What does it mean to be intentional instead of busy?
Today we continue on in our series of taking a look at what keeps us stuck. This week we are looking at busyness instead of purposefulness. No doubt about it, life today is busy, but it doesn’t have to be. We can choose to live life in a less busy pace with purpose, but if we don’t live with intention or on purpose, the busyness will take over.
Dave Ramsey, founder of Financial Peace University, often says, “If you don’t tell your money where to go, you are not going to know where your money went.” I think we can use this statement for many areas of our lives, including our time. If we don’t tell our time where to go, we are not going to know where it went.
Days move past us quickly. We often will remark that we don’t know where the time goes or that it flies by. The busier we are, the faster it seems to go.
Being busy steels our time, our productivity and our joy. It keeps us stuck. It keeps us from living out our purpose to the best of our ability. It keeps us in mediocrity.
If you want your life to be different, you have to live your life differently. If you don’t want to be so busy all the time, you need to stop filling your life up with busyness.
This requires that you make a choice. You have the choice to live your life on purpose, with intention and at a slower pace. You have a choice to weed out activities that don’t align with your values, goals and purpose. You have the choice to tell your time where to go.
There are a lot of good things in life to do and be involved in. How do you go about weeding through it? How do you decide what to say yes to and what to say no to? Here are a few guidelines that may help:
- Understand what your purpose and values are. Take time to really discover who God created you to be, what His purpose is for you and what is truly important to you. This is something you can work on as a family also. Deciding family goals and priorities can be a very empowering thing to do.
- Based on your responses from the first step, prioritize your activities. Decide which activities align with your purpose and your values. Place those things at the top of your priority list.
- Acknowledge those things on your list that feel like “have to’s,” or “should’s.” Recognize when something is on your list that maybe is someone else’s priority for you, but doesn’t really align with your priorities. Be willing to let go of these things. This may include having to let go of feeling guilty as well!
- Decide to become a gatekeeper for you and your family’s to-do list. Don’t be so quick to say yes, rather think it through and talk about it as a family to decide if it fits with your family’s priorities.
There are a lot of good things that we and our families can do and be involved in, but if we say yes to all of it, stress, anxiety and never having time available will always be a struggle for us.
John C. Maxwell says, “Learn to say no to the good so you can say yes to the best.”
How do you think you can begin to implement this in your life? What do you think it means for you to live on purpose rather than simply being busy? How would your life look differently if you were to live with intention instead of just keeping busy? What would you let go of?
I would love to hear from you! Let me know in the comments about what this looks like in your life. What are you letting go of? What is something that you want to let go of but are having a hard time doing? What’s getting in your way?
Don’t stay stuck! Live with intention. Say no to busy!