Looking off into the distance after a much needed
rainstorm, during the drought in 2012.
After throwing around some different options, I've decided my One Word for 2015 is going to be Peace.
This crazy life we live up here in our Tiny Little Town gets hectic. There's always more to do than will ever get done. Two Little Girls are getting to be very busy with their school work and activities - the pressure is mounting to keep them well-taught and well-rounded. There are always more things I could be doing – chores that fill the never-ending to-do list, things people have asked me to take on, things my kids want to do, animals we could bring home, family activities we'd like to plan. But there has to be a limit.
This past year, my life has been full, busy, blessed... but it lacked peace. It was stressful, sometimes to the breaking point. I tried to do it all – with a big smile on my face – but I didn't always succeed. And when I didn't, it was my family and myself that suffered.
My first step in achieving the peace I so desperately need has been to prioritize. I spent some time doing some much-needed soul searching and journaling. I wrote down all of the things that truly matter in my life, categorized them, and numbered them in order of importance. From there, I got my Top 3:
- Grow and maintain relationships that really matter
- Live a life of intention and purpose
- Find peace and joy in my life
Having that list, tucked into the cover of my Household Notebook, I can easily ask myself if something applies to one of my priorities. It's easy to see which parts of my life are important: Spending time with my family, my parents, my dearest friends and a few new friends; farming; leading my own kids and many others in 4-H, an organization I truly believe in; spending time on crafting and creating and art, something I've hardly allowed myself to do for the past several years; keeping a clean and organized house – but not so clean that I'm making myself crazy; successfully homeschooling my children in a way that prepares them to be the women I'd like to see them be someday.
The list of things that matters is long, but the list of things that doesn't can be even longer if I'm not careful.
I'm also an exceptionally skilled worrier. I can find things to worry about that don't even exist, except in my head! Let alone worrying over things I truly can't change. I worry over my kids and my husband and my animals. I spent hours worrying about the health of two loved ones last year, and despite my constant worrying, they still passed away. I worry about what other people think of me, I worry about how to get everything done, I worry about the future – and we're talking the really distant future.
Worry is the opposite of peace. What is going to happen will happen whether I worry over it or not. I can be diligent and caring without worrying, and that is what I will strive to do. I will be at peace with situations beyond my control. I don't have to like them, but I don't have to worry about them, either.
Life is too short, too precious and valuable, to spend it all wrapped up in worry or fear or frantically trying to keep up.
This year, I will slow down, I'll breathe deep, and above all, I will embrace peace.
What is your One Word this year?