Choosing “fight” as my OneWord for 2016 was surprisingly easy – but the day-to-day practicality of living it out sure isn’t turning out to be. What am I going to do on the days when I don’t feel like fighting, or when I’m not sure what I’m fighting for?
At the end of last year, the Female Entrepreneur Association hosted a video series called the #2016SuccessChallenge, followed by a webinar called Creating Your Success Game Plan for 2016. My biggest takeaway from the series and the webinar – for both my business and my life this year – was this: “Keep it simple.”
One of the most difficult aspects of last year was how incredibly complicated and overwhelming everything felt, all the time. So whatever else anything is going to be this year, it needs to be simple. Uncomplicated. And possibly underwhelming. At least for awhile anyway.
I started keeping a record in my planner at the beginning of the month, making it my goal to be able to list at least one thing that I’d done at the end of every single day to live into my word for the year – but even that became overwhelming. I found myself wrestling with things I don’t need to wrestle with right now – wanting to fill up five lines for every day instead of being content to list just one thing, breaking things down into categories (health & wellness, community, etc.) and feeling guilty for not achieving more in one area or another. Under ordinary circumstances, a daily journal like this might have been a great idea – but while the church calendar may have slipped back into Ordinary Time, I haven’t. Nothing is ordinary yet. I’m still recovering from last year, and if I know nothing else right now, it’s that being kind to myself and letting myself off the hook for all the “shoulds” is important in this season. Legalism is rarely helpful in any season – and it’s certainly not useful now.
So clearly I’m going to need a better strategy.
I’m in the middle of reading a new book by Jonathan David Golden called Be You. Do Good. It just came out last week, and is proving to be a rather fabulous read, at least in terms of how much I’m getting out of it personally. One of the things Golden challenges us to do is to pay attention to our lives – to consider the things we do and the people we’re with and to look for patterns in the moments we feel most alive. If cultivating greater self-awareness is the key to finding and living into our callings, then it’s also key to building what Golden refers to as a “liturgy for life” – habits and routines that create the spiritual version of muscle memory for our souls.
As I’ve been contemplating his words over the past few days, and working out how to apply Golden’s wisdom to my own personality type, it’s become evident to me that I need to go back to a few things that were ordinary at one point, and re-weave them into the pattern of my days.
So that’s the strategy… and now to move forward, one day, one step at a time.
"Often when you think you're at the end of something, you're at the beginning of something else." —Fred Rogers via @momentumdash
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"There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle." Einstein