In December I love reflecting back on the year just gone, and looking forward to the year ahead, setting goals and making plans. 2015 is the first year that I have consciously kept an eye on those goals throughout the year, setting little goals each week to help me on my way and reviewing the weeks, months and quarters as they go by.
I have so enjoyed doing that, feeling a sense of achievement, and a greater depth of intention in my living and my choices.
What has surprised me though is the peace and freedom I have felt about crossing goals off not because I have achieved them, but because they are no longer the right goals for me.
My headline goal in January was to write my family Lent book, which I did. I so enjoyed working on it, and then sharing it as a family. I wrote about how I felt quite depleted afterwards though and in need of taking in again. This surprised me, but I was happy to go with it. Partly I was also forced to go with it as I found myself ill on and off for the next 6 weeks and overwhelmed with my job!
And then after I began to emerge again, part 2 of that goal, to pursue the idea of publishing the book, didn’t feel important anymore. I knew that what I had written wasn’t quite right, and I didn’t have the energy or motivation to correct it. I had a new priority closer to home, as my oldest started homeschooling and I knew that that was where I wanted to apply any spare energy and time that I had. I left the goal written at the front of my diary for a few more months, but just this last week I crossed it out. Perhaps it will come back on to the list one day in the future, or perhaps not. It surprises me a little that I don’t mind, and I even started to second guess myself: am I just giving up because I don’t want to fail? Am I being lazy and failing to press on towards the goal? I don’t think so, but it’s always hard to really know about ourselves isn’t it? What I am confident of though (I think!) is that if it is important, then it will not quite go away, but will resurface, and probably at just the right time.
Sometimes something more pressing, more important, more significant comes along, and missing a goal to focus on something more meaningful is always a win!