Intentional Living Simple Living

Lessons Learned in 2017 & Changes for 2018

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Hi friend! It has been a while since we have talked, and I am so sorry for that! While I wish I had some great reasoning behind it, but life simply got hectic. I had remove a few things from my plate to keep my sanity.

Blogging and a few other things took the back seat after Thanksgiving, and I stepped away from a few social media platforms that I love dearly. It was simply too much, but I am back with a refreshed mind and spirit with many things to share!

There were a lot of lessons learned in 2017 that I want to share with you, and also some changes that we can make in 2018 to make our lives simpler than they were in 2017!

Oh, and at the end, I will be sharing my word for 2018! Hopefully it encourages you as you choose a word for 2018!

It was simply too much, but I am back with a refreshed mind and spirit with many things to share! There were a lot of lessons learned in 2017 that I want to share with you, and also some changes that we can make in 2018 to make our lives simpler than they were in 2017!

Lessons Learned in 2017

1 // Hustle should never be your word of the year!

For 2017, my one word was HUSTLE. While at the beginning of the year, it created a lot of push to help me achieve some great goals; it crippled me in the last half of the year.

I think to hustle is a good thing, but only if you can keep up the pace. Many things suffered in the last half of 2017 because I added so much to my plate. It did help me discover some personal things about myself, but I will never use this word as my word of the year again!

2 // Comparison is the thief of joy!

The biggest problem with being inspired by others is the accidental comparison that may occur. Personally, I allowed myself to think that so many people were inspiring me, when instead I was comparing my journey to theirs. It was torture to my heart, and I am so glad to have snapped out of it.

When you no longer feel inspired by someone when you see them on social media or reading something they wrote, you may be comparing your journey to theirs. If so, I encourage you to take a step back and evaluate how you want to be inspired.

For example, my Instagram news feed is now filled with farm animals, nature photos, and people I have a solid connection with and wish to continue building.

Before I gained this clear vision, I followed a lot of people who have certain things I wish I did and/or had a message that did not align with my journey in any way possible.

3 // Your plate can only hold so much.

Being everything to everyone is not possible without harming your mental and physical health. Keeping your priorities clear can help your plate gain some white space, which you will need.

Life happens and things pile up quickly. This lesson I learned all too much this year.

4 // Mental health is something you need in your routine.

This year, I worked with my blogging bestie, Kiara of Blissfully Brunette, who consistently blogs about mental health. Her writing is always refreshing and I craved the bliss she talks about. So we collaborated for a mental cleanse challenge and my gosh!

My world has changed forever! Even with all of the extra things on my plate, I made time to take care of my mental health. I could not imagine how much more hectic my year would have been without learning how to take care of my mind.

Changes for 2018

With these lessons learned, there are a few things we can change in 2018 that will help us simplify our lives. Here are just a few ideas that you can easily incorporate into your life to simplify it just a bit more!

These will all be topics for future posts, so if you have a specific question about any of them, let me know! I would love to incorporate it into the post!

1 // Inbox Zero

How many emails are currently sitting in your inbox currently? Could you imagine what it would feel like if your answer was zero?

I incorporated this into my monthly routine a couple of months ago, and I feel so much better and more productive! For 2018, I am making Inbox Zero a weekly goal for my personal and business email accounts.

The stress of checking emails is less daunting when it is kept up with consistently, so with a weekly goal of getting to Inbox Zero, this is one less thing causing stress in my life.

2 // Weekly Meetings

So many times we get off track, because we are not holding ourselves accountable on a routine basis. My budget and meal planning are two things that definitely slacked throughout different times of 2017.

This year, I am changing that! My current budget system is set up with Your Sunny Money Method, and I plan to become extremely consistent with it.

Meal planning makes life a lot easier when you stick with it. It only takes a few minutes to do, and makes cooking during the week a breeze!

I just snagged a copy of the Pioneer Woman’s Dinnertime Cookbook, and I am excited to add some spice into my meal planning routine!

3 // Gratitude

Want to increase the joy you experience in life? Listing out a few things you are grateful for each day can help! I dilly dallied with this throughout 2017, but it is time to become consistent with it in 2018.

One fun exercise I found was to name 3 things each day, but nothing could be repeated. The purpose is to allow you to get very specific about your daily gratitude.

I am going to grab a fresh journal and get started today! Will you join me?

4 // Decreasing how smart your phone is

One thing I enjoyed during my technology break was my increase in productivity, creativity, and quality time spent with family. I noticed how much of my present life I missed due to having a smart phone.

Uninstalling several apps benefited my life and can definitely benefit your life! Hopefully you will experiment with how smart your phone is.

My new phone routine will consist of removing social media apps on the weekend and reinstalling them for weekdays. This is a lot of work, but I am currently not disciplined enough to stay off of them if I have access to them.

If you know of an easier way than uninstalling and reinstalling all of the time, I would love to hear it!

It does not seem like 4 lessons and changes are a lot, but for someone who does not do New Year’s resolutions or goal setting, it is. My goal setting is not your typical scenario.

I like to focus on a long term goal and set up a system to help get to me to that one big goal. This long term goal could take years to accomplish.

For me, this makes me feel like something in my life is constant in an ever changing world. I feel more stable focusing on that goal.

I would be more than happy to explain my process in another post, if that is something you are interested in learning more about. Just let me know!

Anyways, onto my word for 2018! It will probably not surprise you, because my journey has really pushed me in this direction. My word is something I am learning so much about and want to really dive into for 2018.

Without further ado,

My word for 2018 is INTENTION!

Over the past year, I slowly learned what intentional living was about. Continuing with that as my priority for 2018 only seems natural for where I am in my journey.

Living every day with intention seems mindful, purposeful, meaningful, and all the other ‘ful’ things you can think of. Living life with clarity and getting back to a life that does not revolve around hustling is what I crave. Many great things are ahead and being present for them is what we all should strive to do.

It did not take much thinking to realize this is the word I need to focus on for 2018. With all my lessons learned throughout 2017, I realize that intentional living is what it was lacking. Focusing on this one word is going to be life changing, and I cannot wait to share this new year with you!

I would love to know your thoughts after reading this. Let me know in the comments what lessons you learned in 2017, some things you are going to change in 2018, and if you have a word for 2018!


  • Reply
    Marette Flora
    January 1, 2018 at 10:17 am

    I love reading what words others chose for the year! I like intention, great choice. Happy new year!

    • Reply
      Erin | A Welder's Wife
      January 4, 2018 at 7:40 am

      Happy New Year, Marette! I love reading about them as well! I hope it serves well. Do you choose a word of the year?

  • Reply
    January 1, 2018 at 11:44 am

    Happy new year and thank you for the great article! I also used to discipline myself greatly when it comes to decreading the smartness of my phone. But instead of uninstalling and then re-installing my apps, I found a way to diable them.

    If you are using Android…
    Go to Settings > select Apps/Applications > click on the App you want to disable and choose Force Stop then Disable.
    Whenever you want to activate the App again, just follow the same steps and select Enable.
    I’m not sure how to do this on an iPhone so you can Google.
    This will save you time from unistalling and re-installing Apps each time and will also save you from losing your backups.

    • Reply
      Erin | A Welder's Wife
      January 4, 2018 at 7:41 am

      That is great to know, Nala! Thank you so much for sharing that! I will see if I can figure it out and that will definitely be much easier than uninstalling/reinstalling!

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