Thursday, January 01, 2009

Curator of Your own Contentment

" There are Years that ask questions and Years that have answers."-Zora Neale Hurston
In the past I have be awful with keeping resolutions and reading any type of devotional but I am going to diligently try to follow this one this year. I picked it up at the Goodwill a couple of years ago and find myself being drawn back to it over and over again. I have found over the course of the last year that this is what I seek at this point in my life.
I will be 45 this year and I want to take an honest look at my life and see what is good and what I need to change. I think that like a lot of women especially when you are younger I have been on a roller coaster ride with my life where I have tried to compare myself to others and in the end found myself lacking. This tendency to compare myself to others has left me with little confidence and at times if I am truly honest with myself this tendency leads me to feelings of resentment and anger that I turn inward on myself. I know that this inward turning in the end has led to my problems with me weight and my feelings of isolation.
I grew up with little and I thought that money equaled happiness and it doesn't. I have found that out through the things we are going through now. Money is good to have but if anything I have found that in the end it creates just as many problems.I have found that through these difficulties that I seek contentment (My 2009 word) from the simple things . I guess if I were to choose a resolution this year it would be to seek a simpler path.
I want to invite all who read here to join me on this journey this year.The Principles that the author encourages us to follow are :
One of the ways I want to incorporate these principles into my life is to find "Pockets of Delight" in each day.
I am also planning to do a Project 365 where I take one picture each day that I will combine into a visual scrapbook of my journey this year .
My project for the coming week is to create a Gratitude Board. It can be in a large magnet on the fridge , on a chalkboard or corkboard , anywhere where you can place photos etc. of the things in your life you are grateful for right now.
" And now let us welcome the New Year full of things that have never been."-Rainer Maria Rilke


happily retired gal said...

I loved Sarah Ban Breathnach's SIMPLE ABUNDANCE and it's what got me keeping a gratitude journal ... something I've done for many years now. Your focus seems most appropriate and I wish you joy & wonder on life's journey in 2009.
Hugs and blessings,

Gayle @ Mountainmoma said...

Oh I so love this book and read it again and again. It just never grows old. I think gratitude opens our heart to allow the blessings in. Thanks for the wonderful reminders. Have a new year full of simple abundance.

Willow said...

One thing that has helped me focus on gratitude recently has been the Friday Fave Five posts.

Your goals seem both very ambitious and very easy--a paradox. I agree with you that I want a simpler path this year! I'll look forward to reading about your progress.

lisaschaos said...

Looks great. :) I hope this year goes great and contentment abounds. :)

His Girl Friday said...

Happy New Year!

Interesting post...I'll be back to re-read when I'm not so cross-eyed. Had my 12hr shift today, on 3 hrs of sleep.... ;p

Lydia said...

After my mother died I found her copy of one of the Simple Abundance books on her shelves and got a lot from it that year. It wasn't the same book you are using for your Year of Contentment, and now I'm intrigued by this one.
One thing I'm working on is clearing clutter (have you visited my other blog, Clutterquake? It's in my blogroll) and I mean clutter of all kinds. Since I have books-to-read staring at me on my nightstand, one of them written by a friend (and another friend is to be published in April 09), I know it would be silly for me to commit to reading the book you've posted about. BUT, I will definitely be checking in regularly to gain much-needed pauses for reflection here at your blog. I love what you've decided to do.
My main resolution is Yoga Everyday in January and then a regular practice after that, no sliding back. From that so much else will blossom for me. I know this.
I was still very much letting life happen to me when I was 45. I was driven by my crazy hormones and, looking back, I think I lucked out with the turn of events then. You are giving yourself a great gift with your planned assessment. :)

Mickle in NZ said...

Thank you for introducing me to this author. Six wonderful principles I find my own self has already started moving towards.

As I also move towards my 44th birthday this very month.

Gratitude should be embraced

Huggles and care

Tess said...

Oh 45 is a good age to be coming up to - plenty of time ahead (all being well...) and enough behind to make you wise and wonderful!
Wishing you the very best in your seeking this year.

karen said...

Hi Yolanda, this is so motivating, and so true.. wishing you a wonderfully abundant 2009 and a beautiful journey along the way! Happy New Year from Africa! x

Janna Qualman said...

Oh, I think this is great! I did a mini-search for myself at the end of '08, and discovered not only that I like myself, but that I can be in charge of my happiness. Everyone deserves happiness. I wish you the best!

Amy said...

I love the book! What great projects, Yolanda. Maybe I'll follow suit with the photo project (although I'll be starting a day late). Thank you for inspiring us and for reminding us that we do need to be content.

Judy Merrill-Smith said...

Yolanda, these are wonderful pursuits for your year! When I turned forty, I realized that it was time to reassess things, and it's been quite the journey ever since. I especially hope that you'll share your 365 photos with us. You're such a great photographer, and I think you'll like the challenge of using that camera every day. (I did self-portraits for a month -- a real stretch for me. In fact, I may do another month this year.)

Annie said...

That a thoughtful post and an excellent reminder to me that I have a Simple Abundance workbook. I really need to find it and pay attention. Breathnach's book is an excellent tool.

Carver said...

Interestingly enough I think I was about 45 when I worked through that book. I liked it a lot and hope you do to. I am 51 now so it's been a while since I did it and since it's on the shelf above my computer, I'm reminded to start again.

Patti said...

Hi~ I love the Simple Abundance books and your ideas. That book can be read time and time again and it feels new each time. I am anxious to see and hear more of what you plan to do.


Paula said...

I haven't read that book but I love the idea's you have posted here. I really like your idea for project 365. How fun!

Norma said...

Excellent! I wholeheartedly agree with your new journey. It is a better way of life and you won't regret it one bit.

Connie said...

Great Ideas my friend! I have this book and read it from time to time, it is one you can pick up anytime...I also agree with you on your reflections on money and seeking conformity or approval from others...have struggled with self esteem a great deal. I will be 50 in 19 days and on most days like myself!!!

inlandempiregirl said...

I loved Simple Abundance and I love the word contentment for a word of the year. I think all of us ask some of the same questions you raised in this post. I love the direction you are going in your blog and your life this year. I also love this wish quote above.

Carolynn said...

Your list of words are all words that speak to my authentic self, although I do lose track of Simplicity and Order at times.

A book I started working through late last year is Style Statement by Carrie McCarthy & Danielle LaPorte. You can find out more about it by visiting their website at

It's an interesting process.