Things I know for sure
February 13, 2020
While I was away writing, I learned a few things. My “writing paragraphs” abilities have been all used up for the month, so I’m going to share these with you in a list format. When I was writing “the new book” (I can’t share the name just yet) I started to think about the things I know for sure. I like this because there are a lot of things I don’t know for sure, things I’m still figuring it out, things I have questions about. Such is life. But between my thirty sixth birthday and my upcoming thirty seventh, I learned so many things. It was not an easy year. I spent most of the year trying to learn a slower pace, still reeling from a crazy 2018, having finally raised twins to the age of four (four is magic), moved our family, started at new schools, joined a new church, written a book, released another one, and grown Simplified — with the help of my team — to its best year ever. 2018 was a lot. And after a season of YES, I needed a season of NOT NOW. Looking back at photos of myself from last year, I see how much my heart was aching for rest. When Less Becomes More was such a tender dive into rest for me. It will hold such a special place in my heart forever and ever because, with those pages, I gave myself permission to step back, turn down the noise, and make some decisions about what mattered most to me.
God bless Bryan Ley for loving me through this transition and so many others. He’s my constant and I love him for it.
The month of January felt so FRESH this year. Taking time off of social media to write was so much less jarring than in 2019, having put so many great rhythms and routines into place — things I learned while writing WLBM. And it was in late December of 2019, sitting on stage with Jen Hatmaker in Austin, TX - when she asked me what God was calling me into — that I realized where I was headed next.
To be bold. To learn, discern, and stand on my convictions. To be so freaking proud of how far this little guest room dream has come. To stand up and clap for people who are killing it out there. To say yes more. To be so very effortlessly myself (isn’t that beautiful — to be effortlessly ourselves). I started to look back to my past as a competitive dancer, to revisit the practice of writing (not just writing when I have a book deadline but writing as an art — and practicing it every day) and saying YES to things I typically say no to. It’s a season change. And I like it.
I’ve also felt a new season coming for Simplified. I’ve felt unsure about what this means, having no real inclination other than... there's something I'm supposed to know about where we're headed. And through some very fantastic team meetings, in person get-togethers with my team, as well as some time totally away to cast the vision for Simplified 2.0 (what I’m calling this next season) I’ve confidently found where I think God is leading our company. He’s gifted me as a simplifier and an organizer, and he’s gifted me as a communicator / writer. Sometimes we itch for the future or a season change to look monumentally different. But all I could think when looking ahead was I just want to keep doing what we’re doing. If I can keep doing this for the next ten years with these seven women, what a glorious gift that would be. Now I see that God is calling me to do exactly that with Simplified. To continue to cast the vision, to help our company grow “deep not wide” (a commitment we’ve had since deciding to run this thing debt free AND since we cut our 800+ store wholesale program to focus on our direct relationship with customers) and “less but better.” We’re revisiting our products, our product line up, and our efforts. We want to keep doing what we’re doing and do it with even more impact.
You’ve probably heard me say that the day I run a planner company is the day I don’t do this anymore. And I mean it. We are so much more than that. We want to help you simplify your lives because we care so much about simplifying ours. And we believe that we can change lives by empowering, equipping, and inspiring women (who runs the world… GIRLS! That’s for you Beyoncé).
Alright, back to what I know for sure. (Seriously y’all, I wrote 10,000 more words than I was supposed to for “new book” because I just cannot write short things).
- God wants me to be bold. You too.
- If you love something, practice it. Make yourself do it. Even when you don't feel "inspired" to do it. Step up to the plate and you'll just keep getting better. (I'm talking to you, Emily Ley! Write on this blog more!)
- We were not made to play small. Yes, you.
- I’m done being offended or embarrassed or nervous. I think I’ll just be effortlessly me and see where that gets me.
- Aerial yoga is freaking fantastic. I may hang a bedsheet from my garage ceiling and see where it gets me.
- It’s not only “ok” to take care of yourself, it’s vital. I felt very selfish taking a few days away to finish this book and cast the vision for Simplified. Turns out it was the best thing I’ve ever done for myself and potentially for the company.
May these things I know for sure sink into your heart if you’re not sure or certain right now. Allow my absolute certainty to be enough for you if you’re wondering. And allow God to fill the baby / significant other / job / home / friend shaped hole in your heart in a way only He can fit. There is so much goodness ahead for 2020. Lean in. Get sweaty. Do the work. Take a nap. Live out loud, because you only get to do this once. That I also know for sure.
PS: When Less Becomes More is part of Amazon's Buy 3 for the Price of 2 sale. That means you get 3 for $24! Run, go!