Over the last year or so I’ve been on this quest to be more present. Part of me feels like “present” is the new “it” word, the new “it” goal, but truth is with so much surrounding us every day, it really is a new challenge that I don’t think was a concern a few years ago. I’ve been reading books, checking out blogs and articles online and trying to change my habits. I’ve enjoyed Hands Free Mama,Grace Over Perfectionand my most recent (and favorite) read, Present Over Perfect.
I’ve given up Facebook for Lent twice. Yes, I cheated by getting on for a few minutes here and there unfortunately, but then got myself back on track. What I found is although I gave up this social media outlet, it didn’t really change how often I was on my phone which means it’s not just a social media issue for me. Even as I considered what I wanted for this blog, I questioned if it would help me in my goal to be present or if it would take away from that. Immediately, I thought “I should say no. I’ll just turn off this page, maybe remove my social accounts and focus on my being with my family.”
I’ve been learning to use no more. But can we agree that saying no, doesn’t mean you can’t say yes? This year I said yes to a new job and yes to helping out a few organizations near to my heart which also meant getting to see and talk to people near to my heart more importantly. I said yes knowing I had put my cards on the table, I was clear with what I wanted to do, what I could do and knowing that the people I did it with were the friends I wanted to spend time with. They would be there to support me with what I had going on at home – a new baby to come and the always unexpected with our middle daughter – it wouldn’t feel overwhelming because good friends were part of the commitment.
So back to this blog. What to do? I do want to focus on being present with my family more. Being present with my kids, present with my husband, and especially more present with God. So I prayed over whether I start this blog again and if this was the right time. Is this something I continue or let go? As I kept coming back to this discussion in prayer, it helped me realize this was something I REALLY want to do. I don’t give myself enough time with “me” and being an introvert, that’s a big deal. I need to be present for me, too. I love to write but don’t find the time. So why not make the time? I want to continue reading about things that mean something to me and in a quick way when I don’t always have time to read a book. So why not follow interesting pages and bloggers for those brief reads? I want to stay connected to friends and family when I don’t have the time to talk on the phone with many (or even to text sometimes!) So why not find time to be connected through these tools at our fingertips? I want to be able to be encouraged and encourage others. So why not use this platform? I want to learn something new. So why not! Why not?
So, I (clearly) decided to take this leap and re-launch Here’s to momma. I am doing so without giving up on my quest to be more present. My goal is to find separate time to work on my page and on my blog that is clearly “me” time, and I will make that clear to my daughters. It’s okay for “me” time, and it’s okay that they understand that. But I promise I will work hard to set boundaries so when it’s time to play or read or snuggle, I’m not, not present. I will work harder in the evenings when I have time with my husband to actually be with my husband vs scrolling mindlessly. Let’s be clear, these are still goals. I still have plenty of work to do, but I will do it by balancing those things I want and I’m interested in. This means I need to do so intentionally and not mindlessly. I think that’s really the difference.
Are you on a similar quest? What have you been finding works best for you? Let’s just remember to keep YOU part of the equation.