Category Archives: Time Management

What will you do with your bonus day?

Today is a “bonus” day!

Yes, that’s right every four years we are given a “bonus” day on February 29th! Every four years instead of 365 days, we get 366! Every four years we get a full extra 24 hours! Today is that extra day.

In an “average” lifetime you only get 20 “bonus days”…that’s right just 20 days!  This is my 13th bonus day so I don’t want to “waste it a way”. As I lay here in bed watching the rain pound with vengeance against the windows I am pondering just what I want to do (or not to do) with my “bonus” day.

 How about you? What will you do today with your bonus day?

How about all those things that you have been putting off until you have “more” time?

  • Reading or finishing that book that you heard was so fabulous
  • Making that long overdue doctor or dentist appointment
  • Cleaning or organizing that “junk drawer”, spare bedroom or garage
  • Organizing those photos, making a dent in that scrapbooking project or completing some journaling
  • Sitting down and planning your yearly calendar to include meaningful family traditions that you keep wanting to do but never seem to get going on them

Or maybe you could use your bonus day to do something positive for other people and your community?

  • Volunteer at a homeless shelter or soup kitchen
  • Grab a trash bag and go pick up all the trash on your street
  • Visit the elderly, sick or shut ins
  • Call a stressed out Mom of toddlers and take her kids to the park or mall playground for a couple hours
  • Help a single Mom or widow with the yard work, house or car maintenance

Or what about spending the day enriching your relationships?

  • Spend time really playing with your kids on their level (even if that means getting down on the floor and playing cards or dressing up as a pirate or Maid Marian)
  • Call your spouse just to say I love you & appreciate you (and husbands – bring home flowers for no special reason) – go out on a special date night
  • Ask your loved ones what would be their “perfect day” and then make it happen for them
  • Call that long lost friend from the past just to say hi and catch up
  • Invite that family you have been wanting to get to know over for dinner
  • Take your neighbors some yummy fresh baked cookies
  • Sit on the couch with your family and read a book together (and turn OFF the TV!)
  • Write notes of love, support and appreciation to all those important people in your life
  • Mend a broken relationship – say you are sorry, ask for forgiveness – forgive and forget

Or maybe you just need a complete day “off” to rest, relax and be renewed and refreshed so that you can continue to live a life all year of meaning and purpose.

Just some thoughts for you on this – February 29, 2012 – now you decide how you will spend your “bonus day”. Will it just be “the same ole, same ole” or will you make it truly a special bonus day?

P.S. – The photo above was taken 4 years ago on my “bonus day”…you can read about it here.

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Filed under Inspiration, Life at the Lambdins, Time Management

So what if you don’t have the time….just do it!

To say that I don’t have time right now is like saying that Bill Gates just has a little extra “walking around money”. Yes that would be an understatement.

Besides the regular routine of  mothering, homeschooling, household management, my home based business and my “part time” job (yada yada)… I am working ’round the clock on the annual Jim Elliot Christian High School Dinner Auction which is just over a week away (and I still need to sell 150 tickets..yikes, gather up last minute auction donations and work daily with my team of volunteers).  Add to that my homeschoolers have state testing this week, not having gone to bed before 2am in days and having kids going “down for the count” daily with the stomach flu…and yes extra time is just about non existent in my life right now.

Yet today despite all of this…I managed to throw on some red, white & blue, grab some flags out of the closet and drive downtown to City Hall for a 45 minute rally at our Stockton City Tea Party.

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Why did I stop in the midst of the craziness of my current life to attend a rally where no one was expecting me or perhaps it didn’t even matter if I was there?  Why did I overcome my own personal objections of weariness, busyness and other obligations?  WHY?  WHY? WHY?

  • Because I believe in the message!
  • Because I am role modeling for and training my children.  They are watching and listening to not just what I say….but what I do.
  • Because in the future when I am asked – “Why did you not try to do something to stop this mess?”  I will be able to with a clear conscience say – I did do something!

There is so much more that I could say about how sometimes we just need to throw out our excuses as to why we can’t do something….and just do it! (but I will just let me actions speak for me this time)

Life went on today….even though I spent 45 minutes at a rally letting my voice be heard and then another 45 minutes sharing that with you in this blog! And no one may ever remember that I let my voice be heard today, but I will lay my head on the pillow tonight with perfect peace that I have stood for what I believe in, have role modeled that to my children and have began the fight for our future generation who will have to bear the brunt of our current actions. 

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Is there something in your life that you say you believe in and that you just are not making the time to do? Or perhaps you really do not have the time? So what….just do it! (This is what I said to myself this morning as I contemplated “skipping out” on this event and listed all the reasons I just didn’t have the time)

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Filed under Determination, Economics, Life at the Lambdins, Life Lessons, Lifes Challenges, My "take", Priorities, Time Management

Inaugurations Happen….Every Four Years

Four years…will fly by!

How do I know?  Well after dragging my kids out of bed last Tuesday to watch the historic inauguration of our first black president (which we would have watched the inauguration events no matter who was being sworn in – to me it is patriotic!), I began to reminisce on past inaugurations.

  • Just four years ago in 2005 three of my girls – Michelle, Amy & Rebekah attended the inauguration of George W Bush for his second term
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  • Four years previous to that in 2001, Michelle, after working for months volunteering her time for the Republican Central Committee (as an 11 year old….mind you!) raised the funds and secured a ticket from our congressman to attend Bush’s first inauguration! 
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  • of course I can remember the 1997 inauguration of Bill Clinton because my four girls ages 7, 4, 3 and 18 months and I made & ate an entire batch of chocolate chip cookie dough to drown our sorrows. (ok, so the girls were happy even before the cookie dough except for perhaps Michelle who even at seven was already political)
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  • During the 1993 inauguration I only had two little girls…just a “starter kit” family 🙂
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  • If you go back to the 1989 innaguaration of George H Bush I was pregnant with Michelle just beginning my nine months of non stop “morning sickness”.
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  • And in 1985 I was single (not even considering matrimony or motherhood!) & a youth pastor for over 100 teens
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  • 1981, after voting for the first time the previous November for Ronald Reagan, I was an 18 year old freshman at the University of the Pacific
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That is only eight inaugurations since my being old enough to vote.  Then I began to do the math….our children will be at home with us for,  a mere four or at the most five inaugurations.  FOUR!!!???  Does that not seem like an incredibly small amount of time when you put it in perspective?  I know that when “your guy”  is not in office four years may seem like an eternity.  But it really does just fly by like all of life once you enter the “adult world”. (When I was a child everything seemed to take forever to get here…is that still the case today?) 

So wether you are lamenting or rejoicing in the next four years under our current administration

  • Take a moment to realize and let it sink in how very short four years is and how incredibly fast it will go by
  • Take a moment to count how many innaguarations your kids have left under your roof (Michelle is already up & out, this was the last innaguration for Amy & Kristen to be at home….<big sigh & gulp>, Rebekah has one left, Grace has two, Joy has three and Daniel has four)
  • Take a moment to decide what are you going to do with that time you have left, Lord willing, with your children?

Be purposeful in your parenting.  Have a plan and inact that plan! You have four short “terms of office” as their parents to

  • mold and shape them into people of character & conscience
  • teach and train them in the principles of the Word of God
  • disciple and mentor them to fear the Lord and glorify Him in all that they do
  • influence them to be life giving and show love to the “least of these” – the orphans, widows, elderly, disabled, depressed, outcasts, enslaved and the unborn
  • inspire them to live a life of service that will make a difference and have a lasting impact

Take an oath today that you will be purposeful in your parenting during the term of office you have left.  Don’t let these years just pass you by – all too soon your term will be up and your legacy will be carried on….for better or for worse by your children. What will history write about your parenting?

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Filed under Inspiration, Life Lessons, Making a Difference, My "take", Parenting, Service, Time Management

The thrill of opening my freezer

How many nights last week did your family sit down at the table and eat dinner together?

Ok, so we have all heard or read the studies – children who sit down and have dinner with their families, at least 5 times a week, are significantly less likely to get involved in drugs, drinking alcohol and smoking.  Studies have also shown that teens who ate with their families report:

  • higher grades in school
  • stronger friendships
  • better relationships with their parents

It has even been said that consistent family dinners are a greater predictor of future success than high SAT scores!

So with these studies screaming the importance of family dinners (not too mention our gut instinct as Moms telling us that daily sharing a meal together as a family is important), why would any of us not be diligent to be sure that we are making family meals happen regularly?  I think that for many it is simply the lack of organization, preparation or time it takes to put a good tasting nutricious meal on the table.  We seem to be all running ourselves at such warp speed that by the time dinner rolls around we are too exhausted or too caught up in the upcoming evening activities to make it happen, so we give into everyone just grabbing whatever they can find and eating on the run or in front of the TV or standing over the kitchen counter.

I solved this problem when I was a young Mom with two small children. I was working part time outside of my home and was involved full time with my husband in ministering to teenagers.  The girls and I would often arrive home right at dinnertime and I found myself  at a loss as to what to make for dinner.  It was at this time in my life that I came across the concept of “Once A Month Cooking”.  I heard a broadcast on Focus on the Family highlighting Mary-Beth Lagerborg and Mimi Wilson who were passionate about families sharing meals together.  The three things that hit me, besides already being sold on the value of sitting down together for a family dinner –

  1. I would save time and money (both of which I was short on)
  2. I would never again have to figure out what to have for dinner only to succumb to ordering pizza again or making macaroni and cheese
  3. I would be able to bless others by always being ready & able to have them join us for dinner or by pulling a meal out of the freezer to give to a family who just had a baby or was in need due to illness, death or financial crisis. 

That one radio broadcast ultimately changed my life!  From that point in the early 1990’s to this very day I have used the concept of “Once a Month Cooking” (with the exception of several years when we were beginning Jim Elliot Christian High School and relied on the generosity of others and the Lord’s provision for our meals), added my own tweaking and variations and we have enjoyed the benefits of having relatively stress free, no decision making dinners on our table each and every night.

I start by writing out what I want to eat that month – since October usually begins our cooler weather and after long hot summers we are ready for those cool crisp evenings – I always make this month’s menu full of our favorite soups, stews and other warm fall comfort foods. Several of these are in the “Once a Month Cooking” Cookbook  and others are our family fall favorites –

  • Split Pea Soup
  • Chili & Cornbread
  • French Stew
  • Colonial Cheddar Cheese Soup
  • Ravioli Soup
  • Taco Soup
  • Corn Chowder
  • White Chicken Chili
  • Potato Soup

 I add to that some Lambdin money saving staple meals – beans & rice, spaghetti, sloppy joes, chicken casseroles etc.. Then I make my shopping list and head out to purchase everything I need to make all these meals. My kitchen looks like this when I return from shopping –

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It usually takes me about 6 to 7 hours to prepare, cook and put the meals in freezer containers, if I have no help.  In the early years, we had a wonderful roommate (Hi Carleen!) who would help me power this out much faster and now when I can get my teenagers to take a study break they will assist me. (sometimes if life is really full, I may even split the preparation into two days)The dishes at the end are horrendous (especially since our dishwasher broke 6 months ago and we do it all by hand) but I remind whomever has kitchen duty chore that it is well worth it in the end! 🙂

 

Everything is labeled with directions taped on the front and put into the freezer – who would have ever thought that a freezer full of a months worth of meals could bring such fulfillment and joy? (and of course my girls do not get what the big thrill this picture brings me or why I would even take it – something years and becoming a mother will cure.)

I then tape up a calendar on the fridge listing what meal is to be served each day, along with any side dishes and who is “in charge” of getting it all on the table (All the girls ages 9 and older help out as well as Dan).  I always leave the last week empty as it is inevitable that plans change or we end up having a “left overs” night along the way – so we just move the unused meal from that day down to the last week.

After that all I have to do is check what meals we are having for the coming week on Monday morning – do a quick store run for perishables like bread, lettuce, fresh vegetables and milk  – and we are set!

Here is the book that inspired my life long habit of meal planning for a month and taught me how to plan, shop & cook for a month in a single day –

A Proven System for Spending Less Time in the Kitchen and Enjoying Delicious, Homemade Meals Every Day

But don’t be intimidated by the entire month part – if that sounds to overwhelming – how about two weeks or even one?  If it is all still too much or you do not want to think about masking a list, shopping and all that prep/clean up time – here is the perfect solution! Companies like “Dinners My Way”(my friend Cres Bruns owns the local franchise) and “Dream Dinners”.   are all set up to provide this service. You simply pay for the number of meals you want to make, sign up for a couple hour session and then they provide all the ingredients (already all chopped up, grated, cooked etc….). You make a mess of their kitchen and walk away with meals ready to put in your freezer. The prices are very reasonable and it is super easy. Plus you could go with a friend and even have more fun!

Of course I guess if money was not a consideration, you could hire a private chef to ensure meals served hot on your table every night….now wouldn’t that be awesome?

But whatever you do – begin today to come up with a plan to ensure that you get your family to sit down most days of the week to a wonderful dinner together.  I’m off to enjoy some Ravioli Soup around the candlelit dinner table surrounded by lively conversation and laughter.

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Filed under Life at the Lambdins, Motherhood, Time Management

Excuses, excuses – “I just don’t have time”

Yesterday…feedburner (the service that handles my blog subscriptions) mysteriously sent out an email saying that I had posted…which I hadn’t.  When it was brought to my attention my first thought was – Is someone “hacking” into my blog and getting ready to send out some evil or ugly post to my subscribers which now number close to 600?  I quickly logged into my wordpress account and could not find any evidence of foul play.  Then I thought perhaps one of my kids accidentally got on to my blog site and hit “publish” of a non existent post.  Of course this is a real possibility as I have posted from every computer that has ever been in this house and have saved my log in information on them all…even baby Daniel could probably randomly hit the right keys and pull off an empty post being sent. (after all he is brilliant!)  Or perhaps it was just some glitch in the feedburner system? Who knows.

Update– Just as I was about to post today, my feedburner account once again sent out an email today with one of the last posts I had wrote over two weeks ago – yikes! What is happening?? Does my awesome personal “IT” guy, Jeff have any thoughts – or any others out there who might be able to give me any ideas as to what is happening?

Either which way….it made me desperatly long to spend some long overdue time blogging.  You see, I love to write.  I love to inspire, encourage and bless others.  I love to challenge peoples thinking.  I love to share bits and pieces of my unique life (complete with photos). I love to make a positive difference in lives.  In fact, besides public speaking, writing is one of my greatest passions.  On top of that, without sounding presumptious – I believe it is my calling and that I have been gifted by God in this area.

Why then have I not written in over two weeks?  If I really truly love to do this and feel it is a calling and gift, then why am I not doing it?  I could throw out the time factor – after all I am the mother of seven (who are currently playing on five different sports teams, one is rehearsing several times a week for a major musical, three of them are being homeschooled and I have a 17 month old that is in himself a “full time job” – as are all toddlers!) , I am working from home at my Creative Memories home business and putting in over 20 hours a week for JECHS, leading a homeschoolco-op, managing our home, helping out friends in need  yada yada yada … (not trying to get into the boring  “I am so busy” wars)

But I have NEVER really bought into the “I don’t have time” excuse.  We all have time.  We all have the same 24 hours in a day.  We all choose what to do with that time and how we choose – is a dead give away as to what our true priorities are.  So I must say that writing, inspiring and motivating through this blog has simply not been a priotity as of late.

Well even as I write that, it doesn’t settle well with me. (as in I have to say – ouch!) This is a priority in my life and therefore I need to carve out the time to just do it. (Just as I do my other priorities – my relationships with the Lord, my dear darling husband, my children, friends & family and my personal passions and pursuits)

What about you? Are there things in your life today that you say are priorities but that you are not putting time into? Are you using the “I just don’t have the time” excuse?  Perhaps we should replace the often used excuse of  “I just don’t have time”, to the reality – “This is just not a priority”.  And if that statement stings a bit – then perhaps it is time to reevaluate where your are spending one of your most precious resources – your time!

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Filed under Priorities, Time Management

Living Life “Outside of the Box”

No I haven’t dropped off the face of the earth – we just arrived home from two weeks away. After running the program staff for a youth summer camp, we spent the following week enjoying our annual Lambdin family & friends camping trip to Lake Tahoe.  I have lots to share with you all about our summer adventures, our “barn raising”, adoption progress and my “fat face” update – but for today before tackling the mounds of mail & messages, loads of laundry and organization for the upcoming (far too fast for me!) school year – I wanted to write a quick post about….

Living Life Outside of the Box

The particular “box” I am talking about is the one that seems to command center stage in most of our homes – the television.  Last year I came across a website that challenged us to take the month of August and “Live Life Outside the Box” – in other words unplug your TV set for a month and spend that time doing other worthwhile pursuits.  We took the challenge and added our own ban on computer games and all other electronic entertainment, media and non essential computer time(ie: mindless web surfng). We – or perhaps I should say “I” – the Momma, have decided that this “fast” should become an annual tradition for our family.  It is a perfect time of year to do it as we are winding down the summer with a couple of weeks to enjoy family activities and as we need to focus on preparing and organizing for another academic year.

Now, I do need to tell you that unplugging the “boob tube” (as my mother called it) is not a huge sacrifice for our family.  We do not have cable (and never have had it – in fact the first five years of our married life we did not even own a TV) and therefore we only get fuzzy reception on three channels if we go through the hassle of hooking up an antennae.  This alone keeps us from watching hardly any television on a regular basis.  About the only time the actual television goes on is when we are watching a sporting event (mostly football games and March Madness College Basketball).  We also have chosen to never have our TV in the main living and dining area of our home.  This keeps it from being the focus of our attention and we NEVER (yes in capital letters & bold) watch the TV while we are eating meals. (I cannot emphasize enough how important meal time conversations are to all relationships – if you do nothing else turn off your TV during dinner & eat around the table)  We do however enjoy watching movies on DVD’s, probably more often than we should.  After our month of “Living Life Outside of the Box” in 2007, we decided to continue the “habit” throughout the school year on Monday through Friday.  It was a great discipline as well as keeping us focused on more productive activities.

Can you and your family take the month and unplug the TV, video games, movies and live life “outside the box”?  Or perhaps a month might put you “over the edge” – how about a week or 10 days?  I can gaurantee you that if you think you just “couldn’t do that” – you probably need to! 🙂

Check out this statistic:

The average American watches over 4 1/2 hours of television every single day!

 

Let’s add that up. That is 31½ hours every week (almost a second job!). That also adds up to 5½ solid days per month and more than two entire months every year. By age 70 that is over 13 years watching television! Aren’t there more important things you would rather be doing with this time? For those like me saying I don’t watch that much TV – do your own math – do you watch 2 hours a day? (thats 15 hours a week, one month out of the entire year, 6+ years of your lifetime) Or maybe you just watch an hour a day – what could you do with 7 extra hours this week?  Gives you something to think about.

Worse, according to the most recent figures from Nielsen, the average American household has a TV playing somewhere in their household for 8 hours 14 minutes per day.  How is there any time available to develop meaningful relationships, pursue worthwhile endevours or make a difference in the community or world? 

The number one queston/statement I get from others about my life is this –

“How do you do it all?” or “I don’t know how you do it all.”

Well, I don’t watch TV and maybe that is a large part of the answer. (although let me be the first to admit that I don’t do it all and I certainly don’t do it all very well!)

Here is a “short list” of some fun and relaxing things you could do with your extra time this month

  • Have a family game night
  • Read a book (or write one!)
  • Have coffee with a friend
  • Go on a walk (and take your spouse or child)
  • Plant a garden
  • Begin to learn to play an instrument or learn a language (easily done with 15 hours a week put in!)
  • Take a class (or teach one)
  • Host a dinner party
  • Volunteer or do community service
  • Call your Mom, Dad, sibling, long lost friend & chat
  • Bake or cook something new
  • Do something with your priceless photos 
  •  Journal
  • Soak your feet in warm water and give yourself a pedicure
  • Go out & throw a ball or play sports with your kids
  • Write a letter (yes with a paper, pen and a stamp)

Will you join us this month (or at least a part of it) in Living Life “Outside of the Box”?

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Filed under Family Traditions, Life at the Lambdins, Time Management

Making the most of the moment!

One of the things you become very aware of when living at the beach is that the weather changes swiftly and that it is never consistent from moment to moment or with what the weather reports say it will be.

You can wake up to a beautiful sunrise thinking “Oh it is going to be a beautiful sunny day”, only to have the clouds slowly drift in and cover up the warm sunshine.  The wind can be blowing strong one moment and then a great stillness will come upon the shore and you can barely feel the breeze upon your cheek, as you lay out baking in the sun while reading a book on the beach.  The day can begin with rain storms and a quick check on the Internet says you should stay inside and marvel at the rainstorm and roaring waves from the comfort of your living room and then in an instant the rain stops, the storm clouds part and blue skies poke through and before you know it – the makings of the most beautiful outdoor day ever!  You cannot even be guaranteed to have a “picture perfect” sunset on one of those bright, clear sunny days as just at the last moment a bank of fog may roll out to sea covering up any hope of the brilliant bright red, pink orange and golden hues that you were hoping to relish at the days end.

This phenomenon however helps me to develop a great habit of making the most of every moment because I cannot count on having another opportunity like that again.  So when I am woken up by the cries of my baby boy at an incredibly early hour and get a glimpse of the amazing sunrise over the Montery Bay peninsula, instead of rolling over and going back to sleep – I lay there awake and take it in or even get up and have my morning hot drink out on the veranda and just admire Gods handiwork. (I would love to say hot coffee – but alas for now as I fight the “fat face” and other health goals – it is hot lemon water) Or when I see the morning sun dancing down on the water forming sparkling diamonds all over the ocean, I eagerly put on my walking shoes and head out for the wonderful exhilarating walk along the seashore.  Likewise when it is rainy and cold, I take advantage of some enjoyable indoor activities like scrapbooking, writing or playing with the girls as I know as soon as the weather turns I will want to be outside (and sand, sun & scrapbooking do not mix!). On warm sunny days, I eat every meal possible out on the deck overlooking the ocean  and I enjoy every picture perfect sunset knowing that it may be the last one I have this year during my beach month hiatus.

If only I could live the rest of my life in the present just like this – making the most of every moment!  What if I stopped waiting until tomorrow to –

  • quit worrying about cleaning my house and stop to enjoy a leisurely conversation and cup of tea with a dear friend who I have been wanting to spend time with?
  • be spontaneous with my children and stop the mundane daily routine to take a walk to the park on a beautiful morning, jump in the pile of leaves on that fall afternoon, build a fire and cuddle on the couch reading books on a stormy day or one of my girls all time favorite memories of their mommy – going out in the rainstorm and stomping in every big puddle you can find or sliding down the kiddie slide into the mud puddle below until you are all completely soaked and muddy!
  • Begin those desired family traditions or put together those memory filled photo albums you have been wanting to complete and just jumped in and got going on it with even just that spare 15 or 30 minutes you occasionally have.
  • Call that friend or family member or even acquaintance that you just “happened” to think about today and tell them you love them, appreciate them or just had them on your heart or mind.
  • Kiss your spouse and tell them that you love, adore, cherish and appreciate them and get all decked out and go for a “night out on the town” or a romantic weekend get away!
  • Get up early and watch the sunrise, take a walk through a beautiful park or garden, lay on a hammock with the late afternoon sun warming your face, enjoy a cup of tea or coffee with something sweet while listening to inspirational music, lay out in your backyard on a clear evening watching the stars sparkle.

What if we all made the most of each and every moment, each and everyday day, each and every season and each and every year to simply enjoy our lives, our loved ones and Gods creation?  As I head for home later this afternoon, my prayer is that I will continue to live in and make the most of each and every moment I have.  Won’t you join me?

One of our last beach sunsets (photo by my 13 year old daughter Kristen Lambdin – as were the starfish pictures – I think I have a budding photographer on my hands – and all with a “point & shoot digital”, can’t wait to see what she does with the SLR camera she is saving her pennies for!)

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Filed under Attitude, Inspiration, Time Management

My bonus day

How did I spend my bonus day?

This morning I fixed a big breakfast of scrambled eggs, bacon & coffee cake for my girls. (a real treat since I rarely cook breakfast – morning isn’t my best time of the day)  Later in the afternoon I played the game of “Sorry” with my five year old.  I emailed a few “old” friends who I have been “meaning to” get in contact with and organized some photos to get ready for a weekend of scrapbooking!

And the biggest bonus of my day…………..drum roll please – I grabbed a boogie board and went out into the frigid February Pacific Ocean and rode a couple waves to the delight of my daughters (who are out there daily!) 

Yes it was FREEZING!

Has it really been 27 years since body surfing in the Pacific was a regular part of my life?

Taking a “breather” after my boogie boarding adventure  – maybe next weekend I’ll rent a wet suit!

I hope you all enjoyed your bonus day too!

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Filed under Time Management

What will you do with your bonus day?

Today is a “bonus” day!

Yes, that’s right every four years we are given a “bonus” day on February 29th! Every four years instead of 365 days, we get 366! Every four years we get a full extra 24 hours! Today is that extra day.  What will you do today with your bonus day? 

How about all those things that you have been putting off until you have “more” time?

  • Organizing those photos, making a dent in that scrapbooking project or completing some journaling
  • Reading or finishing that book that you heard was so fabulous
  • Making that long overdue doctor or dentist appointment
  • Cleaning or organizing that “junk drawer”, spare bedroom or garage
  • Sitting down and planning your yearly calendar to include meaningful family traditions that you keep wanting to do but never seem to get going on them

Or maybe you could use your bonus day to do something positive for other people and your community?

  • Volunteer at a homeless shelter or soup kitchen
  • Grab a trash bag and go pick up all the trash on your street
  • Visit the elderly, sick or shut ins
  • Call a stressed out Mom of toddlers and take her kids to the park or mall playground for a couple hours
  • Help a single Mom or widow with the yard work, house or car maintenance

Or what about spending the day enriching your relationships?

  • Spend time really playing with your kids on their level (even if that means getting down on the floor and playing “pollies”)
  • Call your spouse just to say I love you & appreciate you (and husbands – bring home flowers for no special reason) – go out on a special date night
  • Ask your loved ones what would be their “perfect day” and then make it happen for them
  • Call that long lost friend from the past just to say hi and catch up
  • Invite that family you have been wanting to get to know over for dinner
  • Take your neighbors some yummy fresh baked cookies
  • Sit on the couch with your family and read a book together (and turn OFF the TV!)
  • Write notes of love, support and appreciation to all those imortant people in your life
  • Mend a broken relationship – say you are sorry, ask for forgiveness – forgive and forget

Or maybe you just need a complete day “off” to rest, relax and be renewed and refreshed so that you can continue to live a life all year of meaning and purpose.

 Just some thoughts for you on this – February 29, 2008 – now you decide how you will spend your “bonus day”. Will it just be “the same ole, same ole” or will you make it truly a special bonus day?

P.S. – If you are reading this at the days end or perhaps even days after February 29th – you still got a bonus day but if you used it just doing the “norm” then take today or tomorrow and make it your bonus day!

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Family & Friends Friday – date night

It’s date night!

As I got up this morning and looked at the calendar – there it was – in bright bold red letters. Yes, tonight is dear darling hubby and my monthly date night and I can’t wait! In case you haven’t noticed, there have been less posts in the past few weeks. Not because I lack anything to write about, the words are buzzing around in my head constantly, but rather because I am going full speed ahead with a rather all encompassing year long project I have taken on to further the ministry at Jim Elliot Christian High School. (if you are interested you can check it out here and I welcome any input or insights!) Not to mention last weekend was my annual Croptoberfest scrapbooking weekend with over 100 women in attendance and then there is another “family” project in the works that I will share with you all very soon. (don’t you love suspense!)

Back to date night!  Yee haw! One of the most valuable things that ddh and I have done throughout our entire married life (21 years on 12/20/07) is to go on regular date nights.  Of course, “pre-kids” these were weekly and as we are currently right smack in the middle of the season of raising our lively & large family, they are now monthly.  BUT we never, ever, ever miss out on these monthly date nights.  As soon as I get my new calendar for the year, one of the first things I do is to pick one night a month and write in big bold letters – DATE NIGHT!  (And if it is on the calendar, it happens! Although every once in awhile we have to move it around by a few days to accommodate something unexpected…but it NEVER gets put off until next month.)

Why date nights? 

  • To be sure to constantly build, nurture and work on the marriage relationship. If you want a fabulous marriage it takes work! (contrary to many popular love songs we hear.)
  • Because the most important thing parents can do for their children, outside of loving the Lord, is to love each other. 
  • To be a role model to our children for their future relationship with their spouse. Do you want your children to have a fabulous marriage relationship built on common faith, a strong friendship, commitment and life long love? Then you need to be sure you are role modeling that.  Regular consistent date nights give you one opportunity to do that. Don’t think for a minute they do not notice either! Just the other day as I was going through my eldest daughters school years folder, I found a little book she had written in kindergarten for Mothers Day. One of the sentences in it said….”My Mom looks best when…..she goes out on a date with my Dad”  They are watching you and learning….what are you role modeling?
  • To talk! Ok, so are any of you like me? You live in the same house, share the same bed, see each other everyday and yet you can’t seem to pull off a meaningful conversation that is more than a laundry list of “to do” items (who is taking who to soccer practice, when we are doing this or that, can you go here or there etc…)  Date nights are all about communication.  We can share our stress, concerns, problems, frustrations and needs as well as our ideas, insights and inspirations. We can affirm each other and come up with solutions to problems before they get to big.
  • To have fun!  Yes, we need to date our spouses to go out, have a good time together and create meaningful memories. To relax and be refreshed by our relationship.
  • For romance!  To get decked out – looking your best (or at least brushing your hair and putting on some make up) and impress the love of your life. To hold hands and sit next to each other (without a toddler squeezing in between). To cultivate a tender, loving relationship and keep that spark alive.

By my calculations we have gone on over 350 “official” date nights. (this doesn’t count the hundreds of weddings we have attended together, as we have committed our lives to ministering to youth we go to weddings often – these are “bonus” dates) All it takes is putting it on the calendar & “just doing it”. 

No money you say?  We have been poorer than poor (read no extra money here) throughout much of our married life and have learned to be very creative on date nights – a cracker & cheese picnic in the park, a walk along the water munching on popcorn, going for a long drive (or parking in a remote spot….hmmmmm….remember those days?), or our personal “no funds” favorite – going to Costco & tasting all the samples while “dream shopping” (ie: not purchasing anything – just looking, dreaming & talking about what we like there). How about putting all your loose change in a special container only to be used for date nights (it should at least add up to enough for coffee & dessert) or asking for restaurant gift certificates for birthdays or anniversaries and saving them for these dates.

No one to watch the kids? How about trading childcare every month with another couple who would like a date night too? Or if you really are stuck without childcare help – put the wee ones down early (with serious consequences for getting up) and have yourself a candlelight dinner or watch a movie together or give each other a massage.

Whatever you need to do to make it happen…Do it! These date nights have helped me to always see “my man Dan” as the love of my life, best friend & partner in everything!

So when is your next date night?  How about tonight?  I can’t wait!

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Filed under Family & Friends Friday, Priorities, Time Management

After this day

In honor of the bright, talented, goal setting, driven, intense, persuasive, strong willed, lovely, going to change the world  #4 Lambdin lady  – Rebekah – who is turning 12 years old tomorrow, I am posting an updated Monday Motivation that I wrote seven years ago shortly after her 5th birthday. It is very timely in my own life as I am currently saying “after this day” in a couple areas of my own life.  Here it is from October 2000.

This morning I was snuggling in bed with my 5 year old, Rebekah, who wants to break her life long habit of…sucking her thumb! 

While we were laying there talking she put her head down on the pillow & popped her thumb in her mouth.  rebekah1.jpgI gently reminded her that she had made a commitment to stop sucking her thumb on her birthday a few weeks back.  She pulled her thumb out of her mouth, smiled wryly at me and said with confidence “Oh Momma…I will stop sucking my thumb…..after this day, rebekah2.jpgand then promptly put that thumb right back in her mouth.  After quizzing her about why she was putting it off, why she didn’t just stop today and then going over all the compelling reasons as to why she should stop, she finally said with exasperation “it’s toooooo hard, Momma!”

Hmmmm, now doesn’t that sound familiar? Isn’t that pretty much what we all do when something is  just to hard or will take to much time, effort & energy?  We tell ourselves we will do it – “after this day”.  What types of things are you putting off doing? Do any of these hit home with you?

  • going on that diet or exercising regularly & eating healthy
  • starting that home based business (or really beginning to actually work at the one you’ve already started)
  • getting on a budget or having a financial plan and sticking to it
  • doing something with our precious photographs (you know the ones that you say are so important that they are first thing you’d save in a fire or flood?)
  • finally quitting smoking, drinking, gossiping, overeating, complaining (or whatever your bad habit or vice is…we all have them)
  • getting together with, writing a letter or calling that old dear friend of ours who we have not connected with recently
  • writing those long overdue thank you notes
  • beginning to work toward achieving that personal dream you have in your heart
  • volunteering your time or giving your money to that organization you really believe in
  • going to church, joining that Bible study or spending consistent time in the Word and prayer
  • being bold and opening my mouth and sharing my faith with those who need the Lord
  • mending that broken relationship or asking forgiveness
  • being purposeful about creating a meaningful family life & raising children who have your values, morals & faith
  • _______________________________ (list what you are putting off until “after this day”)

But unfortunately, too often for many of us “after this day” never comes.  Saying or thinking we will do things “after this day” just helps us to justify the fact that we are not doing what we say we want or need to do! It gives us a false hope that perhaps someday we really will.  Telling ourselves “after this day” pacifies us just like Rebekah’s thumb pacifies her.  

Our “after this day” often sounds like this –

  • after….this crazy, busy, out of control week (month, season or even year)
  • after….my kids start school (go back to school, get out of school, graduate from school or leave home)
  • after….I get organized (settled down, clean my house or office desk)
  • after….I have this baby (the next baby or the last baby)
  • after….the holidays (my birthday, vacation or that special event)
  • after….I get that job (quit that job, finish that assignment or retire)
  • after…everything is perfect! (“when the moon is in the seventh house & Jupiter aligns with Mars”  to quote a popular 70’s song that often makes me laugh at myself  & others when we make crazy excuses that we are waiting for just the right time!)
  • after…..____________________(fill in the blank with your favorite reason to put off something)

Of course occasionally it is appropriate to wait or put off something until a better time but more often than not it is simply just an excuse to not do something or at least get started in that direction.  Let’s get honest with ourselves today and first decide what is it that you REALLY want to do.

Do you really want to lose that weight & live a healthier life?  Do you really want to make extra income, have less stress and be able to enjoy some financial freedom that owning/working a business, budgeting or planning can bring you?  Would you love to have your photos and memories organized, preserved and available to be easily enjoyed regularly? Are you tired of bad habits, character flaws or unhealthy lifestyles controlling you?  Do you long to have restored relationships with loved ones? Do you want to have the personal fulfillment & blessing of giving of your time, talent or treasure to a worthy cause?  Do you need to be in a growing relationship with God? Do you want to live a meaningful life and pass on your values, morals & faith to your children?  Do you have a dream or goal that often wells up in your heart and mind that you would love to see become a reality?

What is it that you want to do that you keep putting off until another time?  Perhaps it is time to STOP saying  “after this day” and start saying TODAY IS THE DAY!  Forget the past failures, present hardships and put away the many excuses. Begin this very day to do the things you need to do to move you closer to accomplishing your life goals & your dreams! 

Here’s to starting….TODAY!

2007 update:  Rebekah did eventually stop sucking her thumb but not until she was forced to by the orthodontist who put a palate expander in the roof of her mouth.  She was nine years old by that time and had to suffer the pain & problems of extensive dental work in part because of her “after this day” decision.  There is almost always some type of consequence to putting off important things in our lives until “after this day”.  A life lesson that has hopefully been learned well so she can avoid in the future having an “after this day” mentality.

She is now a twelve year old and a tenacious “go getter”!  She is all about planning, working & accomplishing her goals & dreams.  And her attitude is always….Let’s do it NOW. Here is her current “short list” of things she wants to do and/or accomplish –

  • Start her own business this year (actually 2 different businesses – a “Moms morning out” and a trash can cleaning business)
  • Make lots of money (she wants to buy a high quality digital camera, travel, add to her beauty product collection, give money to missions and save.)
  • Travel to Hawaii & Texas in 2008
  • Glorify God by being kind & compassionate to others
  • To consistently help the homeless & hungry by having fast food gift cards & water in the car ready to pass out at any given time.

Rebekah – You go girl! Happy Birthday

Photo by Sallee Photography

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Filed under Goals & Dreams, Home Business, Monday Motivations, Time Management

Lesson plan for life

Can someone please tell me when the month of August ceased being summertime?  

Isn’t August still a time for “floatin’ fools in the swimming pools”, mouthwatering backyard barbecues with friends, carnivals & state fairs, baseball games, enjoying ice coffee & conversation on the patio in the cool of the evening after a sweltering day. (Ok, ok…so I live in California…my apologies to those of you who live in the weather ravaged parts of the world where its still HOT & HUMID at 9pm), late night ice cream sundaes in front of a newly rented movie and sleeping in as late as you want in the morning! It is truly the best of the “dog days of summer” …no schedules, no agenda…just enjoying the easy living of summer!

These days summer seems to come to a screeching halt by the end of July as more & more schools are choosing early start dates instead of the traditional day after Labor Day….1st day of school. My life has been affected by this evolution….with dear darling hubby working at an educational institution that began mid August & # 2 daughter attending there, the charter school I homeschool thru following suit, soccer practices already in full swing for the fall season & even the local neighborhood pool cutting back their hours to weekends & “after school” (even though its 98 degrees outside!). It has even dampened my September 1st birthday celebration that use to always be the last week of summer vacation with no worries, no school, no homework! (and I didn’t care about missing out on cupcakes in the classroom…I’d take a vacation time birthday party over that anytime!) Yes, in my world …it is & should still be summer with all its many wonderful diversions!

So since I refuse to conform to this “new” definition of August…for me today begins the final week of summertime before school starts.  It is a time to continue to enjoy the lazy days of summer while beginning to form a plan for the upcoming school year.

Next week when we officially begin lessons (as a homeschooling family our philosophy is “life is school” but we do complete lessons!) we will all be up a bit earlier in the morning, getting supplies together, and making sure the kids are properly dressed…before getting out the camera for the first day of school pictures. (the rest of the year they can do their school work in their PJ’s for all I care…but have to have those pictures!) 

Having personally been entrenched in education for over 21 years (11 as a high school teacher & administrator and the past 10 years as a home school teacher)… I always see this time of year as a new beginning. A fresh start to a brand new school year that I can make into whatever I want it to be.  The past school year (with all its failures, mistakes as well as successes) is over and gone, only to be remembered through report cards, school records and the scrapbook or yearbook.

I always loved that feeling! I had an empty lesson planner and a school year calendar sitting blank in front of me and I would create whatever type of year I wanted. I could continue to fine tune & develop the things that were successful and make them even better. I could try brand new, perhaps even “risky” ideas in hopes of inspiring my students in their quest of learning.  As I sat there with my yearly calendar, my goals & objectives and my weekly lesson plans…the sky was the limit as to what I could do & accomplish that new school year. BUT one thing was always certain….I never started a new school year without a “plan”. None of us would accept our children’s teacher telling us that they had no specific plan for the year…no goals or objectives….that they were just going to see what happened.  We would leave that classroom (in shock!) and head to the principals office demanding a new teacher!  

YET…that is exactly what many of us do with our lives.  We just “let it happen” without any goals & objectives and with very little planning and then we wonder why its “not working” for us? I want to challenge you today, during this week before new beginnings(like the start of a new school year, even if your kids started weeks ago!) to begin to make a plan for your year. Forget the past…and make today a fresh new start.  

Begin with the end in mind!

Well, maybe not the very end (although that’s an excellent way to live….thinking about what you want your life to have looked like when you are on your death bed!) Let’s start with this –  Next August what do you want your life to look like?  What personal or family habits do you want to cultivate? What new traditions do you want to establish or new ways to celebrate life? What do you want to teach your children? What do you want for your marriage and/or family relationships? Do you have any new skills you want to acquire or talents you want to improve upon or use? Where do you want to be spiritually, physically, emotionally, mentally & financially?

After you write out your dreams, goals, objectives…..take each of them and make a list of what needs to happen to accomplish them. Then “calendar” those things into your year & write out your life’s lesson plans.

Here is one example –

Goal: To get caught up & stay current on my family photo albums

Ways to accomplish this:  weekly time set aside to journal, monthly workshops, yearly retreats

What to put on the life lesson plan & calendar:  Journaling time every Sunday afternoon for 1 hour (during baby’s nap), First Friday of the month attend a 4 hour workshop to complete albums, Every August go on a scrapbooking weekend retreat with friends.

Here is a “heavier” example

Goal: The family to mature spiritually over the next year.

What needs to happen to accomplish this: church involvement, regular family prayer & devotions, scripture memory, cultivating personal time with God, becoming missions minded, developing meaningful spiritual traditions around the holidays etc…

What to put on the life lesson plan & calendar: Calendar in weekly church attendance,yearly mission trip or other local outreach opportunity (like working at a local soup kitchen or passing out blankets to the homeless). Decide on best time for family prayer & devotions and make it happen. (even if you begin with once a week rather than daily) Pick a verse to begin memorizing and post it around the house (bathroom mirrors, fridge, car dash board etc..) – practice together daily at a family meal or while driving to school. Research making holidays meaningful & implement one thing to each holiday this year. Provide a “quiet time” at home (even if it is just 15 minutes) for cultivating a relationship with God thru the word & personal prayer & meditation.

So as the summer winds down & the new school year begins – Write out your dreams & goals for this year, make a life’s lesson plan & then put  that plan into action! Don’t continue to just let life “happen”  BUT rather “MAKE IT HAPPEN”.  You will reap great rewards for your efforts.

Here’s to next August as you are enjoying the “dog days of summer” basking in the sun by the pool, you’ll also enjoy looking back at your many accomplishments of the past year & basking in the glory of a life well lived.

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File under: What was I thinking?

 What was I thinking??

Have you ever muttered those words or had them flash across your brain like a neon light?  I have had a knack for doing a few not so brilliant things in my life where those words were not just said or thought by me, but by many others as well.  A few examples (at the risk of seeming like a big idiot) –

Slicing a 1 inch hole in my knee with a pair of manicure scissors while attempting to cut my toenails. (and I still have the scar to prove it!)

Holding a metal ruler with my mouth while needing two hands to do something else & then banging it on the table….shoving it back into my throat & cutting it severely…….ahhhhhhhhh!! (didn’t Mom always tell you not to put things in your mouth?)

Teaching a high school class a day after my due date while having contractions 3 minutes apart! (my water broke minutes after leaving the class..that would have been a great deterrent to teen pregnancy!)

Deciding I could handle the black triangle ski run (even though I was not an expert skier) and after crashing & tumbling half way down the steep hill…taking off my ski’s and walking the rest of the way down. (To the condesending glances of those riding the ski lift above me)

Ok….that’s enough! (Believe me there are plenty more but I’ll save some of my pride)

Then there are other moments, seasons & decisions in my life that I could have filed under the – “What was I thinking?” category (& certainly everyone else was thinking that!)….however, while they seemed crazy to others & even at times to myself, they were really steps of faith…overlooking the obstacles and realities of my life & seeing the vast potential of the opportunity ahead of me while relying on God to give me the strength to move forward with His supernatural power & wisdom.

The time I signed a “part time” contract (with a part time salary) to do many different full time jobs at the high school where I was employed – guidance counseling, admissions director, student activity director, yearbook & journalism advisor and leadership teacher. (They hired 5 different people when I left!)

What was I thinking?

I often wonder that exact thing but that season of life resulted in a wealth of experience & knowledge that has benefited me greatly in everything I have done since that time.  The relationships I developed during those years with my students, their parents & the staff has enriched my life like none other.  In fact rarely a day goes by where I do not come face to face with the reality of those relationships.  It was a good thing that I wasn’t thinking or I would have missed out on this awesome blessing!

Then there was the time I decided to begin my own home based business at a period in my life when I had four children….whose ages were…. 6, 3, 18 months and a newborn!

What was I thinking?

I wasn’t thinking! (and who is when they are postpartum & have several tiny ones under foot…you don’t have time to think, your brain is in a fog & you are just trying to survive!)  However, that business was and is a huge blessing to my life.  Not only was I able to provide a much needed income for my growing family but I learned to blend my family with my business and we all benefited greatly.  Here eleven years later those children are 17, 14, 131/2, and 11 (and there are three more now – 8, 4 and the baby) – the skills they have developed and the confidence, as well as awesome people skills are a direct result of being involved in Mommy’s business.  I’m glad I didn’t do much thinking about my life situation and obstacles!

Another example is when my dear darling husband and I were facing an unprecedented financial crisis in our lives & we had no income. Instead of taking one of the many job opportunities that came our way, we decided to “live by faith” and start a much needed Christian high school in our area. Other than a handful of people everyone else thought we had lost our minds!

What were we thinking?

We were only thinking of the incredible vision & dream we had of a fabulous, thriving high school that would touch the lives of young people in such a way that they would in turn go out & make a huge and positive impact on the world! And am I ever glad we didn’t do much thinking or perhaps the school (where my husband loves serving as Chaplain, where one daughter has graduated from & is already out impacting the world, another daughter has just begun there & two girls follow close behind in the next few years) may not even exist. I am thankful that we didn’t let our logical thinking process drown out our faith!

What are you thinking about doing?

Is there something looming in front of you that seems bigger than life, impossible or perhaps just too crazy to even try? Does it keep coming to the forefront of your mind but you want to write it off as insane?

Sometimes you need to stop thinking. Sometimes analyzing every side of a situation can paralyze you and keep you from jumping into something that just might be life changing! Sometimes you need to ignore the voices inside your head or around you from others and do something that might be “outside the box”, different, crazy or even impossible to everyone but God.

I find myself once again on the threshold of a “What are you thinking?” moment and getting ready to jump into something that is a bit crazy with obstacles to overcome and realities to deal with.  But I will press forward with Gods strength and power in the hope that when I look back on my life I will rejoice that I didn’t “think” too much but rather jumped in and experienced incredible, life changing  & miraculous things!

What are you thinking about?

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Filed under Attitude, Home Business, Jim Elliot Christian High School, Lifes Challenges, Monday Motivations, Time Management

Choosing the Best

It was one of those days….

….the “to do list” was overwhelming, the papers to shuffle were stacked so high they toppled over on the floor, there were emails & voice mails to answer and I had spent the day “running” – running errands, running to the store (and back – because it never fails in the Lambdin family that some critical item has been forgotten), and running kids to their many activities.

As I sat down after dinner to nurse the little knight (aka Sir Daniel Guy)….my mind raced as I made a plan on how to spend the rest of my evening to get a handle on life and things back in order. After he finished burping and stared up at me with that milk drunk look…I quickly moved to put him into bed looking forward with anticipation to a couple of solid hours to just get things done! As I headed back to the room he began to fuss….a sure sign that he was ready to go to sleep, as he was dry & fed. As a mommy of many I have learned to train my babies to lay down and “fuss” themselves to sleep after just a few minutes. (with the exception of the extremly colicky one!) As I was about to lay him down to do just that and rush off to “work”…that still small voice stopped me with the question…”Why don’t you rock him to sleep tonight?”

My first reaction was…I don’t have time…there is so much to get done…not tonight, maybe tomorrow! Yet despite these thoughts and feelings, I turned and went into the living area, turned the lights down low and sat down to rock the baby. As I rocked “Sir Daniel” I sang softly to him great hymns of the faith, I prayed for him to grow up to be a strong, upright, moral young man with a heart after God, I spoke scriptures to him as I stared into his sleepy eyes that were filled with love & adoration for me, his mother. As he drifted off to sleep…I enjoyed the heaviness of his body resting against me, his peaceful rhythmic breathing and the sleeping smiles that make you wonder what they are dreaming about. 🙂 I sat there in the midst of the current chaos of life and felt perfect peace and my heart swelled with love & joy.

Yes there were still piles & piles of things to do all around me….most definitely many “urgent” things as well as some very important things. And yes…I would begin the week slightly disorganized & haphazard without my two hours of evening work. But I knew this was the BEST thing to be doing with my time. Everything would still be there in the morning (albeit a few “deadlines” would be missed) but this moment would never be here again.

I haven’t always chosen the BEST things to do with my valuable time. As a driven “type A”, lion(choleric) personality, I get easily pulled into the daily “to do” list, the urgent deadlines & even the mundane tasks. While many of these things are good and even important …. if I spend most of my time on them I will miss out on the things in life that are truly the BEST – mainly my family, my friends, my faith and my Father in heaven – if I don’t stop and spend time just “being” and not always “doing”.

So today I will begin to work on the list, the piles and the messages…..but throughout it all I will make a point to look for the BEST things in life so those moments don’t pass me by.

What is the BEST way you can spend your time today?

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Change or stay the same

If you keep doing the same thing in the same way….you can expect the same results. This is true in every area of our lives.

 If we keep eating & exercising (or not) the same way we will continue to look the same.

If we keep training & disciplining (or not) our children in the same way we can except the same behavior.

 

If we keep spending, earning & budgeting (or not) in the same way we can expect the same financial status. 

If we keep communicating, relating & dating (or not) our spouses in the same way we can expect the same relationship. 

This is all well and good…if we are completely happy and content with the way things are.  We can go merrily along this year doing the same things we have always done and getting the same results. 

Yet so many of us start the new year with great expectations of change in our lives.  We set goals, we make resolutions, we decide that things need to be different, we make schedules and lists, we join gyms, we go back to church all with the hopes of change and yet we keep doing daily things the same way and then we are frustrated, disappointed, depressed and sometimes even mad that everything has remained the same. 

If we truly want a change in our lives whether it be in our personal lives, in our relationships with others or our businesses….we must change the way we do things. 

Are you happy & content with your life, relationships or business? 

If your answer is Yes! Yes! Yes!  Then keep on doing the things you have been doing and you’ll keep getting the same results. 

If your answer is “No….hardly!” or it is is like mine…..”Well not really, I’d like more.”  

Then its time to do things differently. 

1. Start with identifying the areas that you would like to see change.  Make a list of all the changes you would like to see in your life, your physical health, your marriage, your children, your business & your finances) 

2. Write down all the ways that you have “tried” to accomplish things in these areas. Be honest and be specific.  Evaluate how hard you attempted something & how much time you gave it to work. 

3. Brainstorm new ideas & new ways that you could accomplish your goals.  

4. Be willing to do things that are uncomfortable or even outright frightening for you. We often have to make ourselves do things that we absolutely do not want to do in order to become who we ultimately want to become. 

5. Make the commitment to daily, weekly & monthly do the things differently that will have a positive effect on our lives. 

Heres to a year of positive CHANGE in each of our lives.  

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