On Sunday, I finished our Breathing Room series at Revolution by looking at how to find breathing room between work, life and everything that has to get done. This week, I want to share 6 simple ways I’ve done that and you can to. I’m going to share one each day so you have time to process them and hopefully put some things into practice.
The first one we looked at was how to get a good night sleep. Tuesday, we talked about why you should take a break every 90 minutes. Wednesday, we looked at what electronics can do to our margin. Thursday we looked at what will probably be the most controversial or at least, the one you think is unattainable: Pay people to do what you hate and yesterday we looked at one of the most important things to making room for what matters most: Live the life you want, not the one others want you to live.
As we wrap up this series today, I want to share something that we often don’t think about when it comes to our lives and schedules and it is crucial to finding breathing room and making room in life for what matters most. It’s this: Use your schedule to your advantage.
Every job, career, has a schedule and a rhythm. If you have kids in school, you know this. If you are in school, you know this. No matter what you do, no matter what stage of life you are in, there is a schedule and a rhythm. There are times that are busy and times that are slow. You have days that are more stressful and hectic and tiring than others.
Use them to your advantage instead of letting them use you.
Here’s what I mean.
For my rhythm as a pastor, the fall and spring are the busiest times of the year. The slowest times? From Christmas Eve until the first week of January and the middle of June to the middle of July. Because of this, I strategically take breaks then. During my week, Tuesday and Wednesday are my most stressful and intense days so I don’t plan much on those evenings.
I am also blessed with being able to make my own schedule so I can work on my sermon, plan meetings when I want.
Maybe you work in the evening and have the days free. How can you be more strategic with those days?
Can you make your own schedule and decide to take a break for your kids during the day? Some people can.
Can you start work earlier to get done earlier? Some people can. Most people can’t (not because their company won’t let them but because they haven’t asked).
When is your slow time? When is the busiest time of the year for you?
The problem for most Americans is we never think about this. We simply roll from one day to the next, one season to the next without ever catching our breath.
When I begin preaching in January, I know it is a long time until summer. That’s okay because I took some downtime over the holidays.
It’s the same in the fall.
Sit down and look at your calendar for the year. If you don’t know when you are busiest, look back and see what you did and how it went. If you are a teacher, you know when it slow down. Use that to live the life you want to live.
Don’t let your schedule dictate your life.