This post contains a lot of words and only a few pictures, so if you want to move on to other things now, my feelings will not be hurt. :) This is for me to look back on during the year and beyond, and publishing it feels like the right thing to do. Even if nobody will to be following up with me about these intentions, blogging makes me accountable for them. If you do continue reading, you will get to know me better, and you will probably also feel a little bit better about yourself.
These intentions, and my thoughts about them, have been bouncing around in my head for a few days, or for a really long time in some instances, and I’m happy to be putting them down “on paper.” Although I will certainly have measurable 2014 business goals and action steps to achieve them, and I’m looking forward to establishing those, I know that I work better in general with intentions, so that’s going to be my personal mindset for 2014. ”Drink 80 ounces of water each day” becomes “I intend to drink more water,” and I go from being annoyed at having rules and then being disappointed in myself, to actually drinking more water. My business and personal life are so intertwined that I know these intentions, however home-related many of them are, will have a significant effect on the success of my business.
So here are my intentions for this year. And I intend for it to be an awesome year!
1. Wash fewer dishes. Do less laundry.
Having a clean house is not a priority of mine. There are many things I’d rather be doing than cleaning and I’m okay with our home looking “lived in.” But life sure if easier and more enjoyable when we are not living in squalor, so I’ve been putting a more effort into helping Paul keep the house semi-clean. Like a 7 is great to me.
What I want to work on this year is doing a little bit here and there so the messes aren’t quite so big. Like when I give the boys bowls of apple slices in the morning, I can rinse the knife and the bowls when they’re finished, dry and put them away. And I can put the apple core right into the garbage, or better yet into a container to take out to the composter. Fewer dishes in the sink to later load in the dishwasher, and less garbage on the counter. Yes, I’m sometimes that bad. And then when I heat up soup for lunch, I can rinse the pot instead of leaving it on the stove with dried soup in it, until we have run out of other pots to use and need to wash it.
I also want to make sure all the laundry gets put away, including the things I think I might want to donate or sell or put somewhere else, so I don’t put them anywhere, and they get washed over and over even though they haven’t been worn. And kids can totally wear the same jammies like three nights in a row if they’re folded and put on the bed instead of left on the floor.
Sounds easy, right? Most people do these simple things, don’t they? So I intend to do them, too.
2. Cook more.
Eating healthy home-made food and feeding it to my family is something I value greatly. We are careful to buy mostly organic, or at least non-GMO foods, and to avoid processed foods. But then we don’t feel like cooking, so we order Mexican or Chinese, even though we don’t want to spend the money, and we know we’ll enjoy a home-cooked meal much more. And then I stop at Dunkin’ Donuts for a grilled cheese and donuts that I know are going to make me feel gross, and I send Paul to Dairy Queen for a large Blizzard with Heath and Butterfinger. We have definitely come a long way, and don’t do these things as often as we used to, but it’s still more often than I’d like. We’re starting a 21 Day Sugar Detox Monday and I’m really looking forward to kicking the bad habits I still have after forming so many good ones.
Preparing meals is one of those things that needs to be done every day, whether I enjoy it or not. So I intend to start enjoying it, by getting Paul and the boys more involved, moving past the major discomfort I feel when needing to follow directions and actually using a recipe, and keeping in mind the truths and I know and value.
3. Enjoy more Facebook-free and TV-free time.
It’s so easy to pull out my iPhone whenever I feel the slightest frustration, anxiety or boredom. And instead of feeling those feelings and being present, I push those feelings deeper, look at Facebook, and probably end up eating the feelings away later that night in the form of Lindt truffles. Also, I’m totally missing out on conversation with my awesome husband, and fun time with my adorable kids. Yes, I need time to myself, and I enjoy Facebook, and use it for my business, but I don’t want it at the dinner table or in my bed. I want to be present.
This year I will to fight that urge to pick up my phone at inappropriate times. I will hear the ringer (and be so excited!!!) if a birth client is in labor, but archiving junk e-mail and looking through Facebook can wait until a time when it’s not taking my attention away from my husband and kids, or from other things I am working on.
I also have a wonderful home office I rarely use, because I like to sit in front of the TV and work. Sometimes I think it works for me. Sure, I get half the amount of work done because I’m only half focused, but I do also get to enjoy some TV time. I don’t want that to be the norm, though. TV is okay sometimes, but I intend to work in my cozy office and focus on this business that I love so much, so I can grow it to what I want it to be, and provide the level of service my clients deserve.
4. Make more coffee filter snow flakes.
I’m the total opposite of crafty. I apparently have the personality traits of a creative person, but I don’t enjoy projects or making things or DIY stuff. Pinning a bunch of cute ideas and then deciding which ones to do and going out to buy the things I need to do them, and then doing them sounds like a big hassle to me, and quite overwhelming. So I don’t do that. But I have recently remembered how much I love doing puzzles. And I enjoy playing with play-doh. And last month I decided to make coffee filter snowflakes with Xander, and I loved it. We only needed coffee filters and scissors and then we could do whatever we wanted. I’d like to continue to find and do really simple things like these that bring me joy. I feel like I’m really close to a breakthrough..something about simplicity allowing creativity to really blossom. I’m writing that on a big post-it for my office wall. :)
5. Push myself just a little bit more.
I’ve read a lot of friends’ 2014 intentions about self-care, self-acceptance, etc. I think those are important. As mothers, we are often taking care of others and not of ourselves. We’re not taking time to do the things that really feed our souls and make us feel good. Over the past year, I have allowed myself countless nights of going to bed at 8 with the boys, nights out with friends when maybe it would have been smart to save the money, and all around just a lot of whatever I wanted. I’ve learned to say yes to my needs and to the things I value, and by doing that, I’ve created a life that is made up of mostly things I love doing. I’m in a very happy place. And I’m also super excited about reaching the next level, in business, in health, in relationships, and for my family. I know that to continue moving forward, I need to push myself. I need a little bit of discomfort, and instead of avoiding that discomfort, I intend to face it head-on, and work right though it. Because I know what is on the other side. It’s an “Oh my gosh, that was easy,” a feeling of satisfaction, and the happiness of being one step closer to living a successful, joyous, and truly authentic life. :)