2016 Word – Hustle

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

In the early part of 2016, I used One Word to frame the year and my intentions. The word that chose me was “hustle” after I’d done Jon Acuff’s “30 Days of Hustle” in January. Although I’d initially picked something else as my word, it became apparent that was to be my word this year. I can’t say I was too thrilled with it and I didn’t quite warm up to it until this fall.

I didn’t want to hustle anymore. I wanted down time, time with family and friends, time to have more fun, and to not be constantly striving.

However, due to an almost immediate change in my new job, hustle was it for this year. A long-time employee quit and I was the only one on the team that had done what she did for sales, use, and property taxes (and a few more things besides that). I did it twenty years ago, but no one on my team had ever done it. As I joked, the last time I’d used some of that software, it was still DOS.

So I stepped up and took it on. It was highly stressful, but also good for me to brush up on old skills. It got better as the year went on, but there were several meltdowns on my part when I was overwhelmed and saw no way out.

My hustle went like this:

  • January to April – my changed job
  • May – new grandson / helping my daughter & son-in-law with their second baby in two years
  • June – my health as I did a Whole 30
  • July – changing my exercise – I spent the month tired and achy
  • August – working on my breathing as it became apparent with my exercise that this was a problem
  • September & October – work
  • November – smoking on my Big Green Egg
  • December – work

So it wasn’t all about my job, but that definitely impacted everything. As for my exercise, in the heat of the summer I stopped walking during lunch. Instead, I started rowing and doing yoga. Both were good for me, but it was hard for a long time. I’m now rowing with more resistance and for a longer time. The yoga has given me a better range of motion, although my balance has not improved much yet. I struggled to breath normally as I exercised and spent several weeks figuring out how to tame it so that I wasn’t puffing so badly.

The Whole 30 was interesting. It’s a cleaning eating detox program for 30 days. I did two weeks before the baby was born, then 5 weeks after I got back. I actually felt worse at the end than the beginning, which is not the normal experience. It took several more months before I started to really see benefits from it. Although wheat and gluten are not good foods for me, dairy turned out to be the worst problem and I’ve now eliminated it completely from my diet except for grass fed butter. Even yogurt was a problem.

As for work, my bosses and I have made an effort to get me back to my part-time hours. I took off two weeks in May when my grandson was born and didn’t use vacation time for it because my hours were so high. My employer has now hired a new employee for me to transition this work to, so I can go back to state income taxes, which is what I was hired to do. He’s still new and very overwhelmed, but that will resolve itself in the next few months.

My grandsons are 22 months and 7 months. They’ve kept their mother’s blue eyes, or as I tease my son-in-law, him and his father-in-law have a very strong recessive gene for two guys with brown eyes. The boys are healthy but keeping their parents hopping. Neither my daughter or son-in-law are getting much sleep.


If you’re interested in trying One Word next year, Ali Edwards has just opened her class. I’ve taken it for a while now and it’s helped me get a lot out of my using my word and making it happen.

Prior Year Words With Links:

My words for the last few years have been:

2011 – Gratitude

2012 – Serene

2013 – Prepare (curiosity was the first choice, but not what I went with)

2014 – Remember (to smile)

2015 – Create

Cooking Exercise One Word Work

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I am a backyard adventurer, philosopher and observer, recording my life in journals and photographs. Visit my blog at www.livingtheseasons.com.

27 Comments Leave a comment

  1. Two young ones–those are the days when one wonders if they’ll ever get to sleep through the night again! I never ventured to the second, one was enough! LOL

  2. Yep, sounds like a lot of hustle to me. I do yoga too, and it has helped more than I had imagined. I may try the word thing. Perhaps if I choose a word like peace, it will help alleviate my fears for the future.

    • It’s hard to tell where a word will take us. The world has certainly gotten scarier for a lot of reasons. Thanks for stopping by – I haven’t been visiting anyone for quite a while, so it’s nice to reconnect. I’m glad you’re doing well with the changes in your life and June buggy is as ornery as ever.

  3. Enjoyed reading the recap of your year. Yes you had a lots of hustle but not all negative as the challenges seem to have brought growth. Still I wish you a little less hustle for 2017. Perhaps a dose of calm.

    • Thanks Kitty! I know you started a new blog – I never made it over there. Thankfully your posts show up in my e-mail or I’d never keep up on the news!

      I’d love a big dose of calm, but we’ll see. They’ve hired a new guy but he’s so overwhelmed, I don’t think this transition is going to go as smoothly as we hoped.

  4. hello dogear6 its dennis the vizsla dog hay the hustle!!! they do that danse sumtimes at the stoodio wot mama and dada go to!!! dada sez its not eksaktly the saym hustle wot yoo mite be referring to but i am shoor it is their kant be too danses naymed the hustle rite??? mary krismas to yoo frum us!!! ok bye

    • mary krismas back to you also Dennis and Happy New Year! dada is probably right that it isn’t quite the same hustle, but that’s okay. It all works out in the end.

      If you’re on Facebook, take a look at the page VizslaTalk. You can prove to dada and mama that there are other Vizslas who are worse!

  5. Hustle doesn’t seem like such a positive thing all the time. When I think of hustle I think of my gym teacher yelling at us to move faster. Of course to hustle someone else is to take advantage of them. Yet, it seems life does force us to hustle sometimes. Sounds like maybe this next year’s word should be “stability” or “tranquility”

    • I wasn’t too thrilled with the word nor with what happened this year. This is supposed to be my job leading into retirement and it turned out to as high pressure as my last job. I’m hoping 2017 is a better year and much calmer.

      My word for 2017 is sparkle. Not another role to play, but to sparkle naturally, like my wedding ring. I haven’t quite figured out how it will execute, but Michael Hyatt published an old blog post on how he doesn’t smile enough, which intimidates people. So that’s a good place to start for now.

      Thanks so much for staying in touch – I really do treasure the short notes from you and our friendship.

        • I’m glad we are also – I’ve enjoyed seeing you start blogging again. My word turned out to be rejoice. Sparkle was too close to my 2014 word to remember to smile and have a life. I still haven’t mapped out rejoice though – the last few weeks at work have been really tough and I definitely don’t feel like rejoicing. Even gratitude has been hard in my prayers, which is unusual. I’ve got a few days off now and hope to reset my attitude.

  6. You have had a very busy year!! Perhaps you need to pick a calmer word for 2017. You always seem to balance things out, though. Merry Christmas to you, hubby, the dogs and family!!

    • Thanks Darlene! Yes, I do need to set my priorities carefully to keep it all in balance. We had a good Christmas and can’t believe it’s a New Year already. Best wishes to you & your hubby & Dot also!

  7. I love your blog title, “Finding Beauty and Laughter Everywhere”. A good reminder to us all, as it is too easy to see the negatives and live there.
    What a full year of seasons and hats you have worn. May the coming new year begin with a refreshing breeze, (not wheeze) a breath of life, that will strengthen you for 2017. Blessings from your northern neighbor, eh. 😊🇨🇦

    • Thanks Linda! Are you feeling any better yet? I did let my Authors Academy lapse. I don’t see myself finishing a book anytime soon, even with an extension. It was a good idea, but going back to work was better.

  8. It has been quite a year. I’m walking more it seems – soothing and good for the dog who has begun to realize I’m not a sled to be pulled along. A new grandson here 2 weeks ago.
    Sounds like it is true: don’t let everyone know how capable you are at work or you’ll end up full time again and running crazy. Green Egg and yoga – almost a book title!
    Cheers as we all row into a the final stretch of 2016. Jingle on!

      • I hadn’t thought of that. Eww! Now I’m humming it all day long.

        I wish the same back to you as well – miles of smiles, intriguing wanderings and lots of wonder is a great blessing to be had. Thank you so much!

    • I’ve always joked that you can tell the beagle owners – they walk with their arms straight out in front as they get pulled along. Congratulations on the new grandson – that’s wonderful!

      And I like that book title – Green Egg and Yoga. Sounds almost like Dr. Seuss.

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