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One Word

I have admittedly gone through a bunch of changes in the last year and a half, and most notably in the last year, I would say. (Giving up booze and quitting a legal career in search of another life that is completely uncertain–just to name a “few” changes.)

And now, while I sit here on my momma’s birthday (happy birthday momma!), I have a semi-clear road-map of what I am doing and what I will be doing.  The ever-pressing FIVE YEAR PLAN if you will.


Step one: swim more, do more planks.


In me, there is still this weird uncertainty that comes with being something else, someone new. Someone who I am not accustomed to being.

What I mean is that in my mind:

I have always been the overweight, overworked lawyer who did triathlons and drank a lot, and still finished every single damn race I started, even if just barely and I almost nearly died.

That was my story.

File May 16, 7 37 31 AM

Now I don’t know what I am, and I struggle with wanting to label things… which isn’t necessarily a great trait. But I also know, with every fiber of my being, that I am not that above description.

I am rewriting a story, and dude—it ain’t gonna be something that I will regret to read later.

I have been introduced recently by one of my athletes to the Enneagram Test.  (Thanks to YOU-KNOW-WHO-YOU-ARE).

This is a personality test that is much more fascinating to me than Meyers-Briggs.

I am an Enneagram Type 8.   Which is apparently not so great—if you want to have friends and people who love you.

Regardless, the whole point of the test is to learn and understand the different personality types of people–so you can better work and live and understand people, and not kill them.

The test was SUPER helpful when I purchased a really large block of tests, and my athletes took them. For the record, I do not want to kill any of them. But I learned A LOT about the women on my team by this test. Pretty cool.  Also pretty cool to see the types of folks who are drawn to me as a coach.  🙂

Where personality tests and trying to do the right thing in understanding people fails is when:

Your sanity is being compromised. Because you are trying to respond according to someone else’s personality.  You’re trying to constantly talk to them in their love language, and they are responding back in the language of asshole.

[Apparently, there is no Enneagram Type A-Hole, but there should be.]

I am still growing and changing. Every day.  I really just am in awe of that idea. SO many changes the last year. And yet, every day is a somehow a change, too.

People are risk-averse and change-averse, I think for the most part.

I posted something on Facebook the other day about cutting hair and change, and the responses were so interesting. Most people don’t like change. But then there are the Type 8s, who clearly thrive and live on it, and I don’t even know what to do with us.

The thing about me is that no matter where I have come from, I have always been hard-working. I don’t mind growing and suffering as I am working–if it’s something I am passionate about. I don’t mind growing also while I don’t have all the answers tied up, figured out and pre-packed and thoroughly pondered over and laid out on a mood board.  (Not that either is “correct” – but just recognizing the difference).

I just go and move and press on.  I don’t care if I fail. I truly don’t.  Because every single thing is a blessing or a lesson, or both. And if that is the case, it means something good comes out of everything, and therefore, good doesn’t scare me.

And guess what? That doesn’t make me reckless or distracted. It just make me, ME.

I am more scared of the chances that I might miss than those that I might screw up.


What scares me—and this is where the test is dead on:

  • Basic Fear: Of being harmed or controlled by others
  • Basic Desire: To protect themselves (to be in control of their own life
    and destiny)  (SOURCE)

Part of the go attitude probably caused a lot of my stress, addiction and general neurotic tendencies has been due to the fact that I don’t want anyone to control me.  But that doesn’t mean that I don’t let people harm and control me, cause me pain and worry, generally treat me like crap. I have actually allowed that a lot.

But I have a new mission: to honor my basic desire to protect myself–while also slamming the door shut on that which no longer serves me. So this type of desire necessitates a whole lot of change, which means I need to freaking be okay with change.

And I am.

But I have to work through this fear of people controlling me, and conquer it.  And lean towards my basic desire, too.


I have found that despite all of the noise in my life or change, that I keep going back to one word.

This was something I started awhile ago—which I totally credit Andy Potts’ with the idea from 2013 when I interviewed him— but that is picking a one word mantra.  Something that you say over and over again. It’s “your” word.  And maybe it’s for a year.  Or a month.

But for the last several whiles, I have had a few “surface” words – things I have said when goings get tough.

But I always go back to this one word:  RELENTLESS


So I think that is my word.

I think that is the theme of my five-year plan, and the new description of my self-proclaimed personality type.

But still even when I look back on the description of myself that I had for so long  (overweight, overworked lawyer who did triathlons and drank a lot, and still finished every single damn race I started, even if just barely and I almost nearly died)…


I have ALWAYS had this word inside of me.  So it’s not about re-creating myself. It’s about LEANING INTO MYSELF.

It was always me.  I am just learning how to harness it for GOOD and not evil when it comes to me, my personality and my basic needs.

Think about what YOUR word is, and perhaps HAS been.  Maybe it’s a powerful word. Maybe it’s a downer.

If it’s a downer – replace it with a good, uplifting word.

If you have a great word already—-how has it impacted you?
How has that one word made a difference in who you are? And where you are going?




Coming up on The Same 24 Hours podcast – an EPIC interview with the amazing Danielle Grabol!

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  • Angie Flynn

    April 14, 2017 at 3:49 am

    When I look back over my life, I think the one word that weaves through the years and the various incarnations of “me” is “RESILIENT.” I roll with the punches with the best of them and usually land on my feet. I like your word. It suits you. :o)

  • Tina

    April 14, 2017 at 1:49 pm

    Meredith have so and have inspired me with your frank and honest talk about you and your journeys. I hope to stop and really think about what my word is and how the definition of that word “defines” me presently. Perhaps I need a change of definition of myself, time to think about that.
    Keep up the you work and maybe I can find the courage to let you guide me ?

  • Lisa

    April 24, 2017 at 2:37 pm

    I am an Enneagram Type 1. I’m currently looking for a therapist:)
    I’ve really admired your transformation and am really inspired by your big leap away from law. It is no small feat to leave your profession.

  • Amy

    August 3, 2017 at 4:06 pm

    I’m new to learning about the Enneagram and am fascinated and probably a little obsessed. I would highly recommend you check out the podcast “The Road Back to You” with Ian Carin and Suzanne Stabile. Skip to episodes 3 and 4 when they interview Nadia Bolz-Weber– she’s the most badass “8” you’ll ever meet and will inspire you for sure. What’s not to love about a foul mouthed pastor in recovery that was a Cross Fit champion? ?? ?


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