Monday, January 02, 2012

Living Intentionally

You might have noticed that I fell of the WEverb11 bandwagon pretty soon into it.  I believe I made it a week.

It isn't that I didn't want to write and it isn't that I wasn't inspired by the prompts.  I just ran out of time.

We are dealing with a very stressful situation with Little G at his daycare which was the overwhelming theme of our month but in and around all of that stress was the whole holiday insanity of getting presents and wrapping them and sending out Christmas cards and stocking stuffers and holiday baking and tree decorating and parties and visits from friends and trying to ensure that our 2.5 year old learns for the first time what Christmas actually is and, oh right, A NEWBORN!!  Throw into that mix the head cold that Little G brought home from daycare that manifested itself in me as bronchitis and you can see how the month just totally got away from me.

Interestingly enough, though I provided a WEverb prompt, it was not chosen as one of the 31 and yet was the one that I was most interested in reflecting upon.  Specifically, it was about living intentionally.  Did I feel that I lived intentionally in the past year and what was my plan to succeed in that regard for 2012.

It is hard when you have a baby to think back to what life was like before they showed up.  They are all consuming from moment one and by the time you get a chance to reflect on what your life was like before they joined it, the memory has slipped far enough away that it is too demanding to bring it up again.

I do know that I waste a lot of time on the internet.  Some of that has to do with my writing for FLOR.  When looking for inspiration it isn't uncommon for me to find myself lost after having followed an idea down a rabbit hole and all of the sudden it has been over an hour and I haven't done anything productive. I also have an unhealthy obsession with keeping my blog reader clear of new entries.  That goes for Facebook and Twitter as well - I HAVE to read everything.  With an iPhone and an iPad and now my iMac, it is easier than ever to space out from real life for a minute or two and quickly 'check' something or look something up.

And it is so easy to get caught up in thinking that I HAVE to be as creative as all the impossibly-perfect mommy-designer bloggers and everything in my life from my everything drawer to my drinking straws to the pillows on my couch HAS to be just as lovely as those I see on Pinterest.  But my couch will live if it doesn't have navy and gray chevron-striped throw pillows.  And I will be just as loved by my family and friends if I don't have place cards at my next impromptu pizza night.

I am so competitive that it is extraordinarily easy for me to get caught up in the race to be the trendiest, the cutest, the most thoughtfully detailed, etc.  And in doing so, I no longer am living my life with my family intentionally.  I become a shell of myself, determined to make things better, brighter, cuter, more design-y when they would love me best if I would show up to dinner.  FULLY show up...not only without my iPhone but without my mind wandering TO my iPhone.

Some of this is hyperbole.  I am exaggerating a bit to make a point.  But still, if I want to live more intentionally in 2012 than the first thing I need to do is be more aware of those things that eat away at my time and my focus and the internet is the number one thing that does this.

So how do I plan to rectify this?  I'm not exactly sure.  I do know that with two kids in the house, I don't have the time I used to have.  It just doesn't exist anymore.  So what I need to do is focus on what my plan is for the time I DO have.  And I think the best thing for me is to blog intentionally.  How is that going to help my family?  What that means to me is that I am going to blog what I want to blog and not what I think I should blog.  I am going to pledge to write what I want to write, not because I care what an audience might think, but because it is what I need to put down on 'paper'.  If I sign up for a series of prompts, I will allow myself to deviate and to fit the prompts into my life rather than vice a versa.

This is a promise to myself to live more intentionally both for my own personal benefit and for the benefit of my family.  So that I am relieved of the pressure to be more and/or different than who I am and I can return my focus to the wonderful life and beautiful family I already have.

So tell me, do you hope to live more intentionally this year and how does that look for you?


I tried to participate in WEverb11 this year (to the best of my abilities, what with a newborn in the house) and ended up needing to reflect and renew on more than it could prompt me to.

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