My word for 2018

Hello everyone & Happy New Year! I am well aware that we are more than a couple days into the New Year but more than ever I needed a slow start to this year. My Instagram and blog have sat pretty silent (expect for Instagram Stories) since before the holidays. I unplugged to be with friends & family (and really just be “off” like people at normal jobs get to do!) It wasn’t until I stopped all the hustle that I realized just how tired I was. I don’t know if I would used the word “burnout” but I did need to reevaluate my work load. It came at a good time – the new year! But when everyone was releasing all their new year plans, dreams, goals, words, verses, and thoughts January 1 – I felt behind instantly.

Instead of rushing to get something out, I sat with that feeling and asked myself why I felt so guilty and behind. I  saw those thoughts for what they were – jealousy & comparison. And those are two things I sure don’t want to take with me into a new year. They only breed discontentment in my heart. And not only that, but they keep me from being the best that I can be. So shaking off those fears, I read a novel, wrote in my Power Sheets, took naps, and let another week go by just sitting in today and not rushing forward & filling my schedule. Oh, and I cried because as a 7 (enneagram) I don’t like being alone in my thoughts.

INTENTIONAL

I don’t always pick a word for the year but sometimes it just happens ( 2014, 20152016, 2017). In the midst of an intentional time off, I realized that intentionality was just what I needed & wanted for 2018. Doing less and making it mean more. Intentional about the schedule, the commitments, the collaborations, the projects. I have a tendency to do all the things (or at least to want to do all the things) but 2017 left me so tired. I can’t continue living like that and I don’t want to.

I’ll be honest, I don’t know if there will be huge changes in Oak + Oats as a reflection of this. I know I already have some practical things in mind – like hire an intern and move my posting schedule to M, W, F but those are little things. And maybe that is what this word is all about – the little things. Being intentional about the clothes I buy, the money I spend, the commitments I say yes to, the things I make time for, the collaboration opportunities that I accept & pass on.

I don’t love the little things. I get lost in the details. I can fly by the seat of my pants and make spontaneous decisions (like buying the swimsuit I saw on Instagram this morning but I am hoping that was a good choice.) I like big. I like launches and success and full calendars and MORE. But while I like I that, I am realizing I need the not big. The little things I do everyday that lead up to those big moments. I don’t want to just keep flying from high to high pushing, running, hustling. It isn’t healthy.

I turn 30 this year and maybe that is the cause of so much reflection. I’m excited about my thirties. I am excited for a new season. Maybe I’ll finally accept slow & steady. Maybe intention will be a natural choice & pattern. I’ll never be perfect but I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in me will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ (Phil 1:6)

Happy New Year friends wherever you are at! Whether you made goals weeks ago or have still yet to process 2017. Take the time, listen to your body, and make time for the important things.

Author: Elizabeth Mayberry