, my word for you is kind. If I had to pick a second it would be generous. Thank you for sharing your passion and knowledge with all of us.

November 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSara

Suddenly, the #oneword thing comes clear.

I think that "Evolving" is an excellent word. It is, perhaps, the best word that any of us can aspire to.

Evolve on! :)

November 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAmber

Great word! I still haven't come up with mine yet :)

November 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTarasview

Great word... it's a trait that every mama (and person) should strive for. I can honestly say that I have evolved enormously after having kids and I now know that to constantly evolve and want to 'grow' as a person is part of what makes life so rewarding. Otherwise, you get stuck in the rut of repeating the same mistakes, the same routine, the same blah day after day after day. Not knowing any better, not caring and not truly LIVING.

Thanks for sharing!

November 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAida

Great word Annie. I had it on my logo for a while, and I hope it's what we all strive for. The world really would be a sadder place if we all just stayed the same.

November 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSuchada @ Mama Eve

I've been thinking about this #oneword thing and I still can't think of one that I like enough to associate myself with. I like lots of words and it's hard to choose just one.

I've also been having trouble picking one that doesn't have negative connotations.

I guess this means I'm still working on it. Good on you for choosing yours! I like your reasoning behind it. :)

November 3, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermelissa

Yup. That's you. And you are fabulous.

November 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterArwyn

Blissdom Canada left me with lots to think about as well. Although I haven't decided what single word best suits me yet, I'm impressed with your list ad I agree that "passionate" rings true.
I just wrote a blog article called, "Lonely, Scared and Overwhelmed" about parenting kids with special needs. http://karynclimans.com/2010/11/04/lonely-scared-and-overwhelmed/ This article was also a follow-up to some of the discussion groups I attended. See you at next year's event but, hopefully, we'll be in touch before then via twitter and our blog sites.

November 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKaryn Climans

Love Evolvoing, Implies change in the productive way. If it was two words I would say you are evolving passionately or have a focused evolution. I'm going with my #one word as Relatable. What do you think?

November 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterEmma

I have said on Twitter that I think I would have told you that the one word I would have used is "genuine" if thinking about how to describe you.

Thinking about myself I think that these days I would use the word "disconnected" or "scattered" to describe myself. Looking forward I hope that "evolves" into being something better for me, my family and the world I live in!

November 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSam (@iamsamisam & @babyRE

I use the word evolving to describe myself, and I think it's perfect for you! .

November 4, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterkristin

This was a great post. It was neat reading about your thought process that brands you in one words.

November 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJanette

YAY. Same Word.


November 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAllison Worthington

I think you chose a great word. It describes what is at the core of what you do here.

From knowing you I would also have picked kind and generous.

November 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCapital Mom

Good word. I still have no clue what my word is... was great seeing you again at BlissDom - we'll have to do lunch soon!

November 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLoukia

Thank you Sara. That is so sweet of you. I loved meeting you and hanging out with you too. Luckily we are in the same city and can do it more often! :)

November 5, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterphdinparenting


Yes, it would be and I'm saddened every day by people who dig their heels in to preserve what is, rather than going with the flow and evolving.

November 5, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterphdinparenting

[...] I needed some inspiration for a six word friday post on the theme of change. So in the spirit of evolving, here are my six words and our take on the Graffiti [...]

[...] have since seen  a couple blog posts (PhD in Parenting and Her Bad Mother) writing about defining their one word. They seem to be somewhat skeptical as [...]

[...] I mentioned previously in my One Word post, I attended the Blissdom Canada conference in Toronto last week.  Although there are a lot of [...]

I'm not a blogger (well, I have a family blog but that doesn't count!)... but I like this "one word" idea. I think it applies to all sides of your life: as a wife, as a mother, as a career person. I don't know if the same "one word" would apply to all the sides of my life but it could for some people. I will have to think about my "one word".

November 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAlina


Let me know when you decide! :)

November 6, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterphdinparenting

Wow. What a task. I'm not sure I could do this. Evolving is a great choice, and perfect for you Annie. I also liked thoughtful and integrity.

November 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJacob

[...] only through the internet. I’m especially curious to know how YOU see me. PHD in Parenting recently asked her twitter followers the same question (well similar, what one word would they use to [...]

February 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHow do YOU see me? » Lif

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