In January, I wrote two posts about choosing One Word for the year, per Jon Gordon‘s suggestion. It’s March – a great time to check in on how my One Word commitment is going. In choosing clarity as my One Word for 2022, I decided to identify three specific areas to focus on around clarity and wrote about them on January 2:
- As an instructional coach , I will seek clarity by listening. Less talking, more listening. When I do talk (or write!), I intend to be more clear, succinct, and affirming.
- As a consumer of those things I put in my body, I will seek clarity of mind, body, and spirit by ingesting less salt, sugar, alcohol, and caffeine. More specifically, I will quit consuming mindlessly and in excess.
- As a wife and mother, I will continue to work on clarity in my roll as a selfless (ooooh, this is going to be tough!) person who lifts my spouse and children up. I spend loads of time and effort trying to perfect my role as an instructional literacy coach, and not near as much time and effort on my role as a wife and mother. Granted, our children are older and don’t require the time and attention that they did in their younger years. I believe my efforts now could be focused on lifting them up as they people they are (not who I want them to be.) The words of Kahlil Gibran ring loud and clear here:
As an instructional coach , I will seek clarity by listening. Less talking, more listening. When I do talk (or write!), I intend to be more clear, succinct, and affirming.
I’m trying. I really am trying. If the 2 sticky notes on the corner of my laptop count for anything, they show the wear-and-tear of my attempts at listening. When I am meeting with colleagues and find myself wanting to contribute to the conversation, I place my hand on these 2 sticky notes to remind myself to STAY QUIET and listen.
In addition to seeking clarity by listening, I am recognizing that I need to be ready to listen to the words that others are saying with their intended meaning, not what I want to hear. I have been catching myself trying to hear what I want, or passing judgement on what I hear, rather than just simply listening and trying to make sense of what is being said.
As far as being more clear, succinct, and affirming, let’s just say that I sure am happy to be revisiting my commitments… there continues to be room for improvement. (We’ll see how long this post ends up being!)
As a consumer of those things I put in my body, I will seek clarity of mind, body, and spirit by ingesting less salt, sugar, alcohol, and caffeine. More specifically, I will quit consuming mindlessly and in excess.
The only significant change I have made here is with alcohol: I have all but quit having a glass of wine (or two!) while making dinner. This has been a relaxing routine that I look forward to at the end of the day. I love food, and love making food. I direct Alexa to play NPR, pour a glass of wine, and start in on making dinner. Eliminating the glass of wine has resulted in a slightly less sleepy me after supper, bringing a bit of clarity of mind. Salt, sugar, and caffeine continue to be consumed mindlessly. Perhaps revisiting this commitment will be just what I needed to pause and think before consuming.
As a wife and mother, I will continue to work on clarity in my roll as a selfless (ooooh, this is going to be tough!) person who lifts my spouse and children up.
Yep, still working on this one. I am incredibly proud of our boys and continue to be in awe of how selfless Bill is when it comes to the boys and me, but I am not that selfless mother and spouse who puts their needs above mine. I maintain my routines around self-care: exercise, consuming educational resources, and sleep. Maintaining those routines can mean that I pay less attention to my family.
One might argue that it’s tough to give to others if you don’t first take care of yourself. I’m 100% on board with that notion, I just want to be careful that I’m not tipping the scales in my favor.
So let me brag on this family of mine for a bit… and I assume it goes without saying that despite the bragging, we have our own share of struggles, frustrations, and disappointments. We are far, far from perfect! 😉
Bill, with the help of all three boys, has put up a new building, continues to maintain his repair shop and trucking business, and always puts our needs before his.
The week of Elton’s 21st birthday brought some exciting changes: he stepped closer to securing a 6-acre piece of property and he obtained his CDL. Oh, and Kruse Concrete Construction continues to flourish. At 21 years of age. If only I had been that focused at age 21.
Owen has officially begun his electrical apprenticeship upon starting classes at ABC of Iowa, through his employment at Mohrfeld Electric. He’s often out the door by 5:30 a.m., puts in 9-10 hour days, and was recently given a raise. In addition, he has taken his One Word for 2022, “Improve,” quite seriously by committing to lifting weights 6 days a week. One of our basement walls is littered with his workout routines and goals.
Emmett, at age 17, has begun to waffle on his plan to join the military upon graduation from High School. It is not the situation in Ukraine (though that is all that his mother can think about) that has led to his waffling, but rather some serious conversations with a cousin that is more-than-disappointed with his experience in the military. I look forward to watching a potential “Plan B” unfold. On a side note, at his recent well-child check, I heard words that I never thought I would hear come from the doctor’s mouth: “Your child is in the 64th percentile in height.” 64th percentile!!! Never have I heard those words about my kids (they typically hang out around the 25th percentile in height.)
Your Children Are Not Your Children
Kahlil Gibran’s words continue to ring loud in my ears. As I said in January: I believe my efforts now could be focused on lifting them [my children] up as the people they are (not who I want them to be.) My parents, Reed and Sue Haeger, cornered the market on this concept. We were always
allowed encouraged to be who we are. Their parenting style was rather “hands-off.” What I appreciate most about this style is that my parents seemed to have perfect clarity about what it means to let your kids be who they are (’cause they’re going to be, anyway!).