February Already?

In a few hours January will be history. It always surprises me. Where did the time go? How can another month have come and gone already?

This year I chose the word renew to embody my hopes and dreams for 2014. Did I do anything in January that renewed me? I’m happy to report that, yes, I did.

Cutting Back

I gave up Words With Friends after the first of the year. I played it non-stop for a little over a year and at times had a dozen games going at once. Without realizing it, I was spending hours on the game. I began playing to improve how I thought about words. It worked. The game got easier for me and my average score improved by almost 150 points. So why stop? Because in the last few months I haven’t enjoyed playing and my score had stagnated. It was time for a break.

Getting Organized

Being organized has always been a challenge for me. Last year I seemed to go in streaks. I’d work really hard at organizing and then a few weeks later things would be a mess again. I’d get things back where they belonged and then several days later it’d be a mess again. Obviously, my method wasn’t effective for me. Frustration sent me in search of new ideas. I read several posts discussing organization. While it was a relief to know I wasn’t alone in this struggle, I knew I still needed a way to make it work. Armed with many ideas, I decided to begin with small easily repeatable steps and reminders.

I discovered a handy reminder app on my computer. It puts a reminder on the screen, no matter what I’m doing, that tells me what I need to get done. I put in everything from clean the bathroom to take a bike ride to put clean clothes away. I don’t know about you, but it’s easy washing the dirty clothes and putting them in the dryer, but everything falls apart once they come out of the dryer. Writing about this reminds me that I have a stack of clean towels to put away…BRB.
Continue reading “February Already?”

Faith And Renewal For A New Year

Midnight has come and gone. The parties are over. It’s a brand new year!

Unfulfilled New Year’s Resolutions

Many people make resolutions on New Year’s Eve; a list of things to change and goals for the year. There isn’t anything wrong with wanting to change your life or set goals for the year. I used to make a list of resolutions each year. One year as Valentine’s Day approached I realized that not only had I not started anything on my list but I didn’t even know where the list was anymore. Since then I haven’t bothered writing down any resolutions.

Thinking about the types of things I put on my list of New Year’s resolutions I now realize why I failed to carry out even one of them most years. I filled my list with things so big that only a giant could step far enough to complete them: lose weight, get rich, get married, buy a car, buy a house, get my degree, get a job I love, and be happy. There isn’t anything wrong with that list except that they’re all long-term goals. I never did figure out what small steps I’d need to take for each of them to actually happen. I never even defined what some of them meant. Without drawing a trail map and determining exactly what I was looking for how could I check off anything on my New Year’s resolutions list? I couldn’t. So for years I just floated from one year to the next.

Changing My Outlook

A few years ago I felt stuck. Life wasn’t at all what I’d thought it would be; it didn’t resemble any of my dreams. Events pushed me off the path I was on and caused me to lose my balance and tumble down the hill. Unlike Jack, I landed slightly bruised but unbroken. I shakily stood and looked around.

Spider Meadows with Canon A620
Pictoscribe via Compfight

I landed in a meadow  decorated with colorful wildflowers and tall grasses. A stream meandered through it and trees with birds singing in their branches provided a shady place to rest. I realized I could be happy here. New opportunities waited for me, things that before I couldn’t see because I was too busy walking with my head down making sure I didn’t stumble. It didn’t work, I fell anyway. It was time to do some soul-searching. Continue reading “Faith And Renewal For A New Year”