Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Learning to Defrag

The past few days, as I've worked on my computer, a message has popped up which says that my hard drive is dangerously low on memory.  I've deleted as many items as possible on my hard drive, but I also went to my system tools and decided to defragment my hard drive.  This tool compresses items, combines files and tries to use the space on your drive to the maximum efficiency.

At times, I need to defragment my life too.  I get pulled in a thousand directions.  I run here and run there.  I have my hands in many different things and I find that I run out of steam.  I begin to feel anxious and stressed.  I slow down and don't work as efficiently.

Here are some things that I have found that work when I start feeling harassed and harried.

1.  I stop and spend some time digging into God's word.  Often when I feel that way it is because I have pulled away from the source of my life.  I tend to think, "Oh, I don't have time for that."  Yet, I certainly find time for the computer or a thousand other things. So I slow down and try to hear from the Lord.  What does He want me to do?  What can I drop?  What thing is a burden that I should never have picked up?

2.  I reevaluate my outside activities. I have a hard time saying no.  I also have a hyper-active sense of duty.  If no one volunteers to do something at church, I'll jump right in because I have this feeling that it should be done.  The problem with that is most people are only too happy to let someone else do it all.  Dan constantly reminds me that if I do it all, I am not allowing others to use their gifts.  The church does not and should not center around the pastor and his wife.  The church is a body of believers, who are all equipped to do ministry.  I'm trying to learn to keep my mouth closed!

My family is my priority.  My primary role is to be a support to my husband and a mother my children.  Sometimes, I put them way down on the list and I always end up regretting it.  So I'm trying to learn to see how an activity impacts our family.  

3. I re-prioritize my to-do list.  What can wait?  What is unimportant?  What is not necessary?  What absolutely must be done?  Sometimes I can major in the minors.  If I have a hundred things to do to get ready for something, does it really matter if the rolls are homemade?  If I'm planning an event, do the decorations always have to be made by hand?  Couldn't I just pick up a few things at the party store?

4. Take care of myself.  I have to admit that I haven't done a very good job of this.  I don't exercise very often, I don't eat properly, and I hardly ever do anything to pamper myself.  I am usually the very last on my priority list.  I need to change this.  I have always been very healthy.  My blood pressure is always perfect.  I have  lots of energy.  I'm hardly ever sick.  

However, a lot of that has changed this year.  I have struggled with 3 bouts of diverticulitis in the past 5 months.  I have very low vitamin D levels.  I am pre-diabetic and I have a family history of heart disease.  So I want to work on changing some very bad habits!

5. Slow down, relax, and enjoy life.  I've been trying to stop and enjoy my life.  As yesterday's post said, I work very hard to make memories, but do very little enjoying of them.  I'm trying to stop and just breathe.  Smell the roses.  Feel the breeze on my face.  Read a good book just for the pleasure of it.  Stay in my pajamas until noon if I want.  I have to say this is so difficult for me.  But I am trying.  I think I have read more books this past year than I have in years.

So how about you? Do you need to defragment your life?  Do you need to reevaluate and figure out where things need to change?  I encourage you to do that before you fun out of memory and slow down!