Olle Lindholm

My 3 words for 2024

Every year I select three words that will serve as guideposts for my efforts. If you’re unfamiliar with the exercise, it’s something that Chris Brogan started in 2006.

I take time to reflect on the past year, what worked and what didn’t. I try to gain a clear picture of what I want the next year (and beyond) to look like.

Looking beyond is a critical component. I may use these words for one year, but they are integral to building a foundation for my life and future work.

Sometimes, the words come from specific goals I’ve established. Other times, I jot down words that catch my attention or explore a list of core values that inspire me.

How to choose your words

I started this practice in 2012. Back then, my three words were: “Listen. Act. Inspire.” I picked these simple words and they served me well. One of my best years ever.

I listened to others, and I learned something new. I acted on this knowledge and inspired others to learn from my experience. It was a positive growth cycle.

A few tips for choosing your words:

The simpler the word, the more powerful it is. My favourite word (so far) has been “ask”. That word opened a lot of doors for me and served me well. (In 2015, I tried to be smart and chose “kaizen” as one of my three words. That wasn’t a very good year.)

Ready to see a few more examples?

My three words over the years

I hope that by sharing these words with you, I will inspire you to embark on your own journey.

Feel free to use any of these words for your own benefit. Here’s to a healthy and prosperous new year!

My 3 Words for 2024

2024 is the year of love. Friends are getting married and love is in the air. Here are my three words that will help me bring more love to the world.

1. Accept

Learn and practice acceptance.

Accept the person, the situation, and the circumstances.

Check the facts – try to describe the situation in a neutral manner. Be weary of bias and prejudice. Remember Morgan Housel’s acute observation:

Your personal experiences make up maybe 0.00000001% of what’s happened in the world but maybe 80% of how you think the world works.

Acceptance boils down to a few central questions:

Acceptance is a powerful tool for personal growth. What I choose to accept reveals my core values, it sets the frames.

Which behaviours do I find unacceptable? Those are my boundaries, my standards and ethics if you will. They set the bar.

Acceptance comes down to seeing things as they are, being kind to yourself, and staying flexible when things don’t work out as planned.

2. Commit

Learn and practice commitment.

Commit to others and yourself.

Make a list of all your commitments, so you can see them.

Clarify expectations and demands – your own, and those of others.

Each commitment has a time and a place. Learn to commit to the moment. What’s important to me right now?

What do I want to commit to? Set your priority, otherwise other people will do it for you.

Commitment is an active choice.

You don’t need to justify or explain your priorities to others, they are yours to define. When you feel like you have to explain or justify yourself, it’s often a sign of an insecurity. Which takes me to my final word.

3. Direct

Learn and practice assertiveness.

Be direct about what I want. Express my wishes and boundaries (what I accept/won’t accept) in a respectful way. Remember the guiding principle:

You can only control your own behaviour, not others’.

Be the director of your life. Take a step back, look at the scene and take responsibility and ownership of your actions. Direct your precious energy, attention and resources to the people and projects that matter.

Set the stage – lead with your values. Collaborate and communicate assertively with others. Scream “CUT!” if necessary to make any changes to the scene. Make art.

Celebrate the year of love

Everyone has a need to be seen, heard and understood. Love is about having a sense of belonging. We could all benefit from learning and practicing acceptance, commitment, and assertiveness this year. Here’s to the year of love!

#personal growth