I have said this occasionally in the past, but this last year I found myself saying it many times… “I am just not going to give that any energy”. This could be, to deal with a negative person, some of our aches and pains, or just about any difficult thing that you currently really don’t have control over.
There are many worthy things to give energy to… your faith, your marriage, your family, friendships, your church, your job, charitable work, exercising to whatever capacity that you can, and eating right (ok, I don’t know about you but these last couple of weeks I have given too much energy to NOT eating right!).
The week before Christmas we changed our cable service at home, because of a recommendation of our wireless phone company. We spoke to someone in the store at length and then called into the company a couple of times to make sure we understood for good or bad what making these changes would look like in our services and financially. Once we moved forward. We found out that every source had given us some wrong information, some of it even in writing. Long term we still think we made the right decision, but you can imagine my level of frustration with this company for SO much wrong and misleading information. Along with their unwillingness to honor anything we had been told or even their own (incorrect) documents. For a couple of days this was almost all consuming trying to sort this out. With Christmas so close I had to decide to not give it anymore energy until after the holidays and then will need to decide if it’s still worth giving any energy to it.
The start of a new year… I know it’s a time we often reflect on this past year and then look, dream and start to make plans for things in this coming year. Something I plan to do again this year is think about where I want to put my time and energy. Also, acknowledging that we need to allow for the good and the bad things that unexpectedly take our time and energy and not let that derail us!
Have you ever had to wait at a restaurant with friends or family members or got stuck in an unexpected traffic jam with them and suddenly ALL their energy goes into crabbing and fussing about having to wait, instead of just continuing to enjoy your time together… for me, they have taken an opportunity and turned it into a waste of our time and energy! (an unexpected situation, is not always a waste of time, but our handling of it certainly can be!)
A couple of summers ago I had the opportunity to travel with 4 other ladies for an 8-hour road trip to a lady’s conference. We took my car and we all took turns driving. We were having a blast over this long weekend together, then less than an hour into our drive back home, we got a flat tire. Five ladies on the side of a busy highway. Thankfully we had AAA, but we realized they were going to need to get to the spare, which was under ALL our luggage. We were in Oklahoma in July! Now we got the opportunity to unload all our luggage out on the side of the road. We had two options, we could give energy to the fact that we were hot, this was going to delay us getting home, the expense and added time to get a new tire or we could treat this as a crazy fun adventure! This is why you pick your traveling friends well! We were laughing throughout the whole ordeal, taking pictures, even got one with the State Patrolman that showed up. Of course, those all ended up on our social media. Our friend that was driving when this happened, said it well “I’ve never had so much fun having a flat tire!”.
Ok, so back to things we purposely want to make sure we give time and energy to this year! I am a list person, so I usually start with a list. You may want to think of at least ten things or areas you would like to work on. This could include a vacation, moving, maybe reconnecting with someone. After you have a few items down that you truly want to give time and energy to for 2017, prioritize! If eating right and exercising is on your list EVERY January 1st (ok, I may be guilty of this), maybe that doesn’t get all your attention right now. Pick one or two of these items to start working on right away. If you look to change too many things too fast, most likely you will be overwhelmed and end up not doing ANY of them or at least not well. If there is a couple of small items that could be done with a small amount of time and effort, wipe those out to feel a sense of accomplishment. If you have a biggie, like a move, a career change, a wedding… if you still have time to, start with baby steps, get a game plan! You know the old saying, how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time!
If you have a day planner, written or electronic, put some of the other items down as reminders, a couple months from now. It helps to keep them in front of you. A couple of things I am starting off the new year working on, is an even stronger, more purposeful prayer life. To go along with that I just started reading a new book, FerVent, A Woman’s Battle Plan for Serious, Specific, and Strategic Prayer, by Priscilla Shirer. I am excited to dig in and dig deeper!
I pray each of you are off to a wonderful start in 2017! May you and your family be abundantly blessed and favored throughout this year!