I have way too many goals and distractions competing for my
attention. It can be quite overwhelming! Especially because I struggle with anxiety. I find myself divided into a million little pieces, each part of me chasing after some other goal or expectation. Gotta catch’em all!
Facebook. School. The GRE. My business. Finding a church. Taking care of my cat. Text messages. Being a sister. Being a daughter. Blogging. Exercising. Cooking. Cleaning. Laundry. Sleep. Grad school research. Friends in Waco. Friends in Dallas. Friends in Peru. LinkedIn. Twitter. Pinterest. Time with Jesus. Learning Arabic. Pokemon Go. Unpacking. Redecorating. Organizing. Painting. Photography.
But c’mon, let’s be realistic. I can’t get all of that done!! Yet I still try… and as a result, something inevitably gets dropped, and nothing gets done well. Which I hate….
So… when it all feels important, where do I start? How do I calm down my mind and focus on the most important things?
Let’s go back to square one.
Step 1: Realign Your Heart with God
One of my goals for 2016 was to keep in mind that God made me who I am on purpose. Therefore, I want to live a life that honors Him! Not one filled with distraction.
A few key verses in realigning your heart…
Matthew 6:33 “But first, be concerned about his kingdom and what has his approval. Then all these things will be provided for you.”
Matthew 7:24-25 “Therefore, everyone who hears what I say and obeys it will be like a wise person who built a house on rock. Rain poured, and floods came. Winds blew and beat against that house. But it did not collapse, because its foundation was on rock.”
Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths smooth.”
Questions for consideration:
- Where have my priorities been focused recently? Based on what I know about Scripture, where should my priorities be focused?
- Do I trust God? If I don’t, I won’t follow Him…. I won’t be willing to step out on the water, and I won’t see lasting breakthrough. Do I trust Him? Am I willing to let Him make the decisions in my life?
- Am I giving Jesus space to speak into my life? Am I giving Him room to guide me? When was the last time I slowed down long enough to let Him speak into my heart?
Step 2: Let God Redesign You
I have learned a lot about rest over the past couple of years. Part of rest means simplifying things… returning to the basics…. Instead of having twenty different time commitments, what are those three big things I can really focus on?
With that in mind, I took some time to journal on Saturday. I prayerfully asked myself this question: “Where should I focus my time and energy during this season?” Then I just waited for some sense of direction from the Lord. I felt Him direct me to three main things: studying for the GRE, spending time with Him every day, and getting invested in a church community. Makes sense.
I also asked Him for a key word or Scripture that could serve as a theme for this season. I was looking for just one word, but got a few in reply: peace, patience, diligence.
I feel so much better when I have an overarching sense of direction. I know where to focus my time and energy. I feel like I’m making progress toward my life-goals, rather than just wasting away, one day at a time.
So ask yourself those same questions:
- During this season, where should I focus my time and energy? What should be my priorities? Now write them down. Use the free printable below to record your answers.
- What key word or Scripture can I use as a theme for this season?
Step 3: Start One Day at a Time
Now that I’ve realigned my heart with God and sought Him about my focus, it’s time to live that out. But I don’t trust myself to make that change on my own. So I’m going to do two final things. First, I’m sharing those goals with at least one person I see on a regular basis, for accountability. And second, I’m going to write down those goals and pin them up on the mirror of my bathroom.
What about you? Ask yourself these two questions:
- With whom will I share my priorities and theme word/verse?
- Where can I post a reminder of those things, to keep them in the forefront of my mind?
Download your free printable now! Use this sheet to write out your theme verse (or theme words) and the top three goals you want to focus on during this season. Post it somewhere you’ll see it! Let’s simplify and return to a foundation on God’s Word and His purposes for our lives.