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PREPARING FOR THE NEW YEAR

This is truly one of my most favorite times of the year.

Well, yes because of Christmas and the holiday cheer and its meaning and its wonder but also because I start planning for the following year.

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This has caused me much angst in years past. Partially because I’ve tried to do it all and even worse, tried to do it other people’s way. I’ve listed everything I wanted to do – down to how many glasses of water I wanted to drink each day – and by February 1st was down-trodden because I had not done many of the things I’d listed. And I’d shared them, making me even more hard on myself for failing and eventually quitting.

I haven’t stopped planning though and honestly don’t believe that I will.

With the planning comes dreaming, hoping, faithful prayer about what I long for, experiences and moments I want to have and the work that goes into them. This year though, I’ve turned it all over to God. ALL of it. And as a result, I’ve been guided to 8 priorities and solid “whys” of these things I’d like to see occur in my life – which I believe will help me persevere in accomplishing the what. Especially when I want to quit. On day two.

My values/priorities for 2016 are:

1 | To consistently give time to my relationship with God through deeper study of His Word.

2 | To raise my son to be prepared to live life reliant on God and be experienced in practical matters.

3 | To improve my relationship with my family.

4 | To be financially responsible and disciplined living on less.

5 | To serve and impact others in God’s love.

6 | To express more of my creative self through blogging, photography, reading & writing.

7 | To explore Texas.

8 | To be my best physical self.

Now hold on, if you know me and see that number 8 is listed and emboldened, I want you to know that it is truly ME writing this post. I know, I know – it’s not the me we’re all used to. In fact, I’ve poo-poo’d giving time and energy to this type of work, but with prayer and knowing my “why” – I realize that I will not be able to do many of the things I want to experience or used to enjoy if I do not prioritize working on bettering my physical self.

I did not come to these priorities lightly – in fact, the first seven are the same I’ve had for most of this year having only come to better see the “why” and the need for the newest one during recent weeks in prayer. In order to add the one new priority and the things that I hope will come along with it (tennis, golf and shooting) I knew that I would need to release and revamp some things. Quite a few things actually.

Many of those changes will be here on the blog – stay tuned, a couple of the aesthetic changes will be coming at the first of the year – but a few others have been connected with the amount of small groups I’ll be participating in (two not three) and where I’ll be seeking employment (narrowing the search to very specific things). The most exciting change will be what I choose to share here on the blog, bringing more intimate and vulnerable content to you about MY journaled life as well as working to submit original pieces (about parenting and how we’ve managed/survived our grief) to be published.

With the newest Powersheets, 2016 filler pages for my Filofax, devotionals, workbooks, journals and online courses planned – I am excited for the potential experiences in the new year. And while I’d still very much like to have that “one” thing I’m moving toward or honing in on, the most important thing is knowing my purpose (more to come), what I’m doing and why. It’s becoming so clear!

It’s not all fleshed out and all of my goal action items are written in pencil. Though I’m feeling fairly certain of where I’m heading, there is always room to take things away so that the best, most important thing is prioritized.

I hope you’ll make moments during the hustle and bustle to be still, dream and consider what you hope for in 2016. Also, be sure to put it before God.

We may make our plans, but God has the last word. You may think everything you do is right, but the Lord judges your motives. Ask the Lord to bless your plans, and you will be successful in carrying them out. | Proverbs 16:1-3

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