Over the past few years, my husband and I have gotten in the habit of choosing a word to focus our new year. We don’t have to choose the same word, as we might have different goals in our jobs, etc. BUT whichever word we choose, we try and apply it in every area we can: marriage, family, job, etc.
My word started emerging towards the end of 2016, as my frustration over the chaos which was my life started coming to a head. Of course, there are many things that happen to us in life– stuff that we can’t control. Unfortunately, I think those things create a mindset in us: that life–all of it–is something that controls us, and as a result, we can’t control any of it.
This is simply not the case.
We can choose a LOT. And every choice is us, either taking control or giving it away.
Here’s the thing I have been realizing…
I choose chaos.
I don’t mean to. I don’t go around thinking, “I’m going to make my life cluttered and complicated today. And then I’m gonna have a bad attitude about it.”
But just because it wasn’t my intention doesn’t mean that wasn’t what was happening.
This year, my word is simplicity.
Simplicity is so important.
To some, simplicity might look like scarcity. (If some people saw the meals I’m planning this week, they very well could think that.) But you know what?
I think complexity is something that only comes with privilege. (I mean, how many people in third world countries feel like a failure because they repeat something on a menu? The fact that we even have the term “menu plan” shows our privilege, doesn’t it?)
In weeding out the excess, it shows us two things: 1) what our real needs are and 2) what our real values are. Simplicity also doesn’t mean we have to “go without” things that we enjoy or love. It allows us to find both of those things inside of it.
Simplicity offers boundaries to extravagance, and let’s be honest: I need that. My kids need that. Without boundaries, extravagance turns into entitlement.
My journey to simplicity isn’t going to be the only thing I blog about this year, but you will find it weaved throughout. I hope it is an encouragement to those who are looking for ways to claw themselves out of their chaos, too.
Happy (belated) new year, friends!
(If you would like, feel free to share your word and your why with me, either here on the blog or on my Facebook page! Would love to read them!)