The Big Shift is a podcast, a community, and a movement. It is our aim to help those who want to make a difference, have success in carrying out their mission. The goal of our podcast is to inspire heart-centered entrepreneurs to create their dream business, do what they love, and make the world a better place in the process.

We will help you get there by sharing with you the best marketing, sales/enrollment and mindset practices known to humankind today… All of these practices are tested and come from the people who are the very best at utilizing and teaching them. These will be some of the most extraordinary people on this planet. Get ready for your Big Shift!

To subscribe to the podcast & leave a review, click the button below:


We will be performing a system maintenance and database upgrade on Saturday, May 28th 12 midnight to 4am PST.

My guide to setting a powerful intention for 2017


I want to share with you one of my deepest and most powerful transformational practices. I look forward to it every year. And without exception, huge transformation occurs for me as a result of it.

It’s creating a THEME for the year.

This is about choosing a one or two-word theme, which becomes a powerful intention that’s like an invisible guide for everything that I do in the year. As I put conscious focus and attention on my theme during the year in a relaxed way — amazing things happen with very little effort.

I’m still marinating on my theme for 2017. But I want to share some of the most powerful themes from past years, as well as instructions for you to create your own.


Even as I write this, tears are coming to my eyes remembering the impact of putting gentle focus and attention on fully learning and embracing love for myself. It was a little scary when I took this on… but it changed my life in so many ways.


I love it when I discover a way to make something that seems really complicated into something really simple. There’s something liberating about that to me.
At the same, this is a difficult theme for me because I have lot of ideas and creativity. I’m going to infuse this theme into 2017 as a secondary theme (time to bring simplicity back into the picture!)

Here’s what I suggest you do to create your own THEME for 2017.

#1 – take a couple of hours away from the hustle and bustle of your life and tune into what you really want for yourself and what’s been holding you back. And then ask yourself what yearly theme would give you a break through.

#2 – once you have a theme, please share it with important people in your life as a public declaration of your desire for a breakthrough (also share it here with me in the comments below this post)

#3 – get a brand new journal for the coming year, put your theme at the top of it and create a practice of journaling around your theme at least 3 times per week
Once you do this practice, you will experience a breakthrough. You will live into your theme and your life will never be the same again.

It’s happens for me every year, and it will happen for you.

Let me know what your theme for 2017 is here (or please share any ideas you are playing with)

Intentionally yours,

P.S. 2017 is going to be an amazing year. Can you feel it?


  1. Success. It is time.

  2. My theme this year is to BE and LIVE (= BELIEVE haha).
    I’m going to “be” the person now that I’ve been working on, and I’m having an awesome time bringing together 3 completely different goals I’ve been creating into my daily life, now.

    • well, CNN might also be a joke but they just made the same argument.That Jaabari had a truce agreement in place and was duly asstainased.BTW, CNBC charactirizes this deeply depressing (for all sides) unfolding event as an Israeli Agression. It surely is not a defense.

  3. Chris Johnson says:

    My theme for the year is LIVE LARGE! I am tired of neglecting myself and I know I deserve more. Thanks to people like you, I realize this is my life and I deserve all the great things I desire.

  4. Thank you for this inspiration, Bill.
    My 2017 themes are Ease and Sensuousness.

    EASE – choose the easy path, the one that has the least amount of “efforting.” The one that unfolds naturally as a result of my being in my personal flow. Use EASE as a guide. If its not “easy,” it’s not the “right” path. Includes awareness of when I am the one making the easy path HARD <– and letting that go too.

    SENSUOUSNESS – fully experience each moment; The sights, the sounds, the smells… the tastes… the touch… while FEELING my deepest, inner feelings. Embrace my ALIVENESS through all of myself as I walk the easy path noted above. 😉

  5. Last week while walking on the beach in Maui, I heard the word:
    GRATITUDE. And recognized immediately that it would be my personal theme for 2017.
    Gratitude acts as a bridge between my body-mind-heart and the universe.
    When I offer gratitude to Spirit for all that I have, all that I am, and all that I do, I instantly connect to a power that is unlimited and abundant, a power that sustains me through the ebb and flow of life. And for me that’s a much better
    place from which to live and work as great things seem to happen the more I give thanks!
    So thank you!

  6. Tove Lise Skarestad says:

    I have let my mind work on this, and I have come up with two important things that will make a huge difference for me. I have been afraid of my big personal power so I have been hiding, and I had lost trust in the Universe (and myself and people around me – I have actually been suffering from a financial trauma) which caused me a lot of pain, and I wan´t able to manifest things and enjoy the wonders as I used to. So the theme for 2017 will be; I am going to step into my amazingness and I will relax in knowing that my intentions will be fulfilled. I am just about to start my coaching business..

  7. Hi to all you fellow “Bill Bareners”

    It’s not my theme for this year but last year I made a “radical change” bear with me please it might help you? Working from home I am one of the millions who’s family thinks ” you’re home so your available”.

    To break this cycle having tried everything else including failed boundary setting, one night, out of desperation, I stayed up all night long to complete a piece of work. As a result I slept all the next day………. ta daaaah the response from my never ending stream of visitors was ” we won’t disturb her she’s sleeping after being up all night working.

    So now I either work through the night if it suits me, or I say I’m going to bed after doing a night shift and it’s worked…….. I get my full quota of sleep and the foot fall to my front door has dramatically reduced.. No I don’t feel guilty I had tried everything else first. Now when I see my visitors ( less often) it’s a pleasure not a hindrance. Needs Must!

    Dee X

  8. My word for 2017 is “connection”. In 2016 I had to “disconnect” so that I could knuckle down, complete and implement my “PPSS” and “TES” training. I’ve done that now although it took me right to the end of 2016 to get there, so now I’m ready, willing and to be honest: looking forward to “purposeful connection” in 2017 X

  9. I want my business to give me freedom to do the things I am passionate about. What’s been holding me back is doing everything in my business myself. I am the business, without me there is no business. My theme to give me the breakthrough I need is ‘Implementing systems’.

  10. Bill. Thanks for the ongoing inspiration.
    I’ve chosen simplicity as a theme for the year, and have already started a personal purge. I agree that it’s a challenge, and some rules and structure are necessary. Just saying no can be difficult. I also feel that abundance can be the result of simplicity which may seem counterintuitive.

  11. Mine is Accomplishment
    Every year I write my goal. This year I WILL Accomplish my goals

  12. I love this practice!

    I started it 2 years ago when I formed my business, and it has helped me stay focused for sure…first was “Go Live!” to get everything up and running, last year I chose three words – Validation, Engaging, Energized and I really do feel that I validated what I was putting out there, and definitely engaged a heck of a lot more people, with positive feedback too!

    So, for 2017, after some thought, I decided to go with – Appealing, Insightful, and Valued. By looking at it from two perspectives – one, I want to do things that appeal to me, I love finding and hearing insights from others, and both of these things bring me tremendous value; two – I hope to do the same for my audience, and find all those others out there who value these things too! (plus “Value in the customer’s eyes” is a key principle behind Lean, one of the primary areas of my offerings!)

    And did you know? 2017 is the best year ever! The future is clear.

  13. Invest.
    This is the key word that kept speaking to me after I purged all my goals on paper today. Investing in myself (taking time for myself, doing things that rejuvenate me), investing in the important relationships in my life, and investing my time and money more wisely with my business. Pretty neat exercise Bill! Thanks for sharing!

  14. My 2017 Theme is Clarity which I believe will be supported by a consistent practice of active listening, acceptance, and simplicity.
    I am ready!

  15. I’m so happy to see this as a recommendation from you! In October I spent a few hours journaling to choose themes not only for 2017, but for each month as well. I am so excited to see the year unfold because of that! I chose gratitude for my primary theme for the year, with being held as a secondary theme.

    I love your advice to journal a few times a week on the theme I’ve chosen. I’ll definitely be doing that!

  16. My intention for 2017: step into my Power and as a result – freedom.

  17. Thank you for this inspiring article. An acquaintance asked me what i was going to do on New Years Day and I told her what I was going to do (which was follow your suggestion in this article.) She thought it was a wonderful idea and decided to do the same thing herself. So you see, the ripple effect is real.

    When I first read the article, my initial thought was “Authenticity.” I mulled it over for a weekend, let things simmer and bubble up; that word just kept coming to the front burner. And of course, that ties in with something I’ve been ruminating on. So that’s my intention for 2017. Wishing you an auspicious new year, Bill.

  18. Wonderful Clarity Bill!

    Theme: My ONE Thing > clarifying what ONE thing that I can do in the coming week makes all other things either unnecessary or easier

    Thank you and wishing you the best for 2017!

  19. Betty Hopkins says:

    I have two intentions.
    Showing kindness to myself and others – having an hour sabbath each day.
    I also want to thank you for your article. It made me do some thinking.

  20. Unconditional Self-Love

    Thank you for the opportunity to share

  21. Moving Forward

  22. Mine is going to be “Followthrough”- or “DAYSYD”. Getting my journal today. Thanks Bill! Really looking forward to working with you in 2017!

  23. Catherine Cooley says:

    Thank you Bill for your generosity and wisdom.
    My theme for 2017 is Joyful Financial Abundance. Thank you for creating the Big Shift Program that is helping me to get there.

  24. Mine is ‘be your purpose’, remembering to be that who I want to be, the one that makes me jump out of bed in the morning.
    thank you!

  25. Hey Bill
    So glad you posted this invitation! My theme this year is “Silver Girl”. I’ve been doing this practice for the last two years–though not to the extent you recommend:)

    While at my family’s this Christmas, I heard an old favorite song–Bridge Over Trouble Water. I’ve always cherished the last stanza…and have been thinking of it nonstop, in Simon and Garfunkle’s Magic voices:

    Sail on Silver Girl
    Sail on by
    Your time has come to shine
    All your dreams are on their way
    See how they shine

    I get tears every time I think of it. Happy, hopeful, resolute tears. Happy New Year Bill!!

    • I really do hope all your dreams are on their way Michele! Having been on a hiatus previously; because the family came calling ( yeah you know it) I used all of 2016 to learn and implement Bills training to upscale my business and…… I did it. “See how they shine” Dee X

  26. I’m going with Action. The things holding me back have been procrastination, excuses, fear of both success and failure and laziness as well as illness. So I played with Courage? Self Care? and Action. I decided on Action. Action is making movement in my definition. Even if it means time to rest, or to take some time for self care, Action is mine.

  27. Hi Bill – it’s so awesome that you write about this theme and it’s impact. Unintentionally, I created 3 themes for 2015 (extraction), 2016 (integration) and 2017 (expansion). You would not believe how different my life is just because of that “gentle focus” as you say on the themes of extraction and integration. I know without a doubt that my work and life are going to expand in 2017. I encourage anyone who reads this to JUST. DO. IT. The mind is a powerful thing! Happy New Year to you!!

  28. My theme for 2017 is BELIEF MASTERY

  29. Sumitha says:

    Financial freedom

  30. Lynne Falconer says:

    Thank you Bill, for sharing this inspiring practice.

    My theme for 2017 is FOCUS – within minutes of reading your email this popped for me and since I started paying attention to how I focus, when I focus, whether I actually focus, I have experienced some amusing and inspiring revelations. More over the next year 🙂

  31. ACTION!

  32. My theme will be to focus on “critical revenue-generating actions.” Since my revenue was, in fact, not up to scratch last year!

  33. Mine is Freedom.
    I lost it approx 20 years ago. No excuses, I was young and just out of university when I followed a partner to a life that was never a part of my plans or dreams. I have since been kept small so that I would stay. 2017 is my time to be free to live. Experience freedom in all aspects of my life. As you mentioned in your article how you focused 2011 on yourself, 2016 was my year for learning to love myself. So grateful for crossing paths with your program and can not wait for the adventure!

  34. We have done a theme every year for the past few years:
    2014: Connection
    2015: Experiences
    2016: Blessings
    and, in 2017, we are adopting Perspective as our theme. Thanks!

  35. Paul Cunningham

    Mine is Be Effective!

  36. This was a wonderful exercise. I felt the rumblings of many thoughts then I made a conscious decision to sleep on it and woke up with what I said. 2016 was all about letting go and clarity. Thank you for being a conscious guide to me Bill. I am so excited by my journey as you hold the energy for our greatest self to manifest.

  37. Saying Yes and Playing Big

    It’s time Bill It is time.

  38. Authenticity is what comes to my mind for now. Or may be I will infuse this theme into 2017 as a secondary theme. 🙂

  39. Anitra Chapman says:

    Self awareness

  40. Anitra Chapman says:


  41. Doren Damico says:

    Perfect Productivity

    I really enjoyed this article and exercise. Did a fabulous brainstorm session with a great sense of efficacy. Thank you! Happy New Year!

  42. My theme is Action.
    I have been planning all of last year and now I’m ready to take big action.

  43. Loving myself

  44. Pascale T says:

    I am juggling between Courage (to live my truth, to create movement around my business project of launching my coaching practice after completing the certification coursework) and Simplify my life. One might become the primary intention (courage) and the other (simplification) the secondary. Happy 2017!!!

  45. A Better Life

  46. Spirituality – I’ve been so focused on just dealing with life each day as it comes, it feels like there’s no time for my spiritual side. This year, I reconnect.

  47. Dr Sy Powell says:

    Thanks again for the New Year’s Theme concept. Mine this year is Focus-Consistency- In 2016 I accomplished my theme of Transformational speaker ( 2 very successful speaking events) Yet in review I was distracted a great deal by personal family tradegy, JOB issues, friends asking for my help, as well as personal self doubt and fatique. I am learning to say NO! That just taking that first step then taking action daily is KEY. I will continue to journal and to keep a calender to track my work. I am clear on what I want to do and will keep focused and consistently take action!

  48. My theme for 2017: Be intentional in how I Live, Love and Work.
    2017 will be a great year, I can feel it.

  49. Thanks for the article, Bill.
    I like the concept of creating a theme.
    I’ve had “organization” as a main umbrella goal for this upcoming year…so it seems to me that the theme is indeed “Organization.”
    For me, this means bringing more clarity, creativity and purpose to my life and business when I am focused on being intentionally organized.
    This past year things got out of whack a bit due to a big personal project: training and hiking/backpacking a portion of the John Muir Trail, so as it occupied a big part of my life, other areas got somewhat neglected. It’s time to put intention back to being organized so I can have more inner harmony and freedom in all areas of my life.
    Thanks for giving me this opportunity to express this!

  50. Mine will be: EXPONENTIAL GROWTH

    The idea is – allowing myself to expand into having the abundance that would bring.

    And by the way, my 2014 was similar: In 2014, I said that I no longer ask others if I’m good enough; I *generate* that I _am_ good enough.

  51. 2017 Theme – New Beginnings

  52. Mine is FUN! Love that you’re doing this too! for 2016 I had FOCUS, and mid year I chose LEVERAGE. Both helped me tremendously. It’s funny (and awesome) how a clear intention like this can actually seep into what happens, on a deep and powerful level!

  53. My Theme for 2017 is Visibility. I’m excited to share this with my clients and followers! Thank you!

    • Peek-a-Boo

      • Johnny,Agree that Harold was something of an inectltelual, kind of a soft spoken academic. I think in his time spent with the Family he was sort of a bemused student, learning from a bunch of crazies but not getting too close to them. The fact that he was able to see through the BS of Manson further confirms this.

  54. I chose “Enjoy” for another “Life Journal” planner.
    For my biz and tying this together – I was playing around with:
    “Allow” as in…allowing for the manifestation to occur with the encumbant joy to manifest.

    It was really cool – I viscerally played around with it this evening, and it felt powerful! Thanks for the article Bill.

  55. Hi Bill,

    My yearly theme to give me a huge breakthrough in ‘2017’ is:


    The secondary theme is: SIMPLIFY & FOCUS monthly, weekly, and daily for great success in ‘2017’!

    Thanks Bill.

  56. Jasmina Agrillo Scherr says:

    Hi Bill,

    My yearly theme to give me a huge breakthrough in ‘2017’ is:


    The secondary theme is: SIMPLIFY & FOCUS monthly, weekly, and daily for great success in ‘2017’!

    Thanks Bill.

  57. My theme for 2017 is Better
    I will aim to make myself better physically, be better at running my business, and of course, help pet owners make their pets better.
    Here’s to Better

  58. Jennifer Lambert says:

    Courageously confident will be my theme for 2017

  59. I love this idea! I am in my third year of my hypnotherapy practice and in order to stay self employed, I need to at least double my client load. My theme for the year is Prosperity. I started reading a book, You Too Can Be Prosperous by Robert Russell last night and it seems right. I have set my goals and they all will lead to prosperity. I am going to get a journal and take you advice to stay focused. Thanks!

  60. I feel LOVE in my heart, most of the time, It’s time to share. Mine is Sharing Love.

  61. My theme for 2017 is “abundance”. I want to go after everything God has for me even if I’m scared. 2016 was a year of regrouping and momentum. Now it’s time to take massive action!

  62. Confident Promotion is mine! Andrea at http://www.awakentomindfulness.org

  63. Joan Hathaway-Sheldon says:

    My theme for 2016 was Vitality because mine was at an all time low. Many miraculous changes later and I feel better than I have in years.
    My theme for 2017 is Connection. I look forward to seeing where that will take me. My intent is greater connection with myself/Self, with clients and my community, with Spirit.

  64. My theme for 2017 is “Touching The World!” Have an amazing new year.

  65. My theme will be forgiving and loving myself. As I have been growing deeper in faith and love through the power of Jesus Christ I am seeing that my areas of spiritual weakness are in forgiving and loving myself. This year I want to fully embrace that healing and forgiveness, that is mine to receive, so that I can let go of my negative self-image. I want to love myself fully so that I care for myself physically, emotionally and spiritually and I, in turn, fully love and care for those around me.

    Thank you!

  67. Confidence

  68. Self-sufficient prosperity! (and finish my website!)

  69. Alicia Kirch says:

    This year my intention is to live courageously!

  70. Linda Phinx Fili says:

    Dear Bill

    Thank you for sharing creating a Theme concept with me. This is truelly hoing to change my life. But firstly let me share my weakness with uou. That is of wanting to please everybody and caring what people think or say about me to such an extent that would be detrimental to my well being.

    I’m thinking of focusing on Inner Peace for a start
    and stick to it. Help me with my weakness please because if I didn’t do something that someone wanted I end up feeling guilty and having no peace.

    Thanking you in advance
    Linda Phinx Fili

  71. Mine are Growth – Creativity – Happiness.
    Thank you for this article

    • Dec. 28, 2016
      My theme is “Energy”–physical and emotional, something I ‘ve struggled with for most of my career and especially in the last 20 years. I hesitated to join
      PPSS because of lack of it.

  72. It’s amazing before reading your email I was already thinking about two words that I want them to be stuck with me throughout this year I didn’t called them theme but nonetheless is the same strategy. Mine are Confidence and Gracefulness. I want to always feel sure about myself and I want to take my time slowing down appreciating every moment by doing everything gracefully .
    Awesome way to start a new year! thanks 😊

  73. Felicity Lerouge says:

    I’m playing with the theme of rejuvenation – like the phoenix emerging from the flames, having died to everything that was holding it back and allowing all the gifts and talents that want to emerge in this new paradigm to unfold. It’s going to be quite a year!

  74. Terrell Kitchens says:

    My theme for 2017 is to opening my salvage yard. Get everything I need to get started. Start helping customers find their used auto parts. And learn more about international sales.

  75. My theme for 2017 is courage

  76. 2017 Word for the year-Balance
    my 2016 Word of the year was – Intentional

  77. katherine says:

    Hi Bill, my theme for 2017 is Manifesting Miracles! This year is a breakthrough year for me and I’m working on a primo package around this theme for others. Its time 🙂

  78. Wanda P. says:

    Hi Coach Bill,

    My theme for 2017 is COMPLETION. To me this means focusing and finishing things. This means embracing a time management system which will help me hold myself accountable, without stifling my creativity. This means being willing to do it anyway, so that I can get to the fun stuff . . . instead of procrastinating and dragging things out until the last minute. This also means acknowledging and releasing angst around what happened yesterday, last week, last month or last year. I believe setting my intention on the art of completion will create room to taste and savor new things. Time is the only thing we can’t make more of, so instead of focusing on multitasking a 1000 things . . . which I have discovered is actually not the best way for me to operate . . I want to focus on using my time more wisely, more strategically and completing (not just starting or working on things). I have been working on my dissertation for a looooooooonnnnng time . . . it’s a good story, but I am ready for that academic journey to be complete!

    Hope your 2017 is even more amazing than you have envisioned!

    Wanda P.

  79. Imani Subira says:

    My theme for 2017 is BLISSFUL ABUNDANCE! Thank you, Bill!

  80. My theme for 2017 is opening up to the next breakthrough to take me into serving the land and highest good with greatest ease. Rita at http://www.spiritearthministries.com

  81. Najee Lee says:

    I JUST FINISHED LISTENING to a podcast and the biggest take away from 15 minutes was a sinmple sentence “CARRYING YOUR INTENTION FORWARD” and your email about intention popped up minutes afterwards!

    My themes for 2017 is:

    Live Truth

    The truth. We are all powerful beyond belief. I am going to live my truth every single day. Utilizing the power of my mind to shape reality and myself as I see fit!

    Internal power
    Because I am powerful beyond belief I’ve got to focus, structure and execute on my internal power. Gone are the days of doubt and insecurity. I will apply the 7 hermetic laws to myself and master the controls over my reality engine.. aka my mind.

    Consistent Value

    Do you know how a Trailer at FedEx gets filled with 2500 boxes? You scan one box then place it in the trailer. One box at a time, one step at a time, one small victory at a time. I pride myself on excellent customer service and will strive to deliver it consistently on multiple fronts: to myself, my life’s work and my audience.

    Close’em Strong!

    Armed with truth, internal power and tremendous value, I’ve got to start strong and finish strong. Closing a sell, a committment or whatever will be done with passion, integrity, and intention. I will speak my mind, committ to my truth and be honest with myself and others.

    Thanks Bill for this great tidbit! It has really gotten me hyped about the new year, it’s themes and most of all…. the results!!!

    – Coach Najee

  82. Hi Bill, thank you for this awesome post. As a Purpose Coach I am allll about helping people to discover and achieve their greatest dreams and serve the world. This year, my theme is “Launch!” 2016 was a year of fine tuning, creating, and strategizing how I can powerfully serve more amazing people with workshops, online courses, and high-level 1-on-1 coaching. I’m ready for 2017 to be the year of the LAUNCH! Thanks for all you do, I have been following you for a couple of years and you have made a huge positive impact in my business:) Happy New Year!!!

  83. I am going to THRIVE in 2017: in business, personally, spiritually, and physically!

  84. This is fantastic, Bill. I’m not sure how many people it would resonate with, as I understand that business minded people like us have to completely “revamp” themselves in order to become renewed enough to accomplish goals. However, once folks see that it’s themselves holding them back and nothing but, I think they will find this piece incredibly helpful.

    • My job is to simply speak my truth of the moment. Whoever resonates with it, I am happy with. I am not for everyone or do I want to be.

  85. Hi Bill
    My intention for 2017 is streamlining and delegating. I am setting aside 3 hours a week to write my protocols down so that other people can implement them. I will journal as you recommended the times a week to maintain that intention. I am a functional medicine doctor who wants to gradually turn patient care over to others so I can lecture and write my book.

    • Perfect theme for you. I love functional medicine doctors, currently working with a really great one on the very things you’re talking about here.

  86. Zsuzsa Czagler says:

    My theme for 2017: blossoming.
    I finally show the world my real value, beauty, wisdom and make people happy with that. At the same time I will be prospering.

Speak Your Mind