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Slowly

Last year I spent a week or so railing against the concept of choosing a word of the year. The whole idea of starting over on the first day of the year is a bit dumbfounding to me. Why do we put this type of pressure on ourselves when it is no easier or more difficult to begin to implement change on the first of the year than on a random Tuesday in July?

Then I ended up choosing the word “Enough” and writing about it

It turns out that there’s something beautifully intentional about selecting a word to guide the choices you make throughout the year. Last January when I tried to quantify what the word “enough” would mean in my life, I thought about travel, work, friendship, chaos. I had had enough of it all. I wrote my post, I set my goals (which included having fewer goals), and I headed into my year. And a funny thing happened. I not only kept the word enough in my mind throughout the year, but remembering that I am, that I have, that I do enough suddenly provided me with more. 

I graciously declined trip invitation after invitation and found myself able to enthusiastically say yes when asked to visit both Walt Disney World in Florida and Disneyland in California ON THE SAME DAY. I unfriended all of the people on Facebook who really aren’t my friends – especially the ones that I couldn’t even begin to place…where did they come from?!? – and now I see and engage with the people who matter to me the most. I passed work opportunities on to other bloggers and agencies when my plate was full, and found myself with enough time to say yes when my church put out an invitation for new praise band members. I stopped worrying about building my business and had the biggest year to date. I let go of my fear that I’d never publish a book and ended up publishing two. Enough, you were purely magical.

This week I’ve been thinking about what word should guide my 2014. I’m spending this month restructuring my business, taking off a number of hats and placing them happily on the heads of others. My hope for this year is to refocus my time and energy elsewhere after riding the wave of work for a few years.

The first word I landed on was…

nest

I want to sew valances for my living room. I want to de-clutter my office closet. I want to make a baby book for my son because OH MY GOD HE IS SEVEN AND A HALF YEARS OLD ALREADY.

But while nesting is certainly part of what I’m doing and how I’m feeling, it was a bit too specific to hand over 365 days to it. So next I contemplated…

happy

Happy seemed to cover it. Last year I very intentionally scaled back, made time in my life for joy. So why not make 2014 all about happy? Continue the process, enjoy my life, enjoy my family… The wheels kicked into motion as I began to create to-do lists for my happiness. What could I DO first, what could I make, what could I change?

I was doing it again. I was trying to reach a goal, use work to find joy, plan to be happy. I need to just BE.

Then this morning in therapy while going over my plans to restructure my business, nest in my home, spend more time on people and tasks that matter most, I heard my word as it was said to me, filled with caution…

slowly

My year of Enough is not over. Living intentionally is a continual process. Finding balance is a journey, not a destination. Choosing joyful over busy is a decision that I must make over and over again each day. Throwing myself full force at living differently is still choosing to overwhelm my life with lists and goals rather than savoring the quiet spaces I’ve made in my day.

So in 2014, I will go slowly…

Comments

  1. 1

    So funny, this year I’m just want to be content and everything will be done one step at a time, one day at a time. It looks like neither of us are in a hurry this year and that makes me feel so very content already!
    Nikki recently posted..A new year, one day, one step at a time

  2. 3

    Hey Amy, so inspired to read this post – what a fabulous year 2013 was for you, I love your words and the sentiment behind them. May 2014 be a year of slow goodness for you and yours. xx

  3. 4

    You are such a wonderful person. I like”slowly”. We all need to take a deep breath sometimes and just unwind.

Trackbacks

  1. […] in our lives for at least six months following the trip, so despite my inclination to leave it all, I moved slowly, made intentional changes in my life, continued to give of my time and talents to Compassion to […]

  2. […] I don’t want to consume. I want to revel. I want to read, think, write, then read again. Remember “slowly”? […]

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