I’m not very good at taking care of my nails. I’d been staring at them over a cup of coffee with a sweet young lady. But as that sweet little blonde girl and I discussed life in the new year, I couldn’t help but burst with my hopes for simplicity.

There’s too many buzz words for my liking around the new year. It’ll take some time for them to work their way out of the fanatics, but when they settle, I hope to feel less inclined to cover my eyes or ears when people talk. I’m not against resolutions, or even the words we use, in and of themselves. In fact, I love that we choose to resolve things in our life. But sometimes we just get so weird about it all. Or, maybe I’m just strange.

Either way, me and the blonde sat over a cup of coffee and I looked at my brittle nails. I had gels on them for my sister’s wedding, and they’d just finished ripping off my natural nail, and hurting my eyes. They look so gross, so sad. And I know this sounds so silly, but all I want to commit to is trimming my nails. That’s what I said to blondie and she was cool with it… though, she looked at me sideways. So I explained myself:

“Honestly, if I can take care of my nails, maybe that could mean I can take care of me. If I can stop fixating and ripping off my breaking nails immediately, go home, and get a file at them, maybe I can learn patience. Maybe I can stop analyzing. It sounds simple, maybe too simple, but I think we’re all so crazy and I need simple. I need care, and goodness. I need to strengthen my heart, and strong nails might become an outward sign of an inward sort of thing. I know, it sounds silly, but I just want to take care of my nails for 2016.”

I think we both began to rant after that. How we needed to stop doing so much so that we can start being so much more. Being kind to ourselves, being a friend to others. Listening to our mothers with our eyes and our hearts. Spending time loving strangers in the coffee shop rather than obsessing over all the other stuff. It was obvious our hearts were racing, and our souls playing off one another.

We decided there weren’t going to be buzz words in our new year. Just one word for her to hold tight for the year, discipline, and I’d just learn to trim my nails. We considered the words that were important: kindness, selflessness, peace, joy, compassion. And we considered the words that weren’t: resolutions, diet, clean eating, volunteer, do better, do more, more, more. We decided to stop casting vision too. Casting vision that has been cast for thousands of years in advance: Love God, Love People. That’s all we’d commit to. That’s all we needed to commit to.

And I’m no good at taking care of my nails. I’m too busy obsessing about my fragility, about people’s expectations, and I need to be caught up in God’s simplicity. Love God, love people. And… trim those nails.