Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Less in 2013

"In 2013, my goal or focus for the year seemed to be summed up as "less is more".  That goes for every area of life:

* less clutter

* less spending/excess

* less stress

* less preservatives, GMOs and toxins in my body (and my family's body)

* less "noise" (literally and figuratively) probably more figuratively being 
   that I have four children ages five and younger ; )

* ultimately...less of me, more of Jesus

I really want this year (and many years to come) to focus on a bit of a life detox, if you will.  We definitely need to de-clutter our home, our spending and my body and soul continue to need de-cluttering, as well.

1. The home:
                                                                      photo source

After moving in and out of different apartments, condos and homes 12 times in our 12 years of marriage, we finally bought a home that we may plant roots in (for awhile at least?!).  In 2011, were blessed to find a great deal on a home that needs a lot of updates and minor repairs with more square footage than we have ever had (complete with an extra room for homeschooling - yay!).  This, of course, means that more STUFF has made it's way into this house and filled it up.  Although I'm very thankful for this houseI admit last year was a bit stressful managing it all with four young children. 

I am more than ready to simplify in order to free up time for more important things like relationships, serving at church/ministering to others and extra curricular activities.

In her book Organized Simplicity: The Clutter-Free Approach to Intentional Living , Tsh Oxenreider describes "stuff" like this:

"...I've come to realize that those things are just things, and that while they aren't inherently evil, they can actually erode my family's purpose in life - or at least water down the potency of our choices.  They can multipy the surfaces I need to dust.  They can dwindle my checking account.  They can even cause stress.  And they can keep my family from living life to the fullest because we've slowly allowed our stuff to own us." 

Hence, we begin to simplify! (I just hope you don't see us on an episode of Hoarders LOL).

2. The budget:

                                                                      photo source 

Our finances/budget is always in need of review and tweaking.  Although, I would consider our family fairly frugal, there is always something we can cut back on or give up in order to give more.  I have not only heard about, but I have seen extreme poverty with my own eyes around the nations of the world.  I will never forget the precious children that raced into a restaurant in South America to eat the scraps that we had left on our plates.

The simple fact that I own a vehicle (2 for that matter) and a refrigerator puts me among the top 6% of the world's wealthiest people.  Most things we Americans believe we "need" to live - we don't.  They are luxuries.

On that note, in an effort to give and save more, we prepare to once again grab hold of the reins and cut spending.  

3. The soul:

I want to continue the lifelong journey of allowing people to see less of Tonia and more of Jesus.  This requires a detox of self.  Cleaning out the revealed and hidden corners and ridding the things that break the heart of God, cause others to stumble and slowly derail me from my life purpose. 

Daily, there are the stresses of life, worries, temptations and sins that creep in and choke out the life that is within us.  We have to be intentional about allowing God to search our heart and soul and "clean house". 

I was so excited to find that there is actually a book entitled Soul Detox: Clean Living in a Contaminated World and it is written by  Pastor Craig Groeschel, whom we used to listen to online. Yay! I will be reading it. 

Excerpts from Soul Detox:

"We will never discover lasting happiness, significance and security in the temporary things of this world because we weren't made to live a temporary life."

"When we truly change what we believe, we'll gladly change how we behave."

4. The body:
I'm so disturbed the more I research and read about the toxins and preservatives that are in many modern food choices.  Even choices that appear to be "healthy".  Although, I would consider our food choices above average on a healthy scale, we still have a lot of work to do in what our family puts in our bodies.  In an attempt to start a more healthy journey, my husband and I began the New Year with a dextox/cleanse that I saw on the Dr. Oz show.  I will share more about that experience in another post. (Click here to print a copy).  

My desire is for our family to be healthy and live life fully from the inside out! We begin by being careful and intentional about what we choose to put in our bodies in 2013. 

So friends.  That is my focus for the year.  Tweaking these areas of life - a total life detox.  

I look forward to sharing this journey in 2013 with you.  Are you doing any detoxing in the areas of your life this year?


Emily Doss said...

I love your list and focus for 2013. If life wasn't so crazy right now then I would totally steal all your goals. I decided it would be best to wait on later for goals and just focus on making it through this fun season of nesting + adopting = newborn sleepless nights. :)

Tonia said...

Thanks Emily! I think your focus is definitely right. We mommas know that major flexibility is needed in this season of life and that change and shifts are inevitable. The things listed are my heart for this year, but I didn't get hugely specific because much of my time, energy and heart go into raising four very young girls : ) I'm more or less just changing habits. : ) So excited for you guys. Keep us posted!