Welcome to 2016! I hope you have had a great first week of the year and are excited for all that is to come!
I’m feeling called today to share a bit about my new years resolution. After typing out a few thoughts (which turned into an essay-sorry in advance) I realize this may need to become a series of posts rather than one post as I was expecting.
I thought I would simply say “here is what I have done this first week of January and how I think it’s going to help the rest of my year and hopefully yours as well”. However, that would be so NOT true! This is the end result of a long thought out concept that is still in the works. In order to understand where I am today, first I must tell you about the beginning. The thought process behind this New Years Resolution began way further back than this first week of January. It goes all the way back to October 2015.
By October 2015, I was working 40 hour weeks at my full-time job, booked every day on the weekends with photography (what a blessing to do something I enjoy so much!), editing photos every night after work until going to bed, trying to be a good wife, a good dog-mom, grow my relationship with God by getting into the word everyday, budget our finances well and meet big financial goals Rob and I have set before ourselves (I’ll do another post about this later), meet friends for coffee (hardly happened), edit my photos perfectly and hand over to happy clients, apply for an intensive study course for my spring licensing exam, go to church (however, this was only if my work allowed). I was trying to do it all; and do it all perfectly. I had a full spirit, an inspired mind, but my body was exhausted, and I knew there was a better way.
The catch-22 about this whole thing, is that all of those things are good things, BLESSINGS. Really good stuff that were outcomes of the grace upon grace He covers me with. They were all tasks or projects that were for good causes, directing me to grow my skills, grow my business, grow our finances, and grow relationships. I thought to myself “for heaven’s sake, Haley, there are CEO’s of companies and parents with young children, and all kinds of people with REAL stuff to worry about and they have their life more balanced than this.” Therefore, I realized that there was nothing wrong with WHAT I was doing, however, there was something fundamentally wrong with HOW I was doing it.
Simply put, I was allowing my calendar to happen to me. I had no boundaries set up to protect the purposeful things in my life. I had no reason to say no to unintentional things. This hard lesson (that I’m still learning) pushed me to realize that I need to set up boundaries to make room for purposeful stuff to happen in my life. I knew this in my head, but didn’t quite understand how to get there, and am still in the process of learning how to get there.
I follow a ton of incredibly inspiring people on Instagram. Lara Casey (@laracasey) is an incredible inspiration, and one of the ladies I look up to most. She has an amazing outlook on living a purposeful and intentional life which she so honestly teaches through her Instagram, blog and book, Make It Happen. She has helped me understand the importance of living intentionally. Why it is okay, even good, to say “no” to certain things in order to say “yes” to purposeful things.
That said, I encourage you (and let’s face it, me too) this week to HAPPEN to your calendar, don’t let your calendar happen to you. Put the good stuff, the purposeful stuff, in there before any other “stuff” passively fills it up. I encourage you to determine what those intentional things are that you hope to accomplish this week and schedule them into your calendar before anything else has the chance to fill the slot. For example, if you’d like to have more quality time with your people at home during the week, then block out your schedule to be home at least 3 evenings after work. If you want to have coffee with a friend, go ahead and put that hour in your calendar before you even have a chance to plan it. If you want to get more into the Bible, then schedule a time for it before it happens. If you’re like me, things (even really good things) simply don’t happen unless they are in the calendar.
By no means am I considering this a fix-all, but by doing this last week before the week happened, it certainly helped me take one step forward to living more purposefully and intentionally and I hope it encourages you to do the same.
All my best,