• Cyndi Wells


  • Mari,

    Thank you for sharing your goals and theme word for 2012.  I appreciate your notes on previous years, and seeing how your steps and evolved.

    Your post from last year inspired me to choose a one-word theme for the first time, for 2011.  “Refresh.” 

    I think this year I will choose a phrase.  “Build With Balance,” seems to feel right.  I’m taking today to think and test-drive and decide for sure.

    It has been a pleasure to learn from you via SME’s Success Summits, and read and reference your blogs over time.  Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help you this year, as you have indeed helped me.

    Enjoy your retreat!  :)


  • Acceptance and Growth. I’m really into J. Krishnamurti right now. I find his message authentic and grounded.

  • I love that! Growth, I mean. And I love the simplicity of creating your objectives. It is short yet it captures everything you can possibly do for the next 12 months. I’d like to try that for my business as well as for my personal life. 

  • Singlefeo123

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  • gollfy

    Very useful resource! Thanks for helping me out. http://californiapropertysmanagement.com

  • I’m all about growth in 2012! Certainly for my business, but also in my personal journey!

  • Robert Koyich


  • Fantastic!!

  • Awesome! Keep us posted, Mae!

  • Thank you kindly, @connectyou:disqus – you are such a delight and it’s an honor to know you. I love your 2012 theme! :) 

  • Liz Weston aka @TheLizWeston

    Enthusiasm :) In 2012, we’re going to maintain, share and spread our enthusiasm for what we do as far and wide as we can.

  • Lisa

    Connect! I love this blog post as I am in the midst of redefining my goals and vision for my business. And one thing my business is all about is connecting. So I will lead the pack and use Connect as my word for 2012. It resonates both personally and professionally. Mari, I hope you enjoyed Canyon Ranch. I live in Tucson and we are proud of the beauty of the land near Canyon Ranch. And if you haven’t been, add Miraval to your list of destinations. :)

  • Deb Prewitt

    I have seen several other people talking about their word for the year, and I have been thinking about mine too. My word last year was “focus” which was good, but not sure I truly achieved that. I have decided that this year’s word is “play”. I hope that I can really include “play” every day in 2012.

  • Anthony Smith

    Great post Mari! My theme for 2012 would also have to be growth. I look forward to growth in both my business life and my personal life. I have recently been introduced to you through Jo Barnes and am looking forward to more closely following your work. I have found that a person needs to find a few key “mentors” who will help them succeed. You have become one of my “mentors” and inspiration. Keep up the great work!

  • Hi Mari
    In 2010 you inspired me to choose a theme for the year and I choose “Go Boldly Forward” (ok, it’s a phrase rather than a word) but it a major impact on me saying “yes” to a lot of things.  I didn’t choose a word for 2011, but your post reminded me to choose a word for 2012 and it is “Plenty”.

  • My word is transact.  Finally after 5 years of formulation development and concept restructuring and refining  we will be transacting in Internet commerce in 2012 under the brand SeaQuarius.  www.SeaQuarius.com

  • Deb Malenda

    Balance & Growth are my words for 2012. 2011 word was Focus and was achieved!!! Thank you for your posts!!

  • Deb Malenda

    Balance & Growth are my words for 2012. 2011 word was Focus and was achieved!!! Thank you for your posts!!

  • Fnbfclub

    My word for 2012 is Focus. Bring it on!

  • inthistogether

    I’m going with you Mari – Growth!!

  • Joy

    I’m still thinking about it but I think FOCUS just might be the one word I need for 2012.  

  • I love this post Mari! You made me think and you are right, selecting a word for the year to come will line-up the opportunities and the energy around it to make it happen! As I was reading this, a word immediately came to mind for me for 2012! Funny how its works :) I also like the pics that you put up! By the way, I noticed that in the photo with Stedman Graham you are wearing a jacket with dragonflies on it. When I visited Vietnam the locals told me that according to their tradition, the dragonfly carries our dreams around and when it visits us it means a dream will come true! I thought it was very sweet and since then I always remember it! Thought you might like this too! Alexandra

  • Yasirali009

    By selecting the word for the year is also like to give the message for the employees and also seems to be a vision.

  • Charles Amayoh

    A theme selection annually is a great secret for success. Thanks Mari Smith

  • Great idea Mari – I often have a ‘theme’ to my year’s plans and goals but hadn’t got it down to one word.  My word in 2011 was essentially ‘growth’ – I think 2012 will be ‘Expansion’ on both a personal and business level.

  • Love this post Mari. Thanks so much for sharing.  My two words for 2012 are team and growth.  If I had to pick one it would be team.  It’s hard to believe just a short time ago we were sitting in your abode and you were encouraging and inspiring me to launch my personal brand. I launched my personal blog just over a year ago.  I now have a global team and a business getting ready to blossom internationally.  

    My business half of my body and mind wants to make growth the word of the year but my heart and being knows the word is team. Without team we are nothing and will never grow. There is no “I” in TEAM.  So, my #1 focus this year is in empowering, training and leading my team to do great and amazing things. I know we will grow but I know we won’t do such without working as a team. 

    I hope we can get together in 2012. It has been far too long since I saw you face to face my friend. 

    Thanks for being YOU and for always inspiring me beyond words! xoxox


  • Mari – My one word is “Rope”. I know so many small business owners like myself who are going it alone with their businesses. I also know that my business is a direct reflection of the deep paradigms I hold in my mind and heart. One powerful shift I’d like to amplify is the idea of helping other owners like me – to take a rope and tie us all together so that we form one massive raft, joyfully concurring white rapids. We are bigger and better together! :-)

  • LisaBeth Weber


  • K.Victoria Smith


    I am a writer and this is the year that all the preparation will fall into place. I have one novel scheduled for for first quarter and a minimum of two more that will be complete and ready for dates within the year. I have a corporate name and will form LLC after Jan1 (no reason for nuisance IRS paperwork in 2011. LOL) Social media is more than humming along. Also, I have become a paid developmental editor and resume writer. The resume piece is a result of my years in corporate not my fiction writing abilities. :-)

  • Hi Mari, mine, after much thought and deliberation is ‘Mastery’, not only in my professional life, but also in my personal life.  In everything I do, I shall embrace the word mastery – as it signifies continual growth, continual striving to achieve mastery, with the lessons in the journey.

  • Christian

    My theme for 2012: Serve

  • Bob Baker

    My word for 2012 is Simplify! Often ambition leads to overextending yourself, which leads to unhealthy stress. In the new year I will pare away unnecessary tasks and offerings from my website at http://www.TheBuzzFactor.com and focus on a shorter list of goals. I feel lighter already :-)

  • Sheila

    My theme words are Commitment and Growth, for business, personal and spiritual life.

  • “LIVE” … life to the fullest!

  • Debra Jason

    Growth is a good – personal, spiritual and professional, but I’ll add “LOVE” – love in my life romantically, love for my friends & family, love of my work and love in the world.

    is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love.” –
    Hamilton Wright Mabie

    Here’s to having lots of love in your
    life. Happy holidays Mari & here’s to a fabulous 2012.

  • Thank you Marie. I am inspired by this post to give myself a slogan or theme song for 2012 CONSCIOUS CREATION. I am excited about playing this theme and vibrating to its tune.

  • Denise Walker

    Ok   my word for 2012  will be GAIN  – this covers so many things for me, personally and in my business.  

    – knowledge
    – experience
    – expertise
    – confidence
    – customers
      If I can GAIN  a little in all of these area I will be so pleased.


  • Sarah Edwards

    My word is “energy” ….. there’s so many things I want to do & try in 2012 …. I’ll need lots of energy to get them all done :-)

  • Michelle Holmes

    Hey Mari!  My word is “SHINE”!!!  Despite appearing to be really confident… I’m often nervous about really getting out there… but I have a mission… and I’m going to shine my lil light in 2012 so I can make my difference for mums and mums to be everywhere!  Whoop whoop!   :)

  • Eladio59

    Hola Mari, agradezco tu felicitación y te deseo toda la prosperidad del mundo en estas fiestas

  • Tanya

    A very timely post Mari, and I love the idea of having an umbrella ‘theme’ for the year ahead, to encompass all my goals. My theme for 2012 is ‘Connection and Service’. Looking forward with great excitement to what 2012 holds for us all :-)

  • Frenchskincare

    Hi Mari,  My 2012 Word is SUCCESS.  Success to so many is measure in different ways but for me it means
    moving in the right direction in terms of health, marriage, work etc.   If you don’t have your health lets face it, you don’t have anything.  Warmly, Lisa

  • my word came slowly this time as 2011 was soar…2012 is leap…i am taking a leap of faith as i move into 2012…bring it on!!! happy and blessed holiday and beyond Mari

  • Becky

    I like this idea. I am going with growth. This coming year holds so many opportunities and it calms me to think about growing into to those opportunities personally and professionally.

  • Donna

    FOCUS! Thanks, Mari, for sharing your goals. You may have just changed the course of the coming year for me.

  • Transparency, because in 2012 the world is going to have to get used to it, thanks to you Mari & social media as a whole – much was begun in 2011, but I think there’s going to be some corporates out there who will struggle with the concept and just may need some help!
    It’s been a pleasure to follow your quest for several years Mari – looking forward to what you learn & reveal next year. Have a great Christmas, with true friends!

  • sandrabaptist

    Hey @MariSmith:disqus , my word for 2012 is also Growth! I spent most of 2011 consolidating, shedding and focusing my business.

    2012 will be my year to grow everything…my list, my business, my profits!! :-)

    Happy Holidays!!


  • Consistency is my word for 2012. It’s been a challenge for me. Yet, since reading comments on this in FaceBook a few weeks ago, it’s already helped me say no to things I might have otherwise said yes to and then wondered how is this going to help me be consistent. Plus it’s help me say yes to some things I would have been too afraid to say yes to. Thanks for sharing your practice. 

  • Hi Mari, I love the idea of picking one word as a theme for each year. My 2011 word was self care. My 2012 word is innovation. Thanks for sharing your words! Lupe 

  • Mari thank you for the thoughtful post and for openly sharing your journey through words. Thanks to you I took on the ‘one word’ theme for 2011 and my word was Expand. To expand in all areas of my life actually meant I needed to cut back on a lot of things, remove a lot of distractions and narrow my focus. And it was amazing to watch what happened. I expanded into international waters with business heading off to Shanghai, China for 10 days of coaching. I expanded my personal relationships into new heights and I expanded my personal down time. All of which brought about increase.

    My word this year – Reposition. It’s time to reposition myself in my life so that I can truly tap into the brilliance I know I was created for. More to come on that. :)

    Cheers to your Growth and l my Repositioning!

  • Heidi Walter

    Great idea, Mari.  The first word that comes to mind for me is expansion. I will probably think of more, but I see 2012 as a continuing expansion on all the changes I’ve already made. This expansion is happening on the outside, but mostly on the inside, as I have days of ‘happiness for no reason.’ As I continue to do the inner work, the outer just gets better and better. Always great to read your posts and I knew you photoshopped that picture, because you always wear turquoise!


  • Verne

    Hi Mari,
    My word is “Do”.    Don’t procrastinate, for we never know what the next day brings us. In the last year I have lost several friends, that I didn’t even suspect they had any health problems.  I also had a sudden accident that could have affected my loved ones, through its effect on me.
    As you have sponsored Relationships in Marketing, we also need to think of Relationships, in general. If I had a second word, it would have to be “Love” because that is another thing that we take for granted, until it is suddenly taken away….

  • jjs

    – more positive people and energy into my life (less of those with “stinkin thinkin”)
    – clients who “get” what we do
    – “knows”, “likes” and “trusts”
    – referrals
    – opportunities

  • Lauren McMullen

    My word for 2012 is Sales! Let me explain for those that do not know me. I have been sabotaging my Biz success for several years because I hate to sell. This the year to get over that! You can’t have a business unless you sell something says my new “sales coach”!

  • Becky Logan

    Last year my word was FOCUS, by the end of the year I feel like I have a clear focus for next year. My word for 2012 is ECONOMY. Just by watching the bottom line and spending wisely this will be a banner year for me.

  • Pam

    Strength!  Also personally and professionally.  I’ve been working with a personal trainer and have discovered that the strength I’m building with my trainer is carrying over into my professional life.  I love it when that happens!  Here’s to more strength in 2012!

  • Jean Issler

    INTENT!  Intent implies a sustained unbroken commitment or purpose, whereas intention would imply an intermittent resolution or initial plan (from thesaurus.com). I need to ask myself “What is my intent?” and then be intent on following through to accomplish my intents (goals).

  • My word for 2012 will be LEAN, as in no fat, no unnecessary impulse buys from the lists I’m on, cutting out all waste and getting to a lean, fit, high energy place where my business slices through the waves at warp speed.

  • Awesome concept Mari! You changed my upcoming year when I first read your article earlier in the month. 2012 brings some huge positive changes to my business that require growth, business goals that require focus & personal goals that require commitment. So, I’m looking for a word that encompasses all of those :) If I take the space out between two words, does it become one? If so — Then my word for 2012 is Focusedgrowth :)

  • I scrolled down before commenting to see everyones ideas and wow…you struck a chord here.  LOTS of comments.  I’ve actually had some time to think about this already because Joan S already spurred me to meditate on it.  My word for the year will be DELEGATE.  I really related to your 12/17 update here about restructuring your work day as freeing up some personal time.  I can delegate but I’m one of those that find it difficult to do so.  This year I’m really going to concentrate on it and enjoy the fruits. 

  • For 2011 my word was “finishitive” — about about getting things done!  For 2012, “consistency” is my word.  I want to consistently complete the actions that have proven sucessful.  I appreciate that Mari commented on her struggle with consistent blog posts — that’s one of my challenges that I hope to address in 2012.

  • Mary Meckley

    Fearless is my word for 2012

  • Success! In 2011, I graduated with a BBA and I’ve established my online presence via Twitter and my blog. Now it’s just a matter of leveraging these to achieve epic things in the new year!

  • KelliG248


  • Vanessa

    My word is “faith”.  Faith in myself, my abilities, my mentors, and my God.  By maintaining great faith all areas of my life and business will move forward much more quickly.

  • Sandra

    The first word that came to mind was FOCUS!  I need to focus on the NOW.  I start something and get interrupted.  I allow myself to be interrupted.  Then I start something else and yes …I move on to something else.  FOCUS!  definitely my word for 2012.

  • Big sign up on the work board: “INSANELY GREAT!”,  which is Steve Jobs speak for focus on the quality of what you are accomplishing. That is phrase for this year. 😉

  • Anonymous

    Acceptance – of myself, of my purpose, of support, of others, of the changes unfolding, of alternative sacred points of view, of healing, of forgiveness, of the gift of clients who are ready to accept the gift of their message and to decide become empowered and prepared to be heard by millions by investing in themselves through our work at http://www.theempoweredmessenger.com, of the maturation and growing away from me that my son is engaged in as he steps from boy to man, of money, of my wonderful WOOWOOness, of opportunities to serve, of joy, of peace, of harmony, of lasting love, of financial freedom, of balance, of the Divine Plan that is unfolding through all of us now as we evolve ourselves and contribute to the ascension of the planet.  Acceptance.  Loving your radiant, infinite, magnificent, majestic light Mari – Love Lights Us!! Peace is IN you……. Amethyst

  • Shamini Dhana

    Thank you Mari for sharing this exercise with us – it’s one that can easily be incorporated  in our daily lives which makes it that more powerful. The word that comes to mind for myself is – ‘Excellence’ – in every step of the way, the best one can be in mind, body and spirit. To challenge oneself to be the best, consciously while being present to strive for ‘Excellence’ in every facet of ones lives – emotional, physical, spiritual and intellectually. I salute you and everyone who embraces this goal of manifesting their true calling in 2012. Best of Life!

  • Cherie

    “Lifestyle”.  I’ve been thinking about your challenge for days and ‘lifestyle’ keeps coming into my thoughts.  I’ve been living in a ‘survival’ mind set the last few years.  My industry (tourism) has returned and my students are getting hired again.  I’ve set up my first training tour since the recession and ready to get more trained and working too.  Happy New Year Mari!! 

  • Mari, you put such wonderful, loving energy into everything you do. This post is a great example of how you balance heart and head. 

    My word for 2012 is FOCUS. I often find myself paralyzed with too many choices (often all good ones) and I am feeling almost desperate to learn focusing tools and techniques so I can spend more time identifying and doing what God put me on this earth to do. 

    Thank you for setting such a good example.

  • Hello

    Hi Mari, thank you for your post which has given me a starting point.  My word for this year is ‘influence’ because I need to work on my inner self confidence and esteem which is holding me back in all areas of my life.

  • Traci

    My word for 2012 is: CHANGE
    I’m changing myself (I have lost 50lbs) as well as changing the way I will do business. Being a new business, I have learned so much and I’m ready to CHANGE things up next year!

  • Michele Flynn

    FOCUS: definitely reflects my determination for 2012 to finish some courses I have and to focus on my passions especially social media and relationship marketing, thanks Mari :) 

  • Abby

    It took a while to figure out a word for me and when I did I was so sure that is the perfect word. Quality. Quality in work, relationships, and everything I do eat say. I’m repeating my word to myself as I find myself doing things that aren’t what I Want for myself. Thank you so much Mari for helping me to find something so small and yet ultimately so life changing for 2012. You are my idol! Quality all the way!

  • Jacob Yoder

    A few days of thinking what one word would be for me , so last night i woke up and the clear word is EARLY, it was so clear in my mind . Like pay my bills early. Early to bed and early to rise .  Early to work and early to go home . Ahh i can see this is changing my mindset already, EARLY 2012.  Thank you Mari .

  • Thanks, Mari, For getting me thinking.  My word for 2012 is “become.”  I am making many changes in my life. They will all help me to become the person I want to be.  And that is what I am doing in 2012.

  • Thanks for sharing this with us each year and for being our catalyst for improvement, Mari! Actually, I knew you’d be posting this soon so I decided on my word for 2012 several weeks ago: LEVERAGE. That one word will encompass so much of my business — my time (managing e-mails, client projects vs. business development, etc.), resources (money, previously-created materials & content, etc.), and contacts (my list, industry vendors, etc.). I’ve already begun putting together a notebook full of assessments, tips & tools to work through during my annual Strategic Planning Retreat later this week in preparation for a breakthrough January! :)

    And here’s a quick update on my 2011 word, Strategic. I made a lot of strategic decisions in my business this year, including taking a number of classes designed to move me from solopreneur to CEO mindset. I’ve begun to look more at long-term strategies vs. just doing what has to be done to survive this week or month. I plan to continue what I’ve learned as a foundation for my 2012 growth and development. 

    Thanks again, Mari & here’s to a 2012 full of Growth for us all! :)

  • Cindy May

    One word for 2012 – “Stepping-Out!” 

  • Carol Henninger Stewart

    My word is “action”. I’ve always believed that I have, in the past, taken action. But looking back, my results would indicate otherwise. I did read the article on “Five Things You Should Stop Doing in 2012″ and I am guilty of several listed which cause me to detour off task or become easily distracted. There is no time like the present to make the shift to “master of action”! 

  • My word is “Breakthroughs!” both business and spiritual…and SUPPORT to implement the outcomes! I am a much richer girl, Mari, because….of your presence in my life.   Thank you! ?

  • Education!

  • My word for the year is Connect.  In the business sense, spiritual sense and personal sense.  I’ve been disconnected from much this year and need to get back to a place of oneness..

  • Leah

    My word for 2012: Resiliency — “ability to recover readily from illness, depression, adversity, or the like; buoyancy.”

  • My word is Learn. I can’t wait to start putting it into my business and personal life. I look forward to your progress!

  • Gloria

    INCREASE is my word for 2012–
    an increase in business contacts,
     more apppointments,
     income in all areas, abundant attitude,more acts of kindness,more time for spirituality,more pasionate living,more improvements in personal health……

  • Laughter – “To find the smile within throughout it all”

  • That is awesome! I love it!

  • Oh Abby! Your kind words touched my heart!! So glad to hear this practice is already making such a difference to you and I just LOVE your word!!! 

  • CONGRATS, Traci – that is awesome!!!

  • You can do it!!! A wonderful saying I heard once, “Borrow someone else’s belief in you, until your own kicks in!”

  • Ah thank you so much for your kind words, @RiverwoodWriter:disqus !! I look forward to hearing how your 2012 begins to unfold. :) xx

  • Beautiful choice!!!

  • I like it!

  • Wonderful! Do keep us posted!

  • I love resiliency – such a powerful word!! Be like the willow tree that bends in the wind, not necessarily like the mighty oak.

  • Oh that is such a beautiful choice, @google-c6cff608cddf8b3ade9c94884f0df904:disqus – I love how you’ve expanded into all areas. It truly starts with a deep and profound connection to self, imho! :) 

  • Pralinedreams18

    Reposition is my word… changing in every area of my life… growing and learning and doing things different….changing from the INSIDE OUT…I NEED THAT….MORE OF GOD.. NOT JUST HEARING BUT ALSO OBEYING THE VOICE OF GOD… REPOSITION IS MY WORD FOR 2012

  • Metamorphosis!  We are changing the name of our 64-year-old organization from something staid and predictible to something aspirational.  But, I see it as more of a re-branding and new beginning for us.  We will be increasing our presence on social media, adding email communications and increasing outreach to all audiences.  It will be a big year, a big challenge and needs a big word to describe it!

  • Interesting article. Thanks.

  • Karen

    My word is “Create” :) Create more jobs for others, Create inner peace, Create order around me, Create a little more happiness and positive energy in the world! Yep, “Create” is where it is for me in 2012! :)
    Thank you Mari for getting me going! You are causing “Growth” right here! :)

  • Inspiring article :) This year, I will CONNECT!

  • cheap bras

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  • Renee Ferguson

    This is my first year to use the one word theme and I have choosen “Achieve”. I’d like to Achieve a work life balance suitable to me and my family; Achieve a successful team which will make our business Achieve; Achieve our family goals; Achieve inner peace basically Achieve in all areas of my life. :) 

  •  Its amazing, it has been nicely written, your views are really great and it can help me in my life to balance my life between work and home.

  • Pingback: Goals for 2013 – Are You A Scatter Gun Or Saint? | Better Business Better Life()

  • naga20

    great sharing mari agen tiket pesawat | bisnis tiket pesawat | usaha tiket pesawat i really glad to find this helpfull

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