By now it’s a safe assumption that your 2006 calendar has no white space left in it. With the advent of the busy holiday season, schedules are crammed full of more activities and appointments than ever.
By definition, a working mom, has a busy life. That old Army slogan could have been written with us in mind: “We do more before 9:00 a.m. than most people do all day.” Combining employment with motherhood keeps you moving at a fast-pace.
The faster your life moves, the more you need to take time to unwind, plan and reflect. Consequently, the need for buffer zones is crucial. It’ll take more than wishing and hoping periodic downtime will miraculously open up. It’ll take deliberate, concentrated intention on your part to keep some time open for yourself. You can -and should build in time to relax.
After all, when was the last time your employer said: “You’re giving too much of yourself for the company, take a few days off.” Or how frequently do your children ask: “Mom, why don’t you take a nap while we finish the housework?” Not even your trusted PDA will flash the word “Overload!” when you’re squeezing in more than is good for you.
Is downtime really so important?
Yes. The Bible even says so.
If you don’t build in downtime to counterbalance your fast-paced life, elementary physics dictates where you’ll end up.
- “Only someone who is foolish does not know when to go home and wears himself out with work.” (Ecclesiastes 10:15 RAP)
- “Jesus said, ‘Come off by yourselves; let's take a break and get a little rest.’ For there was constant coming and going. They didn't even have time to eat.” (Mark 6:31 MSG)
Are there any unbalanced forces at work in your life? Then the laws of physics tells you what to expect, and gives you clues of how you can shape your destiny and choose the direction in which you head.
- Newton’s first law of motion: A [working mom] in motion tends to stay in motion with the same speed and in the same direction unless acted upon by an unbalanced force.
- Newton’s Second Law of motion: The presence of an unbalanced force will accelerate a [working mom] changing either her speed, direction, or both.
Life is not a sprint; it’s a journey. Recognize that you’ll miss all the scenery in the journey when you blow through life at 90 miles per hour, completely focused on chasing down the next item on your “have to do list.”
Next month, we’ll have a guest columnist, Eric Holmlund contributing an article on Vision. This will help working moms with goal setting and making plans for the future.
But for now, I urge you to schedule some downtime for yourself. This Christmas, don’t say yes to a request when you really ought to say no. Use some of your time to recharge. And if saying no is not an option, then put something else off for later so you can relax now. Be intentional about building in more downtime than you think you’ll need to get things done. It’ll exponentially reduce your stress.
Remember, it’s not how fast you live, nor is it how much you do that’s important. It’s how well you live. So live well, and live for the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ. Merry Christmas working moms and May God bless you and your families.
In His Service,
P.S. - I really know what it means to need downtime, check out my new blog to find out why
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