The new year has arrived and I am kind of panicking.
What I mean to say is—time is moving by so quickly, and before I know it, I will be a graduate from the University of Virginia. Which is mindblowing. At least to me.
Last year, my resolutions were simple. And still, I changed them because my season of life could not accommodate all that I desired to do. The main resolution I managed to keep was an intentional rest day. I wonder how we would all fare if we were able to do this as well.
Related Post: Reflection on 2021 New Year’s Resolutions
Now to transition to 2022:
The very special part of new years are resolutions. But this year, I’ve decided to set aside the resolutions in favor of some intentions. I LOVE resolutions and goal-setting, but I want 2022 to build in me some foundational habits that I want to carry forth in my life. I’ve been introduced through various books and podcasts to this idea of a Rule of Life. It’s a set of standards by which you are using to measure your life against.
I want to use a Rule of Life to supply me with habits that I know will be wisely set to good use in the years to come.
Related Post: How to get your life back on track
Here’s my Rule of Life:
This is a bare minimum rule of life but some things I want to slowly implement in 2022.
Anchor habit – waking up early
Daily Quiet prayer and Scripture reading, Moments of quiet (margin)
Weekly Sabbath, Fasting once a week
Monthly Tithing in increasing amounts
There’s more I want to add in with the years to come – to have tangible ways of being hospitable and serving, to have a regular sleep rhythm, to fuel my body with seasonal food, etc.
By the end of the year, I want to be in the habit of these activities so anyone who looks at my life can tell what my life is centered around, and that would be the practices of Jesus. Now if you’re not religious, you can definitely use a Rule of Life and adapt for your own means, but it really began as a practice by Saint Benedict to be in community with other monks and live a prayerful life.
I really break down my Rule of Life into different quarterly goals of 2022.
Q1: work on getting back to my first and second year self who rose at 7am daily. I want to get up around 7-7:30 just to have a regular rhythm for my body to follow and have time for my first “rule” which is quiet prayer and scripture.
Q1: quiet prayer and scripture
This rule isn’t yet a habit for me, and I think it just has to do with not doing it at the same time every day. I want to place this into my routine so that it becomes an instinct for me. (And that’s why it’s been on the top of my resolutions for the past few years.)
Q2: Moments of margin
Instead of filling up every day with activity, which is easy to do in the college environment, I want to say no to more things, in order that my yeses feel more lifegiving. I just want to go about my day unrushed and at ease. If I’m rushed, that means I said yes to more than I handle. And I need to reevaluate that.
This rule isn’t super strict for me, as I already have an intentional rest time on Fridays. But I’d love for Sabbath to be half time with others and half time with myself. Right now, it’s all time with others. It also isn’t 100% devoid of work. I still work my intern job (which I absolutely adore!) but in the future, I will have 0 work whatsoever.
Q3: Fasting once a week
I know this isn’t a popular spiritual discipline, but I am excited to learn to develop this discipline. It’s not about refraining from food so much as it is. Leaning into God and learning to say no to ourselves. In a culture that’s all about what we want when we want it (now!), it’s good to learn to tell yourself no, especially so you can handle it when life tells you no.
Depending on what the second half of 2022 looks like, I will hopefully be doing something that involves an increase to my current income, so I want to faithful tithe to a local church. This also requires that I become a member of a church, so this one I’m saving for last. But it’s probably the most important one. Again, in a culture tied to our possessions, how countercultural is it to give it away!
This is my Rule of Life for now. It will definitely change once I settle down in a more concrete position. I’d love to add hospitality to the list, serving in a local church, working out regularly, and limiting my possessions to grow my tithe.
As for a switcheroo, I want to share with you all my word for 2022. It definitely changed, but life will be full of that in a few months or so.
Related Post: What I’ve Learned in 2021 + full 2021 Highlights
My word for 2022 is uncertainty.
Yes, I know. It feels insane that I am focusing on uncertainty in a year that will most definitely be uncertain. I have no idea what my life will look like in 6 months or where I will be come September. I have 0 clue how we’re all still living in a pandemic (year 3!!!). It’s absolutely wild. But I figure we should probably embrace what we can’t control. Just roll with it. I am going to embrace the uncertainty with trust. Trust that wherever I’m supposed to end up, I’ll get there. Trust that the plan is already in motion and I don’t have to worry. The only thing I’m going to do in 2022 is focus on the present and what is in my control.
Hope 2022 is full of joy and trust for you, gentle reader!
What are your intentions or resolutions for 2022? What are some ways I can encourage you in your journey?