A new month for words

Photo courtesy of Eduardo Jalon (Creative Commons)

Photo courtesy of Eduardo Jalon (Creative Commons)

So here we are at the beginning of a new month. It seems like the last one both dragged on forever and flew by. Christmas and all the hoopla of the New Year seem ages ago, it feels like we’ve struggled with one frigid day after another, with routines disrupted, resolutions forgotten, and more stress and pressure than can possibly be handled.

So maybe it is a good time to stop, reflect and redirect.

One thing that’s important is to reconnect with my three focus words (read more here). In the thick of things, it’s easy for them to fade, and become good intentions neglected. But underneath the overload of work, the worries about weather and the weight of obligations, those words surfaced on occasion.

MOMENT – In spite of a seemingly non-ending stream of work and responsibility, there have been moments treasured. While many days were a blur, there have been sweet times too. A pause for a phone call to reconnect with a dear friend. A couple of sunny, warmer days that meant for a pleasant jog. Savoring a bowl of homemade soup on a cold day.

BALANCE – While work has been the predominant activity, it has not been all work. There have been a few movie nights, some time spent reading, getting a massage, and visiting with family and friends. I am more conscious of gaining balance, so I am more intentional about planning my activities. That is definitely a move in the right direction.

DIRECT – this word has been the most difficult for me so far. Swept along by prior commitments, unexpected workloads and unavoidable deadlines, I have felt “managed” rather than in control of my direction. That needs to change. I need to take control of my calendar – and start by scheduling time for me first, and then working in the other obligations. That will also help with balance.

One huge benefit this month has been my participation in the 30 Days of Hustle with Jon Acuff. In this 30-day challenge, we were to choose a goal and work toward that with the help of daily email assignments. We also gained support from and connected with others in the challenge through a closed Facebook group.

My goal was to write 300 words a day for the 30 days. The idea of carving out that time to write has been a huge benefit, allowing me to get ahead on my blog posts, think through some solutions, and process the craziness that has been going on. While not always post-worthy, the time spent on some days just journaling has been hugely beneficial in grasping what some of the issues are in my  life and in finding some ways to improve.

This one way of directing myself has reaped amazing rewards. As I begin a new month as well as the second round of 30 Days of Hustle, I look forward to even better results. And more opportunities to DIRECT, BALANCE and stay in the MOMENT.