I miss blogging. Every time I take stock of my crazy life, deciding what needs to go, what needs to stay & what I need to bring back, blogging is always at the top of the list of things to come back.
I sit down to write a killer post (in my egotistic mind) & I keep it up for a week or 2 & then it fades away. Writing is the first to go when I start to get busy & bogged down.
That’s so sad. Something that I love to do is the first to go. It’s sad that I’m so busy that I can’t take time out to pour out my thoughts, because that is really what I use this blog for. I don’t try to earn money from it or try to become super popular with my sparkling wit & infinite wisdom I share here. (being so sarcastic right now incase you didn’t know) But it’s cathartic to be able to write my feelings! It feels amazing to get them off my mind & onto the screen. I share them because I think that maybe someone else out there needs to hear they are not the only one. Even if one person reads about my experience & can relate, I feel that I’ve done the right thing in sharing.
So that brings me to living within margin. I had no idea this was a thing. Margins to me were lines on the side of notebook paper to keep your work looking neat. Then I went to church.
Our sermon series has been about living within margin & it has touched my soul. I sat there listening to our pastors tell why we need it, why we don’t have it & how we can get it back & I probably looked like a bobble head sitting in the pew. Well, we sit in very comfy chairs…but same thing. I agreed that I NEED this…NOW.
I went home & went right to researching more about this “margin” thing. It’s really not that hard to do…on paper. But to implement it into real life. Oh my stars.
First you need to identify what motivates you. What makes you get out of bed in the morning? Excitement to read your bible & spend time with God? Nope, I was doing that every day & gave that up to get 15 minutes more sleep when the time changed. Last spring.
Work? I suppose, but I do both my jobs from home. I don’t need makeup or have to jump into an uncomfortable suit. Nor do I have to rush out the door & fight traffic while eating a stale bagel & spilling hot coffee all over my uncomfortable suit. My work life is pretty chill for the most part.
To make money? Ahhh! We have a winner. I need to make the money so I can buy the things & pay the bills. That stinks. Money is my motivator. I’m putting it before all else.
Ok, so I’ve identified my motivator & learned it’s a sin. Feeling AWESOME about this margin thing. (eye roll x 1000) Now I have to figure out what is sucking my time away from me. I didn’t even have to think on this. Social media. I spend too much time on it because I run my 2nd job solely through social media. I love it, too. It’s fun & since I AM at home all day, getting to talk with adults from across the country (did you know that people in the UK call you sweet things like Lovey & end every conversation with hugs & kisses!) is a nice break…which is when I do my 2nd business. In the corporate world, people take breaks at 10, noon & 2 typically, so that is when I stop & jump on Facebook & other social media outlets to do my makeup biz. But I also am on it early in the morning & most of the evening. In come the margins. I need to skip it in the morning & start setting an OFF switch at night. We used to have a family rule, no more phones after 8 pm. Maybe that needs to come back. Not maybe…it does.
Other time suckers can be: work obsessed, clubs, kids activities (too many of them!) TV, video games, etc. Pretty much anything that is taking you away from your family too often.
Identify Motivator. Check.
Identify Time Sucker. Check.
Now time to start making the cuts & rearrange my life.
First thing I want to do is start having my quiet time with God again. No more Facebook or messenger first thing in the morning! I remember how that always made the rest of my day go better. God first. Always.
Next, start blogging more. Even if I don’t share every post, just sit & write! It makes me feel GOOD! It’s a keeper!
Next will be setting the time limits on my social media time/online work.
I might actually have to sit down & write this all out like a monthly budget. I am a visual person & if I see my time all laid out in front of me, I might stick to it better. Hopefully after a short while this will become my new routine & my new, less stressed life! EXCITING!
Do YOU need margins in your life or do you already have it all together? PLEASE!!! If you do, share how you got there! I can use all the inspiration I can get!
I am so in love with this book by Mark Batterson! It has helped me to think about goal setting in a whole new way. A way that I believe will actually turn my goals into accomplishments! Please watch this short video to hear about why you want to set God sized goals & then read on to learn how!
How to Set Goals That Become Accomplishments
1. Start with Prayer! If you can, go away somewhere. The woods, the beach, even just your backyard. But get somewhere where you can be alone & have quiet. Start with a prayer. In the book Mark says: “If you set goals in the context of prayer, there is a much higher likelihood that your goals will glorify God, & if they don’t glorify God, then they aren’t worth setting in the first place! So ask God to help you find & define the goals you need to set.
2. Check Your Motives. “If you are setting selfish goals, you would be better off spiritually not accomplishing them at all.” Make sure you are going after your goals for the right reasons. Yes, we all want to be rich, but to who much is given, much is expected, so be sure you are willing to share your good fortune once you receive it. Or better yet, have a charity or cause in mind that will start benefiting from your success right away, even before you reach your goal. Just make sure it isn’t all about you & that brand new sports car you want to drive.
3. Think in Categories. Think of who you want to help or think of the areas in your life that need attention…family, finances, physical fitness, community. Then write out what you can do for each category to improve those areas. Set goals for each one.
4. Be Specific! “If your goal isn’t measurable, you have no way of knowing if you’ve accomplished it!” You can’t just say you want to lose weight or make more money. How much weight do you want to lose or how much money do you want to make & just for extra measure, set a date to reach that goal!
5. Write It Down. I talked about this in my video. You DO have to write it down. There is something about committing something to paper that makes it real. And when you post it where you can see your goals every day it helps you to stay accountable!
6. Include Others. “Goals are relational glue.” If you set a goal WITH someone, it bonds you & it will double your joy when you accomplish it! Besides, there is no better way to stay on track than to have an accountability partner!
7. Celebrate Along The Way. This is something I do with my Younique team. Whenever someone reaches a goal, no matter how big or small, I give them what we call a shout out! When you are new to something & feel like you are climbing a huge mountain to the top, stopping to celebrate milestones makes the climb seem shorter! And it keeps you motivated to get to the next celebration!
8. Dream BIG! Your list should include not just short term goals, but LONG term goals. Goals that will take years to accomplish! Short term goals are important to get you to the next step, but long term goals are great to focus on when you need a minute to step back & silah, stop & rest. They help you remember the big picture & they also help you to rely on God.
9. Think Long. Sometimes we get stuck in needing to just make it to next week. But stop & think about where you want to be in 5 & 10 years. Lots of things will change in your life during that time. You need to think ahead to what your life will look like & where you want to be in that time. What goals do you need to set to make your dream future a reality?
10. Pray Hard. Goal setting begins & ends with prayer. When you pray about your goals, they become ordained by God. Those prayers become accomplishments. Always be praying & never cease. God will bring to you everything you need to reach your goals.
Happy Goal Setting!
I’d like to take a little bit of time today to share my feelings on the tragedy in Boston. Last I knew, no one had “claimed’ their part in this senseless act, so we don’t know if this is “home grown” terrorism or foreign. Let me just say, that is what makes me mad. Those two labels…home grown or foreign terrorism. We are no longer safe here, at home, or abroad. We are quickly beginning to look like the countries wars are fought in. Burned out buildings & cars with injured innocent people running everywhere asking “why?”.
What has this world come to? That is what everyone says at a time like this, isn’t it? But you really have to wonder. Last night I was watching a special on National Geographic called The 1980’s, The Decade That Made Us. According to the show, the ’80’s was American greed at it’s finest. We all wanted more & we wanted it fast. Cell phones, PC’s, video recorders, VCR’s, & the internet all came to fruition in the ’80’s, all adding to the “bigger, better” everything way of life. And believe me, I love every single one of those inventions. I don’t know what I’d do without any of them. But as I was watching, I couldn’t help but think of all the problems those inventions have brought upon us. The Internet may be the worst of them all. Instant information is at everyone’s finger tips. Not just me, who wants to connect with friends from 20 years ago, but also any evil person wanting to learn how to build a bomb, find an address of an enemy, or a foreign dictator wanting information on where to find the most vulnerable target in the USA.
It is scary & it makes me want to go back to a simpler time. A time before all of the mass media played & replayed horrific events on the tv & Internet. I’m not saying naivety is bliss, but are we any better off seeing these images & hearing about the events over & over? In my opinion we are not, but the people that are trying to learn how to pull off a similar event or action are benefiting greatly.
Can we ever go back? Can we ever regain the simpler life? 20,000 people signed up for a race & did their best to finish. But because of an evil person or persons, it turned into a tragedy. That now makes marathons, movie theaters, churches, shopping malls & schools unsafe places. It’s not right & I’m left with such unsettled feelings.
Til next time, kids. Hold your family tight, tell them you love them & inspire each of them to be the change of the world. Life doesn’t have to be this scary. This is America! Someone has to do something & it has to begin now, with us.