January 19, 2016

2016 Manifesto... and Some Catching Up

I showed up to write my yearly I-don't-like-New-Year's-goals post. Sounds like a positive, promising start, right?

Long time, no see, and much to say. 

Anyway, how you all been? What's going on? I recently logged into my twitter account and about half of you all are either engaged or expecting babies, and my jaw is dropping because I'm just now learning about all of your major life events that I missed while I was off working... and spending time with a young man--more on that later... but my absence here can be blamed primarily on him ;)

There's only so many hours in a given day--and I've missed being able to sit and write here.

When did life decide to start speeding through time at twice the rate? 2015 will be remembered as a year with many new beginnings, but also a year or rush and a faster pace of life. Joy and stress abounded alike.

Truth be told, I'm not sure 2016 will be any different in terms of busyness or fullness--not that there's anything wrong with living a full life... and everybody is busy these days. Here's what I did in 2015 that's not worth repeating in 2016: Making things that matter more at the mercy of things that matter the least. 

May life not be lived so, for much of life will be wasted and pointless.

It's hard to prioritize and say 'no' to things... especially if there's some cost to it. You feel me?

Shauna Niequist is my favorite author when it comes to memoirs and essays, and she's written a whole book on it (I think I need to go re-read it--much didn't stick). In order to live a life brimming with intentionality and purpose--a life that matters, it helps to make two lists. The first list is of all the things to say no to.

In 2016 I'm saying no to...
  • Requests and habits with my job that don't really benefit anyone. I'm saying no to time wasting and energy depleting tasks.
  • Investing time in relationships with people who really want to just keep things at surface level
  • Buying and acquiring stuff I already have or don't really need
  • Cramming as many books into my schedule to read as possible 
  • Constantly being tied to electronics
In 2016 I'm saying yes to...
  • Deep relationships with both family and friends and prioritizing my time so I can be present with them
  • Writing. Because I miss it and I need it. 
  • Figuring out church. And by that I mean, figuring out a rhythm of being in community and worship
  • Savoring books and taking my time to read them
  • Maintaining a healthier lifestyle
  • Taking action on financial goals
  • Creating! 
  • Saying no to the superfluous and purposeless and meaningless business 
Life is busy, life is full... but I want my life to be busy and full on purpose and for the right things. I want my life to busy and full of things that bring me joy, benefit others, and is glorifying to God.


  1. OH MY GOODNESS!!! My heart just skipped a beat when I saw your post on my blogger feed! I have missed your writing, Natalie! I love that you are starting 2016 with intuitionally proclaiming what you are saying YES and NO to. I did the same a few weeks ago and it is such a great way to get an overview of what to prioritize and what to let go of in this new year.

    I hope we can catch up at some point. I want to hear more about the mister in your life, plus how teaching is going!!

  2. Welcome back. :) Shauna Niequist is one of my favorites too! Which book are you referring to?

  3. You're back! I've missed reading your posts, Natalie. I love your lists, especially taking the down time from electronics. That made it to mine this year, too. I hope to be reading more from you soon!


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