The last 4 months have found us in my parents’ basement, feeling very grateful for a place to rest in the mayhem of finding a home that, we thought, we would be buying. Instead, we are returning to the world of renting with a cute townhome that’s smack dab between work relationship locations and family relationship locations, and just the right amount of space.
Even though we hoped to buy a home, I’m just feeling so blessed, and so excited to have our own space again. To have a new space.
I am also feel a great longing to make this “new beginning” a truly new beginning.
Because sometimes external change is the fastest catalyst for internal change.
There a few major things that have been aching and bouncing around inside my heart, resolutions of sorts, to set off in the direction of dreams and growth. On purpose. More unhindered. With deeper passion and intention.
I want to take advantage of this uprooting of our lives to be more intentional about where and how we set roots back down.
These are not my “New Year’s Resolutions,” although I have no beef with those. Resolutions are most famous for remaining unsuccessful and unmet, year after year, but truly, they do not receive the credit they deserve for something that is potentially more important than success: Vision. Even if the resolutions don’t make it past January 31, they still mean something.
They mean you still aren’t dead.
They mean you’re still looking forward and seeing something different for your future.
And when you see something ahead, you’ll keep climbing. And most likely, you’ll be climbing in a direction that is at least a teeny tiny bit closer to your dreams than you were before. That’s just what vision does. Even when you fail. Even when you’re not acting on it. It’s still an internal picture of your life, and you’re still wired to make your internal picture your external reality.
I’ve got some major dreams and goals. I want to see them happen. I want to clear out the junk in our life and make the changes, little by little, relentlessly, to get there. This move just seems like “it.” It’s time.
So, although these are not particularly “New Year’s Resolutions, they are admittedly similar…But we are just going to call them “Commitments of Resolve,” to remind myself (and you) not to throw them in a denigrated can of stereotyped failure and miss the beauty of vision.
My “Commitments of Resolve” For Our New Beginning:)
1. Less Snarking, More Starting
I read something recently that talked about procrastination and stress as a “partnership with anxiety.” Where I rely on the anxiety and stress of putting something off for the motivation to get it done. This inevitably causes me to be stressed, overwhelmed, and unhappy. And snarky. Really snarky, sometimes. My poor family needs much less bite and much more kindness. One way to do this is to just start starting things! This means- A commitment to my planner. I will bring that planner into my new house, and my home into that planner. Goals and lists and schedules are my friends- not to restrict- but actually to FREE. Free up time. Free up space in my brain for making a real road to the goal. Even one act of productivity reduces my stress considerably. And usually, that one act will snowball into at least a few others. Productive days feel so better than unproductive days, and each one brings me closer to dreams, rather than adding another day to delaying them.
2. Less Crappy Thinking, More Happy Thinking.
You’ve heard of “mental diets,” and how we “are what we eat”…..Well it’s no surprise, then, that when I allow myself to chew on negative thoughts- complaints, stressors, things I hate about myself, things my husband didn’t do, things he did do that I wish he didn’t, things I wish other people wouldn’t do- I become, well, just kind of a selfish pessimist. And I’m just REALLY done with that! Joy is mine for the taking, and mine for the sharing. Loving people well is joyful. Helping people is joyful. Resting is joyful. I want to fill up this new home with so much joy that we can’t help but win the battle against despair and negativity. So much joy that we just bowl selfishness right over. I have a friend whose walls are beautifully painted with the Scriptures she prays over her family in each room. It’s visual hope- reminders of truth she can’t escape. Constant “mental food” of the right variety. So, in this new home, I am committing to surround myself with reminders of joy: simple beauty, intentional decor, promises, art….. visual reminders of the power of words, and the option of joy over selfishness.
3. Less Stuff……. Just Less Stuff.
This is a big one. Like I want to write a whole post on it all by itself. I am so attracted to all the minimalism blogs and tips…. and we just want to refuse to be owned by our stuff. I want to spend my days enjoying and caring for people, not stuff. This new home is helpfully small- it will not allow hoarding tendencies to continue. And I am so grateful for that! So…we will purge, and minimize, and simplify. New items brought in will need to make a very strong case for their admittance. Old items making their exit will be immediately donated and given away. Holidays that run wild with consumerism will be intentionally handled (…Read: Christmas will be very different next year.) And our space will be set up on purpose, clutter-free and beautiful. Make way for progress!
I’ll keep you posted.