Last week, I shared bits and pieces of my One Word journey, something I began in place of “resolutions” at the end of 2012. Each word that’s come to the surface has been an anchor of sorts. Without knowing what the year ahead might hold, 2013 was truly a season to surrender the portrait I had for my life. In contrast, 2014 became the opportunity to believe in what could be possible (far beyond my wildest dreams!) Given the experience of the previous two years, I have looked forward to 2015’s word with great anticipation.

As I began this year’s discovery process, I took time to really digest the year prior and write out my hopes for the year ahead. I jotted down all the heavy pieces weighing down my heart and scribbled dreams…prayers…passions. I sat with these for a few days, and I waited. One night, while pondering some pretty lofty goals, I dozed off and began dreaming about the future I’d drawn. Suddenly, I found myself alert and wide awake with one word in my mind: freedom. As I tried to force myself back into sleep, I considered the root of that word and reviewed the goals I held tightly to for 2015. In that journey, I recognized that freedom was not my one word for 2015. Instead, it was what I would need in order to fulfill my big. bold. goals. Perhaps it would help if I shared a few of those!


  • We host neighbors, church groups, and anyone else in need of home love once a week.
  • I coach one individual per month in health, career, and personal goals.


  • I launch a goal-geared clothing line by Christmas.
  • I develop and present a seminar at UNC Chapel Hill entitled “Putting the Heart Back into Business.”


  • I serve as a one-on-one accountability partner for 20 women in their pursuit of a healthy lifestyle.
  • Thomas and I practice radical acts of generosity with all available resources…innumerably.


When I think through “the list,” I’m initially overwhelmed. I’m not sure what it looks like (even to start it). I’m hesitant to commit to any one thing out of fear of doing all things in mediocrity. I’m sure of dropping something along the way. And I start to see endless to do lists and a scattered life. Then I remember, “freedom.”

Freedom to love well. Freedom to give without reservation. Freedom to create. So, how would I navigate an adventurous and goal-filled 2015 that rested in freedom? What was the access point to freedom?


Sigh. Even as I see it written, my heart rate slows. My breath deepens. My soul quiets.


Defined as “freedom from complexity, intricacy, or division into parts, absence of luxury, pretentiousness, ornament, etc. 

“Freedom from complexity….” There is my access point, and there begins my action plan – release the complexities. For me, complexity takes on a number of forms. Sometimes it’s as small as a perfectly spotless house before someone comes over. Often, it’s just. more. stuff. I think I need to accomplish one more thing. And most frequently, it’s a fully packed calendar with no room for spontaneity (because I think it’s supposed to look that way). As I develop an action plan to progress in these goals, I center my choices (and my time) on simplicity: grace over perfection, love over obligation, mind over things, peace over noise, and creativity over to-dos

Can’t wait to see how simplicity shows up in 2015. I will share the experience along the way (#livesimplysparked)! Share yours with me at


Live simply,




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