At the start of August I stated my intention to maintain a healthy balance, even while working through the considerable task of moving out of our house. I committed to determine every two hours what I needed to be balanced, and make a conscious intention to accomplish that.
Overall I would say that August was a pretty good month. I did not remember this commitment every day, and I did not perfectly execute on it every day. But we did accomplish the move, and we did so in a way that I think was as healthy and as balanced as possible. There were moments of feeling overwhelmed, to be sure, but more so there was a calmness and steadiness through the entire process.
I began a new practice with my regular two-hour check-ins to help with this goal. In it I reviewed the interval of time that had just concluded, quickly jotting down every experience that had impacted me emotionally. There were ways I had let myself down, things I was proud of accomplishing, moments where others had mistreated me, moments where others had been kind, expectations that hadn’t been met, unforeseen blessings that had occurred, and so on. Anything that made an impact I took stock of, and in that moment was able to bring a sense of closure to the entire period.
Then I looked forward to the next two hours, and I listed out everything that I thought could be a challenge in it. I wrote down distractions that were likely to come my way, predispositions to failure, hurdles that I might not have the strength to clear. I tried to make specific intentions about how to meet each one, and deal with it in a healthy way. I wrote out clear hopes for what accomplishments I wanted to prioritize in this period as well.
This whole practice did not take very long, and I feel it helped me a great deal in having a clear intention for each new period of the day.
Now that the move is over, there are a lot of practices that I used to be consistent in, that I want to get back into. Date nights with my wife, eating healthily, maintaining strong relationships with friends, and ticking things off my personal list of errands. I’ve tried maintaining each of these over the last month to some degree, but it was sporadic at best. Last month was about getting through a lengthy tidal wave, without losing myself entirely in it. Not I want to come out of survival mode, and start thriving again.
I am going to put together a list of my battle lines: what are all the good and healthy practices that I’m on the fringes of doing each day. What am I accomplishing some of the time, but would like to be accomplishing all of the time? Throughout this month I will try to push these lines forward every day.
Now I want to be careful to not set unrealistic expectations for myself. If I don’t hit every single area every day then I won’t stress too much about it. I’m not looking to be perfect in execution, but to be perfect in trying. I want to be making progress, and that is enough.
This particular goal is directly related to the study I am currently conducting on this blog. I am excited to take the principles of my research, and make them alive in my living discipleship. Come back on October 1st where I’ll give an update on my progress.