I find space for what I treasure
And I make time for what I want
I choose my priorities and…
…what have you been prioritizing lately? With all the thoughts bombarding my mind, the content I’ve been digesting and the laziness I’ve been giving into, it is safe to say that my priorities have been all over the place.
These words really resonate with me because they are a simple reminder that, the things in my life that I care about are identified by what I give my time, energy and resources to, not by what I wish to say or do. After going around this mountain one too many times (which usually resulted in feelings of guilt and wishing I did better), I reached the point with God where He made it abundantly clear that it was time to stop wishing and start working.
I am guilty of having the greatest intentions for things but lacking the follow-through. I find that I get so easily overwhelmed by things in my life, which is why I have been transitioning to a simpler lifestyle over the last several years. That was an important step for me to make, but I now need to implement greater discipline in finishing what I have started.
My goal for this week is to complete one unfinished task each day. While I may get to more than one on any given day, my goal here isn’t quantity as much as it is to be mindful of what I have chosen to finish. As I address each task, I will also be addressing the feeling of overwhelm that accompanies it. My hope is that, in tackling these tasks, I build greater strength and resilience to face other stressors in my day-to-day life.
Practice doesn't always make perfect, but it does make progress.
I want to challenge you to evaluate your life at this current time and write down what you have been giving your time, energy and resources to the most. The easiest way to do this may be to look at the last week or two of your life and jot those things down. These are the things you give priority to. Then, I want you to make another list of the three things you believe to be most important to your well-being. Lastly, focusing on those three things, take a look at your schedule and figure out when and where you can make room for them.
Tip: If you find that you don’t have any margin available to add these things, that means you need to get creative (i.e. replace something in your current schedule with an item on the list, manage your time differently, etc.).
I would like to take a moment to acknowledge that, at the time you are reading this, your life may not look the way it ordinarily would due to an unexpected life event (at the time of me writing this, a pandemic is affecting the entire world in some way). With that said, I still encourage you to complete this activity and pay close attention to the second list you make. During times of crisis, we often lose sight of tools with the potential to help us create and maintain a stable setting for our mental and emotional health to thrive.
Understanding that the ability to cope with stressors can be very difficult for many people, I included a few resources that you or someone you know may benefit from:
- Abide (A Christ-centered meditation app)
- Psychology Today (You can use this to find therapists in your area as well as learn more about different topics)
- National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) (They created a comprehensive COVID-19 guide filled with resources and tips for dealing with stress, anxiety and more)
Finally, I leave you with this verse, hopeful that it helps soothe your spirit.
Until next time,
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.John 14:27 NIV
Lyrics from song, Make Room, by Jonathan McReynolds. Photo by John Sekutowski on Unsplash.