When A Season Becomes A Lifestyle
It's tough to swallow your own medicine. In this post I share about assessing my own busyness, and tough decisions that I have made in light of it.
I used to teach undergrads and graduate students. Navigating stress-filled days and busy weeks, students would quiz me about time management:
"Dr. Kiedis, how do you know when you are pushing too hard?" "How do you know when your life is out of balance?"
My standard response was this: "When a season becomes a lifestyle!"
In the sporting world, it is the beginning of baseball season. Players know that they are going to push it hard until September (or October if they are playing really well). Baseball is a long season, but knowing there is an end in sight helps when bodies ache and the glamour of big city travel has lost its luster.
Leaders also have seasons. There are times that are just going to be longer and busier than others. For example:
- Accountants have tax season.
- Pastors have the extra busy days surrounding Christmas and Easter.
- Entrepreneurs know that when it comes to start-ups, it take tremendous time and energy to "get the rocket off the launch pad."
Most of us understand this. We can handle busy seasons. They are a part of any productive arena. But when the busyness never ends, we call that a lifestyle.
Leaders must be honest about that. They must be able to identify when a season of necessary activity has become a lifestyle of excessive activity.
I have been watching my journal entries over the last few months. If you have read the post, The Leader's Magic Hours, I discuss key blocks of time I must have to be at my best. As I look at my journal, I have been consistently missing one and sometimes two of those "hours."
This weekend I had to face up to the fact that my season of urgent activity is becoming a lifestyle. I have been sacrificing too many important activities and relationships in order to maintain beneficial, but "secondary" endeavors.
As I shared in my devotional blog, my life is not falling apart. I'm good! Shannan and I are good. My family is doing well. I am loving the church I serve. I just want to make sure it stays that way.
I am taking the next three weeks to reflect, assess, and make some necessary adjustments. I'm working on developing a more healthy, sustainable rhythm so as to be back on the blogging track on Monday, May 7. In the meantime, if you would like to read more about the life and work of the leader, I would encourage you to visit www.leaderslifeandwork.com. I have written more than 70 leadership posts. You can browse through them or search by key word if there is a particular topic that is of interest to you.
1 Timothy 4:16 ESV
Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers.