I visited a small group from my church made up of several young couples with children. We were discussing the very real struggles women face when it comes to navigating family and work responsibilities. What I heard was the all-too-common experience women have of being tugged in many directions at once. When women are at work we feel guilty about not being there for our children. When we are at home, we are thinking about the work that is still undone. Women put a great deal of their time and energy into taking care of others, contributing to our communities and meeting expectations at work. And yet I often hear women express how inadequate they feel—that it’s never enough.
When we believe what we do is not enough we feel compelled to do even more. This can lead to an underlying sense that “it all depends on me.” That sense ran me for most of my adult life and I still have to fight against it and remember that’s a lie from the pit of hell. The fact is, I am fully dependent on the Lord, and anything else I might put my dependence in will eventually lead me to an empty tank—burnt out, spread too thin and done. If we don’t stop to recognize this, sooner or later we may find we are paying a very high price.
Friends, we need to make time to invest in ourselves a priority. You can’t give from an empty tank. And everything we have comes from the Lord! Everything. Our energy, ideas, creativity, solutions, the love we so want to share with our children, family and friends, the peace we desperately need today, and even rest. It all comes from God. But we have to make the time to stop and recharge. Just as the electric vehicles that are becoming more prevalent on our streets must stop and plug into a charging station for a while, we need to take a pause and plug into Jesus.
We all need to invest in ourselves through:
Daily quiet time with the Lord. Starting the day with prayer, asking Jesus to lead you throughout the day, and ending the day with time for reflection is a very effective way of staying plugged into the Source.
Short breaks from the demands to do something that fills you back up. A short walk can literally provide the breath of fresh air we need when demands pile up. I like to use those times as opportunities to walk and talk with the Lord.
Connecting with community. An uplifting conversation with a friend or in a small group can be the perfect remedy for a stressful day.
Learning from others who are more experienced. Finding opportunities to learn and grow professionally provides a boost of inspiration and excitement for new possibilities.
I’ve tried to be superhuman, to keep on running and doing and making things happen under my own strength. And eventually I hit a wall—an illness, a bout with anxiety, or the inability to keep my eyes open and my brain engaged. When that happens, I’m good for no one! But when I step out to take a walk, stop to pray and be with the Lord, make time for community and to invest in my own learning, I’m always amazed at how much more creativity and productivity results—an investment that provides tremendous ROI!
What can you do today, this week and this month to take care of yourself and recharge so you have more to give at home, at work and in your community? You not only boost your own mental, emotional and physical health, but you set an example others can follow as well.
We want to help you invest in yourself this month! Attend the BOLDLY Conference on October 21st with a friend. Buy one ticket and get the second ticket for 50% off with the code FRIENDS.