In the last blog post I talked about not letting your failures rob you of your future. I have to tell you, I just had another one of those moments not too long ago. I sat at my desk to re-learn Greek and Hebrew and thought to myself, "If I had just done this and stuck with it, I would have been using it for the last EIGHT YEARS." Imagine how well I would know the language of the Bible and be able to read it, and hopefully teach it, by now. Immediately I felt down and not up to what I was setting out to do.
I reminded myself that when I started lifting weights I had the same block and mindset. But I kept walking those stairs and made it part of my day. That is the key - make it part of your day. Block off a time and do it. Be disciplined.
Right now, if you're still reading, you may have immediately thought "I don't have any extra time in my day." You're right. None of us do. But there are things that can go that are in your day that are taking away from your best possible self. Find out what it is, or what they are, and begin to retool and refocus. Use those things as bonuses when you complete three consecutive days with your new habit or skill. But begin blocking out that time.
Here is a phrase I need to repeat to myself: ERADICATE THE EXCUSES, BECOME BETTER. I really believe that when we begin to do things better, and structure our days better, we become better people. It takes discipline. But I truly believe that we can become better people by ever so slowly changing what we do each day. For me, this involves doing this better each day so that I can live more fully into who God wants me to be - which is far and away more than I could do or become myself. He wants me (and us) to be like Him. That's crazy! And we can't do it by our own will, power, or strength. That's where the Holy Spirit comes in. But that's a blog (or two) for later ...
Below are some of my most common excuses to not do something. I am sure some of you can relate to these.
Don’t want to go
Let's face it, we just don't fee like doing stuff. This fact is all the more reason for us to strive to begin to live differently. I don't want to get older and have more problems and/or more regrets. So I think about the end goal and where I want to be. I remind myself that there are people there now who went through the struggles I might go through, or more, and they appear more whole, more happy. So despite how I feel, I try my hardest to focus on the goal, whether I feel like it or not.
Another thing, once I get started and get going my mind focuses on the task. Since I am no longer focused on how I don't really feel like doing something, and am now focused on actually doing it, my mindset is different. Makes sense right?
As soon as that thought comes, "I just don't feel like it," is when we need to start moving or getting things ready for us to do whatever it is we've day dreamed about being great at.
Other things to do
Quite often I think about all the other things I feel like I need to do. The reality is that if I order my day right and focus, I can get those things done with plenty of time to spare. More often than not I look back at the day and thought about how I wasted it thinking about everything I had to do, rather than actually doing it. More than that, it often ends up not taking up too much of my time - time that I spend doing nothing!
So just do the thing.
Want simple gist of something to do that won’t take too much time
Here is a trap. Because I am focused on wanting to do so much, I just want to do something quick. This isn't good, nor is doing things quickly a good habit to form. Perhaps if you are just getting into the new routine it is fine, but eventually we really need to do something better and better not just learn how to do it to get by. It's like playing guitar with a capo. You can get by for awhile, but eventually if you want to get really good you're going to have to learn those other chords ... and it's actually not hard. It is simply unfamiliar.
So don't let something not happen because you are unsure or unfamiliar. Instead of wasting time thinking about things and binge watching Amazon Prime (or Netflix), "waste" time looking into details of something you are interested in and learn.
Once you start leaning into working towards your day dream, you will love it when you see changes, especially when other people notice the changes. Like I said in an earlier blog, once the results begin to happen you will be happier and more motivated than ever to continue. But you have to do the thing. Eradicate the excuses and do the discipline.
I could be a master of the biblical languages right now. But I am not. So I am just going to try and be a master later and not get all down about not being one now. I am fitter than I was in High School, so if I can be in better shape later in life, I can do other things too!
And so can you.
Get after it. Eradicate the excuses. Do the discipline. Be better.
Some "weekly" musings from Pastor Dave as he sits on his porch and drinks coffee, thinking about theology and lifting heavy weights. For gymsharks, there is something called "Flex Fridays," where we vainly put up photos of ourselves flexing. So this blog is my attempt to flex my theological muscles through reflection ... get it?