I like to learn, to try new things, and explore opportunities. This love of learning and new experiences also explains my love of travel. For the better part of the last 10 years I find myself trying to master something and then when I do being ready to move onto the next thing. Which really is just a nice way of saying I can get bored quickly. One way I have fought the boredom over the years is by adding more and more things, activities, responsibilities, and challenges. And, while this isn’t exactly cliff jumping, it is a dangerous way to live. I don’t think God ever calls us to spend our days over-stimulated, and over-committed. If you’re feeling this tension it might be a sign that you need to edit your life.
It Started With A Book
You know the kind, you see it on a shelf (digital or otherwise) and something about the title or cover just grabs you. That was me with Breaking Busy: How to Find Peace & Purpose In A World of Crazy by author Alli Worthington. I bought the book and then it sat in my night stand for a year. Perhaps I was both compelled and repelled by the book; it’s the only reason I have for why it took me so long to read it. Either way, I am glad I finally dived in.
There are so many amazing truths in this book – Alli’s words resonated so deeply within me that I read with my trusty yellow highlighter and pencil in hand. I even took screen shots of pages and sent them to my friend and read portions aloud to my husband. Have you ever read a book that hits you like that?
I could spend weeks highlighting each chapter but I decided to share just one takeaway that I believe will be a helpful tool for so many of you. You can also check out last week’s blog post to read a little more about my thoughts and take aways from the book.
Edits for Every Woman
When I think of editing something I immediately think back on my college days and those lengthy papers I wrote. I am an idea person, often the words come fairly easily. It’s the editing, for grammar and sometimes even for content, that I struggled with. Editing requires a more deliberate, concentrated, and slower approach. It requires you actually see the words that are in front of you and not default into reading what you simply intended to say.With each big and little commitment we give away the white space in our lives. #BreakingBusy Click To Tweet
I think that for many of us women we have one image in our mind about the state of our life, what it currently looks like, and then there’s reality. We agree to chaperone the field trip, make cookies for class, organize the office potluck, take on another promising project at work, cover the Sunday school class, lead a Bible study, etc.
The list goes on, and on, and on.
And, although our days are busy, we are still left wanting something more.God sometimes call us to quit things that are good in exchange for His plans that are greater. #BreakingBusy @alli Click To Tweet
In Chapter Four of Breaking Busy, Editing: Finding God’s Best in a World of Options, author Alli Worthington explains why editing is so necessary and even distinguishes between proactive and reactive editing. (Believe me, you want to be on the proactive side of things.) She outlines 5 powerful ways we as women can edit our lives – I am sharing three of those with you today. If you want to know more about the others you’ll have to read the book; but more on that below. Let’s talk about how you can edit your life.
1. Be Proactive, not reactive
“A proactive edit is one we make in advance, before things get out of control. A reactive edit is one we make once a crisis hits. It’s a reaction to something gone wrong (typically) and most reactive edits are not good ones.” (Breaking Busy, page 92.)
If you’ve been following my blog lately, you’ll know I’ve been in a bit of a reactive mode. I’d like to say I saw it coming – the crisis, the over-extension. But I didn’t. I bet you’ve been there too. Most of us have had one of those physical or emotional meltdowns we’d rather attribute to our over-tired toddler than ourselves. We would rather risk hitting the emotional or physical wall over disappointing others.
2. Discover what needs editing
“What are you doing in your life right now that you would secretly be relieved to stop doing?” (Breaking Busy, page 93.)
Did something immediately come to mind when you read that line? It did for me. And, then I felt guilty for feeling that way and tried to justify why I should keep doing that very thing. But, as you might have guessed, that one thing that popped right into mind just might be that one thing you should think about editing out.
3. Look for areas in your life that are not fruitful
“Are there things in your life that you are doing, things you enjoy doing, things you’re good at, but you look around and don’t see a single piece of evidence you should be doing those things?” (Breaking Busy, page 93)
Perhaps you agreed or committed to doing something that you are capable of and have the skills for, but just don’t seem to be very productive, or fruitful in that endeavor.Identifying the areas in your life that aren't producing fruit is a great way to break busy and make some proactive edits in your life. #BreakingBusy @alli Click To Tweet
I enjoyed this book so much that I am going to give away a copy to one of you dear friends. If you would like to be entered in the giveaway just follow these easy steps.
- Like this post; and
- Subscribe to the blog at the end of this post. (if you’re not already a subscriber.)
One winner will be drawn randomly and announced here on the blog in next week’s post!