If you’ve hung around the blogosphere for very long, you may have noticed a trend toward choosing one word to define your goals for the year–instead of making a long list of resolutions.
As I alluded to in this post earlier this week and discuss in my book, Your Retreat, I like to do a combination of both.
My one word for 2014 is “Boundaries.”
When I told this to a friend last week, she commented that “boundaries” was the most interesting “one word” she had heard. And truly–I guess it is different than many of the other “one word” themes I have read about others choosing this year:
Mandi at Life Your Way chose “Live.”
Nicole at Gidget Goes Home chose “Perseverance.”
Megan at Sorta Crunchy chose “Grow.”
Leigh Ann at Intentional by Grace chose “Listen.”
Stacy at A Delightful Home chose “Nourish.”
And Beth at Red and Honey is focusing on more “Sex” with her husband.
So why did I choose “Boundaries”?
Quite simply: I need them. Desperately.
I’ve been a people pleaser for my entire life. I give a lot of myself, which results in me not taking care of myself.
I struggle with saying “no” to others, which ultimately translates into more “no’s” for my family because when I constantly say “yes” to everyone and everything else that vies for attention, there ends up being little left for those in my life who matter the most.
At first, I wanted my one word to be “margin.” And how ironic that while in the middle of drafting this post I receive this post from Kat Lee in my inbox–about how her one word for 2014 is “margin”!
But then I realized…I cannot focus on carving out margin in my life until I have set some boundaries in place. So I backed up, and “boundaries” it is.
This year, I’m drawing a line in the sand. I’m building parameters.
Instead of saying “yes” to not offend or hurt someone’s feelings, I will say “yes” to only those things that I get really excited about–those things that I know God has called me to.
My “yeses” will be “OH YESES.” And when I say “no,” I will mean it as well.
I need boundaries for my health and the health of my family. I need it for my sanity, and I ultimately need it for you–because if I continue to say “yes’ to every single opportunity that comes my way then I will have nothing left to give you either.
I’ve seen far too many bloggers burn out. Writing, connecting with readers, building community…it’s all a passion of mine. I don’t want to give this up–if I don’t have to.
I was discussing this with my friend Beth, of Red and Honey, the other day. She said: “(Quitting is) just the temptation to run away from the problem instead of facing it and disciplining myself. I think I need to learn self-discipline and the art of saying NO. Quitting would be the coward’s route.”
In a recent podcast by Michael Hyatt, he commented: “If you’re not careful, the urgent will take precedence over the important.”
A lightbulb clicked when I heard that. And when I look back at my 2013, it was lots of “urgent” and the “important” got pushed aside.
I don’t want that for 2014. I know there will be a learning curve, but setting some boundaries will be the very first step.
What is your “one word” for 2014? Do boundaries come easily to you, or do you have to really work at it?
Want to plan for the year ahead? Your Retreat: A Guide to Giving Yourself a Personal Planning Day will walk you through your very own planning retreat.
Daniele @ Domestic Serenity
Good for you Erin! Here’s a scripture encouragement that I’ve often found hope in: Psalm 16:6 “The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;surely I have a delightful inheritance.” I hope this year of setting boundaries will be a pleasant & life-giving experience!
[email protected] Humbled Homemaker
I LOVE that verse, Daniele! Thank you so, so much for sharing it–and for the encouragement! Have a great weekend!
I had read your earlier post and promptly forgotten that I loved the idea. Got the email this morning for this post and immediately thought of, “simplify.” My house is cluttered, my mind is cluttered, it’s time for me to simplify as much as I can.
I love that, Rachel!
Watch the Series guardrails by Andy Steve.
I read the book, Boundaries (by Cloud and Townsend) and went through an accompanying group study a few years ago, and it was so freeing! I hope you’ll feel the same way as you begin to carve out your own.
Stacy @ A Delightful Home
I love this word and think it is perfect! Boundaries have always been hard for me and I hope to grow in learning how to have them, too!
I know what you were talking about – I used to be a people-pleaser myself (mainly because of how little praise I got growing up – nothing I achieved ever got a good word from my father, whom I lived with). It was only a few years ago that I had to set boundaries with my mother – because despite being in my 40’s and having children, she would still treat me like a child & try to interfere in my marriage (even living 3 hours away!). You’ll be glad, in the long run, that you decided to work on boundaries… 😉
I was going to choose Simplicity as my word this year, but the health issues I’ve been fighting for the past 2 years have made me want to make Health my word. Restore my health, restore my strength, restore my mobility…… So I can be a more active mom and wife. And so I can finally make friends in the new area we moved to. That’s my hope, at least.
I think my word is ‘discipline’…and I don’t like it.
Forgot to mention… The book on boundaries that I liked was “Dealing with the CrazyMakers in Your Life: Setting Boundaries on Unhealthy Relationships” by David Hawkins.
Leigh Ann @ Intentional By Grace
Love this, Erin! I just got around to reading this (shame on me), but I love how you explain your reasons for setting boundaries. Thanks for letting us in on the process. I love seeing how others think through the decisions (in this case, their one word!). I look forward to seeing how you stick to this and let God change you from the inside out. 🙂
Love it! I started choosing a word to describe my goals for the year a couple years ago. I find it is easier to remember for one and easier to post around the house as little reminders of what you are striving for that year. Mine for this year is: Change. Mostly because we are planning on moving from our first house of 11 years. I think that will bring plenty of Change! But also, there are things I are working on Changing in my life like my addiction to television. You can check out my post about my word:Change at my blog MishMashedMe http://mishmashedme.blogspot.com/2014/01/change-is-coming-in-my-2014.html
20014 is coming to an end. How did your resolution to set boundaries go? I have been working on this myself. One thing that I found interesting while working on this was I needed to set the boundaries for myself. Meaning I found myself jumping into to many things spur of the moment. I needed to sit back and choose wisely what to do with my time.