I've focused on being intentional this year - truthfully longer than a year when I look back at things I included on my most recent 101 list developed in late 2012.
Intentional has meant a lot of saying no to things. Even to things that I truly enjoy, like frequent dinners with friends and spontaneous trips and...writing daily on this blog.
It's not that those aren't good things in my life, it's just that they aren't the best things for me to do right now. I'm not crafting nearly as much, or cooking wildly wonderful meals, or doing fun crazy activities, or fill-in-the-blank.
I suppose that might make me boring (and I do think that maybe I am that at times), but it also is keeping me sane.
Work is very demanding and if I want to have a good work-life balance, I need to make sure that I'm not trying to squeeze too much on either side.
So while I'd like to be more involved in off-hours things with coworkers (like stopping in for happy hour or going to cheer for our soccer team), that's not a good use of my time right now.
And while I'd like to have lunch with friends nearly every day, I can't be away from the office that much.
What I need is to do my work, connect with my husband, get exercise, spend time with God, invest in a select number of personal and professional relationships and pet the furbabies.
These are the essentials.
Everything else is optional. If I have time to blog (like I have today, giving me a chance to prewrite several posts), then I will. If I don't, then I don't.
I'm ok with that.
And here's the crazy thing - I've discovered not the only one feeling this way. Because life is busy and overfull, I've lost count of the number of people I know who are stepping back.
Good! More power to them! [My new response is: Don't ever apologize for making time for the truly important things in your life.]
All that being said, I do feel a slight need to rant.
Why can't we just let things be? It's not enough to slow down just to slow down.
No - you choose to slow down because it's a "thing" that everyone is doing.
And because it's a "thing" it has a name. Most recently I've seen it pop up in the blogging world, it's slow blogging, as in, "I was really pushing myself but now I'm an advocate of slow blogging." Why not just say that you need to take a break or find balance?
When will we learn that it's ok to simply do things that we need, rather than having to name and claim and group-ify our actions?