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Devaney & Associates Completes the 2023 One Word Challenge

Devaney & Associates Completes the 2023 One Word Challenge

As we welcome 2024, the D&A team took a few moments to reflect on last year and how we’ve grown not only as individuals, but as an agency. We started 2023 with a task to choose a word that would guide us through the year—helping us improve qualities within ourselves and ultimately end this chapter on a positive, more enlightened note. The One Word Challenge was an eye-opening exercise for our team members, and we’re excited to share how it helped us make the most of this past year.

My One Word for 2023 was…

Diane: …“marinate.” It was different than my past One Words because it was not something that I thought about every day or that was incorporated into my daily work. But I picked it to help break a bad habit of reacting too quickly and it definitely helped me at many times throughout the year. Every time I wanted to react right away, I told myself to marinate, and it worked.

Casey: …“hungry.” For me, that meant learning to say “yes” to opportunities outside my comfort zone, and also not being afraid to ask for help to get where I need to go. With a lot of support from Diane, my teammates, and my family, I joined a professional development program with 25+ strangers (whom I’m now happy to call colleagues/peers); began meeting monthly with a mentor; participated in a ladies golf group; and (gulp) agreed to try snowboarding with my son this winter. Fortunately, I still have time to back out of this snowboarding thing.

Val: …“ponder.” I chose this word because I need time to mull over and research things before making a decision, reaching a conclusion, or blurting out the first thing that comes to mind. I often reply too quickly and then end up saying something that I might regret. I need to take some time to formulate my thoughts and words and know who my audience is. Then, I can respond appropriately.

Lindsay: …“nurture.” I chose this as my One Word because it’s easy to get caught up in completing each day’s necessary tasks and forget what really matters. I used my word as a constant reminder to slow down and make sure I was giving each person and project all the consideration, time, and care they deserved.

Kolleen: …“avant-garde,” also known as the opposite of “status quo.” It is easy to do things you know; it is comfortable and predictable, but it can also be boring and unrewarding. This year, I have worked on a few internal processes that will help our clients and streamline our work by trying to forget the phrase, “but this is how we have always done it.” It can be worthwhile to reevaluate things that have become habits and trying to give them a fresh look and offering our clients some new ideas.

Lisa: …“lift.” I do not know if I necessarily kept it top of mind, but it was the embodiment of who I wanted to be in my encounters with others. At work, I have always tried to show appreciation and give positive comments to my coworkers. But this year, I took it to another level by giving little treats on occasion to show my appreciation more.

Out in the wild, I try to communicate with a smile, and compliment strangers when I see something about them that I appreciate. Especially women. I feel like we (women) fall into traps of tearing each other down due to our own insecurities. Also, I know how it feels to be in the receiving end of a genuine compliment, so I like to try and make someone else feel that way. I am not perfect, there are days I go out and I am not feeling well, or having an off day, but I do find when I say something nice, it lifts my own mood as well.

Renee: …“intentional.” I chose this for my One Word because I wanted to act and respond more purposefully in 2023. I’d be lying if I said this word has always been top of mind all year, but it has been a really good reminder each time I see it on my desk, and it does make me stop and think every now and then about why I am doing whatever it is I’m doing. It’s nice to remember to slow down and be more deliberate during busy times. 

Jordan: …”train.” I chose this as my One Word so I would remain dedicated throughout 2023 and focused on developing new and more efficient methods to my workflow that will benefit my creative and mental health.

Meghan: …“purpose.” I chose this word because I feel like I sometimes get lost in the day-to-day things and forget how lucky I am to have a job that allows me to be creative and use my talents, family and friends who love me, and coworkers who push me to be better than I was yesterday. Leading each day with purpose helped me feel confident in knowing what I bring to the table in my relationships so I can show up for people in the best way that I can. It gave me the motivation and drive to try new things and step outside of my comfort zone, the strength to let go of things outside of my control, and the power to be more intentional each day.

Lily: …“balance.” I chose this word because I wanted to get better at prioritizing and juggling different aspects of my life. I kept my word front of mind this year by reminding myself to focus on balancing my time and attention and thinking things through before acting.

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