On being intentional…

Here we are, in a new year, a new decade even. I have spent a lot of time over the last few weeks deciding what my guiding word will be for 2020. I wonder where the trend actually started — however it did, I’m grateful for it. Picking a word, a theme, a verse helps give me focus throughout the year.

This year the word that most resonates with me is intentional. I have found that recently things have just sort of been happening in my life. And I’m super easily distracted, especially as of late. I’ll start out thinking I’ll put my attention on something, let’s say it’s writing, and the next thing I find myself doing is surfing the web, looking at Facebook, answering a text. And I wonder where the time went, and still, there is a blank page before me. And I wonder why I find myself feeling frustrated at the lack of progress I’m making.

I’ve taken some steps to make this different. I’ve written down some goals, I’ve made space in my life for the things I’ve deemed important to me, at least for now, by shedding the things that take up time and offer no real value, and so far, I like where I’m heading. One of the areas I am going to be intentional with is in my writing.

I have felt a call on my heart and life for some time now to write. Until now I have very much treated my writing like a hobby. I write when I feel inspired. But I don’t want this to just be a hobby anymore. I want to write as a means to minister to others. I want to use my writing to share common experiences and help other who may stand where I have once stood, in a way that helps someone not feel alone in their struggles. To do this, I need to be intentional about writing and the time I spend engaged in the craft of it.

I shared the other day that I have joined the Hope*Writers community. That was step one. There are so many incredible people in that community — so many resources available through it. One of the library materials I was reading suggested planning time to write. The suggestion was to actually make an appointment in my personal calendar and dedicate time to write, on the daily. I have always written when the mood moved me. I’ve never considered treating writing like a job, in any way. But I realize if I want to take my writing to the next level, which for me is publication, there are parts of it that will have to mirror a job. I have to schedule time and dedicate myself to writing when I say I’m going to write. So, I’ve done that — marked time in my calendar to practice writing every day. Whether it be here on my blog, in my personal journal, or in a notebook. I’m discovering there is power in the act of writing consitantly.

The other day I was talking to my husband about having a creative space to write. A place where I feel inspired, even when the creative mood isn’t moving me. He very sweetly suggested I use the dining room. I brushed it off immediately. Let me start by saying our dining room is vacant. It is an unfinished space that has held many decorating dreams. I’ve always pictured that room with a long, chunky, dark table with many chairs and a beautiful chandelier hanging above it. A place where we can host many people we love at one time, be it for game night, fancy dinners, Bible studies, any number of social events I might come up with. I’ve never thought of it as anything else. It was a prerequisite to have a formal dining room when we built this beautiful home we live in now. How could it possibly be anything else? His suggestion has stuck with me, and I’ve been warming to the idea over the last few days, but this morning, something clicked in my heart and my head.

The dining room is big. It’s a large room, 14×15 wth a 10 foot ceiling height. It has two beautiful and tall windows facing the front of our house and they bring in a good amount of natural light during the day. I have recently painted it my favorite shade of coastal green/gray (SW Geiser Steam) and added an entire wall of white board and batton. It’s really a lovely space. In the middle of the room has sat an old, slightly beat up small kitchen table. My friend Sara had used it in her home as a craft table at some point and was giving it away before we moved from Colorado. I knew we would need a small table for the apartment we would be staying in until our house finished building and so I took it off her hands never imagining we would hold on to it for so long.

When we moved into the house on Paddlers Cove Drive, I put the table in the dining room. More because I had no where else for it to go. Certainly not because it fit the space, but there it has sat for nearly two years. Empty. Until this morning. This morning I stood in the space of the dining room. I looked a the windows, the standard chandelier that came with the house. I admired my handiwork on the statement wall and soaked in the calm the color in that room brings to my heart, and in those moments I shifted. I shifted from being dismissive of my husband’s offer to feeling overwhelmed with gratefulness. Gratefulness that we have a home with such a space and that I have a husband who loves me and supports me enough to help me see my dreams come true and to gift me the space in the front of our house to pursue those dreams. Today I fully embraced my new creative space.

This weekend I will sand and paint the table, making it the desk space I envision. I have bought a new writing chair and a small bookshelf online. I will make this space my own dedicated space for writing. An intentional space that will not include my phone or other distractions. My time in this space will be purposeful and in it I will grow my hobby to whatever it is God intends it to be. I sit here writing these words, already feeling deeply thankful for the possibilities that lie before me. Happy birthday to me — right now I feel like the most blessed and luckiest girl in the world.

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