I can easily spend an afternoon in my office working like a crazy man yet walk away not feeling like I accomplished anything significant. There is never a lack of distractions to woo me away from important work.
I am ashamed at how I can look back on a day off with my family and realize I have not made one heart-level connection with my kids or my wife. We may have spent the day together, but the busyness of getting in and out of the car, putting away shoes, and getting snacks for everyone has kept me busy… but it has kept me from the work that matters. Connecting with my family
Busy, busy, busy… And I don’t think it is ever going to stop.
So what am I to do? Give up? Be busy and be miserable?
I feel like I am a rookie in this area, but here is a phrase that is helping me to grow.
Slow down in the things of life that don’t matter. Speed up in the things that do.
Life will never slow down long enough for you to get a grasp on it. If you are going to slow down the unimportant and speed up the important, you need a plan. Here is a starting point.
Identify what is important and what is not.
What do you value? Be brave enough to wrestle with this. Is it administrative perfection, or relational depth? Do you value mindless and passive entertainment on your phone and TV, or growing with Christ, learning, creating, and connecting with others? Wrestling with this question takes honesty and guts, but it pays in spades.
Put the brakes on the unimportant.
We all have pet unimportant, habitual, and time sucking habits. Most of them seem mundane and safe. They are not. They are robbing you of fulfilling what you really want to do in life. A good place to start to look for your pet habit is in media – including social, perfectionism, and time commitments you made without considering point 1.
Pour fuel on the important
Is it important to you? Kick people out of your office. Put it on your calendar and do not relent. Guard it. If you have to, get out of bed early to do it or go to bed late. Don’t be a jerk to others, just do it. If you feed the important, you will find a surge of energy that will be a breath of fresh air.
Our lives are so full; I am confident you will struggle with busyness until you are very late in life. But whatever you do, don’t let it overwhelm you. You can keep it in check! Start today.
So, what needs important things needs to speed up in your life?
Let me know in the comments below!