The New Year has come and gone but this is the time I’ve FINALLY decided to put pen to paper (fingers to keyboard?) and write about it and my “resolutions”for the year. It’s definitely ironic considering what I’ve decided to do.
A few years ago a friend of mine did a business talk on finding a word for your year in relation to goals that you want to set and reach. At first I was totally confused.
What in the world does tying a word to your goals have to do with anything?
As it turns out, a lot! You see the idea was simple, you choose a word that you want to be the theme for your year–and then everything you do is a reflection of that. So much simpler than trying to make an endless list of things you resolve to do but, let’s face it, won’t do past January, if at all. So, in December I set out to find that elusive word that would carry me through the coming year. As I was 9 months pregnant a few choice words came to mind-impatient, exhausted, annoyed, stressed. But those were just the sarcastic musings of a tired mama and not really suitable for inspiration. I wanted something that would be strong, yet flexible and also reflect the coming chaos that was to be a family of 5 with 3 kids under the age of 4. And then a word came to mind that should be banished from the dictionaries of all mamas:
I’ve tried to do it all. You’ve tried to do it all. I’ve tried to keep up with everything. And for a while it worked–until we added a second child. Until I started working from home. Until my passion drove me to start my own business with essential oils. Until football season started. Until I got pregnant with my 3rd child. Then I was a mess. Who can BALANCE doing all.the.things. every single day? No one! And we shouldn’t put that pressure on ourselves to be a perfect version of ourselves. Or the perfect Facebook mom. I say that with my finger pointed directly at myself. My type-A personality balks at the idea of not having every hair in place, not having all the I’s dotted and T’s crossed, not having everything in its place. And my weary mama soul cringes at one more day in the same clothes, with unwashed hair and a sink full of dirty dishes while pictures float by on Instagram of women wearing REAL pants, with make up on and pretty hair. Of gorgeous clean rooms and perfectly draped curtains framing a picturesque window. But then reality sets in. In this stage of life, those things are not really attainable or realistic. My life is chaos and laughter, happiness and exhaustion, beautiful and messy. And in that I found my word:
I can’t make each day be perfect. I can’t always clean all the dishes promptly and the laundry may be overflowing-clean or dirty. But if I make the effort to do the best that I can FOR THAT DAY, to live THAT DAY in harmony then I can be happier. Maybe I clean the kitchen while the kids watch tv (gasp!). Or maybe we go to the zoo for the morning and I stay up late making up lost work hours. Maybe I haven’t washed my hair in 2 days but I put a puzzle together with the older two while the baby naps instead of showering. Maybe the kids eat boxed waffles for breakfast and Chick-fil-a for lunch but there are smiles on their faces. Whatever it takes to make each day exactly what I needed it to be–that’s Harmony.
This word and resolution may sound easy to some but, for me, it is a challenge. You see, my mind works well with starting a task and working on it until I’m done. Point A to Point B. A straight line. Motherhood has taught me, sometimes kicking and screaming with my fingers in my ears, that I can’t always do everything in order or from start to finish. That I have to do what I can, when I can. Each day this year has been a challenge but I’m trying and striving to implement more Harmony into my life and mind. Sometimes my rigid brain takes over and I start to panic about the long list of things that should or need to be done. Then I’m reminded of my word: Harmony. I make a conscious effort to let it go. I just can’t do everything.
So, what will your word be for this year?