The Perks of Planning Ahead

There are a few times when having a running to-do list works out in my favor. 

Tonight is one of those nights! 

I work for a ministry and this weekend is their big conference. I put in close to 12 hours today…

Got home and my running to-do list helped me get everything done super fast!

Now I’m relaxing for a minute before bed. 

Woohoo!

Planning ahead is awesome. 

Avoid overcommitting

I’m learning that showing up is a big deal. No one likes a flaky, only when it suits me kind of person. 

Jesus said, “Let your yes be yes and your no be no.”

I try to only commit to what I can reasonably do. Overcommitting was a major problem in my past and it led to me not being able to do anything all that well. 

As much as I love to help people, jamming my schedule full of stuff only meant that there was no way I could actually be of much help. 

I think about the requests that come my way now. 

Keeping a calendar is the best way I’ve found to keep from overcommitting. 

Whatever you need to do to show up when you agreed to show up, do it!

Being faithful in your commitments speaks volumes. 

Filter your words

I scrap a lot of posts…

There’s no telling how many times I get to 200 words and hit delete. (Maybe I should start a file of my “Almost got posted” words.)

Here are a few reasons I scrap posts: 

  • I’m thinking too negatively about a subject.
  • It’s just a really silly topic.
  • I’m simply spewing unprocessed emotions.

I started this blog to put into writing the everyday happenings and thoughts of my 25 year old self. 

Of course, my mind always wanders back to you, my reader, because I want these posts to be a source of encouragement to you as well.

Years ago, a friend of mine jokingly said she processes everything through her Jesus filter. 

I know she was joking, but I seriously do process everything through that filter.

What would Jesus say?

What would Jesus post on Facebook?

A lot of heartache would be avoided if we’d only think before speaking (or posting). In fact, just today I said the right thing in the wrong way.

Did you catch that?

It was the right thing to say, but I said it the wrong way, so I ended up needing to apologize to a good friend of mine for not being sensitive to her situation. 

Words are powerful.

Everything you and I say is either building someone up or tearing someone down. 

There is a time and place to share unfiltered words and thoughts–and it’s not on blogs or on Facebook or to any random stranger you meet.

For this reason, self-control is just as much about knowing when to speak as it is about watching what you say. 

 

 

 

Goals for May

Hard to believe May is here! 

We’re 5 months into 2016…

With a new month comes a few new goals. I’m trying something new, which is really helping me build my consistency muscle. 

I’m tackling goals in monthly chunks. 

If I want to do something, I set a goal to accomplish it within a month.

You can do anything for a month, right?

This May I am reading through the gospels and journaling daily for 10 minutes. 

When I started daily blogging, I dropped daily journaling and that’s just not okay, especially because there’s a lot of things to think about right now. 

I need some dedicated space to say whatever comes to my mind and not filter my thoughts. 

My goal in reading through the gospels is simple: I need to spend some time with Jesus and study more closely what He did and said. 

Jesus told His followers that as He is so are we in this world. I want to look at what that means more because there’s a lot of teachings out there on what Jesus said and meant. 

Why not just read the Bible and see for yourself?

Is it wise to poke and prod at what to take literally? 

If Jesus didn’t mean everything He said, we are left with a lot of scriptures to interpret by ourselves, which is dangerous. 

These are the questions I’m asking myself as I read. 

What are your goals for May?

The Importance of Strong Character

Last week I spoke on the subject of faulty perceptions. 

The key point was to not allow someone else’s judgments to cloud your own. There’s another element, however, that I didn’t cover: Your reputation—good or bad—tends to precede you. Sure, you might be able to cover up a character flaw, but not for long.

Here’s an example: I am notorious for over committing myself. This is an area that requires my utmost attention. Being overcommitted is not a sign of strong character.

It actually makes me look like someone with no focus or vision.

Nothing is more embarrassing than telling someone you can’t do something because of carelessness. No matter how much grace the other person extends, it still highlights your own irresponsibility.

What does this have to do with faulty perception?

Most flaws are character flaws, not personality flaws. Maybe you’re really struggling with punctuality or honesty or gratefulness. These issues have nothing to do with your personality! They have everything to do with a lack of strong character.

The good news is that strong character is developed like any muscle—with discipline.

I realize that some of us have greater obstacles to overcome than others. If you don’t know what to do, just start somewhere. Surround yourself with people who encourage you to pursue excellence. Write out a list of three to five things you can do to become a person of better character. Be proactive and accept responsibility for your current situation.

Don’t be a victim.

Take back control of your life and stop letting bad character affect your reputation.

And remember: The best way to receive grace is to extend it to others. Help a friend who’s fighting against the current, who’s working hard to make vital changes. Your encouragement might just be what keeps them on the right path.