Ahh, a New Year…this means a clean slate. New possibilities await. Do you make New Year’s resolutions? Do you set goals at the beginning of a calendar year? I certainly have in the past.
Last year I came up with a word for 2016: Mindfulness.
Although I must admit, it was well past the year, around August, before I became truly mindful of my needs. This year, however, I want to simplify my objectives. In 2017, I have one overall goal: Enjoy my time.
That way on December 31, 2017, I can utter three words: Time. Well. Spent.
That’s all I really want. I’m not asking for more time, more money, more love or even more peace.
I simply want to enjoy the time I have and spend it wisely, without regrets or guilt. When I decide to do something, I want to do it and not agonize over it. Do it because it’s what I need or want to do at the moment. The end.
I believe I can do that. (I believe anyone can if they choose to as well).
Involve my family in the time we spend
When it comes to my family, I intend to involve them more in how we spend our time. My kids love it when I consult them on decisions or give them choices. I need to do more of that. I will make them junior event planners for our weekends. Although mommy and daddy rule the house, all of us can have more say in the family fun activities and the chores. There are so many ways to delegate but also to take turns when it comes to responsibility, allowing for learning opportunities, more fun and best of all, more time together.
Watch the clock less
Adding more time into the day may seem impossible. Yet even when quantity is limited, small amounts of quality can be placed in the schedule. I’m learning to let go of such a rigid schedule and build in an extra five minutes or fifteen minutes for leisure. I’m also learning to not worry so much if I’m a little bit late for work if it means I listened to my daughter play the piano or we spent two extra minutes finishing the chapter of the third Harry Potter book. I can think of many examples when those spare minutes have added more joy and I still managed to get the necessary work and chores done. I will let go of watching the clock so much except to use it to be more thankful. I hope to spend one minute at the end of each day stating why I am thankful. I want to recite out loud (or occasionally on paper) to remember the best things about each day. Minutes fade fast but I can make them count and ensure they as joyful as possible.
Take some quick, unplanned road trips
My only other thought about time well spent in the upcoming year is to take more, short road trips around my region. A few months ago I planned a quick overnight stay in just a few days’ notice. It was the off season of beach stays so I found a great deal. This was such a nice change for my family and me – to pick up and go without a lot of planning or thought! I want to do that more often in 2017, even if it’s just driving to a new library that is farther away in town to compare books from my regular location. I remember doing a road trip in college with a group of friends. What fun memories we made! I need to do that with my family, friends and even co-workers this year. And I will!
What’s Your Plan?
Will you grab 2017 and make it your own? Or will you just take some time to embrace the everyday, ordinary blessings you have?
Think about the joy and memories you can make. Whatever you decide, I hope you take 2017 and make it the best!