2014 – The year of the deliberate life.

At the end of November last year I went to a gala event in Melbourne. Standing in the gin and tonic haze of a late night bar, I chatted with some of my favourite bloggers. I was asked a question that I am often asked and I always answer the same way. Whenever I mention that I lived in a tiny village in Indonesia for three years, people always ask me, ‘what were you doing there?’ I always answer it with a throw away response. I answer ‘oh you know, traveled, got married, had a baby…’ and leave it at that. And whilst I did do those things, that’s not at all why I was there.

And it’s not at all what took me there in the first place.

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.” Henry David Thoreau



What was I doing in Indonesia?

I was learning language and learning new skills. I was becoming humbled. I was living surrounded by great poverty and great community. I was standing barefoot in rice fields, learning how to harvest crop. I was surfing on reef and black sand beach. I was incubating the most beautiful friendship and later mourning the tragic death of the same friend…. I was growing up. I was learning about a religion that is so often feared in our western world, and with that I learned lessons about belief and love and acceptance that I had never been taught anywhere else.

I was learning about what it is to live with simplicity without consumerism and technology, without competition and commercialism, without television and without luxuries.

I was living amongst some of the poorest and happiest people in the world. And yes, I fell in love, and got pregnant, and got married in a little Islamic service in a foreign language in a foreign world without my family, with a little baby in my belly… I was grabbing life with both hands and living the hell out of it.

I was living deliberately.

We welcome 2014 this year with the same fierce determination I had when I moved from inner city Melbourne to that tiny village on the coast of South-West Java all those years ago. A determination to live a deliberate life. A determination to learn and to challenge myself and not just to float through this life with all it’s wishlists and nick knacks and ease and privilege.

But to do something more.

This year I’m embarking on a great personal project. One that has already began and that will be ready to launch in this space next week. One that will take me back to an element of the beautiful and challenging life I lived in that little sun-bleached village, whilst also moving forward… One in which I live deliberately again. One in which I aim to experience again, the essential facts of life… and to warn of that niggling fear that always creeps in… a little voice that whispers to me… ‘am I doing enough?’

What is life, if not lived deliberately?

I’ll be easing back into blog writing over the next week… slowly, slowly. Happy new year friends, I hope your holidays were as relaxing and care free as ours were…

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  • January 6, 2014 - 6:45 am

    Alicia - Exciting and real! Can’t wait for your future posts! xReplyCancel

  • January 6, 2014 - 12:11 pm

    Yvette - Love your idea! Waiting patiently to see what fantastic things you do.ReplyCancel

  • January 6, 2014 - 1:34 pm

    jules - you are blessed to have had this beautiful experience——–truly blessedReplyCancel

  • January 6, 2014 - 5:28 pm

    andrea - I think I will need to read this post again. And to soak up the photos. Meanwhile I recommend ‘itto’s living faith’ blog, – she also lives deliberately- and I wish you well with your new venture.ReplyCancel

  • January 6, 2014 - 8:15 pm

    Rachel - Beautiful pictures Sash! Looking forward to hearing all about your new project 🙂ReplyCancel

  • January 6, 2014 - 8:41 pm

    Emma - Wow… Don’t forget taking some amazing photos!ReplyCancel

  • January 6, 2014 - 9:45 pm

    Peggy - Oh Sash, you inspire me and you inspire me. Can’t wait to join you on this ride.ReplyCancel

  • January 7, 2014 - 12:32 pm

    Jenn - I love you. Period. lol

    You deserve nothing but the absolute best and little miss loves you to the moon and back! hehe. Can’t wait to see what comes. xoReplyCancel

  • January 7, 2014 - 4:33 pm

    Mother Down Under - What a powerful post…I can’t wait to be inspired by your 2014!ReplyCancel

  • January 8, 2014 - 11:08 pm

    Nothing New – 2014 Challenge | Postcards without stamps - […] has just started one of them. Motivated by greater good and caring, she decided to dedicate 2014 to deliberate living and in so doing she resolved NOT to buy anything new in 2014. Since the themes for Postcards […]ReplyCancel

  • January 9, 2014 - 6:46 am

    Akanksha - Beautiful batukaras….tell u what Sash ,when I used to read barefoot Inked ,I fell in love with this place and you ,and your beautiful story …I dreamt , one day will surely go their and meet you and Lil Bo …..hope this New year Brings all the joy and happiness in your lives……Stay strong …..ReplyCancel

  • January 13, 2014 - 2:21 am

    Emma - I have found you hope not to.leave you. Your blog touched my heart and soul as we are on.the same page I think we our thoughts on what is and isn’t important in this world. Happy.New Year to you xxxxReplyCancel

  • January 21, 2014 - 12:31 pm

    Inked in Colour:Nothing New - The Rules. - Inked in Colour - […] what and why I consume. It’s not about depriving us of fun or stripping the joy out of life. It’s about coming back to a place of simplicity, where life becomes more about the people and the world outside our door instead of all the shit we […]ReplyCancel

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