GENTLY + QUIETLY // a one year commitment to not raise my voice

"At 11:11am September 14, 2017 I began a project… That project is that I am not going to raise my voice (yell) for one year.

This is an impossible project. I doubt that I will complete it by September 14, 2018, because each time I fail I will restart the entire year. It’s the same concept as when I tell my children that their quiet five minute time-out begins over at a full five minutes each time they break the silence to ask if they can come out of their rooms.

It is an impossible project, but I am going to succeed because I will not quit until I have completed one year of not raising my voice – even if that takes me five years. I am a competitive person so I think that a one year project taking a decade is pretty good motivation for me to not screw this up too badly. However, each time I do screw it up, I am going to drag myself to this blog and let you know. Everyone in my family has authority to keep me accountable. For that matter everyone who reads this blog, has authority to keep me accountable. So if you see me lose my stuff in Trader Joe’s when I think no one is looking and my kids have touched one too many bananas and whined for one too many snacks… You have full and complete permission to tap me on the shoulder and tell me that my year starts over right then and there.

I need to share with you this great question I have wrestled with all my life. Can I be both tender and fierce? Is there a strength that goes gently and quietly, why are we called to it, and how do we live it?" 

I don’t know what I will do when I complete the year…

My hope is that I will be transformed."

- excerpt from my blog post Gently + Quietly - An Impossible Project is Born


Fifteen minutes after posting this blog post, I went back to my computer feeling terribly vulnerable and wanting to take it back down. But it was too late. People were already commenting, saying, "Me too!" So instead of removing the blog post, I began a Facebook group and the project I began alone, to my surprise, became a shared journey in a community of men and women who want to find a better way.