Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year!

I sit here on the eve of a new year.

2013 is almost over. It has been 12 months of ups and downs, things that went the way I hoped and things that didn't, blessings and hurdles that I had to overcome.

It is a time to look back on all of things that God allowed me to experience and to set goals for the upcoming year.

In the past I have made resolutions, promises to myself- some of them went fairly well, some of them were forgotten within weeks, and some of them proved to be a larger issue than I cared to deal with at that particular time.

This year I am keeping things fairly simple:

1. Try to lose those pounds that I have managed to put BACK ON since I lost it a few years ago.

I am not specifying a particular number. I think it is more of a personal comfort level. When my pants stop feeling so snug, I will know that I have reached my goal. I am not sure yet what I will do in order to shed those pounds, but my vow to myself is that I will keep on trying until I find SOMETHING that works for me.

2. Attempt to reclaim a sense of balance to my life.
In recent months I have found myself overwhelmed with the lack of personal time. I am finding myself doing more and more things that are related to my job: grading papers, attending meetings, writing lesson plans, researching units.... you name it and I have done.... often on the weekends or evenings when I could be spending time with my family. It has been literally MONTHS since I have enjoyed scrapbooking. That has always been my personal form of therapy. Whenever work or life got too overwhelming, I could escape to my little craft room and enjoy an hour or so with paper, glue, and photos. Allowing those creative energies to flow somehow also allowed the pent up anxiety and stress to escape my body. Without that, the stress has somehow managed to stay inside me.... creating a feeling of total imbalance.

I really want to work to find a good balance between work related duties and life. I want to enjoy my time with family and friends and I also want to have time for myself.

3. Share more of myself with others.

I have always been one of those people who enjoyed doing the "little things" to brighten the day for others. At Christmas this year I spent lots of time making handcrafted gifts for those around me. Each one was carefully planned and prepared with the recipient in mind. When I hear someone say they need something or they would like something, if I have the capability to help provide that thing, I try to step forward to fill the gap.

This year, I would like to extend that giving beyond my own little circle. I want to seek out ways that I can use the talents that God has given me to help make the lives of others a bit better. I already have a couple of projects in mind and I am anxious to get started. I know that these things won't be earth shattering in size and scope, but I also know that they will help meet a need for someone somewhere. I also know that by giving of myself, I will become a happier person. H. Jackson Brown said, "The happiest people are not those getting more, but those giving more." I think that is true.

Those are my goals for 2014- In 12 months, I will sit down and examine the year. Hopefully, I will be able to speak of the successes that I have had with these efforts. Between now and then, I will try to keep you updated on my progress.

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