Monday, September 7, 2009

How do You do it All?

Posted by Tracy Wainwright at 11:31 AM
"I don't know how you do all you do" is a statement that I hear quite a bit. It always gets me to thinking, do I really do that much? I'm an almost-stay-at-home mom (I work out of the house one day a week) of four beautiful children, a wife, a writer, a blogger, daughter, friend, women's ministry co-leader at my church, and have various other activities such making and canning salsa from my own garden during the summer. I guess it is a lot. So, how do I do it all?

Well, sometimes I do to much and get in over my head. For about three years in a row around this time of year I had to step back and step out of some things because I was getting overwhelmed. This year, despite having baby number four, I don't feel that way. I've learned tricks and tips and tools to help me focus on what I need to do when I need to do it.

The first is organization. When I'm organized I can get ever so much more done. While I find it more challenging to stay organized than ever, when I'm making my to do lists and planning menus and planning trips to the grocery store, things seem to go much more smoothly. When I know what there is to be done, and when I want it to be done, I can prioritize. And I can have the satisfaction of marking things off my list!

The second is to pray about everything. Well, this really should be first, because it comes into play before taking on anything extra. I'm still working on making this first. Should I do this? Should I give up that? I know that if I rely on God to lead me into the things He has planned for me, I won't get in over my head. I also know that I have to lean on Him for strength and wisdom to get things done. If I do it His way, it will be more efficient, more productive, and come with more blessings.

The third is to give up any sense of control over anything other than yourself and any notions of perfection. I think this is where many of us women who are used to achieving at a high level tend to send ourselves over the edge of stress oblivion. We like to live in the illusion that we have control over other people and circumstances. These things are really out of our control (even our children, we can influence and motivate our children through parenting them lovingly and with authority, but we don't have control over them) and trying to control them will use way more energy than we'll ever have. Perfection and expectations of perfection fall into this boat because perfection is usually about control. I don't have to control every aspect of my household (that would run me down) nor does my house have to be perfect. I like it to be clean and I like it to be straight, but with four children under 7, it doesn't stay that way very long. So I can spend all my time chasing after control and perfection and have a house worthy of Southern Living, or I can live in my house and enjoy it, my family, and the career God's called me to.

So, the answer is, I don't do it all. I do what I'm called to do and do it good enough. I'm a little slack on the housework at times, but the dust will eventually get wiped off (only to come back a couple days later) and the floor will get mopped (only to have something spilt on it an hour later), but in the meantime, I'm going to spend today working on building relationships and fulfilling my call to write to encourage others in their lives, relationships, and most importantly, their relationship with God.

0 comments on "How do You do it All?"

Monday, September 7, 2009

How do You do it All?

"I don't know how you do all you do" is a statement that I hear quite a bit. It always gets me to thinking, do I really do that much? I'm an almost-stay-at-home mom (I work out of the house one day a week) of four beautiful children, a wife, a writer, a blogger, daughter, friend, women's ministry co-leader at my church, and have various other activities such making and canning salsa from my own garden during the summer. I guess it is a lot. So, how do I do it all?

Well, sometimes I do to much and get in over my head. For about three years in a row around this time of year I had to step back and step out of some things because I was getting overwhelmed. This year, despite having baby number four, I don't feel that way. I've learned tricks and tips and tools to help me focus on what I need to do when I need to do it.

The first is organization. When I'm organized I can get ever so much more done. While I find it more challenging to stay organized than ever, when I'm making my to do lists and planning menus and planning trips to the grocery store, things seem to go much more smoothly. When I know what there is to be done, and when I want it to be done, I can prioritize. And I can have the satisfaction of marking things off my list!

The second is to pray about everything. Well, this really should be first, because it comes into play before taking on anything extra. I'm still working on making this first. Should I do this? Should I give up that? I know that if I rely on God to lead me into the things He has planned for me, I won't get in over my head. I also know that I have to lean on Him for strength and wisdom to get things done. If I do it His way, it will be more efficient, more productive, and come with more blessings.

The third is to give up any sense of control over anything other than yourself and any notions of perfection. I think this is where many of us women who are used to achieving at a high level tend to send ourselves over the edge of stress oblivion. We like to live in the illusion that we have control over other people and circumstances. These things are really out of our control (even our children, we can influence and motivate our children through parenting them lovingly and with authority, but we don't have control over them) and trying to control them will use way more energy than we'll ever have. Perfection and expectations of perfection fall into this boat because perfection is usually about control. I don't have to control every aspect of my household (that would run me down) nor does my house have to be perfect. I like it to be clean and I like it to be straight, but with four children under 7, it doesn't stay that way very long. So I can spend all my time chasing after control and perfection and have a house worthy of Southern Living, or I can live in my house and enjoy it, my family, and the career God's called me to.

So, the answer is, I don't do it all. I do what I'm called to do and do it good enough. I'm a little slack on the housework at times, but the dust will eventually get wiped off (only to come back a couple days later) and the floor will get mopped (only to have something spilt on it an hour later), but in the meantime, I'm going to spend today working on building relationships and fulfilling my call to write to encourage others in their lives, relationships, and most importantly, their relationship with God.

0 comments:

 

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