Joy Manifesto: Make Joy Your Top 2017 Goal

Dare to Capture Joy Every Day.

January Is a Time to Reflect, Set Goals for Your Homestead

When it comes to goal setting around the homestead, January can feel like a river bank where we stand on the edge of Now, gaze across the rushing water, searching for Later, on the Far Bank. I chart my course, step on each goal, and hope I don’t slip, get wet, or drift down the stream. (I just want to cross without meeting disaster.)

After all, when I reach Later, Happiness will be there, too….

Do you ever feel like that?

All Goals Are Within Reach When You Choose Joy

The truth is, whether you’re a homesteader-at-heart or not, no matter how disciplined or dedicated you are to achieving the SMART goals you penned in your planner pages, unforeseeable events, situations, circumstances will–like it or not, hinder you from reaching your homestead goals, in your way, in your time.

Careful planning won’t prevent killing frosts or drought from devastating your crops or predators from taking your chickens.

There’s little you can control.

Discouragement sets in, set up residence, and chide you to quit.

But, if you choose joy first and tuck it inside each one of your goals, your journey will be so much sweeter. Joy is not based on circumstances, which change.


JOY Is Yours and Yours Alone

As I look back over the past 12 months, I realize I lost my joy somewhere. Maybe it’s under the tree that came down on the horses’ shelter or inside the doe who munched the blueberry bushes. Anyway, I didn’t come to this conclusion on my own. It took someone else telling me so.

Before you fret for me, here’s the good news: within minutes of putting two and two together, I got my joy back.



Since I allowed it to be taken, I CHOSE  to take joy back.

You can make the same choice, no matter your circumstance.

“This joy, gladness, is not happiness that depends on our circumstances and our moods; which has to do with our emotions or station in life.  This joy is something that is constant…. One can have the same joy in terrible circumstance that they would have when all is well, the same attitude of being on the mountain top when they are in the valley.” (Source:

My Top Goal Is to Choose Joy

Yes, I have plans for the coming 12 months. There are things I’d like to accomplish, like building a garden shed, completing the arena, planting more fruit trees, digging into my growing interest in digestive health, and watching my son achieve his goal of building a skate ramp on the property. But, at the top of my list, I wrote “choose joy”.

Visit the Joy Board on Pinterest

Tuck Joy Into All Your Goals for the New Year

Whether your goals in the new year include finding your homestead, growing a garden, managing finances better, or improving your nutritional habits, choose joy no matter your circumstance

After realizing I let my joy go, I took a stand to choose joy in all things and I want to encourage you to do the same. In fact, I wrote a Joy Manifesto. You can find it here.

Make Joy your top goal for 2017

I keep Joy Board that hangs boldly on the wall in front of me as I sit at the computer. It quietly reminds me to CHOOSE JOY when circumstances seem less than joy-filled.

Make Joy A Goal. It’s Something Constant.

While you’re planning your goals for the new year, make joy the cornerstone for each. Cling to it as you travel through the next 12 months. It’s the one constant that won’t change or leave you…unless you choose to let it go.

Notice what happens when you choose joy in all circumstances. Share your experiences with us so we can remind each other that circumstances change, but joy is ours always.

Make yourself a Joy Manifesto. Pin it here if you like. You can learn more about creating a manifesto here.

Begin Where You Are

Download the Joy Manifesto. You are welcome to use it or create your own.

Now I challenge you to write “Choose Joy” at the top of your goals list.

[This post was shared Mitten States Sheep and Wool.]

Dare to Capture Joy Every Day


  1. Vickie

    Good New Year’s Day to you, Sally! Here’s to us both living joyous lives! For me, at least, sometimes the joy is looking at all that we HAVE accomplished, and then making what we WANT to do our goal for the next year! Thanks for sharing your wonderful insight!

    1. Post

      You are very welcome.

      Yes, it’s so important that we glory in all that we’ve accomplished and rest in it once in awhile. There’s joy in that.
      Have a blessed New Year. I hope you visit and again.

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