Plans fail for lack of counsel,
but with many advisers they succeed.
but with many advisers they succeed.
Proverbs 15:22 (NIV)
By nature, I am best at putting out fires. I have considerable professional experience as a strategic planner, but an equal part of my professional life was devoted to putting out fires-solving or at least responding to crises in real time. I have the unique capacity to see long-range and immediate contingencies simultaneously. As we prepare for 2013, I’ve decided to do a new thing. With age (and wisdom?) I have become more intentional. I decided to be intentional about doing a few things differently, and I’ve already begun to implement them in my life. Here’s my personal list of things I have, or will consistently be doing going forward…
This is just one of those on-top-of-it-girl things that makes me feel a little cooler and keeps life a little simpler. I can create endless flavor combinations for chicken (I’ll happily share as I check in regularly, because that’s part of my commitment), it’s a great quick meal, and nothing is better when someone is feeling a little under the weather than fresh, homemade chicken soup from roast chicken in the fridge. Yup, I like me like that.
2- Always pause before speaking (in progress)
I’m wanting to better control my everything that comes out of my mouth. Saying “think before you speak” is one thing, practicing it with a pause is entirely another level. I also think the pause is good for the listener; I really am considering the best way to respond (or not).
3-Breathe more, talk less (in progress)
This connects on some level to #2, but I really need to learn to breathe. I’ve lived enough of my life so passionately, which isn’t a bad thing. The next phase for me will be…considered.
4-Consciously stop interrupting
Sometimes my brain moves really fast, and while I don’t intend to be rude or give the appearance that I’m not actively listening, that may be the way it comes across. What is most important to me is giving a fully measured and well-considered response. My brain will just have to learn the patience the rest of us is working on.
5-Keep my living room clean (in progress)
This is a lesson my granny taught. If someone comes over unexpectedly, at least their first impression of your home is positive. Besides, I am at ease when there is order. I am not a neatnik by nature, but habits can be taught.
6-Meditate, with my body at rest, at least 30 minutes daily.
I am not good at slowing down, but I see the benefits of rest. I pray and meditate while walking the dog each morning. That’s moving meditation. I will add still meditation because that is good for all of me, mind, body, spirit.
7-Actively practice the presence of God (in progress)
I want to evolve to the place where I am not thinking about but actively being in the presence of God. I call it hiding. You’ll still be able to see me, well sort of…
8-Organize at least one thing every month
I have some very good advice from Holley Gerth on making changes to my life. I’ll be sharing it, and my journey to achieve changes, soon, so stay tuned, but here’s a hint. Don’t go big, go smaller…
9- Remember that although life is scary, pray, breathe, and dance anyway; oh and anything that doesn’t defeat you ISN’T scary. (in progress)
I’ve already started working on this. In the beginning I believed that fear was the opposite of faith. Deuteronomy 9:3 reminds me to “…be assured today that the Lord your God is the one who goes across ahead of you like a devouring fire. I will focus on being faithful, even when i am afraid. Fear is bad when it paralyzes you. It is bad when it threatens to separate you from the Love of God. He loves us even when we are afraid. We just need to remember to stay close.
10-Remember, God is in control, Not you.
The test here is to pray, be still, listen, and then leap. I’ve spent so many years unintentionally relying upon my own strength. I 've got little engine that could-itis…I think I can. I push when I should rest. I move when I should be still. I offer because I can. I have a capacity conundrum.
When God blesses you with ability, there is a breaking point at which you should surrender, but don't. We need to learn to lean on God. So, as the last item on my list, I will include a prayer. Lord, I surrender. I cannot do it all, and when I try, I fail miserably. When I don't immediately fail, I put my capacity before your Grace and get things all mixed up. I don't like it either way. I'm setting aside capacity in search of sweet peace.
That’s my playbook for the year to come. I’ve put it out there, and pray that you’ll keep me accountable. Finally, in my commitment to my list of 10, I’m including this challenge from a fellow dream-teamer, along with our badge, as a reminder that I AM NOT IN CONTROL…
"Dream a dream so big that unless God intervenes it will fail." ―Hudson Taylor
On Thursdays, I pray and and play with friends here...