We should never underestimate the creative potential of our words.

The words and phrases that rank high in our day to day vocabulary shape the type of leader, colleague, spouse or friend we become. They also shape the way we engage with others and how they in turn, engage with us.

What words or phrases will be high in your vocab for 2018? If you haven’t had a chance to think about it, here are some suggestions that would be valuable to have in high rotation.

Pick one or two from each category and ask yourself “how can I be more intentional in saying these as I head into the new year?”.


1. I can do that: Take Initiative. What opportunities can you put your hand up for?

2. Can we talk about: Make Progress. What tension needs to be resolved now?

3. Yes: Find Courage. What have you been saying ‘No’ to in 2017 that it’s time to say ‘Yes’ to this year?

4. No: Set Boundaries. What have you been saying ‘Yes’ to in 2017 that it is now time to let go of and say ‘No’ to in 2018?


1. I am Valuable: Get Conviction. Can you confidently say this? I am valuable to the people around me, to my work, to my team, to the world?

2. I am Capable: Choose Affirmation. What are you good at? When was the last time you reminded yourself of that?

3. I am Human: Be Real. What areas of your life are you demanding perfection that is unreasonable. What are the areas that you need to cut yourself a bit of slack.

4. I am LovedBuild Connection. Remind yourself of the people in your world that truly care about you then invest in those relationships.


1. Thank You: Choose Gratitude. Make it a mission to catch people in your life doing something great, then thank them for it.

2. Are You Ok?: Be Available. Ask the question more than once a year. Ask it genuinely and ask it regularly, then listen without judgment.

3. You’ve Got This: Speak Encouragement. Decide that you will only speak well of others.

4. You Go First: Choose Humility. Whether small or big, humility is always a good choice.


1. You Have my Undivided Attention: Give Focus. One of the best gifts you can give to those you love is the gift of your undivided attention.

2. I Appreciate You: Show Appreciation. They might know it, but it’s also nice to hear it and see it in action.

3. How Can I Help?: Offer Support. What areas can you step up and contribute more then you have in the past?

4. I Love You: Demonstrate Affection. Three simple words that hold a lot of weight. Don’t miss an opportunity to let the special people know.

What others will rank high in your 2018 Vocab? Intentional actions lead to desired outcomes. Take a minute to think through and write down your own.

Looking forward to a great year ahead!