Commitment Issues :: Saying “Yes” To What Is Most Important

I wrote this post a few months ago but wasn’t ready to share it.  As we go into the New Year, I found this post relevant…instead of trying to do more this year, I want to do less.  So that I can give more of myself to the things that matter most.  DSC_0217 I like to think of myself as a pretty reliable person.  If I say I will do something, I make every effort to follow through.  Before my husband and I were married, we were very busy people.  There was something every night that we were committed to be being at.  Shortly before we got married, life slowed down, and we both let go of our demanding commitments…focusing on a new season of life…our marriage.  Fast forward a year and we are still in the same boat.  Little commitment, home most nights together, and feeling exhausted every time we add something new to our plate.  DSC_0326Someone recently said in conversation that she does not like being committed to anything.  This really hit me…someone does not like to be committed to things?  And it is okay?  It was so freeing to realize I was not alone. 

Another recent conversation I had was with a fellow substitute teacher.  The man was a retired teacher now writer.  We are completely different people at very different places in life.  But we did share a common trait.  An appreciation of free time.  As a substitute teacher we are both able to pick and choose when we work.  We have no boss telling us to stay late or that they need us to pick up more hours.  We both agreed that given the gift of time, we have a hard time giving it up to commitments that we are not passionate about. {Which I realize is a huge blessing!  Not everyone has the same freedom to have such a flexible work schedule!}  DSC_0247I always get really irritated with other people who think there is nothing to do at home.  That if they were given the free time that I had, they would not know what to do with themselves. 

All of these things tied together brought me to my final conclusion.  I love my free time because I choose to use it on the things that I love most.  My husband.  My home.  Not to say these other non-free time people do not love their husband or home.  BUT I have a passion for these things.   When I go on a run, I study homes to help me figure out what paint colors I like.  I pick up the free coloring pages from Trader Joe’s because I collect such things for having children one day (and lets be honest, I like to color sometimes!).  I garden so that I have something pretty to look at when I drive into our driveway.  I have stacks upon stacks of torn out magazine pages because I cannot help but be inspired.  DSC_0496 I do my husband’s laundry.  I leave him chocolate on his pillow.  I pick up his dirty socks.  I do not get angry when he tracks dirt into the house.  I cannot help but want to read and learn more on how to be a better wife. 

I create.  I love beauty.  I am humbled that I have a husband who goes to work everyday to provide for us.  I dream in paint color.  I find great pleasure in small details.  

I cannot commit to more because I am already committed to what I love. 

All this to say…let’s be committed to the things that are most important in our lives and enjoy the freedom of letting go of everything else...whatever that is for each of us.  I so appreciate that you all love your home just as much as I do!  xxoo DSC_0124What have you chosen to say “yes” to?

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This Wednesday I will be hosting my first linky party…Top Ten Moments of 2010.  You are invited to link up with me your top ten moments of the past year…events…celebrations…your favorite moments.  I hope you will join me!



14 comments:

  1. I love this post! I, too, prefer to be less busy! Wait 'til you have kids and try to slow down! Life gets soooo crazy busy even when you don't want to be busy! We allow our kids to participate in one activity at a time and it's really still too much for this mama! I love and need down time! Less is more!

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  2. Beautiful post, Ashley! One thing I refuse to do is let my KIDS become over committed. I have too many friends whose kids are in ballet, a sport, children's choir, and AWANAS. Those kids look tired and unhappy to me. I don't see the point in stressing my girls out, so we pick one activity outside of preschool. Right now, for my oldest, it's ballet. And she loves it. And there is zero reason for her to get involved in other stuff at this point. ;)

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  3. Ashley, I love this post! I agree with Amanda - - I make certain that my children aren't over-committed. They need down time and play time and do not need to be doing an extracurricular activity at all times. As for me, I can totally relate to your post because I have people in my life who are constantly trying to dump things in my lap because, "she's a stay at home mom - she must not have anything to do all day" - - it drives me mad! I spend my waking hours taking care of my boys, my home, my husband, cooking, cleaning, etc. I rarely have a moment of free time. On the other hand, I know a lot of stay at home moms/wives who DO spend their days in their jammies, watching t.v., and waiting for their husband to come home from work and cook THEM dinner...I guess they give the rest of us a bad rep! My goal for this year is to still devote my time and efforts to my family, but to make sure I am including time for myself. So difficult to do, but something that needs to be done just the same.

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  4. I totally agree - and good for you for sticking up for it. AND making sacrifices to make it happen. I try to always remember "Spend Time on That Which Matters Most." It's my life motto!

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  5. This is a lesson I'm still working on learning although I'm getting better each year. I've lost some friends over the time, as I've pulled my circle in closer but, I've grown in the relationship I have with my husband and son.

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  6. Ashley, you couldn't have said it all any better! You have a lovely home, notice I said home, not house, because a home is something you create out of love. I can relate very much to your statement regarding people who say "what do you do all day at home?" I used to get asked that when my kids were still home and I always wanted to reply, "I do what you pay other people to do, take care of my children, my husband and my home". I too have been lucky to have a husband who works hard to provide for all of us, but he always makes sure I know how much he values what I do too - even now that my kids are on to their own lives. I committed to my family and at times I committed to PTA, sports leagues, volunteering, etc. It can get overwhelming working for "nothing", but the rewards are rich. Now I have to commit to working on me and the next stage of my life - the possiblities are endless.... Ann

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  7. Thank you so much for this post. People try to make me feel guilty because I'm home most evenings and don't "have anything to do". I've spent 19 years raising my son and having a ball doing it. Now I have a chance to plan my schedule and if that is sitting home then that is it. Thanks, Melissa

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  8. Thanks so much for sharing this post. I lost my teaching job this past June due to budget cuts and I'm so thankful I've had this time off to create a home for my new hubby and I. I used to think of this time off as a burden because of everyone's judgements of not working and "sitting around all day", but now I realize this really has been such a blessing for our little family...thanks again & best of luck in all you do!

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  9. We are all on the same boat. Funny after years of women trying to go out and work I find so many want to be home. Since my unemployment I've been LOVING being home and seriously thinking this is the place for me. I asked the hubs about this because we want more children and his reply was that he would look for a better job. He knows I'm happier, he appreciates having a warm dinner and his clothes washed, a clean home and happy kids. I am darn proud of it, even if other people think less of me.

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  10. Fantastic post. So well said, I too have chosen husband home (and insert kids in there) ;)
    I am so thankful I am able to stay home. We choose a simple, beautiful life instead of a busy life.
    I am beyond grateful.

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  11. I love this post Ashley!
    I used to have a "martyr" personality, always bending over backward to make people happy. I love making people happy, but I finally realized that I was never doing
    anything for myself or my husband.

    At first I felt so selfish for making my mouth learn how to
    say the word "no", but now I finally feel free!!

    Our drive for success, schedules and multitasking is a purely American principle. We may accomplish more than people in other countries, but we've lost value in our relationships with friends and family. Because we can't say "no", families no longer even eat dinner together, something that is such a basic act.....

    Keep up the great thoughts!!!

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  12. I'm cherishing our "not busy right now" time. It's great just laying around and being lazy (not saying that's what you are talking about) instead of the rush rush rush of doing so much. Kids change all that though. I have 3 kids. My son was playing football. Practice was EVERY DAY except Friday, games on Saturday and Sunday off. Just those couple hours a day of having to take him and hang out (too far to go home and come back) for those few months made us all stressed out! Add in the other 2 kids with their activities and it's mom overload!

    PS. I used to not care if my husband had dirty feet but when you are the only one cleaning up after FIVE people you tend to get kind of upset when you JUST cleaned the floor ;)

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  13. Well put, Ashley! I'm in the same boat... I love spending time at home and mostly would prefer a night in to a night out! I hate being over-committed and like to keep that at a minimum. Church is really my only commitment along with working two days a week in our church's children's program and sometimes that feels like a lot.

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  14. Ditto :)

    I too have very few commitments. And, actually, the commitments I *do* have include playdates at the park and taking dinner to a friend in need :P You know . . . the good stuff :) I grew up with a mom that went a million miles an hour . . . still does. I refuse to be like that. I want to be present for my family and dedicate myself to what's most important. Thank you for this post!!

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