I’ve written in the past about using Susannah Conway’s workbook “Unraveling the Year”. Last year, my word was Practice, my intention was to commit to a writing practice. I got off to slow start but I DID it! Then came December, all bets were off, thankfully, I have picked it up again in January.
I flamed out at the end of 2015 (thus the drop off writing in December). The last quarter was non-stop and I did no one any favors by continuing to say “yes” and ignoring what my body was telling me.
2016 WILL be different.
Thankfully, 2016 is already different. My word for 2016 is: enough.
I am enough.
I have enough on my plate. I can’t take on anything else until something is taken away. Preferably several things are taken away. I have to scale back. I can’t go through another quarter like Q4 2015. The challenge for me is figuring out WHERE to cut back on existing commitments and WHEN to say no to new commitments.
When I saw this post on Facebook from Jen Hatmaker, I almost cried. Don’t read too far into the comments, they go sideways pretty quickly, but Jen does respond and mentions Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKewon. I’m reading this slowly so it really sticks, but so far, I’m really loving this book. It’s just what I need right now. I’m pretty sure there will be a blog post from me on the book down the road.
So far, I’ve stepped down from an existing commitment and turned down new work. Not gonna lie, both were hard to do. The existing commitment was something I care deeply about and I would have been a really good fit for the consulting position. I just keep reminding myself “I am enough.” and honestly, after the initial shock wore off, saying no to both was incredibly empowering and uplifting.
Determining what is essential to my life is still a work in progress, but writing is without a doubt essential to my life and it is my hope by eliminating the truly unessential, I’ll make more time for writing. My goal is progress, not perfection. I’m close to finishing the roughest of rough drafts of my work-in-progress. I have another DIY writing retreat scheduled for this weekend and my goal is to pitch this story at a conference scheduled for October. To make that a reality I have many hours of revision ahead of me but, at the same time, I’m trying not to get too far ahead of myself.
I start everyday reminding myself, I am enough.
Did you pick a word for 2016?
How do you determine what is essential to your life?
Haven’t set your goals for 2016 yet? If not, you aren’t too late, you are right on time.
Lee Laughlin is a writer, marketer, social media consumer and producer, wife, and mom, frequently all of those things at once. She blogs at Livefearlesslee.com. She writes for the Concord Monitor and her words have also appeared in a broad range of publications from community newspapers to the Boston Globe. She is currently working on her first novel, a work of contemporary, romantic fiction.