I have never been a person who liked to set New Year’s Resolutions, or when I did set them, I wasn’t all that great at following through with them. Over the last couple of years, I have become better at sitting down and doing some goal planning. As I have mentioned before, we have lot’s of dreams for our farm & business so goal planning has been kind of fun!
This year was no exception. I have spent a lot of time reflecting on life in general over the last couple of months, and the goals we want to set for ourselves in 2019. As I mentioned last week, 2018 was a year of transition for us, in both a business and personal way, so looking forward to 2019 to get moving on some new goals!
One of my goals was to get back into reading and spend more time doing it. Reading is fuel for the brain, you can learn so much from a book, newspaper, website, blog, etc. Last week I shared a book I just recently finished called “I Used to Be So Organized, Help for Reclaiming Order and Peace”, and I am just finishing another book by the same author called “Doing Busy Better, Enjoying God’s Gifts of Work and Rest”. They both touch on the idea of balance. I don’t know about you but I find that idea almost impossible. I find when I am strong in one area of life I am weak in another. You just can’t be on top of everything all the time. One of the take away’s from both books was the idea of “just because you are good at something, doesn’t mean you should always say yes to doing it”. No is a hard word for a lot of people. No is a very hard word for me. I like to take on projects, events, activities, etc because they give me a sense of fulfillment or something. What I have realized after reading these two books, is that always saying yes can often mean a sacrifice somewhere, and that sacrifice is often your family life.
That leads into another of our goals for 2019…Family First! Why do we as a society believe that our schedule always has to be jam packed with “stuff”?! Why isn’t it okay to have dates on the calendar with absolutely nothing on them…blank….a white box?? Steve and I have had numerous conversations about our kids, schedules, and priorities. Within our goal for “Family First”, is getting back to good old family dinners around the kitchen table. That was always a big priority for us, but as we get “busier” it seems to be the first thing to slip. Sitting around the dinner table together is where we often learn the most about our kids lives. It seems to be the place where they divulge the most about their day, their friends, any trouble they had. It’s the place where they get our undivided attention, no devices, no tv, no interruptions. It’s a valuable time in our house, and one that we don’t want to sacrifice. It was one of the things we talked about when I quit my job to “stay at home”, as being important to us.
You’ve heard me say many times that living on the farm has it’s highs and lows. One of the not so high, highs, would be the “schedule” or rather lack there of. There are no set times for the work day. Steve doesn’t go out and work your typical 9:00-5:00pm. One thing that was new to me when I met Steve was the idea of not working on a Sunday, having always worked in retail in one form or another it was something I simply just did not consider. The Bloomfield family as a whole has always honored Sunday as a day of rest. Another of our goals for 2019 is actually to get back to honoring that day as a day of rest. It’s so easy to get caught up in the status quo of shopping, yard work, house work, office work, etc, on a Sunday. I’m certainly not here to judge anyone else for how they spend their days, but for us taking a day to rest, spend time with our kids and just relax is super important! I used to think that because Steve worked some pretty crazy hours, Sundays were for us to “catch up”. We would get busy with house projects, yard work, errands, etc and my reason would always be that I only get his undivided attention on Sundays to get these things done. What I have learned is that not only do we need the physical break, but the mental break as well. When we actually rest on a Sunday, it sets the week up to be a much better, more productive one. So we are going to work on setting that day aside for rest, relaxation and family time!
There are many advantages to being self-employed, with your business at your home. On the flip side there are also disadvantages to that. Living where you work can often mean there is no clear line between “work life” and “home life”, they often just blend together. Farming is very much a way of life, rather then a career, or job, making that line even blurrier. Another of the things that I took away from the two books mentioned above, was the idea of “Being versus Doing”. So the idea of “I am what I do”, “how I feel about myself is connected with how well I perform”. “When your identity is grounded in your accomplishments, it creates a never-ending cycle of pursuit”. Well hello, that was like walking into a brick wall. Not exactly how either of us want to be. Thus I bring you to yet another of our goals for this year. As I wrote about at the beginning of this post, “No” is a hard one for both myself and Steve. When asked to help out, volunteer, give of our time, tackle one more thing on the to-do list, we more often then not say “Yes”. We seem to have forgotten the essentials and the idea of “Being”, rather then “Doing”. We want to “be present” in this life we live. So our goal is to go back to the basics. To cut out all the things that fill our time, to cut out the “doing” that defines us, and focus more on the “being”. I will come full circle, back to the beginning of this post. Family First, cut out the extras, focus on our family, be diligent in making time for what’s important and if there is extra time left over, give of ourselves to things that WE feel are important. It’s okay to say No, especially when yes would be at the expense of your family.
We are both excited to see what 2019 has in store for us. We will continue to work on putting our family first, attempt to cut out the road blocks, enjoy this life, because as we have learned far too many times already, this life is too darn short. Our kids are growing so fast, and we don’t get a do-over, so we want to be as present as possible, and learn from our mistakes. We have some pretty lofty goals, but in the end they will all be worth it, if it means having a peaceful family that is happy, healthy, and well- adjusted. With kids that grow up knowing what is and is not a priority and of the utmost importance to us as a family unit. As I said before I am certainly not here to judge others, and I don’t pretend to know or have all the answers. I’m simply sharing what I have learned at this stage in life, and where we are hoping to lead our family.
I hope you have a great week!