Three words for 2012

Chris Brogan has an annual tradition where he decides three words that will guide him through a new year. Think of it as a broader alternative to New Year’s resolutions. A lot of awesome people have followed suit since.

I thought I’d join in with a few of my own that I’ve been mulling over. It’s a little late being that it is after January 1st, but I’m still in the early stages of formulating the upcoming year because of my ongoing trip to Italy (and Mike Vardy outlined some great reasons why you might do the same, even if you aren’t vacationing abroad).

So here are my words, carefully considered, for the year ahead.


This one is an easy one. This is my first year of committing fully to Van Patten Media, and I need to make it a successful one to prove the business can survive (and start paying off those pesky college loans). I’m confident I can do it with a little hustle and a lot of the same high quality work.


This word didn’t come so easy. At first, it was risk, a word that definitely embodies a lot of what I’m looking to accomplish here, but at the end of the day adventure better captures the spirit of my goal. All too often, I resign myself to safe, boring days and constant work. In the next year (and beyond) I want to make sure to balance my workaholic personality with a healthy dose of adventure. Spur-of-the-moment trips, being more open to excitement and chance-taking, and generally stepping out of my comfort zone will aid in my pursuit of new experiences.


I need to find an emotional center in my life and be more present, aware, and happy with myself. Mindfulness is a technique to help accomplish this, and also a word that I think embodies the end goal. My recent dabbling with various Buddhist practices after reading the books of (Hitch-approved) author Stephen Batchelor (like Buddhism Without Beliefs) have excited me about the possibility of “tuning up” my mind and becoming more at peace with who I am and who I am becoming. I’m only 21–a tumultuous time in a person’s life–and I am incredibly eager to find an emotional anchor in my life.

So those are my three words. What are yours? Leave a comment or write your own post and send it my way!

Published by

Chris Van Patten

I'm an entrepreneur, designer, theatre producer, and tea aficionado. I love helping artists achieve their digital potential through custom websites, apps, and more. I own and operate Van Patten Media, a boutique web agency in New York.