It is the first month of a new year, which always makes people take into account the activities of last year: its successes and failures, its victories and its regrets. For me, this new year has me asking a very basic question: What really matters?
You see, I am not so much taking stock of the perceived successes and failures of last year. I mean, I could. There were “Woohoo” moments as well as my fair share of “I am never leaving my bed again” mistakes.
Instead, my eyes have looked back over the careless moments of 2014. I am taking stock of every unreturned text, every rushed through email, every missed phone call, every broken promise, and every hurried conversation where I failed to truly be present and really see the person standing in front of me.
What really matters to me? If you asked me, I would tell you that relationships matter. People matter. Hearts matter. However, does my behavior reflect that declaration? If I say people matter, then people have to matter.
They can’t just matter in the grand gesture. They have to matter in the day to day, which if we are honest, is the hardest part of living. They can’t just matter during a crisis, or a holiday, or a birthday. They have to matter on a Monday and during a meeting and after a church service.
I deeply desire to be a person who is careful with the hearts of others. I deeply desire to be a woman who keeps her promises. I want to be present in every interaction, allowing others to feel seen, heard, and valued. These things matter to me. But, they can’t just matter in theory. They have to matter in my choices. Everything that I do and everything that I don’t do says who I am. The choices that I make say what and who I value.
Here is my theory about being an adult: Everyone does what they have to do (fulfills their responsibilities) and then we do what matters to us. Nothing more, nothing less.
I am hoping that in January of 2016, when I am looking back, I will see year filled with focus on what truly matters.